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Media Release

Senator the Hon Ian Macdonald
Parliamentary Secretary to the
Minister for the Environment

GOVERNMENT FUNDS STUDY INTO BOONDALL WETLANDS


28 July 1998

The reasons for a decline in the number of marine species inhabiting the Boondall Wetlands will be studied following today's (Tuesday) announcement of a Federal Government Grant.

The Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment, Queensland Senator Ian Macdonald, and the Federal Member for Lilley, Elizabeth Grace announced a $44,000 grant to the Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) to undertake the study on the Boondall Wetlands.

"The AMCS will investigate the substantial decline in some of the marine species in the Boondall Wetlands from the serious pollution problems that have been detected. The Wetlands form part of the Moreton Bay Ramsar Site," Senator Macdonald said.

Research suggests that in recent years there has been a decline in sediment -dwelling invertebrates in the Boondall Wetlands and an unidentified toxic chemical contaminant has been found in sediment which may be the possible cause.

"The study will seek to investigate possible causes of the decline through a targeted program of biological and sediment sampling accompanied by detailed analysis.

"The project will be undertaken in a partnership arrangement between the AMCS and the Centre for Environmental Risk Management and Policy at Griffith University," Senator Macdonald said.

The Federal Member for Lilley, Elizabeth Grace welcomed the funding for the study as the decline of marine creatures is having a serious impact on the marine and bird populations in the Wetlands.

"It is important to find out what pollutant is affecting the mudflats because these marine creatures are critical to the food chain that supports life in the Boondall Wetlands and Moreton Bay.

"This study will complement the work that has recently been carried out in the area by the Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage," Mrs Grace said.

Mrs Grace said she was delighted this important part of the Electorate of Lilley was receiving attention from the Federal Government.

"I have been meeting with local conservation groups working with this problem and I am delighted the Federal Government has taken action to help protect this important part of North Brisbane's environment," Mrs Grace said.

Senator Macdonald said the grant is part of the Coast and Clean Seas program part of the $1.25 billion Natural Heritage Trust,

Ends
28 July 1998
For further enquires please call Philip Connole 07 4771 3066 or 0417 063 605

Senator Macdonald and Elizabeth Grace will announce the grant with representatives of the Australian Marine Conservation Society at the Nudgee Beach Environment Education Centre, O'Quinn Street, Nudgee Beach at 1pm Tuesday 28 July 1998.

Commonwealth of Australia