Water

One Nation plans to fix the Murray-Darling Basin

By Jamieson Salter

One Nation's 10-point plan for the Murray-Darling Basin was last week released by Queensland Senator Malcolm Roberts.

The plan proposes to:

1. Save the Coorong wetlands:

One Nation plans to divert natural freshwater drainage back to the Coorong wetlands, saying the lakes were originally freshwater.

2. Move sustainable water diversion limit acquisitions to the south-east:

One Nation will stop the Sustainable Diversion Limit program throughout the basin and give $1.5 billion to South Australia, to complete the drain project and return 500 Gl of water to the basin as SDL acquisition.

3. Save the Menindee Lakes wetland:

One Nation believes it can save the Menindee Lakes by terminating the new Menindee plan, ending the drainage of the lakes and restoring local water entitlements.

4. Return 200 Gl of water from the northern basin to irrigation:

One Nation supports the return of 200 Gl of stranded environmental flows back to agriculture.

5. A better balance for irrigation water and lower prices:

One Nation will alter the water trading regulations to ensure temporary water licences can only be purchased for agriculture.

6. Transparency is confidence:

One Nation aims to require all farms and government agencies to meter their water and make the data available online, audit SDL payments and implement the online register for water licences.

7. The ‘Water for Life’ weir project:

This One Nation program will raise dam supply to hold five years worth of water.

8. The Lower Lakes were fresh and salt:

The Lower Lakes need to be primarily freshwater according to One Nation, with periods of sea inundation only during the most extreme droughts.

9. Build lock zero and protect Adelaide's water:

One Nation supports the building of lock zero above Wellington and an irrigation canal around both sides of the lower lakes.

10. Build dams:

Dams will drought-proof Australia, according to One Nation.

One Nation has requested feedback on its solutions at: senator.roberts@aph.gov.au