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Monday, 25 June 2018
Page: 3784


Senator CHISHOLM (Queensland) (16:04): I seek leave to make a short statement.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator CHISHOLM: Labor has a proud history of protecting the environment. It was Gough Whitlam who passed Australia's first environmental legislation, the Environmental Protection (Impact of Proposals) Act; appointed Australia's first minister for the environment; and put in place the inquiry into the environmental impacts of the Ranger Uranium Mine. These were the foundations that allowed him to prevent Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen from drilling in the Great Barrier Reef and enabled Bob Hawke to save Kakadu, the Franklin and the Daintree.

It was the Keating government that commenced the process for protecting our oceans, which was concluded when Peter Garrett and Tony Burke held the environment portfolio. Through this process of ocean protection, Australia established the strongest network of marine protected areas in the world. Labor support World Heritage and see it as a critical part of how precious areas are globally recognised and protected. Labor want World Heritage decisions that are based on extensive consultation, science about the values and engagement with traditional owners on all aspects of a listing.