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AGO downgrade will backfire.



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Senator Lyn Allison Australian Democrats Energy Spokesperson 10 July 2002 MEDIA RELEASE 02/357

www.democrats.org.au

AGO downgrade will backfire The Government must strengthen the Australian Greenhouse Office instead of clipping its wings, the Australian Democrats warned today.

Democrats’ Energy Spokesperson, Senator Lyn Allison, said the Greenhouse Office was a good initiative for this Government.

Senator Allison said, “If the Warwick Smith Report recommends folding the Greenhouse Office into the Department of Environment and Heritage, the Prime Minister should ignore it.

“The Greenhouse Office needs independence and the teeth to deliver on Australia’s relatively easy Kyoto targets as well as Government support beyond a reliance on voluntary industry measures.

“Australia’s projected emission levels show an increase of 33% above 1990 levels by 2010 - well above our Kyoto target.”

Senator Allison said, “This is no time for Government to demote greenhouse initiatives.

“As the worst per capita greenhouse polluter, Australia’s efforts have become a joke.

“Gutting the Greenhouse Office is yet another sign that the Federal Government is walking away from its responsibilities on climate change. Our greenhouse policy agenda is currently being set by the United States. This is a perilous move that will backfire,” concluded Senator Allison.

Contact: John Derry 0408 056 167