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Building more dams won't create more water

Media Release
Rachel Siewert 11 Sep 2006

"Unless Mr Turnbull wakes up to the huge impact that climate change is having on the security of our water resources, the National Water Initiative will go off the rails," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

Senator Siewert slammed comments by Malcolm Turnbull criticising state government efforts to reduce the demand for water and suggesting that they should be investing in new infrastructure to increase supply.

"Building more dams and pipes is not a solution when the water simply isn't there."

Mr Turnbull's comments came the week after the interim water policy report of the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs committee highlighted the dwindling water levels in the dams of our major cities.

Brisbane currently only has 28% of its storage capacity, Perth has 29%, Sydney 41%, Melbourne 47%, Canberra 49%, and Adelaide 54%.

"State government efforts to reduce demand should be applauded, not berated. If we are to tackle this problem effectively all levels of government need to be doing more."

"The truth is that we need a combination of measures including water recycling and demand management to deal with the impacts of climate change and the growth of our cities on diminishing water resources," she said.

The RRAT committee report stated that "...the committee is concerned that the potential impacts of climate change may not been sufficiently factored into water entitlements and management plans."

Malcolm Turnbull was quoted in today's Australian saying: "The truth is that urban water is a very profitable business and that state governments have used restrictions to reduce demand rather than investing in new infrastructure to increase supply."

 

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