Home' Grower : August 2010 Contents The South Australian Grower – August 2010
Will there ever be
truth in politics?
with WALLY SPARROW
IAM seriously starting to worry about what goes on in
the minds of our politicians at the state and federal
Are they absolutely stupid or born liars? It seems
to me that they feel they have the right to make
any statement that suits their purpose, without it
having any substance, truth or possible reality.
For several years, the Brumby government has
been issuing press releases stating that the way
they had introduced water saving techniques into
the Goulburn Valley region justified them diverting
that saved water to Bendigo, Ballarat and
At the time, all those with an interest in our
water problems considered this to be a very
innovative scheme, although the figures really
didn’t add up.
Locals have told me that the Goulburn River has
nothing to do with the flow of the Murray River.
Well I am sorry, but the Goulburn is part of the
Murray Darling Basin, and it is an established fact
that it is the most important Victorian tributary to
the Murray River.
It has been raped, pillaged and politically drained
I recently drove from Melbourne to Albury,
Echuca, Shepparton and then back to Melbourne. I
thought it would be good to see all these new
innovative water saving schemes. To my eyes,
nothing had changed.
I am sure there must be some growers who are
using drip and low throw irrigation systems, but
the water delivery systems were the same
evaporation channels they installed when they
opened the area up. High volume overhead
irrigation was quite evident everywhere I went.
Where are all the changes and innovative water
They are yet another politically initiated lie. This
water is being stolen from other recipients further
down the river.
On Wednesday, June 9 the Victorian Auditor-
General tabled a damning report in the Victorian
Parliament regarding the $2 billion Food Bowl
Modernisation and the $750 million north-south
pipeline. This report found that the Brumby
government’s projects were implemented without
proper costing and without evidence that the
savings were feasible.
State Member for Shepparton, Jeanette Powell,
has again condemned the Brumby Government in
Parliament for its mismanagement of the Food
Modernisation Project and the north-south
pipeline. She pointed out that highlights of the
The Victorian government decisions were poorly
informed, which in some cases has affected the
achievement of outcomes.
The business case was formalised two years
after the decision to proceed with the project.
Water savings and cost consumptions had not
The technology had not proven itself.
The feasibility of the project was unknown.
Expected water savings had not been achieved.
The effectiveness of the modernisation was
The Department of Sustainability and
Environment (DSE) had created its own set of
water inflow forecasts, selectively using years
2004 to 2006 rather than the past ten years as
The proposal submitted by irrigators (the former
Food Bowl Alliance) was not given to the DSE and
the Office for Water to review, despite that agency
having both the expertise and responsibility for
Is this not a classic case of no-brain government
decisions being made and then people in the
engine room later being charged with the
responsibility of justifying it? This involves the
blatant theft of a lot of water that should have
come down to our State.
I doubt if our leaders would even know where
the Goulburn River is and if they claim they do,
why haven’t they acted?
I rest my case.
On a lighter side, you may be able to help Ron
Gray and Senator Nick Xenophon with their
campaign to get some honesty in labelling laws.
We want every one of you to sit down in front of
your computers and complete their petition on
We may (I only said may) be able to convince
somebody in government that we are serious
about this problem.
You can contact Ron on 0417 811 314
If you want to dump me in the Goulburn or have me
labelled contact me on email@example.com
or 0419 591 894.
Unit 3, 43-55 Produce Lane, Pooraka
Tel: 08 8349 4556
Fax 08 8349 5316
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