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Media Release

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

ENVIRONMENTAL CRUSADERS LAUNCHED


6 May 1998

**Embargoed until Wednesday, 6 May, 1998**

The Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment, Senator Ian Macdonald today (Wed 6 May 1998) launched two key environmental projects that will benefit the environment and the Mirani Shire.

The two projects that were launched today (6 May 1998) were the Mirani Green Corps Project and the Pioneer River National Corridors of Green, Mirani site.

Unveiling the projects Senator Macdonald said the Mirani Green Corps Project aims to re-create a lagoon and restore wetlands to their former status which will provide an essential link in the local eco-system.

"The Green Corps youth training and environment program clearly demonstrates the Government's commitment to young Australians and the environment in regional communities.

"The Green Corp team of 10 environmental volunteers aged between 17 and 20 the members have put up their hand and offered to do things to help our environment," said Senator Macdonald.

The Mirani site of the Pioneer River National Corridors of Green Project is presently being prepared for the planting of 4,000 trees this Friday and Saturday by the Mirani High School Junior Landcare Group and the Mackay Society for Growing Native Plants.

"The National Corridors of Green program is a key component of Bushcare: The National Vegetation Initiative, which is one of the largest programs of the Federal Government's $1.25 billion National Heritage Trust.

"The goal of Bushcare is to reverse the long-term decline in the quality and extent of Australia's native vegetation communities in order to conserve biodiversity and contribute to the ecologically sustainable management of natural resources," Senator Macdonald said.

The Green Corps program provides great opportunities for young people aged to make a meaningful contribution to Australia's future by helping to conserve and restore the area's natural and cultural heritage.

Green Corps members work for six months on projects in all State and Territories in rural, remote and urban regions where important environmental work is required.

The Australian Trust for Conservation Volunteers has been appointed to administer the Green Corps programme. Young people interested in becoming involved in a Green Corps project can contact the Australian Trust for Conservation Volunteers National Hotline on 1800 633 844.

The Pioneer River National Corridors of Green Project is facilitated through Greening Australia and it consists if five sites along the Pioneer River located within Mackay City and Mirani Shire.

**Senator Macdonald will launch the two projects at the Mirani Shire Office and then inspect the projects at the conclusion of the Launch Please Contact Philip Connole for details on 0411 042 813 Media Welcome**.

ENDS
4 May, 1998

For more information contact Philip Connole on (07) 4771 3066 or 0411 042 813.

Commonwealth of Australia