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Sydney's Population Future Forum

Open Forum - Dr Mary E White
Forum Outline - Bob Walshe OAM
Professor Peter McDonald - Scenarios for the future population of Sydney
Hon Philip Ruddock - Population stabilisation: Australia 24 million, Sydney 6 million
Martin Ferguson AM MP - Labor's population policy outline
Michael Richardson MP - Sustainable community development
Clr Genia McCaffery - Urban consolidation - local government experience?
Clr Peter Woods OAM - Shifting the focus to whole of state development
Dr Tony Recsei - Dictatorship of the high density bullies
Brent Davis - Prosper through growth

A forum designed to broaden the current debate about urban consolidation and examine the long-term impacts of present-day choices.

Saturday, 3 March 2001. From 8.40am - 5.00pm,

Sutherland Entertainment Centre, Eton Street Sutherland

"It is an often-repeated fallacy that governments only govern within the context of the electoral cycle. The most cursory glance at policy decisions in many fields including immigration, the environment, health and age care, retirement income and the labour force demonstrates that this is simply not true. Many public policy decisions resonate over decades. Indeed, the effect of some only becomes apparent years after they have been taken. It is therefore essential that governments making these decisions understand and take into account the demographic context against which they will be played out.

". . .Current projections indicate that over the next 50 years there will be continued growth of most major cities and the eastern seaboard, and depopulation of many parts of the inland. It has been estimated that by 2050, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth may have increased by approximately 1 million people each. Sydney could have increased by nearly 2 million. In fact, the Australian Bureau of Statistics projects that 75 per cent of all population growth will occur in the major cities. This has prompted some to argue that the upper bounds of population growth in Australia will be linked to the capacity of these cities to absorb more people and our ability to manage and re-shape them."

– Immigration Minister Philip Ruddock, speaking at the Australian Centre for Population Research: Public Seminar Series, Australian National University, 11 November 2000.

Forum Program, Saturday 3 March, 2001


Jointly sponsored by: Australians for an Ecologically Sustainable Population, Save our Sydney Suburbs and Sutherland Shire Environment Centre.

Phone: 9528 6091, email:, web:

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