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Truss congratulates Australian farmers on World Environment Day.

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Home | Media Releases DAFF04/157WT - 5 June 2004

Truss congratulates Australian farmers on World Environment Day

On World Environment Day, Agriculture Minister Warren Truss today congratulated Australian farmers on their adoption of environmentally friendly and sustainable agricultural practices.

"Australians from all walks of life should be aware of the significant effort farmers are putting in to caring for our country's natural resources - our soil, water, vegetation and biodiversity," he said.

"Our understanding of what constitutes good farming practice, and our awareness of the fragility of the Australian landscape, has grown enormously over the past few decades.

"The community-based landcare movement, in particular, has helped farmers develop and implement more sustainable natural resource management practices. Some 40 per cent of farmers are members of Landcare groups and a further 35 per cent participate from time to time - making them Australia's most active and committed hands-on carers for the environment.

"All Australians have benefited from this effort through better quality food, cleaner water and a healthier environment and, I congratulate our farmers for their contribution to the health of our environment.

"The Australian Government is proud of its partnership arrangements with rural communities through its $5 billion natural resource programs, and will continue its strong support of the community landcare movement.

"The effectiveness of landcare is demonstrated by a recent report which found that, for every one of the more than $500 million provided by the Australian Government for landcare activities, other sources contributed around $2.60.

"Landcare groups are also contributing significantly to the Australian Government's regional approach to natural resource management.

"The $3 billion Natural Heritage Trust and $1.4 billion National Action Plan for Salinity and Water Quality are drawing on the extensive knowledge and expertise of landholders and local communities, providing regional bodies with greater autonomy in deciding how to manage local issues and challenges.

"The Government is looking at how it can help build closer links between landcare and industry bodies, and the scientific community, to strengthen the information flow to landholders, and to broker partnerships on innovative approaches to sustainability.

"Overall, the adoption of more sustainable agricultural practices is leading to more profitable, competitive and sustainable farms. This in turn is leading to stronger rural


and regional communities and greater national wealth."

Further media inquiries:

Minister Truss' office: Tim Langmead - 02 6277 7520 or 0418 221 433

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