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Ms Parke (3:45pm) — Providing appropriate environmental protection is one of the Australian government's core responsibilities and, sadly, it is already emerging as one of the Abbott government's starkest failings. As I have said before, the national government is in the best position—indeed, the only position—from which to have holistic regard to the health of Australia's forests, rivers and oceans; our rainforests, temperate coastland and deserts; and the incredible but fragile cornucopia of flora and fauna that our ancient continent supports. The Australian government is also charged with the serious responsibility of leading our engagement with other nations and in multilateral fora that exist to ensure the planet we all share is properly protected.
Ms Parke (1:15pm) — The Official Development Assistance (ODA) budget within the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) allocation includes some very significant shifts in both funding and emphasis.
Under the previous government reform occurred to substantially improve both the quality and quantum of Australia's international development assistance. Aid effectiveness depends on both these aspects. It depends on the benefits delivered and the outcomes achieved on a per dollar basis, and it depends on how many dollars are applied. No amount of rhetoric can change that.
Ms Parke (5:43pm) — I rise to speak on the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Amendment (Bilateral Agreement Implementation) Bill 2014. This is a bill that cannot be supported by anyone who takes seriously the regulatory role of the national government in respect of the environment we all share and the environmental values and biodiversity which we have a responsibility to protect for future generations. This bill represents another instalment of this government's 'anything goes' approach to development and big business, and follows the pattern set in their capitulations to big polluters on the issue of climate change, and to big miners on the issue of a fair share for all Australians of the profits derived from the resources that belong to all Australians.
Ms Parke (1:12pm) — I move:
That this House:
(1) commends the Government for reaffirming Australia's support for the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (the Initiative) by maintaining the $15 million commitment for 2013-14;
(2) notes that:
(a) on 13 January 2014, India passed three years without reporting a single case of polio, an achievement reports say will lead to the entire South-East Asia Region of the World Health Organisation being certified as polio-free later in 2014;
(b) lessons learned from India's success are now part of the Polio Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan 2013-2018 announced at the Global Vaccine Summit in Abu Dhabi in 2013;