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Time to clean up Sydney's coasts of shame.



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Wed, 26th March 2008 TIME TO CLEAN UP SYDNEY'S COASTS OF SHAME

The Hon Greg Hunt MP Shadow Minister for Climate Change, Environment and Urban Water (to 22 September 2008)

A new campaign is being launched today to clean up Sydney's coasts of shame.

The Federal and State Shadow Environment Ministers, Greg Hunt and Pru Goward, said it was time to clean up Australia's coasts and embark on a revolution in water recycling.

Speaking at Australia's most famous beach, Bondi, Mr Hunt and Ms Goward announced a new partnership to clean up Sydney's coasts.

''It's time the Iemma Government stopped wasting water and polluting our coasts,'' Ms Goward said.

''Every year almost 400 billion litres of recyclable sewage, much of it barely treated to primary standard, is dumped off Sydney's magnificent coasts, rather than recycled for industry or farming.

''The dumping of this treated sewage off our coasts is a nineteenth century practice in the 21st century. Almost 50 billion litres a year of primary treated sewage is dumped off Bondi, over 120 billion litres off Manly and over 160 billion litres off Malabar - opposite the beaches of Peter Garrett's own electorate and the NSW Minister for Climate Change, Environment and Water, Verity Firth's electorate of Balmain.

''Perhaps most disconcertingly, two billion litres of untreated raw sewage is dumped straight into Sydney's coastal waters every year.''

''We need a deadline for ending ocean outfall, cleaning up our coasts and recycling this massive waste of water - this is the real 2020 vision for Sydney and for Australia's coasts,'' Mr Hunt said.

''Our goal is simple, to work with all political parties and the community to clean up our coasts and recycle 100% of our water by 2020.

''The setting of a far-reaching vision is important in working across Governments and across decades to give our coasts, our water supplies and our grandchildren a better future.

''The partnership between the New South Wales and Federal Oppositions is the first of a series around Australia. The Federal Opposition will work with State Oppositions on a vision of total recycling of Australia's 1800 billion litres of waste water and coastal pollution.

''If the States are not willing to work with the ideas put forward by State Oppositions and clean up our coasts then we will strongly consider national emissions standards legislation for coastal discharge.''

Mr Hunt and Ms Goward said it's time that we brought Australia's water use in line with the best of the world and with the standards of the 21st century. ''It's time we cleaned up our coasts and undertook a revolution in recycling our waste water for industry and agriculture,'' Mr Hunt and Ms Goward said.