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Parliamentary record : Part I debates (27 February 1990)



Parliamentary record : Part I debates (27 February 1990)


Debates for 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Northern Territory Legislative Assembly

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Tuesday 27 February 1990 government representatives from the Conservation Commission and the Departments of Education and Industries and Development. It is envisaged that this committee would develop an action plan for the implementation of the ozone protection strategy in the Territory, would be consulted with on the development and formulation of regulations, would assist in the formation of relevant codes of practice, and would advise on the need for appropriate courses and accreditation of such courses for such people as air-conditioner service mechanics and other trades who may have cause to use CFCs and halons. The bill allows also for other persons with an interest in the content of the regulations to be consulted during their formulation. The involvement of industry in the development of the action plan, in the formulation of regulations, and in the incorporation of codes of practice in the regulations will mean that imple'mentation of requirements for ozone protection will include a significant component of self-regulation by appropriate industry groups. There will be a requirement for inspectorial 'services, and these will be provided through existing structures within the Department of Health and Community Services and the Work Health Authority, with coordination being provided by the Conservation Commission. ' The bill provides for exemptions to be made under the regulations, with or without qualifications. Obvious exemptions would need to include aerosol sprays used for medi ca 1 purposes, for peop 1 e such a s a sthma sufferers for whom there is no a 1 ternat i ve. There has been some recent controversy in relation to exemptions that have currently been made by the Commonwealth. However, the Assembly should note that there is a requirement for exemptions to be consistent across the Commonwealth, all states and the terri tori es. In this regard, we have little option but to adopt those exemptions agr~ed to on a nation-wide basis. The regulation-making powers of the bill allow for the keeping of records and returns. This will be critical in order to assess the success or otherwise of the implementation of the Territory's actions in controlling ozone-depleting substances. The enforcement provisions of the bill are very strong and quite exhaustive. The Conservation Commi ssion is the authority charged with the enforcement of the legislation, but provisions are made for the mi n i ster to authori se offi cers of other government departments, such as the Department of Health and Community Services and th~ Work Health Authority, to carry out specific or general functions under the legislation, whilst similar provisions are made for the Conservation Commission to provide direction to such officers and for the commission to delegate its powers to other government officers. The enforcement provisions under the bill provide confidentiality and protection for commercial or manufacturing information that is required by the commission in order to implement the bill and the regulations. It provides for powers of entry and inspection, for examination, inquiry, test i ng, sei zure, remova 1 and forfeiture. As the offences are regul atory offences, the bill a 1 so estab 1 i shes a defence to prosecution on the grounds of preserving life or property, accidents or lawful actions. It provides for pena 1 ties for offences, inc 1 udi ng obstruction of authori sed offi cers, and allows also for employers, together with corporate bodies and their directors, to be prosecuted in appropriate circumstances. The passage of this bill through this Assembly will allow for the formation of the Ozone Protection Consultative Committee and will facilitate commencement of drafting of regulations necessary to implement the first steps of the strategy. I am sure that all members of thi s Assembly will 8820