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Murray options need to be assessed by experts: Greens.



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Wednesday 3 September 2008

Murray options need to be assessed by experts: Greens

The Greens say the Federal Government’s options for saving the Coorong need to be properly assessed in the current Murray-Darling Senate Inquiry.

Greens Senator for South Australia Sarah Hanson-Young welcomed the new information released by the Government but said the data contained within it and the options outlined need to be considered by independent experts.

“We need balance, and the expert scientific assessment to help chart the way forward,” said Senator Hanson-Young.

“It is now up to the Inquiry to assess this information along with the input coming from independent scientific experts, environmental groups, and the community.”

“Fortunately there has been such a strong community response that this information has finally come out into the open.

“What is clear now is that the Lower Lakes and Coorong need freshwater flows to be restored as soon as possible.

“New sources of water are needed by the end of summer if the lower reaches of the Murray have any hope of being rescued.”

Senator Hanson-Young encouraged concerned members of the public and community organisations to make their own submissions to the Senate Inquiry.

“The observations, expertise and opinions of those who live and work in our Storm Boy country will prove invaluable information in determining the best solutions to this environmental crisis,” she said.

“I urge all concerned South Australians to sharpen their pencils as soon as possible and contribute to this urgent inquiry so we can get the Coorong a drink before Christmas.”

Submissions can be made in writing or electronically, and must be received by Thursday 11 September 2008. The Committee will then report back on its findings by 30 September 2008, due to the urgency of the situation.

Hearings will be held on 10 September in Adelaide, 18-19 September in Canberra, and 26 September in Melbourne.

Visit http://www.aph.gov.au/Senate/committee/rrat_ctte/lowerlakes_coorong/index.htm for details.

For more information: Gemma Clark on 0427 604 760