The Academy of Sciences report has shown poor water management is at the root of the Menindee fish kills; their recommendations must be adopted in full, the Greens say.
“Economists, lawyers and now scientists have highlighted the mismanagement of the Murray Darling Basin as the leading factor in the dire state of our River. The River desperately needs more water if it is going to survive, and we need a federal Royal Commission to clean out the corruption, maladministration and incompetence,” Greens environment and water spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.
“The Academy of Sciences has made clear that planning, management and decision making needs to be informed by science, and in consultation with River communities and traditional owners. Their recommendations for a pumping embargo, and for water to be bought for the River need to be implemented immediately.
“This report highlights the limitations of environmental water accounting and the grave danger posed by water use including floodplain harvesting and theft of overland flows, particularly in the Northern Basin.
“The decision by Labor and the Government last year to reduce environmental flows in the Northern Basin must be reversed, as the SA Royal Commission and now, the Academy of Sciences report recommends.
“This latest report, together with the SA Royal Commission and the Productivity Commission report, shows the River desperately needs a drink. It is a matter of life or death. These fish deaths are a symbol of mismanagement and misplaced priorities.
“This is another opportunity for the Liberal National Government, and the Labor Party, to do right by the River. There must be cross-party support for these recommendations and a federal Royal Commission.”