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Rudd’s stance on town camp leases contradictory - Greens

Moves by the Federal Government to push through with compulsory acquisition of Alice Springs town camps are a disaster in the making, and highlight a discord with rhetoric from Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, say the Australian Greens.

"A positive resolution is still possible, but the Rudd Government seems determined to dig in their heels and refuse to negotiate," said Senator Siewert today.

"Tangentyere Council have agreed to sign the 40 year leases and to lock in reforms to tenancy management - which would effectively deliver all of the Governments stated priorities."

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Barrow Island expansion could destroy ecosystem: Greens

Expansions to the controversial Gorgon Gas development on Barrow Island could have devastating impacts on the local ecosystem, warned the Australian Greens today.

"The original Gorgon proposal for a two-train LNG plant on Barrow Island has not even been started and now Chevron is talking about building three, four or five LNG trains," Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert said.

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Work still to be done on Closing the Gap

The Australian Greens said today they expected more from the Prime Minister in his first report back to Australia on Closing the Gap.

"This approach is a continuation of the Howard Government's approach to Aboriginal Issues. The Prime Minister's emphasis on personal responsibility, income management, false promises of more housing and tenure reform shows that yet again, the Government is clueless," said Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert today.

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Barnett backflips over Burrup while Garrett stands by

The Australian Greens have criticised the Western Australian Government for dismissing the need to protect the world's largest collection of Aboriginal rock engravings on the Burrup Peninsular in the State's north-west.

"In opposition, Colin Barnett called for the relocation of future Dampier industrial development away from the Burrup rock art and rightly described the art as having world heritage value," said Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert.

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Ord River irrigation expansion needs careful planning: Greens

The Australian Greens today expressed their deep concern over expansion of the Ord River irrigation project in North Western Australia, following Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's announcement of funding under the Federal Government's infrastructure package.

"The Rudd Government need to stop and look at the bigger picture, before rushing into large-scale irrigation projects in Northern Australia," said Senator Rachel Siewert.

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WA Government playing catch-up on housing

The WA Government needs to seriously invest in Indigenous housing, to address inadequate funding in the past by both State and Federal Governments, said the Australian Greens today.

"Both State and Federal governments need to play catch-up fast by investing the funding required to replace or upgrade homes in Indigenous communities," said Senator Rachel Siewert.

A recent WA government audit found that $540 million needs to be spent renovating nearly 2,500 homes in Indigenous communities in Western Australia.

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Greens back churches call for crisis response

The Australian Greens have indicated their support for the call by major church providers for the establishment of a ‘crisis and recovery fund' to help those most hurt by the global financial crisis.

"The real face of the global financial crisis isn't the banks, it is the families on the margins; those who are losing their job; those who are at risk of having their mortgage foreclosed for the first time in their lives," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

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