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Minister changes his tune on Green Army

AAP logoAAP 5/12/2016 Belinda Merhab

It wasn't too long ago Dan Tehan was singing the praises of the Green Army - now the Liberal frontbencher doesn't have a positive thing to say about it.

The minister doesn't have anything to say about it, in fact.

The federal government hasn't confirmed reports the Green Army, created as part of Tony Abbott's Direct Action policy to reduce carbon emissions, is to be cut in the mid-year budget review.

Asked on Tuesday whether the program had been a success, Mr Tehan refused to answer, insisting he would not speculate on what might be in the mid-year budget - despite not having been asked about that.

"I like and dislike many programs but I'm not going to comment on all of those individually," he told reporters in Canberra.

"It's absolutely vital that as a nation we live within our means."

Mr Tehan wasn't so coy in the past, having issued more than 20 press releases on the benefits of the Green Army, describing the program as a "key government commitment".

In June, he described it as a "huge success" for its benefits to the environment and helping participants to get jobs.

In a 2014 speech, he said it was a program "that deserves serious commendation," announcing he'd secured four Green Army projects for his electorate of Wannon.

Mr Abbott says the Green Army had been good for grassroots conservation and got unemployed people working.

The program was designed to use up to 15,000 unemployed young people for conservation projects across the nation.

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