Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Resignation of MDBA Chair Mike Taylor: that left unsaid speaks volumes #agchatoz

Further to the post below relating to the resignation of Mike Taylor as Chair of the Murray Darling Basin Authority, I have now received a press release from Fair Water Use:

The resignation of MDBA Chair, Michael Taylor, is a clear symptom of the utter frustration permeating the Authority as a result of attempts by vested interests to sabotage the Basin Plan and an apparent unwillingness of the Commonwealth to allow the Authority to perform its vital task free from political pressures.
Mr Taylor also indicates that the Authority has received further legal advice that it is unable alter its recommendations with respect to the volumes of water required to restore the environment of the Murray-Darling River system. That should come as no surprise, as the stated role of the MDBA is to manage the Basin’s water resources in the national interest, not in such a way as to placate those who would prefer to continue business as usual.
National coordinator of Fair Water Use, Dr Ian Douglas, responded to the news of Mr Taylor’s resignation saying, “The Commonwealth and particularly Minister Burke should be roundly criticised for attempting to add responsibility for economic and social management of the Basin to the brief of the Authority”.

He added, “The stunts of renegade groups of irrigators, including the burning of the Guide and the establishment of the faux MDBA website, are now seen for what they are: knee-jerk attempts to discredit the messenger, stemming from an unwillingness to accept the long-term implications of an over-exploited and degraded river system”.

As intimated by Mr Taylor, irrespective of the content of the final Basin Plan produced by the Authority, the survival of the river system will hinge on whether the Commonwealth and Basin state governments are genuine in their stated desire to restore the nation’s most vital rivers, or whether, as now appears all-too-likely, they will squib the issue for short term electoral gain. 

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