If the NSW Government was serious about preventing “Fish Armageddon” this summer, it would secure water supply for native fish so they don’t need rescuing in the first place, Greens water spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.
“The NSW Government’s refusal to accept the findings of the Natural Resources Commission is outrageous. The findings show over-allocation of water in favour of up-stream corporate irrigators pushed the river system into severe drought three years earlier than it would have, leading to the fish kills in the Menindee Lakes and Darling River.
“They’ve had more than six months since those devastating fish kills to stop over extraction and lift the freeze on buying back environmental water so native fish can get the water they need to survive.
“Instead, they plan to rescue dying fish from the river when the heat sets in and the water stops flowing, which does nothing to prevent future fish kills.
“It’s time the NSW Government stopped working in favour of big corporate irrigators and started acting in the best interests of family farmers, river communities, the environment and native fish.
“Water must be returned to the River and we must have a Royal Commission to fix the management of the Murray Darling Basin before it is too late.”