Australian news, and some related international items


Senator Rex Patrick   3 Nov 19, I’m sick and tired of the NSW Government threatening to pull out of the Murray-Darling Basin Plan every time they get upset about something happening on the river.

It’s been threatened at least 4 times since February 2018, when the Senate was debating whether or not to allow an extra 70GL of extraction from the Norther Basin (Centre Alliance voted against extra extraction).

NSW pulling out of the Basin Plan would not be in its own interests. There are a number of significant NSW river projects that are or will be funded by the Basin Plan, but won’t be if NSW were to pull out.

The Murray-Darling is a national river that needs to be managed accordingly. If NSW took its bat and ball home, there would be little choice but for the Federal Government to take control, either using existing Commonwealth powers or by supporting a constitutional amendment handing powers to the Federal Parliament. Centre Alliance already has a Constitutional Alteration Bill before the Parliament that seeks to do this.

NSW Nationals MPs have cried wolf on pulling out of the plan so often now that it’s becoming meaningless. They would be better off focussing their efforts on reigning in over-extraction, but that would involve acting in the national interest, not in the Nationals’ interests.

November 4, 2019 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, environment, politics

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