Human rights and international law expert Professor Hilary Charlesworth, says that Australia's appointment to the UN Human Rights Council gives the country an opportunity to examine its own human rights record.
Commissioner for Environmental Sustainability for Victoria, Dr Ian McPhail will speak at the University of Melbourne on the steps needed to implement recommendations from the State of the Environment report.
Launched in December 2008, the State of the Environment Report is a ‘stocktake’ of Victoria's environment, covering a broad range of contemporary issues including climate change, population and planning, materials and waste, energy, water, coasts and biodiversity. The Report has received excellent feedback from commentators and academics and is available in full at www.ces.vic.gov.au/ .
On Monday 30 March, Dr McPhail will present an overview of the key findings and recommendations of the report. While the recommendations are there for government to respond to, importantly, they are also there for the community to use. Recommendations include formal recognition that ecosystem services underpin economic and social wellbeing.
The presentation ‘STATE OF THE ENVIRONMENT REPORT - A DEBATE’ launches the University of Melbourne’s Office of Environmental Program’s ‘Environment Week’. The presentation will be followed by a panel discussion which will be chaired by coastal geomorphologist and television weather presenter Rob Gell.
“The Flora and Fauna Guarantee act has failed to protect Victoria’s biodiversity, and should be reviewed,” Dr McPhail warns.
“We simply cannot continue to maintain our standard of living through the gradual and continued degradation of the natural environment.”
“Despite Victoria leading in may environmental initiatives, actions to date have simply not been enough. Victorians are talented and innovative and together we can make a difference. Victoria has the opportunity and capability to lead the changes required and in doing so, be internationally recognised as an environmental leader as well as take advantage of the business opportunities this leadership presents”
STATE OF THE ENVIRONMENT REPORT - A DEBATE
Monday 30 March, 5:30pm - 7pm
Prince Phillip Theatre, Architecture (Building 133), University of Melbourne
Dr Ian McPhail, AM, is Commissioner for Environmental Sustainability, Victoria, and was previously the Deputy Director-General of the Queensland Environmental Protection Agency. His current role is governed by Victoria's Commissioner for Environmental Sustainability Act 2003. The Commissioner is an environmental guardian for Victoria - an independent voice that advocates, audits and reports on environmental sustainability.
Host of the panel discussion Rob Gell is a coastal geomorphologist by training who has taught Environmental Science and Physical Geography at the University of Melbourne. He has also presented television weather for the last twenty eight years.
The panellists include:
Ms Kelly O'Shanassy
Ms O'Shanassy is the Chief Executive Officer of Environment Victoria, the State's leading non-government voice on the environment. Ms O'Shanassy has an extensive background in sustainability, within the public, private and community sector. She was author of Victoria's Framework for Environmental Sustainability and set the directions for Melbourne's future water supplies and conservation actions.
Dr Peter Christoff
Coordinator of Environmental Studies
Melbourne School of Land and Environment.
Dr Christoff has taught environmental politics and policy at Melbourne since 1997. Previously he worked as the Assistant to the Commissioner to the Environment in Victoria and, as a consultant, assisted in the establishment of the National State of Environment reporting program.
Mr Kevin Love
Deputy Secretary, Department of Sustainability and Environment
Mr Love is an Executive member of the Department for Sustainability and Environment, Victoria. He is the Deputy Secretary with responsibility for Public Land Stewardship and Biodiversity.
For more information on the panel discussion and Office of Environmental Programs:
Dr Helen Duckham
Manager, Office for Environmental Programs
Natural Philosophy Building
University of Melbourne
T: 03 8344 4773 F: 8344 5650