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Abetz casual on quarantine.

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Christine Milne

Australian Senate Australian Greens Senator for Tasmania

media release

Abetz Casual on Quarantine

Hobart, Monday, 3 September 2007 Australian Greens Climate Change Spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, today called on Fisheries Minister, Senator Eric Abetz, to act fast to contain the spread of a virus that could destroy Tasmania's abalone industry.

Senator Milne said “Senator Abetz cannot be taken seriously on quarantine issues if he thinks we can wait for action until the virus killing Victorian abalone reaches Tasmanian waters.

"Australia's horse-racing industry should be very grateful that Senator Abetz is not managing their concerns, or the swift action to contain the spread of horse flu would have been derailed by silly arguments about whether it was a state or federal issue.

"This is no time for a casual approach to quarantine. Once the disease reaches Tasmania, it will be too late. We need fast action now from Federal authorities to contain the disease and make sure it never reaches our State.

"The Tasmanian abalone industry has been highly responsible by closing their fishery. But they want answers and they want action."

Contact: Tim Hollo (CBA) on 0437 587 562 or Cassy O’Connor (HOB) on 03 6224 8899