23.8 C
Byron Shire
March 3, 2021

Water the all important resource now and in the future

Latest News

Forum to address housing emergency, March 8

A grassroots movement is bringing women, community and art together on International Women’s Day (March 8) in an urgent push to solve the local housing emergency. 

Other News

Forum to address housing emergency, March 8

A grassroots movement is bringing women, community and art together on International Women’s Day (March 8) in an urgent push to solve the local housing emergency. 

Action on Cumbalum Interchange at Ballina?

Following multiple community requests, Cr Phillip Meehan brought a motion to the last Ballina Council meeting calling for additional ramps to be built at the Cumbalum-Pacific Motorway interchange.

Council’s power

Matthew O’Reilly I refer to Ian Pickles’ letter, titled ‘Developers’ power’ (Letters, 10 February). Generally, I must agree with most of...

Monkey see

Daniel Brown, Byron Bay Back in my early youth growing up in Mt Eliza Victoria in the ‘90s I’d secretly...

Lennox Rise development clears another hurdle

The massive new residential development planned west of Epiq in Lennox Head continued its progress towards becoming reality at the last Ballina Shire Council meeting.

Byron’s new road: the good and not so

After more than 30 years of talk, debate, disagreements, tears and political gridlock, Byron Bay has a new road to divert traffic from the CBD to the southern end of town.

Tweed Greens candidate Bill Fenelon at a recent protest in Uki. Photo supplied

Recent rains have done nothing to change the view that Australians should expect to face future crises in water supply. The mayors of several western NSW councils who face current water supply crises have asked the state government to stop water allocated for irrigation from being pumped out of the upper reaches of the Darling river system, and water supply shortages can be expected in many parts of Australia in the future.

Residents of the Tweed Shire have called for a halt to new water mining approvals in the shire, and that result appears to be a step closer after Councillors Milne, Cherry, Cooper and Byrnes voted to forward a planning proposal to remove water extraction for commercial water bottling from the Local Environmental Plan to the NSW Department of Planning and Environment at the February Council meeting.

Greens candidate for Tweed Bill Fenelon says the recent death of 1 million fish in the Darling River near Menindee Lakes is yet another wake-up call of the consequences from over-using and abusing our water systems.

‘According to an Environmental Defenders Office report, a river is like a piggy bank, if you keep taking money out without saving for the future you end up bankrupt,’ he said. ‘The causes of this devastating fish kill include extracting too much water from the river, failing to set limits on extraction that take into account climate change, and prolonged periods without rainfall.’

Fenelon says that similar principles apply to water mining.

‘You just can’t keep taking water out of our aquifers without a risk of them drying up. Eventually the “piggy bank” will be empty.

‘Our aquifers are our buffer against the increasing threat of climate change and ongoing drought,’ he said. ‘As our rivers and creeks dry up, we will be more reliant on our underground water supplies for domestic and agricultural use.

‘Our aquifers belong to us, the community, not the greedy few selling our precious life-sustaining resource to make a profit. The Tweed community has raised concerns on numerous occasions about lack of evidence of the sustainability of water mining operations, impacts on the rural character of the area and on the road network.’

According to NSW Greens policy, the over-exploitation of groundwater sources will diminish the extent to which groundwater can sustain groundwater-dependant ecosystems. The Greens NSW say that they will work to ensure that no new bores are constructed, and all bores in existence are mapped, metered and licensed.

Mr Fenelon said that if elected as the Tweed State MP, he will push for this Council resolution (removing commercial water extraction for bottling from the Tweed LEP) to be ratified.

‘I will also investigate ways that existing water mining approvals can be revoked so that we can put an end to this environmentally-destructive water mining industry once and for all.’


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Bangalow blackspot puts school children at risk

Will action ever be taken to protect school kids getting on and off the bus on Lismore Road, Bangalow as trucks fly by at 80km/h?

Lifting the lid on plans to build a retirement village in Ewingsdale

The letter sent to the residents of Ewingsdale last year by holiday park owner Ingenia seemed fairly innocuous at first glance...

Byron’s new road: the good and not so

After more than 30 years of talk, debate, disagreements, tears and political gridlock, Byron Bay has a new road to divert traffic from the CBD to the southern end of town.

Interview with Janet Swain

Janet Swain is 14. She’s in love with the tragic and brilliant cellist Jacquleine DuPré. But one day her mother arrives home with a bassoon.