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Wednesday, 13 November 1974
Page: 2347

Senator JESSOP (South Australia) - I wish to raise the question of the National Estate. This morning I asked the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs (Senator Cavanagh) who represents the Minister for Urban and Regional Development (Mr Uren) in the Senate a question concerning the preservation of the Hallett Cove area and in regard to the fact that there were bulldozers in the area encroaching upon a very important geological structure that is of great importance to South Australia. I think that the Minister was very sympathetic with the idea of the preservation of this area. He said that he had inspected this part of South Australia when he was a member of the Opposition. He stated that he tried to get money from the then Government in order that this area could be preserved. But he seemed to show disinterest in the matter because he did not give me any answer to my question. I want to know what the Federal Government intends doing with respect to that very important area of South Australia. Scientifically and geologically it is a most significant and unique feature of that State. Yet, the Minister seemed to me to brush aside the matter and treat it in a very off-hand manner.

The Minister for the Environment and Conservation (Dr Cass) has visited South Australia to inspect this geological structure and agrees that something ought to be done about it. In my view, the Federal Parliament and the Federal Government ought to accept this responsibility. It ought either to try to persuade the South Australian Government to alter its attitude with respect to the plan for this area or to acquire it for the benefit of the South Australian people as part of the National Estate. I would like the Minister to give me a more sympathetic answer than he gave this morning during question time.

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