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Media Release
Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell

6 December 2006

Report on the State of Australia's Environment

A comprehensive independent report tabled today in Parliament outlines progress and pressure points on the state of Australia’s environment, the Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell said today.

“The Australia State of the Environment 2006 is the nation’s most wide-ranging environmental report card to date,’ Senator Campbell said. “It is the third in a series of studies prepared every five years for the Australian Government by an independent committees of experts. This report is a great resource for government, industry and the community. It tells us what we are doing well in caring for the environment and what we need to do better.”

The report tracks changes in a range of areas including atmosphere, biodiversity, human settlements, inland waters, coasts and oceans, natural and cultural heritage and the Australian Antarctic Territory.

The report outlines key achievements in environmental management since 2001, including:

The report also outlines key environment challenges for Australia, including the cumulative impacts of increasing populations on Australia’s coastline; the need for continued waste reduction and recycling efforts; the poor condition of land, inland waters and coastal lakes in some parts of Australia; pressures on some of our fisheries; and adapting to the impacts of climate change.

“I am particularly pleased that the report acknowledges a major shift in the past ten years in the approach by governments and the community towards environmental management. Senator Campbell said. “The Australian Government has shown leadership in this area, spending some $10.3 billion in the last five years to address environmental problems, in particular through the Natural Heritage Trust and the National Action Plan for Salinity and Water Quality.

“The Australian Government is committed to protecting our environment for the long haul. It has invested unprecedented amounts of funds to make this happen.

“I congratulate the 2006 Australian State of the Environment Committee and its Chairman, Associate Professor Bob Beeton, for the commitment and effort in bringing this report together.”

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