Australian Government, 2011‑12 Budget
Budget

Part 2: Expense Measures (Continued)

Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

Antarctica — continuation of shipping support

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

The Government will provide $3.4 million in 2011‑12 to maintain shipping logistical support for Australia's Antarctic program.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

Antarctica — maintaining Australia's presence

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities 13.2

The Government will provide $13.2 million in 2011‑12 to maintain functions that support Australia's presence in Antarctica. The funding will contribute to the maintenance of station operations and Antarctic science projects.

Australia‑Antarctica Airlink — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

The Government will provide $11.7 million in 2011‑12 to continue the operation of the Australia‑Antarctica Airlink, a direct air connection between Hobart and Antarctica.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

Community Heritage Grants — establishment

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities 4.0 4.0

The Government will provide $8.0 million over two years for competitive grants to assist local communities to manage and conserve heritage places that are important to Australians. The program will also enable greater community access to heritage places of local and national significance.

Environmental Stewardship Program — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities 17.1 18.8 21.7 26.6

The Government will provide $84.2 million over four years to continue the Environmental Stewardship Program. The program encourages voluntary actions by private sector land managers by providing long‑term payments (for up to 15 years) to protect high value conservation assets. Participants will be selected through market based mechanisms, including reverse auctions. The program will target environmental assets across a greater geographic range using a habitat based approach which addresses habitats rather than individual species.

Kokoda Track and region — management and protection

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

The Government will provide $4.5 million in 2011‑12 to continue to assist in the management and long‑term protection of the Kokoda Track. The funding will enable the Australian Government to support the Government of Papua New Guinea to achieve the goals set out in the Second Joint Understanding 2010‑2015 between Papua New Guinea and Australia on the Owen Stanley Ranges, Brown River Catchment and Kokoda Track Region.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resourcing of AusAID.

This measure is part of the Government's commitment to increase Australia's official development assistance over the long term.

Local environmental initiatives — mid‑north coast, New South Wales

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities 1.0 1.0 1.0

The Government will provide $3.0 million over three years to progress local environmental initiatives on the New South Wales mid‑north coast. This measure includes funding for the Cattai Wetlands — Big Swamp project, planning and works for the Lake Innes freshwater reversion program and a feasibility study into the prevention of further erosion of the Old Bar Beach.

National Environmental Research Program — reduction in funding

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities ‑3.5 ‑3.5

The Government will reduce funding by $7.0 million over two years from the National Environmental Research Program.

The National Environmental Research Program will now provide funding of $85.2 million over the next four years.

Savings from this measure will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

National Wildlife Corridors Plan — establishment

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

The Government will provide $10.0 million over three years ($2.0 million in 2011‑12, $2.9 million in 2012‑13 and $5.1 million in 2013‑14) to develop a National Wildlife Corridors Plan to guide future investment in conservation management. A trial will be conducted in one or more regions to test the effectiveness of the plan.

The cost of this measure will be met from the existing funding provision for the Renewable Energy Future Fund.

This measure delivers on the Government's election commitment.

Natural Disaster Recovery and Rebuilding — Building Better Regional Cities — redirection of funding

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities ‑30.0 ‑35.0 ‑35.0

This measure will redirect $100.0 million of funding to re‑building infrastructure in flood affected council areas, including those not originally targeted by the initiative. The remaining program funding of $103.1 million will continue to be made available to participating councils across Australia to invest in local infrastructure projects that support new housing developments.

Savings from this measure will be used to meet the costs of supporting individuals, businesses and local communities affected by natural disasters in 2010‑11 to recover and rebuild.

Further information can be found in the press release of 27 January 2011 issued by the Prime Minister.

Natural Disaster Recovery and Rebuilding — National Rental Affordability Scheme — deferral of dwelling target

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities ‑5.6 ‑15.9 ‑17.8 ‑22.9 ‑29.1
Australian Taxation Office ‑5.9 ‑45.0 ‑52.4 ‑66.2 ‑84.2
Total ‑11.6 ‑60.9 ‑70.2 ‑89.1 ‑113.3

The Government will spread the roll‑out of the National Rental Affordability Scheme over a longer time period, with 35,000 funded over the forward estimates and a further 15,000 dwellings to be supported beyond the forwards.

This will provide savings of $345.1 million over five years ($264.3 million in underlying cash balance terms) for redirection to assist with the rebuilding of flood‑affected regions across Australia.

In consultation with the relevant states, priority will be given to applications from flood‑affected areas across Australia in allocating the remaining National Rental Affordability Scheme incentives under the 2013‑14 target.

The scheme will continue to operate over the longer term to deliver at least the 50,000 homes provided for under the original program.

Savings from this measure will be used to meet the costs of supporting individuals, businesses and local communities affected by natural disasters in 2010‑11 to recover and rebuild.

Further information can be found in the press releases of 27 January 2011 and 18 February 2011 issued by the Prime Minister.

Regional Marine Planning Program — continuation

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

The Government will provide $9.7 million in 2011‑12 to continue the Regional Marine Planning Program. The funding will allow completion of the planning process and support the initial implementation of the plans.

Provision for this funding has already been included in the forward estimates.

This measure delivers on the Government's election commitment.

Sustainable Australia — measuring sustainability

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities 1.9 2.8 2.8 2.7

The Government will provide $10.1 million over four years to enable the development of sustainability indicators for Australia and the reporting of progress against these indicators. Sustainability impact statements will also be developed to assist the Government's consideration of new policy proposals.

This measure includes the establishment of a data collection fund to support the ongoing collection of priority data and a directory of sustainability measurement to direct stakeholders to available indicators and data published in reports, databases and web sites operated by the Australian, state and local governments.

Sustainable Australia — suburban jobs

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities 4.0 32.5 42.0 21.5

The Government will provide $100.0 million over four years to assist state and local governments to plan and provide for employment hubs to support local jobs, close to residential areas in order to reduce travel times to work and services.

It will also provide grants to companies who fund innovative ways to use the National Broadband Network to reduce travel times.

The program will focus on the outer suburbs of our major cities that are experiencing pressures from population growth and transport affordability.

Sustainable Australia — sustainable regional development

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities 8.5 9.4 8.1 3.2

The Government will provide $29.2 million over four years to support the development of seven sustainability plans for regional and coastal high growth centres by state and local governments. The program includes a grants component that will help build the capacity of local governments to develop sustainability plans.

The sustainability plans will be assessed under the strategic assessment provisions of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 and will facilitate subsequent streamlined environmental decision making under the Act for these regions.

Tasmanian Forests Statement of Principles — support for signatories

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities 0.3

The Government will provide $0.3 million in 2011‑12 to support signatories to the Tasmanian Forests Statement of Principles to Lead to an Agreement and other relevant organisations to better engage and consult with their membership in the negotiation process. Assistance will be provided to industry and environmental organisations, unions and other groups.

Water for the Future — Driving Reform in the Murray‑Darling Basin — reallocation of funds

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
National Water Commission 2.7 3.6
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission 1.7 1.7
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities ‑4.5 ‑5.4
Total

The Government will reallocate $9.8 million over two years from the existing Driving Reform in the Murray‑Darling Basin component of the Water for the Future initiative to the National Water Commission ($6.3 million over two years) and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission ($3.5 million over two years). This measure will enable these agencies to continue to meet their responsibilities under the Intergovernmental Agreement on Murray‑Darling Basin Reform.

Water for the Future — National Rainwater and Greywater Initiative — termination

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities ‑4.5 ‑5.0 ‑5.0

The Government will terminate the National Rainwater and Greywater Initiative from 10 May 2011 in response to lower than expected demand. The program provided rebates of up to $500 for households towards the cost of installing rainwater tanks and greywater systems.

The measure will provide savings of $14.5 million over three years, while still leaving sufficient funding in 2010‑11 and 2011‑12 to meet remaining commitments.

Savings from this measure will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

Water for the Future — National Urban Water and Desalination Plan — reduced funding

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities ‑85.5

The Government will reduce funding by $85.5 million in 2011‑12 for the National Urban Water and Desalination Plan in response to lower than expected demand. The program supports desalination, recycling and stormwater harvesting projects to improve water supply security in cities with populations of over 50,000.

The plan will now provide funding of $574.2 million over two years from 2011‑12.

Savings from this measure will be redirected to support other Government priorities.

Yellow Crazy Ants on Christmas Island — continuation of control efforts

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

The Government will provide $4.0 million over four years ($0.9 million per annum in 2011‑12 and 2012‑13, $1.4 million in 2013‑14 and $0.8 million in 2014‑15) to continue control efforts for the Yellow Crazy Ant infestation on Christmas Island. The funding will also enable continuation of research into the development of a suitable long‑term biological control agent.

The cost of this measure will be met from within the existing resourcing of the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities.

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