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Minister for the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts 2001-2004

The Hon Dr David Kemp, MP



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Media Release
Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Dr David Kemp

25 June 2004

Kemp welcomes historic agreement on water

Australian Environment and Heritage Minister, Dr David Kemp, has warmly welcomed the signing of Intergovernmental Agreements on the National Water Initiative and The Living Murray as historic achievements for the nation and the environment.

Dr Kemp said the agreement of Australian governments to ensure the environment an adequate share of water was undoubtedly the single greatest environmental achievement since federation.

"The growing awareness that our use of water has been excessive in terms of environmental cost and how to resolve that in a just and equitable way was a driving force behind The Living Murray process," Dr Kemp said.

"It brought to the fore the need to ensure security for water users that was a major factor in the development of the National Water Initiative process through COAG.

"It is a great tribute to the leadership of John Howard and John Anderson that clear pathways to achieving those goals are now agreed.

"It is a great display of the health of our democracy and its ability to deliver good governance."

Dr Kemp said the agreements would make a massive contribution to placing Australian agriculture, communities, and the environment, on a sustainable footing.

Commonwealth of Australia