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High Speed Rail a winner for NSW, Albanese should put skates on

Media Release
Lee Rhiannon 11 Apr 2013

Greens Transport spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon has called on Minister Anthony Albanese to fast-track High Speed Rail pointing to the benefits for the NSW economy, tourism and regional jobs growth.

"Anthony Albanese is very skilled in creating bridges built of reports, spin and empty consultation between elections to make him look busy trying to solve a problem," Senator Rhiannon said.

"This is the fourth major study into High Speed Rail in Australia. We need real action from the Labor government to bed down the project before a possible Abbott government.

 "The benefits of High Speed Rail for NSW are crystal clear. Minister Albanese must now organise the environmental assessments, work with the O'Farrell government to reserve land and allocate funds in the May budget for a dedicated High Speed Rail Authority to implement the project.

"Two studies in 2010 called for federal leadership to see corridor protection for High Speed Rail but nothing has happened since.

"A study commissioned by the Greens shows High Speed Rail could decrease congestion at Sydney Airport, saving $10 billion, which is equivalent to the avoided cost of a second Sydney airport.

"High Speed Rail should be linked with a relocated Sydney airport outside of the city's airshed basin," Senator Rhiannon said.

Greens Deputy Leader and High Speed Rail spokesperson, Adam Bandt said today's report, the culmination of Greens' work negotiated through our agreement to form Government, proves that high speed rail is a great opportunity for Australia's economy and environment.

"Today's report proves the Greens right. High speed rail is not only feasible, it will cut pollution and generate positive economic returns for the country," said Mr Bandt.

"High speed rail will be a great 'stimulus package' for the south-east states and the manufacturing industry, which are doing it tough because of the mining boom and the high dollar.

"High speed rail will boost the economies of regional centres along the route.

 "It's the cheapest it's been in a long while for the government to borrow money and with billions sitting in superannuation funds, it's a great time to issue bonds to fund this nation-building project which will be an asset for generations to come," Mr Bandt said.



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