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Joint Media Release
Mr Tony Abbott, MP
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for
Employment, Education, Training and Youth Affairs
Senator Ian Macdonald
Parliamentary Secretary to the
Minister for the Environment


19 December 1997

Protecting rare and endangered flora and fauna and bush regeneration is the focus of two new Green Corps projects announced today for the Northern Territory.

The Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment, Senator Ian Macdonald, and the Parliamentary Secretary for Employment, Education, Training and Youth Affairs, Tony Abbott MP, announced 33 new projects, to begin across Australia in April, which will provide places for 330 young Australians aged between 17 and 20 years.

Senator Macdonald said the projects complemented the Howard Government's environmental rescue plan, the $1.25 billion Natural Heritage Trust.

"Biodiversity conservation and bush regeneration are directly linked to Trust programs such as Bushcare and the Endangered Species Program.

"The team working within the Flora River Nature Park near Katherine will help protect sensitive tufa (porous rock) formations and monitor the Pig-nosed turtle.

"Previously believed to exist only in Papua New Guinea, the Pig-nosed turtle is being carefully monitored in the Northern Territory. The project will contribute to future conservation plans for the species.

"The Green Corps team based in Alice Springs will survey rare and endangered fauna in the West MacDonnell National Park near Alice Springs.

"The surveys will make significant contributions to local knowledge about the relationships between fauna and vegetation communities."

Mr Abbott said the program will do more than assist young people to join environmental projects. Green Corps helps young Australians to reach their potential by boosting their future employment and education prospects.

"Green Corps team members will receive accredited environmental training, providing nationally recognised skills transferable to other courses," Mr Abbott said.

The announcement of the fifth round of Green Corps projects marks the continued delivery of a key election commitment by the Howard Government and the commitment of $42 million to provide opportunities for 3500 young Australians over the next two years.

Media Contacts:
For Senator Macdonald, Paula Randall 0419 238 756
For Mr Abbott, Maxine Sells (06) 277 4337

Commonwealth of Australia