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The Australian Greens: a list of achievements and activities relevant to Tasmania

The major Greens policies are supportive of Tasmania. For example, the Greens support will get the mining tax through -- and we'll be trying to make it much stronger -- which will redistribute some money from overseas shareholders to Australians including Tasmanians.

A more measured pace in extraction of our mineral resources would mean a lower exchange rate which would help Tasmanian tourism and lower interest rates that would benefit other Tasmanian industries.

Business in Tasmania is more small business and so the Greens proposal to replace the 1% cut in company tax for all business with a 5% cut just for small business would also be pro-Tasmania. Small business will also benefit from the tax concessions to be funded from the mining tax, which the Coalition opposes.

Tasmanian enterprises should be well placed to attract funding from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation which the Greens pushed the Government to include in the Clean Energy Future package.

The Greens were instrumental in the stimulus programme passing the parliament. This resulted in, for example, 227 Tasmanian primary schools receiving $360 million. Among projects funded in Tasmania from the stimulus programme are:
• Around 20 improvements to road black spots
• Around 20 rail level crossing boom gates
• New multi-purpose school halls at Bicheno, Bruny Island, Cape Barren Island, Ouse, Ulverstone and Wilmot and refurbishment of those at Rosebery and Sprent
• School libraries at Franklin and Westbury
• Performing Arts centre at Lilydale High
• School tennis courts at Cape Barren Island
• Classroom refurbishment at Ashley School
• School gymnasia at South George Town and Winnaleah
• Improved lighting and acoustics for Albert Hall, Launceston
• Refurbishment of John Hart Conservatory, Launceston
• Restoration of Lilydale Recreation Ground Pavilion
• Redevelopment of Northern stand at Aurora Stadium, Launceston
• Construction of West Park sports facility, Burnie
• Multipurpose Community Centre at Windsor Park
• Upgraded facilities at community halls in Fingal, Granton, Koonya, Maydena, Midway Point, Railton, Riana, Saltwater, Turners Beach and Whitemark
• Upgraded facilities at Beaconsfield Cricket Club
• Redevelopment of Sorrell Pioneer Park
• Enhancements to the Brighton Main Street
• Arena lighting for night sport at Bellerive Oval
• Solar heating system at the Cressy Memorial Swimming Pool.
• Upgrades to facilities in recreation grounds in Campania, Kempton, Mangalore, Oatlands and Woodsdale
• Playground upgrades in Bracknell, Hagley and Whitemore
• Stage and rotunda at Tynwald Park, New Norfolk
• Upgrade of heating systems at Clarence Aquatic Centre
• Refurbishment of the Bothwell Recreation Ground
• Redevelopment of the Devonport Skate Park
• Replacement of Panatana Rivulet footbridge at Port Sorell
• Construction of numerous walking and bike paths and picnic facilities
• Construction of 10 defence houses in Hobart

Christine Milne - activities and achievements relevant to Tasmania since 2007 federal election

• As a co deputy chair of the Multi Party Climate Committee, Christine fought successfully to have the Biodiversity Fund included in the Clean Energy Future package, which will go a long way towards restoring carbon stores within depleted landscapes throughout Australia. The Biodiversity Fund is ongoing, and the Government has allocated $946 million for the project over the first six years.
• Similarly, Christine was successful in having the carbon farming initiative included in the Clean Energy Future package, meaning farmers throughout Australia can earn extra income through managing soils as mass carbon stores.
• Christine moved successfully for a senate inquiry into the threat to pollination, the honey industry and our native nectar-feeding animals from the invasive Asian honey bee.
• Fought successfully for a PET scanner in Tasmania.
• Christine has been a key figure in the fight to stop the Tamar Valley pulp mill.
• Introduced to Queenstown residents the ‘Renew' concept of linking vacant commercial properties to artists and community groups. Renew Queenstown is now up and running.
• Commissioned the Paradoxes of Protection report by Dr Louise Crossley that found Tasmanian protected areas are grossly underfunded, understaffed and mismanaged.
• Christine is a strong voice in federal parliament calling for the protection of Tasmania's Tarkine region.
• She secured $75,000 from the Ted Turner Foundation for further research into Tasmanian devil facial tumour disease.
• Christine worked with key scientists to highlight Tasmanian wildlife disease; a range of diseases threatening many of our native species. Christine has called for an independent study investigating the cause of these diseases.
• She has worked with the Road Victims Tasmania group in their bid to erect a public memorial to the people who have been killed on Tasmanian roads.
• Worked in the Senate to protect Tasmania's lowland native grasslands.
• Worked with the federal government to bring a $769,000 investment into North East Tasmania through allocating funds to the completion of the Bridport walking track circuit.
• She called on Minister Tony Burke to review the licensing of methyl bromide for use in the Port of Burnie.
• Helped secure a portion of the $40 million for national bikeways to be used for bikeways around Tasmania.
• Provides long-term support for Tasmania's Choir of High Hopes by printing their monthly Newsletter.
• Christine has been a key player in uniting environment groups to oppose the logging of native forests for woodchips, timber and biomass fuel.
• Christine has been a Deputy Chair of the Rural, Regional and Transport Senate Committee and a key player for a better deal for Tasmanian dairy farmers in the long-running dispute over fairer milk prices.
• Christine has been outspoken in protecting Tasmania's apple industry from the risk of fire blight and the Suzukii fruit fly, and the abalone industry from ganglioneuritis virus.
• Referred the Rudd government's decision to allow the import of beef from countries affected by mad cow disease (BSE) to a Senate Inquiry and successfully worked with the Coalition and Nationals to have the decision reversed.
• Christine has taken a keen interest in the free trade agreements to which Australia is a signatory, and has sought an evaluation of these to identify whether the benefits promised have ever eventuated.
• She has been critical of the duopoly of Coles and Woolworths, and has taken a keen interest in the Trade Practices Act and the role of the ACCC. She is working to see a complete review of Competition Policy and a restructuring so that those who oversee mergers are not the ones deciding whether the mergers have been anti competitive.
• Christine is also a strong voice for improving food labelling laws so that consumers can be clear about where their food comes from and how it is produced. She advocates for more local, seasonal and fresh produce and supports farmers' markets.
• She has been a strong critic of Managed Investment Schemes that have resulted in the loss of Tasmanian food growing land to plantations with its adverse impacts on small agricultural communities.
• Christine sees the strong economic benefits of value adding locally. She advocates strongly for innovation in the production, processing and sale of produce especially in the face of climate change.
• Pursued an audit of the grants under the Tasmanian Community Forest Agreement.
• Christine is promoting a national food security plan in the face of climate change, peak oil, urban expansion and unregulated foreign investment in land and water rights. She has proposed that the Foreign Investment Review Board establish a register of land and water rights already sold, and that land and water rights be categorised as sensitive and be subject to government veto as New Zealand has done.

Achievements and activities specifically in the Senate

• As a co deputy chair of the Multi Party Climate Committee, Christine spearheaded the fight to break the political deadlock and deliver a price on carbon in order to drive the transformation of the Australian economy & action on climate change.
• Christine was instrumental in the forming of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) that brings together more than $3 billion in government funds for renewable energy R&D under the auspices of an independent expert board.
• Been a leading voice for Australian national investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development.
• The Greens supported the Government's $6 billion flood levy, whilst blocking proposed cuts to the solar flagship program.
• Supported the Rudd government's stimulus package.
• Successfully campaigned for the Renewable Energy Target to be brought back to the Senate and therefore secured $20 billion of investment for Australia, particularly for wind and especially for the Mussleroe Wind Farm in NE Tasmania.
• Introduced Green Building Energy Efficiency legislation that has been hailed globally as a model.
• Initiated many critical Senate Inquiries including:
o investigating Australia's future oil supply
o Builders Warranty Insurance
o PET Scanners
o The dairy industry
o Beef imports from nations where Mad Cow Disease (BSE) is present
• Secured $40m for bike paths around Australia.
• Secured a breakthrough in the standoff on AQIS fees and charges.
• Secured $75,000 for further research into Tasmanian devil facial tumour disease.
• Saved the Australian National Academy of Music from closure.
• Introduced legislation for a gross national feed-in tariff adopted in a number of states.
• Successfully negotiated to exclude the most fuel efficient cars from the Luxury Car Tax.
• Secured $60 million for preserving and maintaining built cultural heritage around Australia.
• Supported green loans assessors, and referred the scheme to the Commonwealth Auditor General for investigation.
• Brokered the $300 million Local Green Jobs package.
• A leading voice for maintaining biosecurity protection for farmers and the environment, including the importation of apples from countries affected by fire blight, beef from countries affected by BSE, and a range of seafood diseases.
• Secured a change in the quarantine arrival card from New Zealand to better protect Australia from Didymosphenia geminate (rock snot).

Christine and other Green MPs are currently working on a range of vital issues including:

Climate Change & Peak Oil: as a key architect of the Government's Clean
Energy Future package, Christine is looking ahead to building political will among all parties as we move towards greater ambition and a zero carbon economy.

Renewable Energy: championing alternative energy research and development such as solar, wind and geothermal technologies; supporting the creation of "green economies"; the need to grasp global competitive advantages; no "clean coal"; public investment and security and energy efficiency targets.

Health & Well Being: fighting for a publicly funded dental system; better mental health services; increased funds for the public hospital system; increased financial support for carers (disabilities & aged) and public education about the importance of diet and exercise.

Protecting Australia's natural environment; saving native forests once and for all; extending the Tasmanian World Heritage Area; ending Forestry Tasmania's horrendous burning regimes; controlling the spread of plantations and use of chemicals; proposing legislation and monitoring of health of all waterways; air pollution laws; protection of soils; greater funds for reserves and proactive management on endangered species such as the Tasmanian Devil.

Christine is holding the Tasmanian and Federal governments to account for logging in the 430,000 hectares of informal forest reserves earmarked for immediate protection under the forest peace deal signed by Premier Giddings and Prime Minister Gillard.

Sustainable Economy & Agriculture: planning and building a "low carbon economy"; equitable taxation; promoting sustainable Tasmanian food growers with a healthy national export economy; transport (Tas Rail investment); keeping Tasmania GE free; and a national food security plan.

Indigenous/ Human Rights: standing up for Tasmanian Aboriginal support; balanced immigration, refugee and population policies; proposing a Global Disaster Relief Centre.

Education & Arts; seeking significant funding increases and recognition of excellence in the Arts; abolishment of HECS debts to provide a free education; increase science funding to CSIRO, universities and colleges; re-skilling the workforce for a post-oil dependent economy and society.

 

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