26 November 2017
Support for SA Royal Commission into Murray water theft
The state’s peak environment body has backed today’s announcement of a SA Royal Commission into Murray Darling water theft.
“While we would prefer a federal Royal Commission or an equivalent wide-ranging federal judicial inquiry, it’s increasingly clear that Barnaby Joyce and the Turnbull Government will not act,” said Craig Wilkins, Conservation SA Chief Executive.
“South Australia’s confidence in the multi-billion dollar Murray Darling Basin Plan has been rocked by the damning ABC Four Corners expose in July, and a series of followup reports in recent weeks which point to water rorting and theft in NSW and Queensland, and a culture of cover-up and corruption.
“We need to get to the truth behind these allegations, and ensure Australia’s enormous investment in restoring the long term health of the Murray Darling Basin system is not being wasted.
“Equally, if there is dodgy behaviour in other states, including SA, that also should be stopped.
“As the state at the end of the Murray system, South Australia has the most to lose from water theft.
“The Murray is South Australia’s lifeblood, and unless more water is restored to the system, our River’s fate is looking increasingly desperate, with little capacity to respond to the next drought.
“Something must be done. If Barnaby Joyce won’t act to restore confidence in the Murray Darling Basin Plan, then SA must,” Mr Wilkins said.
Further comment: Craig Wilkins 0417 879 439