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Thursday, 6 December 1973
Page: 4396

Mr FOX (Henty) - by leave- On behalf of the Opposition, I should like to say that we are happy to see that the Government has made this amount of money available for the purposes stated by the Minister for Science (Mr Morrison). If I have any personal criticism, it is that the amount is not large enough. The study was recommended by the House of Representatives Select Committee on Wild life Conservation, of which I had the honour to be Chairman. The Committee recommended that a biological study be carried out in relation to birds, animals and reptiles and their ecology. It is a well known fact that in the past many countries have destroyed unique areas of habitat which can never be replaced. It is also well known that hundreds of species of wildlife have disappeared and, in the main, this has been due to encroachment on their habitat and not because they have been hunted.

We, as a Committee, considered that this survey was urgent, and I commend the Minister and the Government for making this amount available. I believe that before any development takes place in any virgin area of land it should be essential that an environmental impact study be carried out. For the present, the provision of this amount of money and the establishment of this Council are steps in the right direction and we completely support them.

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