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Wednesday, 7 November 1973
Page: 1634

Senator Carrick asked the Attorney-General, upon notice:

(   1 ) In view of the statement by the Minister for Transport in the press release on 28 August 1973, in which he stated 'Galston has been chosen by the Australian Government to meet Sydney's airport needs for the 1980 V, how does the AttorneyGeneral reconcile his reply that no final decision has been made with the press statement of the responsible Minister that Galston had been chosen as a result of a Cabinet decision.

(2)   Is the Attorney-General aware that Galston was rejected on a cost-benefit basis by the authoritative specialist study group set up by the Government.

(3)   Does the Government propose to ignore statements by conservation authorities that the Galston area must be preserved in its natural state; if not, does this make a hollow mockery of the Government 's claim to support conservation.

Senator Murphy - The answer to the honourable senator's question is as follows:

(   1 ) The construction of an airport at Galston is subject to a feasibility study being undertaken. In the light of the feasibility study, a final decision will be made by the Government. This is, in effect, what the Minister for Transport said in his press statement.

(2)   and (3) As indicated in the answer to (1), a detailed feasibility study will be undertaken before a final decision is made. The study will have regard to all relevant considerations, including the economics of the proposal and its environmental implications. An environmental impact statement will be prepared as part of the feasibility study. It is Government policy that public hearings be held to consider important environmental impact statements prepared in relation to proposals significantly affecting the environment.

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