Greens say much more is needed for the Snowy River

Greens candidate for Gippsland Michael Bond has cautiously welcomed the Federal Government water announcements but is concerned that they will only result in minor increases in flows to the Snowy River.

Meeting with members of the Snowy River Alliance in Bairnsdale and Paynesville, Michael said: “The announcement to pay out the Snowy River “debt” will only result in a mere 2% increase to flows for the current water year (2010-11) when the legislated target for June 2009 was 15% below Jindabyne Dam and 21% by 2012.

“The Snowy River remains on life support. What the Snowy needs is action that will deliver major volumes of water down the river now” said Michael.

The Greens support the Snowy River Alliance's calls to (as a matter of priority): Permanently close the Mowamba Aqueduct to allow the Mowamba River to flow its natural course into the Snowy; Funding to deliver 21% of real water not paper water below Jindabyne Dam by 2012; return flows to the Upper Snowy in Kosciusko National Park below Guthega Dam and Island Bend Dam; an independent inquiry into the expenditure of the $425* million of taxpayers' money provided for Snowy River environmental flows, with a review of Australian water policy as part of that inquiry. “The Greens believe that a key part of saving the Snowy and in fact ensuring the survival of all Australian rivers is to legislate for minimum mandatory flows so successive governments cannot keep using 'the drought' as a reason to hold water back from the rivers.

“The Snowy Scheme must stay in public hands and The Greens will continue to oppose any moves for its privatisation or leasing.” (*includes $75 million for 70 Gigalitres for the Murray)

contact Michael Bond 0413 315 084 michael.bond@vic.greens.org.au  

 

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