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Tuesday, 11 August 2009
Page: 4603

Senator Abetz asked the Minister representing the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts, upon notice, on 6 May 2009:

With reference to the answer to question on notice no. 1069 and the underspend in the program, A Sustainable Future Tasmania - Mole Creek:

(1)   How many hectares have been covenanted under this program.

(2)   What was the average price per hectare for the conservation covenant.

(3)   Will the underspend of $207 000 be available for future conservation covenants in the Mole Creek area, or has the money been returned to consolidated revenue.

Senator Wong (Minister for Climate Change and Water) —The Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts has provided the following answer to the honourable senator’s question:

The $3.6 million Mole Creek Forest Karst Program, part of the Tasmanian Supplementary Regional Forest Agreement, was voluntary and supported private landowners who were willing to sell or place a conservation covenant on their forested land (the allocation included $360,000 for administration). The Program concluded on 30 June 2008.

With regards to questions 1 and 2:

  • Two conservation covenants were funded at a total cost of $174,316 for 99 hectares (average of $1,761/ per hectare).
  • In addition, seven land purchases were funded at a total cost of $2,790,973 for 438 hectares (average of $6,372 per hectare). Five of these properties are being added to the Mole Creek Karst National Park, administered by the Tasmanian Government, and the remaining two properties have been purchased through a revolving property fund administered by the Tasmanian Land Conservancy.

With regards to question 3:

  • The Program underspend was returned to consolidated revenue.