Environment

I believe we need to protect our unique environments.  The picturesque landscapes are a major attraction of the Adelaide Hills, the Fleurieu, and Kangaroo Island. I have been fighting to make sure our environment stays stunning!

This means:

  • Getting a fair deal for the Murray River, Lower Lakes and Coorong
  • Keeping risky big oil out of the Bight
  • Ensuring we preserve prime agricultural land from too much residential development and retain our region’s agricultural landscape
  • Lobbying the Government to act on climate change and worsening coastal storms
  • Keeping plastic out of our oceans

 

Saving the Murray

My focus has been on making sure the very end of the River has a voice. When the River suffers, it dies from the mouth up. The Murray Darling Basin Plan needs to be delivered in full and on time.

All decisions must be based on scientific evidence and not by vested interests. Most critically, there needs to greater State and Federal Government transparency and accountability – everyone who uses the River needs to have confidence in the Murray Darling Basin Plan.

Results:

  • Holding the Government to account on water buyback overpayments
  • Sending the Government back to the drawing board on the flawed Northern Basin Review
  • Driving greater transparency and accountability in the Basin Plan
  • Securing a commitment from the Prime Minister to make the River Murray a standing item in every COAG (Council of Australian Governments) meeting
  • Securing a commitment from the Prime Minister to make the River Murray the subject of a special biannual Senate Estimates process

Speeches and Questions in Parliament:

Media Releases:

I have also asked Questions in Writing on the following topics:

  • Barwon-Darling allegations
  • Environmental special account
  • Murray Darling Basin Plan standards and auditing
  • Automation of the barrages on the Lower Lakes

 

Fighting for the Bight

Big oil in the Bight is just too risky. Even though we are told the likelihood of an oil spill is low, the proposed deep-water drilling methods are largely untested and the outcome of any spill would be catastrophic for our communities. Our environment is not replaceable. Local tourism and livelihoods also depend upon our environment, coasts and oceans being attractive and productive.

Results:

  • Securing anti-drilling exclusion zones for the Southern and Western Commonwealth Marine Parks
  • Ensuring big oil is aware of community opinion on drilling in the Bight
  • Negotiating greater protections for Commonwealth Marine Parks

Speeches in Parliament:

Media Releases:

I have also asked Questions in Writing on the following topics:

  • Commonwealth marine parks

 

Climate change and coastal storms

As the effects of climate change slowly escalate, the damage and erosion that storms and rising sea levels will cause to Australian coastlines is beyond the ability and funds of local councils to manage. Local councils in our own electorate are struggling to cope and need assistance from State and Federal Governments.

The Minister for Environment has confirmed that “[a]dvice from the Bureau of Meteorology is that there is a relatively high degree of scientific certainty that coastal storms in South Australia will become less frequent but with the impacts of storms being more severe due to higher sea levels and increased rainfall”, with the Coorong and Lower Lakes particularly vulnerable to rising sea levels.

Federal leadership is needed to coordinate Australia’s response. I have heeded the call from local government and the Australian Coastal Councils Association to do what I can to address this issue.

Results:

  • Securing a $110 million equity loan for the Solar Thermal Plant in Port Augusta
  • Delivering the electorate-wide Micah Community Climate Petition to Parliament
  • Hosting a clean energy roadshow for businesses throughout the electorate
  • Delivering the Young Mayo climate change banner to the Minister for the Environment
  • Lobbying the Federal Government to take action on coastal erosion
  • Delivering the keynote address at the annual conference of the Australian Coastal Councils Association

Media Releases:

Speeches in Parliament:

I have also asked Questions in Writing on the following topics:

  • CoastAdapt project; funding for the National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility (NCCARF)
  • Coastal hazard management

 

Preserving our unique agrarian landscape

I believe that the character of our prime agricultural land should be protected from overdevelopment. I support the Mount Lofty Ranges UNESCO World Heritage Bid that seeks recognition for the Adelaide Hills and Mount Lofty Ranges as unique agrarian landscapes.

Results:

  • Hosted and launched the Mount Lofty Ranges UNESCO World Heritage bid in Parliament
  • Supported the passage of the register for foreign agricultural water ownership

Speeches in Parliament:

 

Keeping plastic out of our oceans

When I visit schools and talk with children across the electorate, the number one issue they talk to me about is the environment. Recycling and plastic waste are particularly prominent issues. After speaking with students from Kangaroo Island Community Education (KICE), I decided to champion a national ban on lightweight single-use plastic bags in Parliament.

Results:

  • Delivering a motion and speech in the House of Representatives urging hold-out State Governments to implement a plastic bag ban
  • Directly lobbying the Victorian and New South Wales’ governments to implement a ban
  • Victoria has now announced its intention to implement a ban
  • Supporting Kangaroo Island’s plastic bag free campaign
  • Delivering keynote address at Parliamentary launch of the ocean conservation movie, ‘Blue

Speeches in Parliament:

Media Releases: