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United Nations award - A big thank you to Australia

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G r e e n i n g A u s t r a l i a

Media Release May 25, 1998

United Nations Award s A Big Thank You to Australia

A United Nations Environment Program award for Greening Australia is a big thank you to all Australians from the international community, Greening Australia Chief Executive, Mark Thomas, said today.

Federal Environment Minister, Robert Hill, and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) in Nairobi announced the award today.

In its citation, the UNEP described Greening Australia as a defender of the environment. It had often been a 'silent partner' in the struggle for environmental protection.

"Its members did not seek rewards, but their achievements richly deserve to be recognised. UNEP is indeed honoured to pay tribute to the organisation's commitment and we hope that this recognition will encourage its members to continue their work."

The award will be presented to Greening Australia at a ceremony in Moscow on World Environment Day, June 5.

Mark Thomas said the award recognised greening achievements and would help Greening Australia to raise awareness of land degradation problems and change the culture of land management,

"It's recognition of the physical and financial contributions that many Australians make to protect and restore our vegetation."

Mr Thomas said that through the Commonwealth Bushcare Program, part of the Natural Heritage Trust, Greening Australia was creating awareness of the need to protect and restore native trees, shrubs and grasses and providing technical advice and assistance to landholders, community groups and individuals who were

working together to green Australia.

Greening Australia is a national, community-based organisation that has been conserving and re-establishing native vegetation for productivity and nature conservation benefits for 16 years. It has strong community networks in urban and rural Australia and provides specialist technical expertise in vegetation management through field days, workshops, training and demonstrations. x

Brian M, Peek, Public Affairs Manager, Greening Australia (02) 6281 8585 0417 466 891