Environment groups release interim report card

October 16, 2001

Australian Conservation Foundation - The Wilderness Society - Greenpeace - Friends of the Earth - Total Environment Centre - Conservation Councils of NSW, Victoria, Queensland, ACT, WA, NT & SA

With four weeks to the federal election, a coalition of environment groups today released interim report cards on the four major political parties performance, policies and commitments to date.

The groups will release a final card in the last two weeks of the campaign when policy positions are clearer.

The groups were pleased both Prime Minister John Howard and Opposition leader Kim Beazley stressed the importance of the environment in their opening comments on the election, but commented that their policies and performance need substantial improvement to get to the standards of the Australian Greens and the Democrats.

The groups have welcomed last week¹s statement by Labor on climate change and Monday¹s statement on salinity but say there remains many opportunities for both Labor and the Coalition to lift their environmental credibility.

Parties were graded under the five themes announced by the groups when they launched their election campaign two weeks ago, further details on how grades were determined are available at http://acfonline.org.au/election2001 .

energy reform (Marine B- pulled down by appalling forest record)

The groups stressed that the report cards were an assessment against the comprehensive and positive vision for Australia provided by them to all political parties prior to the election. The groups noted that preference negotiations are a matter for political parties.

For more information, contact:

Cam Walker
Friends of the Earth
Mob: 0419 338 047

Kathy Ridge
Conservation councils
Mob: 0438 899774

Don Henry
Australian Conservation Foundation
Mob: 0418 501 395
or John Connor
Mob: 0409 935 044

Peter Mullens
Mob: 0412 188 278

Alec Marr
The Wilderness Society
Mob: 0417 229 670