LABOR’S $20 MILLION UNI PLEDGE TO TRANSFORM WESTERN SYDNEY INTO A GLOBAL FOOD SECURITY POWERHOUSE

A Shorten Labor Government will invest $20 million to transform Western Sydney into a global food security powerhouse, putting Australia at the cutting edge of research on hardier crops, nutrition, and biosafety.

The $20 million will establish a new agri-technology research centre at Western Sydney University’s Hawkesbury campus in Richmond.
 
The centre will research new technologies to help Australian farmers in and around our cities get more of their great produce to market, and more quickly.  It will also help shore up Australia’s own food security to make sure we have enough quality produce to feed our growing population.  
 
This kind of technology is in demand around the world, so this investment has the potential to be a huge job creator as Australian know-how is exported across the globe.  
 
The university is already collaborating with domestic and international partners on the project.
 
The new research centre will expand on Western Sydney University’s 1700 square metre Glasshouse facility where crops are grown for research.
 
The Glasshouse uses the latest climate control technology. Features include diffuse glass and smart glass coatings that adjust the spectrum, direction and intensity of light, helping researchers to produce the highest possible crop yields with minimal energy, nutrients and water.
 
This investment is part of Labor’s new $300 million University Future Fund.  The fund will invest in new university research and teaching buildings, as well as projects that will drive our economy and support jobs and communities right around Australia.  
 
Labor will be consulting with universities and local communities about other priority projects that could benefit from investment from the fund.
 
The $300 million University Future Fund comes on top of Labor’s:
 

  • almost $10 billion plan to uncap student places, giving an extra 200,000 Australians the chance to go to university;
  • $174 million investment in mentoring, support, and other specialised programs designed to boost opportunities for uni study in communities where graduation rates are low; and
  • commitment to stable three year funding agreements for universities so they can plan with confidence. 

 
Labor wants Australia to be a country with a strong economy, and secure, decently paid jobs.  That’s why, unlike the Liberals, we will make investment in education a top priority. 
 
The Liberals massive cuts will see about 200,000 Australians miss out on a university place.

Scott Morrison says he can’t find the money to properly fund universities, but he can find billions to give away to the top end of town. His priorities are all wrong.  You can’t trust Scott Morrison with education, or your future.  
 
TUESDAY, 25 SEPTEMBER 2018


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