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17 September 2008

334  DR STONE: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts—

(1) In respect of the Living Murray and Water for Rivers projects mentioned in his conditional approval of the Sugarloaf Pipeline, could he: (a) provide a list of the projects in Victoria that are funded under the Living Murray program and Water for Rivers company and for each project, include the date of the grant, the amount funded and the megalitres of water to be saved; and (b) confirm that the projects already funded under Living Murray or Water for Rivers are not counted in the water savings from sending water to Melbourne via the Sugarloaf Pipeline.

(2) In respect of the independent audit of the water savings as part of the conditional approval for the Sugarloaf Pipeline: (a) who will be responsible for undertaking the audit of the water savings, (i) can he provide assurance that it will be conducted independently, and (i) would he consider it appropriate for the proponents of the project, the Sugarloaf Pipeline Alliance and Victorian Government, to be involved; if so, why; and (b) do the water savings have to be demonstrated annually in order to send the water down the north south pipeline to Melbourne.

(3) Given his decision, as a condition of the Sugarloaf Pipeline, to not use the water quality reserve in Eildon Dam for the water supply to Melbourne, will he also take action to stop Coliban Water using this reserve to supply water to Bendigo.

335  MR PEARCE: To ask the Prime Minister—Since becoming Prime Minister, what has been the total cost to the Government for overseas travel for the Prime Minister and accompanying personal and departmental staff.