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Media Release
Hon Dr Sharman Stone MP
Federal Member for Murray

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister
for the Environment and Heritage


15 February 2001

SunRace 21.C powers through Melbourne with a little help from the sun


Despite early morning rain, a warm Melbourne welcome greeted competitors from the SunRace 21.C race, travelling across southern Australia. Australia's top solar racers are competing in a 2,300km event between Adelaide and Sydney, via Melbourne and Canberra and passing though a number of rural and regional communities in between.

Dr Sharman Stone, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage, was on hand to 'wave-in' competitors at the Southbank finish line, after completing their 253km journey from Charlton in northern Victoria.

"The nine competitors racing across the continent are highlighting our commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by making better use of renewable energy and alternative fuel technology, which are friendlier on our environment", Sharman Stone said.

The Federal Government is sponsoring this year's race through the Australian Greenhouse Office - the world's first dedicated greenhouse agency.

"We are investing $1 billion over 5 years on greenhouse gas abatement. In Melbourne alone the Federal Government has funded the conversion of buses on Blackburn Rd to ethanol, provided $1m to the Queen Victoria Market to install state of the art solar technology and funded a joint BP-CSIRO venture to produce a new long-life battery for use with renewable energy systems".

"Human induced climate change means we must reduce our generation of energy that releases harmful greenhouse gases in the process. Sunrace 21.C is an opportunity to showcase technology that may eventually lead to the current generation of greenhouse gas emitting motor vehicles being replaced by 'clean' solar powered vehicles".

"The next step is to apply the lessons learnt on the race track to the further commercialisation of solar technology".

Sharman Stone said that there were four competitors in SunRace 21.C from Victoria this year.

"Swinburne University, RMIT, Trinity Grammar School and Chisholm TAFE are all competing in this years event. Here's hoping in true 'state of origin' style that one of these teams are able to win the event for Victoria!"

"Whoever wins, we will all benefit in the long term, by reducing our greenhouse gas emissions and promoting clean and green renewable energy", Sharman Stone said.

For further information please contact:
Simon Frost 0419 495 468 or 02 6277 2016
February 15th, 2001

Commonwealth of Australia