Announcements today regarding the return of a possible 3200GL of water are a step in the right direction, but more needs to be done if we are to return the Murray Darling Basin to health.
The Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists have today stated that 3200GL achieves 66% of the Murray Darling Basin Authority's own environmental water requirements and only 3 of the 20 South Australian environmental water requirement targets.
"By capping possible flow return at 3200GL we are condemning the Murray Darling Basin to a bleak future" said Peter Owen, Campaign Manager for the Wilderness Society.
The Wentworth Group Report raises serious concerns around the proposed massive expansion in groundwater extraction, which runs the risk of eroding water return targets and significantly undermining the Plan.
The Report further identifies that flows need to be increased beyond the 3200GL scenario if the salt export target set by the South Australian Government is to be met.
"How will our red gum forests on the Chowilla floodplain improve in health if the maximum dry period between drinks is up to 13 years when it should be no longer than 5 years" said Tim Kelly, CEO, Conservation Council SA.