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Greens’ Murray Darling Basin Royal Commission Bill before Senate

Australian Greens environment and water spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young has this afternoon introduced a Bill to establish a Royal Commission into the Murray Darling Basin.

 

“I introduce this Bill today on behalf of the millions of Australians devastated by the mismanagement of the Murray Darling Basin, for the people without clean water to drink or watching fish die, and for taxpayers who have been continuously ripped off,” Senator Hanson-Young said.

 

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LNP fails Murray Darling Basin

The Liberal National Government has shamefully stopped the Senate from delivering vital water back to the Murray Darling Basin today.

 

“The Liberal National Government’s refusal to lift the freeze on water buybacks is another nail in the coffin for our precious River. On day one of Parliament we could have done something to help our River, instead the Liberal National Party has failed it again,” Greens environment and water spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

 

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We must do more to save the natural world: Greens

Australia needs to step up its efforts to protect vulnerable and endangered species, including insects, to combat mass extinction and set an example for the rest of the world, the Greens say.

 

“The sharp decline in insect populations shows ecosystems across the world are struggling to survive. Insects play a vital role in our ecosystems and must not be forgotten in plans to save our threatened species,” Greens environment spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

 

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Greens’ Murray Darling Basin Royal Commission terms released

The Australian Greens have today released draft terms of reference for a federal Royal Commission into the Murray Darling Basin.

 

“We know our river is under extreme stress. Fish are dying and people are without clean water to drink. A Royal Commission is clearly warranted. It must be far reaching, take into account the effect the Plan has had on environment and river communities, and include the impact of climate change,” Greens environment and water spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

 

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Bird exports must be stopped and investigated

Reports of more rare and endangered birds being exported to Germany and into the hands of a convicted criminal must be investigated urgently, the Greens say.

 

“The Federal Government should never have given permits to allow the trade of rare and endangered birds with a person convicted of fraud and kidnapping. It must be investigated and exports of rare and endangered birds must halt,” Greens environment and trade spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

 

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Speirs aimed at wrong target

The South Australian Liberal Government needs to stop fighting the SA Royal Commissioner and start fighting for our water if they are serious about saving the Murray, the Greens say.

 

“South Australian Environment and Water Minister David Speirs is in denial about the delivery of the 450GL of water promised to South Australia. The Royal Commissioner has confirmed we won’t see a drop of that water,” Greens environment and water spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

 

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Murray Darling Basin management is sacrificing the environment

The Murray Darling Basin Plan’s compromised legal status must be taken seriously by the SA and Federal governments following the delivery of the SA Royal Commissioner’s report, the Greens say.

 

“Reports that the plan designed to save the River is failing to meet its environmental objectives and may be unlawful are deeply concerning. It becomes clearer as each day goes by that the Murray Darling Basin has been mismanaged and corrupted, by political and corporate interests," Greens environment and water spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

 

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More fish deaths, still no action

The Australian Greens have called on the Prime Minister Scott Morrison to visit the Lower Darling and see the environmental disaster for himself following another mass fish kill in Menindee.

“Where the bloody hell is the Prime Minister? Why hasn’t he or his Water Minister been to the River to see the environmental crisis at all in the last month?," Greens environment and water spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

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Murray Darling Basin Plan managers get an F

The Productivity Commission’s scathing report into the Murray Darling Basin Plan shows it is failing and needs serious reform and transparency, the Greens say.

 

“The Productivity Commission’s scathing assessment of the Murray Darling Basin Plan is summed up perfectly in one sentence:

 

“Recovering water through efficiency measures has become increasingly divorced from the environmental outcomes it is meant to achieve.”(p22)

 

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