Environmental and scientific issues


Budget Review 2008-09 Contents

Budget 2008 09: Environmental and scientific issues

Climate Change

Louise Emmett, Leslie Nielson and Anita Talberg
Science, Technology, Environment and Resources

On 3 December 2007, Prime Minister Rudd signed the instrument of ratification of the Kyoto Protocol. Supporting this commitment, the Government s Climate Change strategy is built on three priorities: reducing Australia's greenhouse gas emissions; adapting to those impacts of climate change that we cannot avoid; and helping to shape a global solution. Expenditure totals $2.3 billion over four years with the majority of programs honouring election promises. Expenditure breakdown under revenue and expense measures by Department is available in Budget Paper No.2 pp. 105 107.

Budget commitments such as the renewable energy fund of $500 million and the
$90 million Green Building Fund have generally been well received, although organisations such as the Climate Institute and the Australian Conservation Foundation said the Federal Government should have gone further by cutting tax subsidies for polluting activities such as car use.[1]

The Opposition has claimed that spending on climate change programs over the next two years has actually been reduced and that no provision has been made for the introduction of an emissions trading scheme.[2] In fact, the Budget makes clear that money has been set aside for the implementation of such a scheme, as explained shortly.

There has also been criticism of the delay in expenditure in Climate Change programs which, it is claimed, will give the impression that there is no need for immediate action.[3] For example, under the Renewable Energy Fund less than half the funds will be spent by 2012. As well, critics have noted that funding for Clean Coal technology is much larger than for renewables[4] and starts immediately even though, they claim, the technique of carbon capture and storage remains speculative. They also argue that this technology should be funded by major polluters rather than by government.[5] Other commentators have noted that while many departments have been cut, including Prime Minister and Cabinet which loses 22 positions, the Department of Climate Change, not surprisingly, increases by 140 to 250.[6]

Table 1 summarises expenditure under Tackling Climate Change 2007 08 to 2011 12.

In Budget 2008 09, the Government has invested $21.8 million in the establishment of the new Department of Climate Change. The new department will coordinate the Government's response to climate change, including development of an Emissions Trading Scheme, increased activity following the ratification of the Kyoto Protocol, and participation in ongoing international climate change negotiations.

The Government will provide $68.8 million over five years to design and implement a domestic emissions trading scheme in Australia. Most such schemes are of the 'cap and trade' variety in which the total emissions of a particular area or set of industries are limited and the scheme participants are issued with permits to emit certain quantities. Those participants with emissions that are less than their permitted amount can sell their unused permits to others. Those participants emitting more than their permitted amounts must buy extra permits. The European Unions' Emissions Trading Scheme is the most prominent example of the cap and trade approach.

The Minister for Climate Change, the Hon. Penny Wong MP, has stated that Australia will have a national cap and trade emissions trading scheme starting in 2010. Such schemes are complex and require careful design and planing. The above funds are necessary to ensure that the design of an effective Australian emissions trading scheme takes place

The Government will provide $2.3 million over two years to the Garnaut Climate Change Review to examine the impacts of climate change on the Australian economy. The review is due to report to governments by 30 September 2008.

Sustainable Homes

The Government has provided funding for a series of programs to help make Australian homes more environmentally sustainable. The Government will provide $300 million over five years (including $46.3 million in 2012 13) under the Green Loans program to subsidise the provision of low interest loans, of up to $10,000 per home, for the installation of green technologies to improve water and energy efficiency including solar hot water, insulation, rainwater tanks and grey water recycling. Funding also covers refunds for home energy and water audits and free 'green renovation packs'.

The Government will provide $7.9 million over four years for the Hot Water System Phase Out of inefficient hot water systems and the development of nationally consistent greenhouse performance standards for domestic hot water products. The cost of this measure will be met by the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts.

The Government will bring forward funding of $45 million from 2010 11 ($27.4 million) and 2011 12 ($17.7 million) to 2008 09 ($25.6 million) and 2009 10 ($19.4 million) to meet the increased demand for household rebates under the Solar Homes and Communities Plan, formerly known as the Photovoltaic Rebate Program. This provides for rebates of up to $8,000 for the installation of solar power panels in homes and grants for up to half the cost of a 2 kilowatt system for up to 400 community buildings a year.

The Lower Emission Plan for Renters program will provide $150 million over five years (including $2 million in 2012 13) to provide partial rebates to owners of private sector rental homes for the cost of installing insulation.

To help Australians implement practical actions to save water and reduce greenhouse emissions the Government will provide $3 million over three years to establish a One Stop Green Shop. The aim of the initiative is to link schools, businesses and families to all Commonwealth, State and local government household energy, water and other resource efficiency programs.

The Government will provide $14 million over four years to the Energy Efficiency of Electrical Appliances program. This measure expands the current 6-star Energy Rating Label to a 10-star system and introduces Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards.

Sustainable Communities

To encourage local communities to be more sustainable, the Government will provide funding under four programs. An additional $25 million will be provided over four years to extend the Solar Cities program by three years. The Solar Cities program is designed to trial alternative energy options in particular, solar power. It is a partnership approach that involves all levels of Government, the private sector and the local community. Solar Cities consortia are working with industry, businesses and their local communities to rethink the way they produce and use energy.

The existing Solar Cities are Adelaide, Townsville, Blacktown, Alice Springs and Central Victoria. During 2007 the ALP made an election commitment to expand the Solar Cities program to include Perth and Coburg.

The additional funding will provide $13.9 million to set up a solar city in Perth and $4.9 million to do the same for Coburg, Victoria. As new funding, $6.2 million will be provided under this program to contribute to the new
$15 million Green Precincts program. (A further $8.8 million from Water for the Future-National Water Security Plan for Cities and Towns brings the total for Green Precincts to $15 million.)

Australian schools will receive assistance under the National Solar Schools Program to install solar panels and for energy and water efficiency improvements. The Government will provide $480.6 million over eight years to provide grants of up to $50,000 to all Australian schools. Funding for this measure will be provided in part from the redirection of funds from the Green Vouchers for Schools program (See: Responsible Economic Management-Green Vouchers for Schools in Budget Paper No. 2 p. 350). This measure will provide savings of $334.3 million over four years to partially offset the Government s election commitment National Solar Schools Plan. The Government will also provide $250,000 in 2008 09 from the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts for the installation of solar water heating panels for the Deception Bay Pool in Caboolture Shire, Queensland.

Clean Businesses

Four programs totalling $260 million are providing financial assistance to businesses to implement energy efficiencies. Over four years, $90 million will be provided under the Green Building Fund to assist Australian business by subsidising 50 per cent of the cost of retro-fitting and retro-commissioning existing commercial office buildings, up to a maximum of $200,000 per building. Priority is to be given to large buildings (over 5000m2) and funds will be awarded on a competitive basis.

Australian manufacturers will be assisted by $75 million over four years under the Retooling for Climate Change program to improve their production processes, energy and water efficiency and to reduce their carbon emissions. Up to a third of the cost of each project will be provided through grants of between $10,000 and $500,000 to small and medium-sized companies.

Under the Climate Ready Program, $75 million is provided over four years in a new competitive grants program to assist small and medium enterprises to develop and bring to the market new products that save energy and water and reduce pollution.

The Clean Energy Innovation Centre is a sector specific centre of the Enterprise Connect network- $20 million is provided to assist small and medium businesses to improve services in the clean energy sector.

Clean Energy

The Government will not proceed with the introduction of the Clean Energy Target announced in the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2007 08. Instead, the original target (of 30,000 gigawatt-hours of electricity a year generated from low emissions sources by 2020) will be replaced with the expanded Renewable Energy Target of 45,000 gigawatt-hours of electricity a year from renewable sources by 2020.

Under the Renewable Energy Target Expansion program, the Government will provide $15.5 million over five years for the Office of the Renewable Energy Regulator to expand the current Mandatory Renewable Energy Target to reach the level of 45,000 gigawatt-hours of electricity a year to be generated from renewable energy sources by 2020. The target is in addition to a baseline level of renewable energy generation estimated to be around 16,000 gigawatt-hours annually. The target will assist in the transition towards an Emissions Trading Scheme and will be phased out between 2020 and 2030 as the Emissions Trading Scheme matures.

The Government is developing the Emissions Trading Scheme in cooperation with states and territories through the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) Working Group on Climate Change and Water. The Office of the Renewable Energy Regulator will also work with the states and territories in order to introduce a national approach to feed-in tariffs.

Under the Energy Innovation Fund the Government will provide $150 million over four years to support the development of clean energy technologies. This includes $50 million for the Australian Solar Institute in Newcastle, $50 million for photovoltaic research and development, and $50 million for general clean energy research and development.

Support of $500 million over eight years will be provided for a National Clean Coal Fund. Initiatives in this include:

  • $50 million for a national carbon mapping and infrastructure plan;
  • $75 million for a National Clean Coal Research Program;
  • $50 million for a pilot coal gasification plant in Queensland;
  • $50 million to demonstrate carbon capture and storage;
  • $50 million for a large scale post combustion capture plant in the Latrobe Valley in Victoria;
  • $15 million to fund Australia's involvement in the FutureGen Alliance; and
  • $20 million for the Australia‑China Clean Coal Co-ordination Group.

Provision of $499.7 million over seven years is made to establish a Renewable Energy Fund (including $101.0 million in 2012 13, $100.9 million in 2013 14 and $70.3 million in
2014 15). The Fund will provide grants, on a competitive basis, of between $10 million and $75 million to develop, commercialise and deploy renewable energy in Australia. This measure includes $15 million over four years for the Second Generation (Gen 2) Biofuels Technology Research and Development program.

The Government will provide $500 million over five years from 2011 12 to establish a
Green Car Innovation Fund for the development and manufacture of low emission vehicles. A total of $2 billion in investment will be generated through industry matching the Government's contribution on a one-to-three dollar basis.

The Government will provide $150 million over three years (including $0.4 million in capital funding in 2008 09) to the Adaption to Climate Change program, focusing on countries in Australia's region where communities are at risk from the impacts of climate change. Funding of $15 million in 2008-09 will be met from within the existing resourcing of AusAID.

The Government will provide $0.2 million in 2000 09 to fund the application of Climate Change Adaptation Strategies in the Serpentine Jarrahdale Shire and the City of Mandurah, Western Australia. This project will act as a pilot for other local government areas across Australia looking for ways to deal with the impact of climate change.

Farming

The Government will provide $60 million over four years under the Climate Change Adaptation Partnerships Program to assist farmers in responding and adapting to the impacts of climate change, and preparing for an emissions trading scheme. Provision of $55 million over four years is made under the Climate Change Adjustment Program to assist farmers to respond to climate change through the provision of professional advice and training grants. Re-establishment grants will also be available to eligible farmers who choose to leave their farm and $10 million for the Rural Financial Counselling Service.

Forestry

Funding totalling $20 million will be directed to five priorities to assist in securing the future of Australia s forestry industry: addressing forestry skills shortages; boosting the export of forest products; building a forestry industry database; addressing the importation of illegally logged timber; and preparing forest industries for climate change.

The Forestry Adaptation Action Plan receives $8 million to enable it to assess the capacity of forests to sequester carbon.

Savings and Cancellations

In Budget Paper No.2, under the heading Responsible Economic Management , the Government has listed the following redirection of funding and savings. These include:

Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate. The Government will not proceed with funding for the Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate program. The Budget includes $0.2 million in capital savings in 2007 08 and savings of
$50 million over four years Budget Paper No. 2 p. 341.

Green Vouchers for Schools funding will be redirected to the new National Solar Schools Plan savings of $334.3 million over four years. Budget Paper No. 2 p. 350.

Greenhouse Gas Abatement Program $4.2 million will be re-directed the new Renewable Energy, Clean Business, Energy Innovation and National Clean Coal Funds. The Government will also reprofile $4.2 million in funding from 2007 08 into 2010 11 and 2011 12 ($2.1 million in each year), to align with the funding requirements of the Australian Coal Mine Methane Reduction Program, which is funded from the Greenhouse Gas Abatement Program. This measure will provide savings of $4.2 million over two years from 2008 09. Budget Paper No. 2 p. 351.

Asia-Pacific Network for Energy Technology The Government will not proceed with funding announced in the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2007 08 providing savings of
$5 million. Budget Paper No. 2 p 380.

Low Emissions Technology and Abatement program funding is reduced provide savings of $2.2 million in 2007 08. Budget Paper No. 2 p 401.

Low Emissions Technology Demonstration Fund Savings of $90 million over 12 years will be provided under this program through reductions from 2007 08 to 2018 19. The Government will fund the previously announced projects, but any new projects in this sector will be funded through the National Clean Coal Fund or the Renewable Energy Fund. .

Funds will also be moved across years to better reflect the profile of expected expenditure in this program. $410 million over 12 years remains in the program to meet expected grant payments for the six announced projects. Responsibility for the program has now been transferred to the Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism. Budget Paper No 2 p. 402.

Renewable Remote Power Generation Program funding will be reduced in 2007 08 and 2008 09. providing savings of $42 million. Budget Paper No. 2 p. 420.

Sustainable Regions Program Offsetting savings of $23.3 million over two years will by redirected from the Sustainable Regions program. Funding for the program was scheduled to cease in 2008 09. Budget Paper No. 2 p. 422.


Table 1. Tackling Climate Change

Program

2007 08

($m)

2008 09

($m)

2009 10

($m)

2010 11

($m)

2011 12

($m)

Total

($m)

Adaptation to Climate Change

0

20.7

49.4

65.0

0

135.1

Australia s Farming Future Climate Change Adaptation Partnerships Program

0

15.0

15.0

15.0

15.0

60.0

Australia s Farming Future Climate Change Adjustment Program

0

15.0

15.0

15.0

10.0

55.0

Climate change adaptation strategies for the Serpentine Jarrahdale Shire and the City of Mandurah (Peel-Kwinana Growth Corridor), Western Australia contribution

0

0.2

0

0

0

0.2

Climate Change and Productivity Research Program

0

6.0

5.0

4.0

0

15.0

Clean Business Australia Climate Ready Program

0

13.1

22.6

23.8

15.5

75

Clean Business Australia Green Building Fund

0

22.5

37.5

15.0

15.0

90.0

Clean Business Australia Retooling for Climate Change

0

10.9

21.8

24.5

17.8

75.0

Deception Bay Pool contribution

0

0

0

0

0

0

Department of Climate Change establishment

0

5.5

5.4

5.4

5.5

21.8

Emissions Trading Scheme design and implementation

12.4

16.0

15.6

15.5

9.4

68.9

Energy Efficiency of Electrical Appliances

0

2.0

4.1

4.0

3.9

14.0

Energy Innovation Fund

0

40.9

51.2

36.3

21.7

150.1

Green Car Innovation Fund

0

0

0

0

100.0

100.0

Green Loans

0

17.4

60.2

88.1

87.9

253.6

Hot Water System phase out development and implementation

0

0

0

0

0

0

Low Emission Plan for Renters establishment

0

10.5

37.5

50.0

50.0

148

National Clean Coal Fund

15.0

34.8

108.6

124.5

97.8

380.7

National Solar Schools Plan

9.0

74.6

119.7

107.2

50.8

361.3

One Stop Green Shop establishment

0

1.0

1.0

1.0

0

3

Renewable Energy Fund

0

0

55.5

71.0

101.0

227.5

Renewable Energy Target expansion

1.3

5.7

8.4

8.7

10

34.1

Solar Cities and Green Precincts

1.0

8.0

8.0

8.0

0

25

Solar Homes and Communities Plan

0

25.6

19.4

-27.4

-17.7

-0.1

Garnaut Climate Change Review contribution

1.6

0.7

0

0

0

2.3

Preparing Australia s Forestry Industry for the Future

0

5.9

6.9

7.2

0

20.0

Climate Change and Forestry Adaptation Action Plan

$8.0 million over three years unprofiled

8.0

Clean Energy Innovation Centre

$20 million over four years unprofiled

20.0

TOTAL

$68.30

$380.0

$695.8

$689.8

$621.60

2343.5

Source: Budget Paper No.2, pages 108 119.

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Caring for our Country

Louise Emmett
Science, Technology, Environment and Resources Section

The Caring for our Country Program was announced on 14 March 2008 in a joint media release by the Hon Peter Garrett MP, Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts and the Hon Tony Burke MP, Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. The program will deliver an integrated approach with $2.25 billion over five years to restore Australia s environment and build on improved land management. The new program covers four previously existing programs: the National Heritage Trust, the National Landcare Program, the Environmental Stewardship Program and the Working on Country program. Regional bodies are guaranteed only 60 per cent of historical average funding under this new program.

The Shadow Minister for Environment, Heritage, the Arts and Indigenous Affairs, Dr Sharman Stone has criticised the cuts in funding saying that the total catchment and regional focus will contract back to a piecemeal approach.[7]

In February 2008, the Auditor General found that the information reported on the Natural Heritage Trust was insufficient to make an informed judgement as to the progress of the programs towards outcomes. The Auditor General found that there was little evidence as yet that the programs are adequately achieving the anticipated national outcomes or giving sufficient attention to the radically altered and degraded Australian landscape highlighted in the 1996 Australia State of the Environment Report.[8] He found that achievement of some outcomes would be a long term process potentially over two hundred years at current progress.[9]

Table 1 Expenditure for this measure

Program

2007 08

($m)

2008 09

($m)

2009 10

($m)

2010 11

($m)

2011 12

($m)

2012 13

($m)

Total

($m)

Caring for our Country

0

428.2

440.1

465.7

453.5

459.3

2246.8

Source: Derived from data in Australian Government, Part 2 Expense Measures , Budget Paper No. 2:Budget Measures 2008 09, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra 2008, p. 163.

Six national priorities are covered by the new program:

  • Australia s national reserve system
  • Biodiversity and natural icons (including weeds, feral animals and threatened species)
  • Coasts and aquatic habitats
  • Sustainable farm practices and Landcare
  • Natural resource management in remote and northern Australia and
  • Community skills, knowledge and engagement.

Caring for our Country is targeted to:

  • rescue the Great Barrier Reef ($200 million over five years) and the endangered

Tasmanian Devil ($10 million over five years)

  • protect and repair Australia s fragile coastal ecosystems ($100 million over five years)
  • improve water quality in the Gippsland Lakes ($5.3 million over three years)
  • fight the Cane Toad menace ($2 million over two years)
  • implement the Tuggerah Lakes Estuary Management Plan ($20 million over five years)
  • employ additional Indigenous Rangers ($90 million over five years)
  • expand the Indigenous Protected Areas network ($50 million over five years) and
  • assist Indigenous Australians enter the carbon trading market ($10 million over five years).

This measure will provide savings of $15 million in 2008 09 and $13 million in 2009 10 from the amalgamation of previous programs, and will provide additional funding of $7 million in 2011 12 and $12 million in 2012 13 for the program. Net savings of $9 million have been identified over the five years from 2008 09 to 2012 13 (see Table 2).

Provision for Caring for our Country was included in the forward estimates under the existing Natural Heritage Trust, National Landcare Program, Environmental Stewardship Program and Working on Country program.

Table 2 Expense ($m)

Program

2007 08

($m)

2008 09

($m)

2009 10

($m)

2010 11

($m)

2011 12

($m)

Total

($m)

Caring for our Country

0

-15.0

-13.0

0

7.0

- 21.0

Source: Australian Government, Part 2 Expense Measures , Budget Paper No. 2:Budget Measures 2008 09, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra 2008, p. 163

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Water for the Future

Louise Emmett & Anita Talberg
Science, Technology, Environment and Resources Section

The Government s $12.9 billion 10-year water plan identifies securing water supplies and taking early action on the Murray-Darling as key priorities (see Tables 1 and 2).

The Water for the Future Program was announced at the 4th Annual Australian Water Summit, Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre, 29 30 April 2008. Water for the Future identifies four key priorities: taking action on climate change, using water wisely, securing water supplies and supporting healthy rivers.

As part of this funding, the 2008/09 Budget will provide:

  • $1 billion for the National Urban Water and Desalination Plan
  • $250 million for the National Water Security Plan for Cities and Towns and
  • $250 million for the National Rainwater and Greywater Initiative.

Outlays on these programs will be low at first the National Urban Water and Desalination Plan will start with just $14 million next year and then grow to a total of
$808 million over the four budget years. (It will reach one billion two years after that.) Likewise there will be a slow start on the National Rainwater and Greywater Initiative, with just $19 million to be spent next year and $176 million over the four years. Savings and redirection of funds include the reprofiling[10] of $45 million for the Murray-Darling (Table 2), deferral of $5 million from 2007 08 to 2016 17 for the Bureau of Meteorology (Table 3), the cessation of funding from 2008 09 for the Community Water Grants program worth $74 million over four years (Table 4), and rainfall enhancement technology.[11] Critics have commented on the subsidisation of state desalination plants[12] and have asked for more detail and further funding for infrastructure, particularly for irrigation.[13]

National Urban Water and Desalination Plan

In towns or cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants, desalination, water recycling and stormwater harvesting will be encouraged by the provision of $1.0 billion over
six years (including $192 million in 2012 13). The funds will be provided through grants and refundable tax offsets of up to 10 per cent of project costs, capped at a maximum of
$100 million per project.

This measure includes funding for a Centre of Excellence in desalination technology in Perth ($20 million), a Centre of Excellence in water recycling in Brisbane ($20 million), the Glenelg to Adelaide water recycling project ($30.2 million) and the Geelong Shell water recycling project ($20 million).

National Water Security Plan for Cities and Towns

The program will provide $254.8 million over five years for governments and local water authorities to minimise water loss, invest in more efficient water infrastructure, refurbish older pipes and water systems, and fund practical projects to save water.

National Rainwater and Greywater Initiative

This initiative will provide $250 million over six years (including $50 million in 2012 13 and $24 million in 2013 14) to provide rebates of up to $500 for up to 500,000 homes towards the cost of installing rainwater tanks or new piping for greywater use. Funding of $3 million will also be made available in 2008 09 to provide up to $10,000 to every surf life saving club in Australia for the installation of a rainwater tank, or as a contribution towards a larger water saving project.

Murray-Darling Taking early action

The Murray-Darling Basin is seen as a major priority in this year s Budget. The Government will bring forward $400 million in funding to take urgent action in the Murray-Darling Basin through water efficiency measures in irrigation systems and increasing funds available to purchase water for environmental flows. The $400 million is part of the Government's
$12.9 billion Water for the Future program and includes $177.2 million for water buybacks and $222.8 million for urgent infrastructure projects. In the Water for the Future statement on 29 30 April 2008, the Government has announced that it will invest at least $3 billion in restoring the balance in the Murray Darling Basin. The Government intends to purchase water to put back in the rivers.

Water Efficiency Western Australia

The Government will bring forward $35 million to 2007 08 (from 2011 12) to make an initial contribution to the Harvey Water Piping Project in Western Australia. The remaining contribution of $14 million is expected to be provided in 2008 09, from within existing funding for the Program.


Table 1 Expenditure for Water for the Future

Program

2007 08

($m)

2008 09

($m)

2009 10

($m)

2010 11

($m)

2011 12

($m)

Total

($m)

National Rainwater and Greywater Initiative

0

19.0

38.0

59.0

60.0

176

National Urban Water and Desalination Plan

0

14.0

158.0

244.0

392.0

808

National Water Security Plan for Cities and Towns

10.0

39.8

55.0

75.0

75.0

254.8

Taking early action

96.2

110.0

193.8

0

-400

0.0

Water efficiency Western Australia

35.0

0

0

0

-35.0

0.0

TOTAL

141.2

182.8

444.8

378

92

1238.8

Source: Australian Government, Part 2 Expense Measures , Budget Paper No. 2:Budget Measures 2008 09, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra 2008, p 159 161.

In Budget Paper No.2, under the heading Responsible Economic Management , the Government has listed the following redirections of funding and savings:

Murray-Darling

The Government will re-profile[14] $45 million in funding from 2007 08 to 2016 17, and
$26 million in funding from 2008 09 to 2015 16, to reflect the expected changes to expenditure arising from delays in establishing the Murray-Darling Basin Authority. The new Authority was originally scheduled to be established in 2007 08, but will now be established in 2008 09. The final arrangements for bringing together the Authority and the Murray-Darling Basin Commission will be considered by COAG in July 2008.

Table 2 Expense ($m)

Program

2007 08

($m)

2008 09

($m)

2009 10

($m)

2010 11

($m)

2011 12

($m)

Total

($m)

Murray Darling Basin Authority

-45.0

-26.0

0

0

0

-71.0

Source: Australian Government, Part 2 Expense Measures , Budget Paper No. 2:Budget Measures 2008 09, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra 2008, p. 426

Bureau of Meteorology

From 2007 08 to 2016 17, $5 million from previously committed funding will be deferred to reflect the change in expenditure arising from delays in the Bureau of Meteorology establishing its water functions under the Water Act 2007. The Bureau was scheduled to receive a $28.8 million (including $5.1 million in capital) increase in funding in 2007 08 to meet the Government s commitments on water. Implementation delays have reduced the necessary amount by $5 million.


Table 3 Expense ($m)

Program

2007 08

($m)

2008 09

($m)

2009 10

($m)

2010 11

($m)

2011 12

($m)

Total

($m)

Bureau of Meteorology

-5.0

0

0

0

0

-5.0

Community Water Grants

Funding for the Community Water Grants program will cease from 2008 09 resulting in savings of $73.6 million over four years. New measures, such as the National Rainwater and Greywater Initiative, and Green Loans will help households with water-saving and energy- saving projects.

Table 4 Expense ($m)

Program

2007 08

($m)

2008 09

($m)

2009 10

($m)

2010 11

($m)

2011 12

($m)

Total

($m)

Community Water Grants

0.0

-41.5

-26.5

-1.9

-3.7

-73.6

Source: Australian Government, Part 2 Expense Measures , Budget Paper No. 2:Budget Measures 2008 09, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra 2008 p. 382

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Agriculture

Nilufar Jahan
Economics Section

Economic viability and competitiveness are major concerns for agricultural producers in Australia. This paper outlines the measures proposed in the 2008 09 Budget intended to guide Australian agriculture to meet future challenges.[15] See Appendix A for discussion on these challenges.

Measures to assist farmers to adopt and mitigate the effect of climate changes

The government will provide $130 million over four years to the Australia s Farming Future initiative to facilitate farmers in adapting and mitigating the effect of climate change.[16] The initiative aims to deliver three programs:

  • Climate Change Adaptation Partnership Program ($60 million over four years) this program will develop practical demonstrations to improve the sector s response to climate change
  • Climate Change and Productivity Research Program ($15 million over four years) this program will finance research on managing emissions and adaptation, and
  • Climate Change Adjustment Program ($55 million over four years) this program intends to provide professional advice, training and re-establishment grants to primary producers.

The government has also allocated a further $69 million, including around $31 million in additional funding for designing and implementing an environmentally effective and economically responsible greenhouse gas emissions trading scheme.

Another $20 million has been provided over four years for forest industries on climate change adaptation, boosting exports and to address industry specific issues.

Transitional Income Support Program

The Budget also introduces a Transitional Income Support Program that is expected to commence on 16 June 2008 and would continue until 30 June 2009 at an estimated cost of $14.5 million over three years.[17] This income support is designed to support farm families who are in financial difficulty and to assist those who are considering leaving agricultural farming anticipating that farmers may consider changing to other businesses. This Transitional Income Support Program will complement the $5500 Climate Change Adjustment Program Advice and Training Grant.

Regional Food Producers Innovation and Productivity Program

The government announced a new $35 million Regional Food Producers Innovation and Productivity Program, to assist Australia s regional food producers in becoming more competitive through productivity and innovation improvements. In response to a growing global food crisis, the Budget attempts to meet the challenging future by assisting Australian agriculture to be more competitive in terms of innovation. The Budget also provides more than $168 million to the Commonwealth s rural research and development corporations and a further $15 million for the National Weeds and Productivity Research Program for farm productivity.

The forestry value adding industries are expected to be provided with $9 million to continue their investment programs. The government will provide an additional $4.4 million over the next three years for the Fisheries Research Program, with $1.9 million invested in 2008 09.

The government, in partnership with industry, will develop new technologies, processing or production methods and boost export market development. Regionally based food processors will receive assistance that includes dollar-for-dollar grants and support to help the processed food industry become globally competitive.


Appendix A: Future Challenges

The Budget proposal may be viewed against the following background of the challenges to be faced in the future:

  • Productivity growth in Australia s broadacre (1.5 per cent per annum) and dairy industries (1.2 per cent per annum) is highly variable on a year-to-year basis[18]
  • Globally, agricultural commodity prices started rising in 2006 and the trend continued in 2007 and 2008. The surge in prices has been led primarily by dairy and grains, but prices of other commodities, with the exception of sugar, have also increased significantly.[19] High price events, like low price events, are very usual in agricultural markets, but what distinguishes the current rise is rather the concurrence of the hike in all over the world prices
  • Further, the Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics (ABARE) reported that due to future climate changes, production could decline by 2 to 6 per cent by 2030 and by 5 to 11 per cent by 2050, relative to 2006 output.[20] These forecasted changes are expected to have significant implication for key agricultural trade and rural Australia. The most recent drought in 2006 still continues to affect large parts of rural Australia, and some farmers may be relying on Exceptional Circumstances assistance to keep afloat, and
  • International prices of cereal have risen, fuelling domestic food price inflation in many parts of the world, including Australia.

These facts show that Australia s agricultural sector faces a number of pressures and challenges, including climate variability, declining terms of trade, rising fuel prices, appreciating Australian dollar and increasing international competition. Continual empirical research which links primary producers, researchers and policy makers is required if Australia is to remain internationally competitive in this sector. The $35 million Regional Food Producers Innovation and Productivity Program will assist in this regard by emphasing the related process of industrialisation, product differentiation and increased vertical integration in agriculture.

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Science Funding

Matthew James
Science Technology Environment and Resources Section

Introduction

Scientists do not seem to have done very well out of the Budget. The word science does not appear in the Budget speech, although innovation does in an emphasis on wider issues. While science agencies face tighter times, there have been a few new programs announced to favour those organisations that may have previously faced budget restrictions. The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) see a modest reduction in their allocations, but there is a separate new program to retain mid-career scientists in Australia through the Australian Research Council (ARC).

According to the 2008 09 Science and Innovation Budget Tables, Australian Government support for the sector through the budget and other appropriations has risen from $6203 million in 2007 2008 to $6371 million in 2008 2009, but drops as a percentage of total government expenditure from 2.63 to 2.56 per cent. In January, the Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Senator Kim Carr, announced a wide ranging review of Australia's national innovation system. The Review is being conducted by an Expert Panel.

In its response to the Budget, the Australian Academy of Science says that:

There must also be intellectual infrastructure developed so that we are equipped to produce the new technologies required by future generations. The Education Fund of $11 billion has the potential to provide that in part, but only if the other research and development sectors such as CSIRO, Geoscience Australia, ANSTO etc. are kept strong.[21]

The Federation of Australian Scientific and Technological Societies (FASTS) states that:

A few days ago the Prime Minister said, to boost our global economic competitiveness we must simultaneously boost long-term productivity growth. That is our central narrative on the economy. But no narrative on long-term productivity growth is credible without reinvigorated policy and funding in higher education, research, knowledge transfer and science and mathematics teaching at all levels.[22]

Science Agency Funding

Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation

CSIRO funding is set to change from $663.160 million in 2007 2009 to $675.790 million in 2008 20009, a rise of just 1.9 per cent and below the CPI. Under the budget measure of Responsible Economic Management , the agency receives a cut of $9.486 million in 2008 2009 followed by similar amounts over the next three years, to total $39.813 million over the full period.[23] With external income, the total CSIRO budget will rise 16.1 per cent from $1030.1 million to $1196.3 million in 2008 2009. Also affected with cuts are the Healthy Active Australia program ($1.2 million) and the Research Vessel Southern Surveyor ($3 million). CSIRO staffing will drop from 5700 to an estimated 5615 in the year ahead. If combined with $23.6 million under the increased efficiency dividend, CSIRO faces a loss of $63 million over the next four years.

The CSIRO National Research Flagships program is to continue to expand, although no specifics are stated in the Budget. A further thrust is building major partnerships through targeted partnering, alliances and ventures, along with developing science hubs through co-locations. CSIRO remains involved in several American legal proceedings concerning wireless technology licensing and the Budget statements says that the revenue and costs concerned are considered unquantifiable.

Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation

Annual appropriations for ANSTO fall from $185.714 million in 2007 2008 to $174.715 million, but cash reserves increase net resourcing by almost 46 per cent. ANSTO loses $7.315 million under Responsible Economic Management and a further $11.3 million of the former Nuclear Collaborative Research Program.[24] Shortly after the Budget, ANSTO announced a restructure and the confirmed loss of around 80 staff in the future.[25]

Perhaps not coincidentally, but on the day of the Budget, ANSTO announced the re-commissioning start of the new OPAL research reactor, following a ten-month long unexpected shut down. ANSTO attributes the embarrassing problem to a combination of factors including inadequate design and fuel manufacturing techniques.

Australian Research Council

Establishment of the Future-Fellowships scheme sees an initial budget measure provision of $10.7 million, set to substantially rise in the subsequent three years to reach in total $326.207 million over the full period.[26] At the same time, the new government has acted to cancel the Research Quality Framework management program and redirect funds to an Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) initiative. The Australian Government announced on 21 December 2007 that it would not be proceeding with the former Government s Research Quality Framework (RQF) project. The RQF aimed to rate all publicly funded research institutions and award block grants according to a new formula. The ERA initiative will assess research quality using a combination of metrics and expert review by committees comprising experienced, internationally-recognised experts. ARC programs see a slight budget rise.

There is also an allocation of $209 million over four years to double the number of Australian Postgraduate Awards for PhD or Masters by Research students. However, there is no increase in the value of scholarships for students, despite claims that the support level is set too low.[27]

Cooperative Research Centres (CRCs)

The CRC resource budget rises from $126.755 million in 2007 2008 to $182.782 million in 2008 2009. However, in the previous Budget the expected 2007 2008 estimate was $212.288 million, indicating that the allocation was seriously underspent in this past year.[28]

IP Australia (IPA)

The intellectual property protection agency sees a healthy 9.8 per cent increase in funding from $5.638 million to $6.191 million which, when combined with special accounts, sees total net resourcing rise from $213.079 million to $245.432 million in 2008 2009.[29] Staff numbers at IPA should rise from 910 to 968 during the financial year ahead.

Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS)

AIMS has obtained a significant contract with a future income stream for a study of marine eco-systems in northwest Australia, that will increase its revenue, staff numbers and expenditures. Its appropriation from government will increase from $26.6 million to $27.7 million in the year ahead but, despite that, its total funding falls from $30 million to $27.7 million because of reduction in other income sources.[30]

Geoscience Australia (GA)

GA s budget for 2008 2009 will decrease by $10.1 million to $166.4 million, mainly owing to decreased funding from prior year budget measures, i.e. pre-competitive data and petroleum promotion $3.1 million; carbon capture and storage (CCS) $0.4 million; and a decrease in Section 31 receipts of $3.8 million.[31] The agency s role in CCS was outlined in the 2007 2008 Budget, when $9.3 million was provided over four years to implement a national regulatory and legislative framework for CCS, and for regulatory oversight.[32]

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Health and Food Security Issues

Rosemary Polya
Science, Technology, Environment and Resources Section

Introduction

Overall, health research funding increased by $123 million in the Budget. At the same time, there was little attention paid in the Budget to novel sciences of emerging importance to food production and health, namely nanotechnology, biotechnology and gene technology. Indeed, there were cuts made to some areas, such as the cancellation of the National Nanotechnology Strategy and the scheduled closure of the Australian Office of Nanotechnology in June 2009. The novel sciences will be catered for, in part, within various departmental programs, CSIRO and research grants schemes. For example, the Office of the Gene Technology Regulator comes under the Department of Health and Ageing portfolio. See the science funding section for more detail.

Matters related to food security also attracted the Rudd Government s attention. There will be new funding allocated for weeds research and a fruit fly strategy. The alcopops excise for ready to drink beverages containing spirits carries the intention to reduce health problems associated with binge drinking. See the health and tax reform sections of this brief for further discussion of the alcopops tax.

NHMRC

The Budget increased the National Health and Medical Research Council s administered appropriation for research by $123 million in the last financial year to $617 million. Additionally, there is $3.8 million non-research funding allocated for The National Institute of Clinical Studies. The government s efficiency dividend of $1.147 million will not result in staff redundancies. [33]

Activities during 2008 09 will include the establishment of a permit system for the import and export of human embryonic stem cell lines developed from human embryo clones. This will be a cooperative project with the Australian Customs Service. Measures that demonstrate the benefits of health research to society will also be developed and ethics assessment in multi-centre research facilities will be harmonised.

The National Nanotechnology Strategy

The National Nanotechnology Strategy, established by the Howard Government in July 2007, will cease on 30 June 2009. This will save the government $11.7 million.[34]

Australian trade unions have expressed concerns about the safety of items produced by nanotechnology. [35] The OECD recently reported on risks arising from nanoparticles, which are superfine particles, the largest being a billionth of a metre wide. [36] Nanoparticles are used in various foods, packaging, health products, cosmetic preparations and other consumer goods with little or no regulatory oversight. Under the National Nanotechnology Strategy, a Health, Safety and Environmental (HSE) Working Group was to be set up so as to coordinate regulatory issues relating to nanotechnology. [37] With the demise of the strategy, it is yet to be established how such functions will be managed by the government. A Friends of the Earth (FoE) report recommended the oversight of health and environmental aspects of nanotechnologies.[38] In March 2008 it was reported that the Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Kim Carr, had undertaken to develop a regulatory framework for nanotechnology. [39]

The Shadow Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Eric Abetz, protested about the end of the strategy, in a January 2008 press release Labor slashes nanotechnology research .[40]

There have also been concerns expressed by scientists about the cancellation of the nanotechnology strategy. Mike Ford, associate director of the University of Technology Sydney's Institute for Nanoscale Technology, said the decision could leave Australia out of the game on nanotechnology compared to the US, Europe and Japan.[41]

Biotechnology

The National Biotechnology Strategy, which was established in July 2000, was funded by the Howard Government until 2007 08. No further funding has been identified for the strategy in the Portfolio Budget Statements 2008 09 for the Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research. [42] In July 2004, $20 million was provided for both the strategy and Biotechnology Australia up to and including 2007 08. The peak biotechnology body, AusBiotech, argues in its submission to the current National Innovation System Review:

the national coordinating biotechnology agency should be strengthened to give it decision-making responsibilities, its own budget and dedicated, senior staff. As well as providing a coherent policy framework across government, this would also ensure that government funding programs are channeled appropriately through to the industry.[43]

An evaluation of both the strategy and of Biotechnology Australia is awaiting government consideration. The green paper arising from the review is not due for completion until July 2008. [44] The white paper arising from the review is due in October 2008 and an industry spokesperson from AusBiotech stated in response to the Budget that the paper would inform the government s direction on innovation for the 2009 10 Budget and that AusBiotech was disappointed with the government s decision to discontinue the Commercial Ready and Commercial Ready Plus programs .[45] There remains, however, provision for biotechnology related matters in programs in the Department and other portfolios.

Funding for the National Stem Cell Centre was allocated up to 2010 11 by the Howard Government. The Rudd Government s total estimate of available resources for the Centre in 2008 09 is $226 774 compared to $240 797 in 2007 08. The anticipated target for activity for the Centre is that it undertakes five commercial agreements, including Centre-owned intellectual property.

Food

The alcopops excise measure, Excise and customs duty increased rates on other excisable beverages , was introduced from 27 April 2008. [46] By applying the same excise as spirits, that is, $66.67 per litre of alcohol content, the government anticipates $3.1 billion will be raised for preventative health investments. The states are estimated to gain $281.5 million from GST payments. However, similar drinks containing wine have not attracted budgetary attention.[47] The measure has proved controversial, with some people asserting that it is primarily a revenue-raising device. On the other hand, Health Minister Roxon has argued the excise is part of the government s strategy to tackle harm caused by excessive alcohol consumption. It remains to be seen whether legislation supporting this measure will be passed, given that the Opposition Leader Dr Nelson has vowed to block it. [48]

The alcopops increase in excise is but one strategy being examined to remedy concerns about youth drinking.[49] For example, the Health Ministers resolved on 2 May 2008 to ask FSANZ to consider the provision of warning labels on packaged alcohol, mindful of new alcohol guidelines to be issued by the National Health and Medical Research Council. FSANZ has carriage for developing food standards, alcohol being regulated as a food in the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code.[50],[51] COAG will receive a response in December 2008. In 2000, FSANZ rejected an application, A359, for warning labels to be mandatory on alcohol products on grounds that actions already in place, namely, controlling prices, advertising and availability, were effective and that Australian alcohol mortality rates were decreasing in the 1990s. The Senate Standing Committee on Community Affairs is currently examining the Family First Bill, The Alcohol Toll Reduction Bill 2007.[52]

FSANZ will be resourced at $26.2 million in 2008 09. Its Science Strategy 2006 09 will continue to review risk assessment processes and collection of data. Its average staffing complement will remain the same.

Weeds and Food Security

The Shadow Minister for Environment, Heritage, the Arts and Indigenous Affairs recently asked in a press release Got any money for weeds man? The Budget answered with $15.3 million allocated to address this problem.[53] This funding consists of $0.3 million for fireweed research over two years and $15 million over four years for general weed reduction within the new National Weeds and Productivity Research Program measure. The fireweed research funding was found by cancelling the Defeating the Weed Menace program which had this same amount allocated to it for 2007 08. Now these monies will be spread over two years for the new program.

The Rudd Government was fulfilling an election promise against a backdrop of the CRC of Australian Weed Management failing to secure funding from the Howard Government in 2006 to continue to secure its operations after June 2008. [54],[55] The CRC will close, the Rudd Government preferring to establish a new nationwide program. It has been estimated that weeds cost Australia $4 billion each year, much of this comes from their effect on agricultural productivity and hence Australia s food security.

Biosecurity and Food Security

The Quarantine Research and Preparedness Plan provides $5.4 million over four years for activities such as a model for on-farm biosecurity planning, enhancement of diagnostic capabilities for plant pests and diseases, and plans for dealing with pests, diseases and contaminants in agriculture, fisheries and forestry.[56] The plan also includes funds for the establishment of a national fruit fly strategy. There is, however, no mention of any provision in the Budget for funding dung beetle research and thereby help to control bush fly populations.

Some dung beetle funding has been provided in the past by the Commonwealth under the Natural Heritage Trust and the National Landcare Program. The current drought, however, has reduced dung beetle populations, thereby increasing bush fly numbers. A 1990s analysis calculated that for every dollar spent on dung beetle programs $112 was saved through production that would otherwise have been lost. Bush flies can be a significant problem for agriculture.[57] There is also a link between bush flies and trachoma in Aboriginal children.[58]

Budgeting for a National Fruit Fly Strategy is particularly welcome this year, as Victoria has suffered the highest recorded number of fruit fly incursions. There are fears that Victoria could lose its fruit fly-free status and this could curtail Australian trade in Asian markets. [59] A draft National Fruit Fly Strategy was prepared by Plant Health Australia, an industry-government consortium, in 2007 and is awaiting consideration by the Primary Industries Ministerial Council. [60] Their national committee for the fruit fly strategy project finalised its recommendations in December 2007. [61] The Commonwealth s Office of the Chief Plant Protection Officer stock-take had estimated that from 2003 08 $128 million had been spent on fruit fly-related activities and projects. [62],[63] This figure did not include costs incurred by farmers. The committee was mindful of the influence of climate change on fruit fly populations and the likelihood that two important post-harvest disinfestation treatments fenthion and dimethoate would no longer be used. Both are currently being reviewed by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) under their Existing Chemicals Review Program to address safety concerns where used in food-producing applications.[64],[65] The national fruit fly strategy committee, chaired by Professor Nairn, had recommended that a further $5 million per year be spent and that this was shared equally by the Commonwealth, state governments and industry. This spending will be in addition to the estimated $25 million spent by governments and industry on fruit fly projects per year. [66],[67]

Under the Securing the future: protecting our industries from biological, chemical and physical risks continuation measure $4.9 million has been allocated for 2008 09 only. [68] The 2007 08 budget estimate was $2.97 million. The measure pertains to both entry point quarantine control and post border control. The purpose is to to minimise the costs to industry and governments caused by established pests and disease incursions . The funding covers a member contribution to Plant Health Australia, national preparedness, intelligence gathering and to improve responses to risks. Findings by the Australia s Quarantine and Biosecurity Review panel which must report to the Minister of Agriculture Fisheries and Forestry by 30 September 2008 may influence next year s funding for this important area. [69]



[1]. WME Environment Management News Wednesday, 14 May 2008,
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[2]. http://parlinfoweb.aph.gov.au/piweb/TranslateWIPILink.aspx?Folder=pressclp&Criteria=
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[3]. http://parlinfoweb.aph.gov.au/piweb/TranslateWIPILink.aspx?Folder=pressclp&Criteria
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[4]. http://parlinfoweb.aph.gov.au/piweb/TranslateWIPILink.aspx?Folder=pressclp&Criteria
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[5]. http://parlinfoweb.aph.gov.au/piweb/TranslateWIPILink.aspx?Folder=pressclp&Criteria
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[6]. http://parlinfoweb.aph.gov.au/piweb/TranslateWIPILink.aspx?Folder=pressclp&Criteria
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[7]. The Hon Dr Sharman Stone MP, Caring for our Country on a shoe-string, media release, 14 March 2008 accessed on 22 May 2008. http://www.sharmanstone.com.au/Pages/Article.aspx?ID=567

[8]. The Auditor General, Regional Delivery Model for the Natural Heritage Trust and the National Action Plan for Salinity and Water Quality Audit Report No.21 2007 08 Performance Audit p 16. http://www.anao.gov.au/uploads/documents/2007-08_Audit_Report_21.pdf.

[9]. ibid., p. 20.

[10]. The Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) has advised that reprofiling means that the total funding for the program remains the same but the funds have been moved between years.

[11]. Australian Government, Part 2 Expense Measures , Budget Paper No. 2:Budget Measures 2008-09, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra 2008, p. 416.

[12]. K. Davidson, The time was right, conditions were right, but the Government blew its lines The Age, 14 May 2008, p. 11.

[13]. S. Morris Push for climate adaptation Australian Financial Review, 15 May 2008 p. 19.

[14]. As advised by DEWHA, $45 million has been moved from 2007-8 to 2016 17 and $26 million has been moved from 2008-09 to 2015 16.

[15]. Australian Government, Portfolio Budget Statements 2008 09: Budget Related Paper No. 1.1, Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra, 2008,

http://www.daff.gov.au/about/budget/budget_2008-2009/portfolio_budget_statements_2008-2009, accessed on 19 May 2008.

[16]. A. Albanese (Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government), T. Burke (Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry), & G. Gray (Parliamentary Secretary for Regional Development and Northern Australia), Strengthening Rural and Regional Australia, media release, Canberra, 13 May 2008. http://www.budget.gov.au/2008-09/content/ministerial_statements/download/rural_regional.pdf, accessed on 19 May 2008.

[17]. The apparent discrepancy between the program s stated life cycle (until 30 June 2009) and its funding schedule ($14.5 million over three years) could not be resolved prior to publication.

[18]. S. Zhao, K. Nossal, P. Kokic, and L. Elliston, Productivity growth Australian broadacre and dairy industries , Australian Commodities, vol. 08.1, Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Canberra, 2008.

[19]. FAO, Food outlook: Global market analysis, Food and Agricultural Organisation, Rome, Italy, November 2007, http://www.fao.org/docrep/010/ah876e/ah876e00.htm, accessed on 19 May 2008.

[20]. D. Gunasekera, Y. Kim, C. Tulloh, and M. Ford. Climate change: impacts on Australian agriculture , Australian Commodities, vol 07.4, ABARE, Canberra, 2007.

[21]. K. Lambeck, President of the Australian Academy of Science, Budget 2008/09 response , Australian Academy of Science, Canberra, 14 May 2008, http://www.science.org.au/reports/14may08.htm, accessed on 23 May 2008.

[22]. K. Baldwin, Brief comment on budget 2008 for The Australian Higher Education Supplement, Tuesday 13th of May, 2008 , Federation of Australian Scientific and Technological Societies, Canberra, http://www.fasts.org/images/news2008/fasts%20budget%20op%20ed.pdf, accessed on 25 May 2008.

[23]. Australian Government, Part 2: Expense Measures , Budget Paper No.2: Budget Measures 2008 2009, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra 2008, p. 381.

[24]. ibid p. 368 and p. 408.

[25]. ANSTO to restructure , Media Release, Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation, 19 May 2008.

[26]. Australian Government, Part 2: Expense Measures , Budget Paper No.2: Budget Measures 2008 2009, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra, 2008, p. 271.

[27]. J. Hinde, Helping hand for cash-strapped grads , Weekend Australian, 7 July 2007, p. 2.

[28]. Australian Government, Portfolio Budget Statements 2007 08: Budget related paper No. 1.5, Education, Science and Training portfolio, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra, 2007, p. 104.

[29]. Australian Government, Portfolio Budget Statements 2008 09: Budget related paper No. 1.14, Innovation, Industry, Science and Research portfolio, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra, 2008, p. 169.

[30]. ibid p. 83.

[31]. Australian Government, Portfolio Budget Statements 2008 09: Budget related paper No. 1.16, Resources, Energy and Tourism portfolio, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra, 2008, p. 57.

[32]. Australian Government, Portfolio Budget Statements 2007 08: Budget related paper No. 1.14, Industry, Tourism and Resources portfolio, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra, 2007, p. 141.

[33]. Update on the 2008 09 Federal Budget and its impact on the National Health and Medical Research Council , NHMRC newsletter, 14 May 2008, p. 1, http://nhmrccommunications.createsend4.com/viewEmail.aspx?cID=C0D87FBD45E2EBF8&sID=
40F1B28829C283A27DE5A425CEFC6E66&dID=5CB9CB5A1CE688CE
, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[34]. Department of Innovation, Science and Research, National Nanotechnology Strategy, Canberra, 2007, http://www.innovation.gov.au/Section/Innovation/Documents/NNSFeb08.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[35]. S. Ryan, Big cut for science of the small , Australian, 14 January, 2008, p. 2,
http://parlinfoweb.parl.net/parlinfo/Repository1/Media/npaper_2/DHEP60.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[36]. Small sizes that matter: Opportunities and risks of nanotechnologies. Report in co-operation with the OECD International Futures Programme, OECD and Allianz, n.d., http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/37/19/37770473.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[37]. Australian Office of Nanotechnology, What is nanotechnology and why is it important?, Canberra, Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, (last reviewed 30/04/2008), http://www.innovation.gov.au/Section/Innovation/Pages/AustralianOfficeof Nanotechnology.aspx, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[38]. G. Miller and R. Senjen, Out of the laboratory and on to our plates. Nanotechnology in food and agriculture,( 2nd. ed.), Friends of the Earth Australia, Friends of the Earth Europe and Friends of the Earth United States, 2008, http://nano.foe.org.au/filestore2/download/227/
Nanotechnology%20in%20food%20and%20agriculture%20-%20web%20resolution.pdf
, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[39]. L. Dayton and S. Ryan, Pledge on regulation of nano products , Australian, 11 March 2008, p. 5, http://parlinfoweb.parl.net/parlinfo/Repository1/Media/npaper_5/VVUP60.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[40]. E. Abetz, Labor slashes nanotechnology research , Liberal Party of Australia News Centre, 14 January, 2008, http://www.liberal.org.au/info/news/detail/20080114_LaborslashesNanotechnologyresearch.php, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[41]. S. Ryan, Big cut for science of the small , Australian, 14 January 2008, p. 2,
http://parlinfoweb.parl.net/parlinfo/Repository1/Media/npaper_2/DHEP60.pdf
, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[42]. National Biotechnology Strategy, Canberra, Biotechnology Australia, 2008, (Last reviewed 22 April 2008), http://www.biotechnology.gov.au/index.cfm?event=object.show
Content&objectID=538B635B-BCD6-81AC-1E1B66BB24EA3184
, accessed on Date 22 May 2008.

[43]. AusBiotech Ltd., Submission to the Review of the National Innovation System, Malvern, Vic., 2008, http://www.ausbiotech.org/data/downloads/AusBiotech%20Submission%20-%20
National%20Innovation%20System%20Review%2030%20April%202008.pdf
, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[44]. C. Johnstone, Biotech industry will have to wait for tax concessions , Courier Mail, 8 May 2008, p. 70, http://parlinfoweb.parl.net/parlinfo/Repository1/Media/npaper_3/MIGQ60.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[45]. AusBiotech, Biotech banking on future initiatives after Budget shock, media release, Malvern, Vic.,14 May 2008,
http://www.ausbiotech.org/data/downloads/
May%2014%20-%20Budget%20outcome.pdf
, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[46]. Notice of intention to propose customs tariff alterations , Commonwealth of Australia Gazette Special, No. S 88, 26 April 2008, http://parlinfoweb.parl.net/parlinfo/Repository1/Library/miscitem/JSAQ6.%202%20880.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[47]. M. Schubert and L. Shanahan, Battle of bowsers and boozers. Nelson pledge to block alcopops tax, slash petrol , Age, 16 May 2008, p. 1, http://parlinfoweb.parl.net/parlinfo/Repository1/Media/npaper_0/0BGQ61.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[48]. ibid.

[49]. S. Dunlevy, Restrict takeaway sales to curb binge drinking. PM plans to hit the bottlo , Daily Telegraph, 28 February 2008, p. 11, http://parlinfoweb.parl.net/parlinfo/Repository1/Media/npaper_4/QQRP60.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[50]. Australia and New Zealand Food Regulation Ministerial Council, Food Ministers agree to a strategic vision for Australian and New Zealand food regulation system, Joint Communiqu , 2 May 2008,
http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/newsroom/mediareleases/
mediareleases2008/2may2008jointcommuni3906.cfm
, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[51]. Part 2.7 Alcoholic Beverages , Food Standards Code,
http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/thecode/foodstandardscode.cfm, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[52]. Senate Community Affairs Committee, The Alcohol Toll Reduction Bill 2007,
http://wopared.parl.net/Senate/committee/clac_ctte/alcohol_reduction/index.htm
, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[53]. S. Stone, Got any money for weeds man?, media release, Parliament House, Canberra, 1 May 2008, http://parlinfoweb.parl.net/parlinfo/Repository1/Media/pressrel/04BQ60.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[54]. L. Skuthorp and K. Smith, Labor s $15m weeds plan , The Land, 8 November 2007, p. 10, http://parlinfoweb.parl.net/parlinfo/Repository1/Media/npaper_0/5IZO60.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[55]. CRC Weed Management, Weeds CRC to end June 2008. Website to shut down , CRC Weed Management website, http://www.weeds.crc.org.au/overview/index.html, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[56]. Australian Government, Part 2: Expense Measures , Budget Paper No. 2: Budget Measures 2008 09, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra, 2008, p. 78.

[57]. State won t back a new dung beetle war on flies , The West, 29 January, 2008,
http://www.thewest.com.au/default.aspx?MenuID=146&ContentID=56247, accessed on 23 May 2008.

[58]. Guidelines for treatment of trachoma in the Northern Territory, Darwin, Centre for Disease Control, 1998, p. 3, http://www.nt.gov.au/health/cdc/treatment_protocol/trachoma.pdf, accessed on 23 May 2008.

[59]. Victoria is under siege from fruit fly , The Weekly Times, 23 April 2008, p. 11.

[60]. National Fruit Fly Strategy Priorities Project website,
http://www.planthealthaustralia.com.au/FruitFly/public.asp?pageID=243, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[61]. D. Cussons, National Fruit Fly Strategy , ABC Rural, 29 January 2008, pp. 1 2,
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[62]. Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, National fruit fly-related activities stocktake 2003-2008, Canberra, n.d., http://www.daff.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0011/146891/fruit_fly_background_paper.pdf, accessed on 22 May 2008

[63]. Plant Health Australia, National program to coordinate fruit fly fight, media release, Canberra, 20 July 2007.

[64]. Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority, Fenthion Review history and regulatory outcomes, Canberra, n.d. http://www.apvma.gov.au/chemrev/fenthionHistory.shtml, accessed on 22 May 2008.

[65]. Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority, Dimethoate, Canberra, n.d.,
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[66]. Cussons, op. cit.

[67]. ibid.

[68]. Budget Paper No.2., op. cit., p. 83.

[69]. Quarantine and Biosecurity Review , Canberra, The Review, 2008,
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