The Barmah Millewa Collective is currently campaigning on the Murray Darling Basin Plan - a once in a life time opportunity to safeguard water for the rivers, wetlands and forests of over 14% of Australia's landscapes! We also continue to collaborate with Traditional Owner Nations throughout the Murray-Darling Basin to protect and care for this unique and threatened landscape. Our work ranges from on-ground revegetation projects through to campaigns for Aboriginal land and water rights.
We've been busy highlighting the true ecological impact of the disastrous draft Basin Plan. Our lead Murray Darling Campaigner, Jonathan La Nauze,spent days pouring over dozens of publications to piece together the truth of what only 2750GL of extra environmental water would mean for the Basin's ecosystems. Our modelling shows what lives and what dies under the draft Basin Plan and clearly outlines that the draft fails to meet Australia's requirements under international obligations and does not satisfy the requirements of the Water Act.Read more
As the deadline for public consultation on the draft Basin Plan draws near, twelve peak environmental groups, including Friends of the Earth, are increasingly frustrated that the Basin Authority seems unprepared to use the best-available science to fix the serious problems of the draft Plan. “Instead, they are persevering with a flawed process, incomplete data and limited modelling,” said Jonathan La Nauze, our Murray-Darling Campaigner.Read more
When a group of highly respected scientists call for the draft Basin Plan to be thrown out completely, its time to start taking seriously the flaws in the process to restore our most important river system. Most significantly, the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists found there is no data in the draft on the amount of water actually needed to ensure the river's health – the whole point of the Basin Plan! This was just one of 5 key failings they outlined in their detailed and carefully considered analysis.Read more
The entire Labor caucus has been ordered to an unprecedented weekend brainstorming session this Sunday 5th Feb. It is being touted as an opportunity for all 102 MPs to workshop policy ideas and strategies and in particular raise any concerns they have in their electorates with the PM and the cabinet directly. So – THIS WEEK is the best opportunity we have to get our message to each of our local federal members, so that on Sunday the government hears loud and clear from across the country that Australia wants a strong Basin Plan that restores the health of the river for future generations. Ringing or visiting your MP is easy and powerful – you can find talking points and background info here as well as search for your MPs details.Read more
In the last few weeks, the impact of Coal Seam Gas (CSG) mining on Murray-Darling Basin rivers has become a whole lot clearer - and a whole lot more worrying.
We commissioned independent testing of "treated" water being discharged from a Santos CSG mining operation in NW NSW. Toxic chemicals in the Bohena Creek just downstream from this discharge were excessively high - ammonia levels were 3 times the safe level for drinking water.Read more
In a protest this morning against the hopelessly inadequate draft
Murray-Darling Basin plan, activists have abseiled from the wall of the
Hume Dam outside Albury and suspended a giant 50 metre banner.
On Monday, the draft Murray-Darling Basin Plan was finally released. Green groups around the country, including Friends of the Earth, have described it as a monumental failure. It recommends a measly 2750 gigalitres of water be returned to the environment and even their own modelling predicts this is not enough to restore the rivers and their ecosystems to health.
CSIRO released their independent report yesterday as well - which highlights five major failings fo the plan, including a failure to take into account the impacts on water availability of climate change.
What now follows is 20 weeks of community consultation - it is time to get our voices heard. This draft Plan is simply not good enough - and doesn't appear to meet the requirements of the Water Act 2007. But we can still turn this around - see how to get active here and find out more via the links below to the media coverage we've been getting.Read more
The Murray Darling Basin Authority is charged with regulating groundwater acquifers as well as surface water. But in new leaks it appears they are looking to more than double extraction - "That's a huge amount of water to be pumping out of these aquifers, with untold risks for the future of those aquifers and also for potential pollution of surface water streams." says Friends of the Earth Murray-Darling Campaigner, Jonathon La Nauze.
It's also a radical revisal that has no basis in science and potentially opens the door for Coal Seam Gas and other mining in the Basin to large amounts of water.
Last Thursday Friends of the Earth attended a pre-briefing on the soon-to-be-released Proposed Basin Plan. Amongst many disappointments in the document was this shocking bit of back-pedaling: water quality and salinity targets, critical to ensuring the waters of the Murray-Darling are safe to swim and drink, will now be merely “aspirational.”Read more