August 2020

Unredacted Documents Prove Commonwealth Paid Too Much for ‘Watergate’

The Australia Institute and consultancy firm, Slattery & Johnson, have released research today based on newly unredacted valuation documents about the $80 million ‘Watergate’ scandal. The documents, provided to independent Senator Rex Patrick last week after a two-year battle, contain the commercial valuation commissioned by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (DAWR) for negotiations

February 2020

Up ‘effluent creek’: Basin Plan projects to damage sensitive waterways

Some of the Murray Darling Basin’s best managed waterways would be damaged by water infrastructure projects that benefit major corporate irrigators, according to a new report by water consultants Slattery & Johnson and think tank The Australia Institute. The Yanco Creek System, which links the Murrumbidgee and the Murray rivers, is declared a “jewel” of

January 2020

‘Watergate’ water “not value for money” even at half price according to Department

Research released by The Australia Institute today reveals new information on the Commonwealth’s controversial purchase of water rights in the Condamine Balonne valley for $80 million in 2017. The Government has refused to release independent valuations of the water rights, despite requests from the Senate, with newly released documents showing similar deals had been repeatedly

October 2019

September 2019

Majority of Australians want Murray Darling policy to prioritise food security and family farms

New research released today by The Australia Institute shows that the vast majority of Australians prioritise production of food for Australian consumption, and support for family farms in the Murray Darling Basin. When respondents were asked to rank agriculture and water policy goals: Top water policy priorities for the Murray-Darling Basin include: Three quarters of

July 2019

Problems with the Murray-Darling Basin can’t be skimmed over

by Maryanne Slattery[Originally published in The Canberra Times, 13 July 2019] The Murray-Darling Basin is broken. Literally. As in its parts aren’t joined up anymore – the Darling River/Barka hasn’t flowed into the Murray since 2017. The Murrumbidgee isn’t flowing into the Murray either and will be disconnected from the rest of the basin more

June 2019

May 2019

Key independents back 4 steps to fix Murray Darling

New research from The Australia Institute highlights four steps governments can take to improve the management of the Murray Darling Basin: Emergency water allocation to the dairy industry Develop policies to ensure diversity in Basin agriculture A federal Royal Commission or federal ICAC investigation Pause the Basin Plan The Institute’s proposal has been backed by

April 2019

Poor Voter Impression of Murray Darling Basin Management Soars

The Australia Institute surveyed a nationally representative sample of Australians in 2018 and in 2019 about their views towards issues surrounding the health and management of the Murray Darling Basin (MDB). Key Findings: A majority of Australians (55%) now consider the health of the Murray Darling Basin poor or very poor, up 18 percentage points

SA Voters Want Federal Royal Commission into MDB, Restrictions on Irrigators

New research from The Australia Institute shows that South Australians overwhelmingly want a Commonwealth Royal Commission into the Murray Darling Basin Plan (73%) and believe that irrigation businesses in the Darling Basin should not be allowed to draw water when mass fish kills and drinking water shortages are occurring downstream (84%). The research also reveals

March 2019

December 2018

May 2018

Request for audit: Supply measures projects – Murray Darling Basin Plan

by Maryanne Slattery and Rod Campbell

4 May 2018 Dear Auditor-General, Supply measure projects  We refer to the proposed amendment to the Murray-Darling Basin Plan. That amendment is based on 36 ‘supply measure’ projects. Supply measures aim to achieve the same environmental outcome as under the original Basin Plan, but using less water. The Commonwealth has committed $1.6 billion to implement these supply measures. The

Request to Audit: Allegations concerning the purchases of water for environmental flows in the Murray-Darling Basin

The Auditor-General has received correspondence from Senators Patrick, Griff, Hanson-Young and Bernardi, Ms Rebekha Sharkie MP and the Hon. Tony Burke MP dated 24 April 2018, requesting that the Auditor-General conduct an investigation to examine the purchases of water for environmental flows in the Murray-Darling Basin. This request is under consideration and the response will

December 2017

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