Tuesday, 17 April 2012

One thing matters regarding the Murray-Darling Basin: returning it & its environment to health

The Murray River at Cummeragunja, NSW

Basin Plan must return Murray-Darling to health

The Australian Conservation Foundation’s submission on the Murray-Darling Basin Plan calls on the Basin Authority to strengthen the plan by putting more water back into the Basin’s rivers and setting the system on the road to long-term health.
ACF’s submission, released today, is one of thousands that have gone to the Murray-Darling Basin Authority calling for a stronger Basin Plan.
“In addition to the Australian Conservation Foundation’s submission, more than 1000 of ACF’s members and supporters have made submissions to the Authority,” said Australian Conservation Foundation CEO Don Henry.
When you add up all the submissions that have been made by members of the Lifeblood alliance and through the Adelaide Advertiser, it seems that at least 7,000 of the 12,000 submissions received by the Authority call for a stronger Basin Plan that will return the river to health
“There is a rising chorus of voices across Australia, especially from South Australia and Victoria, insisting on a stronger plan,” he said.
“A stronger plan that safeguards the health of rivers in the long term would improve the sustainability of industries and communities that rely on the Basin environment.
“Water Minister Tony Burke should instruct the Authority to assess the benefits of providing higher volumes of water – such as 4000 gigalitres – to the river system.”
ACF’s submission calls for a stronger plan that returns more water to the river system and keeps the Murray mouth open, questions the planned increase in groundwater extraction, urges the Authority to take account of the impacts of climate change and seeks adequate cultural flows for the Basin’s Aboriginal people.
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