Save the Murray River! Next year is too late...

This is from GetUp — but this is such an important issue that I’m posting it here on RB too. The Murray River is one of the world’s great rivers — in the 19thC it had more than 4000miles of navigatible waterways — now it is dying because of our greed and short-sightedness. If the Murray goes, so do thousands of species of uniques animals — many are already nearing extinction due to destruction of their habitats and competition from imported species such as carp.

GetUp are petitioning the government — please sign their petition. Here’s what they say:

The Murray-Darling is at breaking point – literally dying of thirst.

The Murray-Darling Basin accounts for over 40% of Australia’s agricultural production and grows almost a third of all our food. It’s Australia’s food bowl. Could we survive without this mighty river system?

It’s time to implement urgent solutions to save it – as things heat up in the coming months, the Coorong Lakes at the Murray’s mouth may even dry up completely before summer’s end. Click here to help save the Murray-Darling before we turn our nation’s food bowl into dust bowl:

www.getup.org.au/campaign/BuyMeARiver

We’ve spoken to scientists, environmentalists and farmers, and learned there are three things our Federal Government must do, right now, if the mighty Murray is to flow again:

Recover and release 500 gigalitres of water into the river system by the end of the year, and 4000 gigalitres overall to prevent our food bowl turning into a dust bowl.
Create an emergency Interim Basin management plan, including a focus on the Coorong and Lower Lakes. This could be done in a matter of weeks, as a precursor to establishing a truly independent authority that is not held to ransom by State governments’ veto power.
Establish a national freshwater reserve system to protect rivers, wetlands and estuaries of high value to the river. As a first step, urgently intervene to save the Murray River Red Gums, the river’s “green lungs” suffering from State inaction.

Everyday Australians can send a vital message of urgency to the Federal Government that we need to do more, and now. Click here to sign the petition to Save the Murray-Darling:

http://www.getup.org.au/campaign/BuyMeARiver

The Senate is holding an inquiry today in Canberra, hearing testimony from scientists on just how serious the situation has become. Just this morning, scientists gave evidence that use of water across the Basin needs to be halved below the current cap.

A decisive statement from the Australian community now could tip the scales and achieve the urgent State and Federal government action needed to keep the rivers flowing. More than just a national icon, take a stand today for Australia’s food bowl.

Journal Comments

  • Cathie Tranent