Labor, Greens fail to support blackwater inquiry

Thursday 11 May 2017


The Andrews Labor Government and Greens MPs have voted against an inquiry that would have examined blackwater events and better management of water in northern Victoria.

Significant blackwater events in the Southern Murray Darling Basin in recent years have had serious consequences for our agricultural industries that rely on the river system and communities along the river.

The inquiry, proposed in the Legislative Council by The Nationals Member for Northern Victoria Luke O’Sullivan, would have considered the management, governance and use of environmental water in Victoria.

But the Andrews Labor Government and Greens voted against the motion today, denying communities and stakeholders the chance to participate and denying the opportunity to improve environmental outcomes.

“It is very disappointing for northern Victoria that Labor and the Greens have denied them this chance to voice their concerns about a very important issue in our communities,” Shadow Minister for Water Peter Walsh said.

“Victoria’s Agriculture Minister voted against a motion to investigate the protection of Murray cod and other native fish in our waterways as a result of significant blackwater events.

“The Nationals and Liberals were supporting the inquiry in a bid to achieve better waterway health and it’s sad that Labor and the Greens fail to understand what is important in country communities.”

Mr O’Sullivan said our Murray River communities had many unanswered questions about the role of environmental watering in blackwater events.

“This inquiry was a chance to investigate questions our communities have on blackwater events and the management of environmental water, and whether better practices could lessen the impact of blackwater events,” Mr O’Sullivan said.

“Clearly the Greens and Labor are only concerned with what happens in the inner suburbs of Melbourne and are not serious about assisting local regional communities.”

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