Sunday, 17 February 2013

Maria on the MDB, Desal, NVIRP, Mildura and the Tim Holding resignation

My feisty friend, Maria in Mildura, has written to her local Council to remind them of salient facts concerning Tim Holding who announced his resignation from politics last Friday.  Miss Eagle is nothing if not a cynic about politics, politicians and, in particular, post-politics careers.  Will watch with interest how Tim Holding will earn a crust from here on - something to do with water could be on the cards?


15 February 2013

Dear councillors,

Tim Holding is the politician who, against all logical thought, approved water decisions like:

1. the north-south pipeline, which was to take water from the dry north, and forever, out of the Murray Darling Basin

2. the Wonthaggi desal plant which is the biggest in the southern hemisphere, locking Melbournians into millions of dollar payments no matter if they do not take one drop of water and releasing nasty chemicals back into the sea

3. and  NVIRP,  part of which is just juggling figures and calling it saved water, eg measuring from different sections, and lining channels with black plastic

4. Closed down the local FMIT (First Mildura Irrigation Trust) set up by the Chaffey Brothers, which had been looking after irrigators for a historical 114 years, not giving them a chance. With LMW putting his criticism letter on its website for a few years and calling the letter history. The Supreme Court jury made a decision on this lately that was not flattering to either Mr Holding or FMIT

All of the above forces Victorians to pay millions and millions for these decisions well into the future and lost us our local FMIT and still leaves the very high possibility of taking water out of the MDB forever to Melbourne.

This instead of recycling and conserving and looking rigorously at long-term environmentally sustainable options by planning well into the future with proper community consultations.

Instead he made these decisions without proper EIAs and without listening to the community. In fact ignoring their concerns by limiting the referrals for these projects and limiting public consultations so he had his own way. (He did not want a repeat of the Nowingi Toxic waste dump hearings which lasted 58 days). This includes those of the community who went to a lot of trouble to present at the hearings for the desal plant and the hearings for the north-south pipeline. And then failed to take into account us up in the north, by only concentrating on the NVIRP area, that too was a decision made around a table of vested interest people.

Our council, realising the importance of maintaining water in the MDB, assisted the community and myself, by paying for buses to Yea and Bendigo because by taking water from the north during the longest drought in history he was taking this water to Melbourne, out of the already stressed Murray Darling Basin, forever, never to be returned to the MDB, when there were other options.

For him to now state that some of these decisions were his best shows that some politicians just don't get democracy and environmentally sustainable development and don't care whose money they spend because they do not admit responsibility, because they just move on and out, leaving us, the people to pay for over 25 years, for these whopper of bad decisions.

He also broke a cardinal rule of bush walking by failing to take a gps or any safety signalling device and walking alone, forcing tax payers to pay for his one day jaunt into the Alps (the area just burnt) by getting lost. A helicopter was called and guess who paid for that?

He dived at a dive site just set up, with a new sunken ship, when no one else was allowed to dive there for safety reasons.

This is probably the best decision he has ever made and certainly in the best interest of Victorians. Thank you Mr Holding.


Maria Riedl

"Democracy is not a spectator sport"

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