Nov 7, 2006

Response to water summit

Response to water summit

MEDIA RELEASE – ANTHONY ALBANESE MP

7 November 2006

Climate change and water are the two sides of the same coin, and Australia desperately needs a strategy for both.

Today’s Water Summit is a welcome step forward in addressing the water crisis.

Without a plan to cut Australia’s greenhouse emissions and address climate change, John Howard does not have a water plan.

The Murray Darling Basin Commission’s warning that Australia is having a one in 1,000 year drought demands urgent action from the Howard Government.

Australia’s precious water supplies remain over-allocated, undervalued and misdirected.

Australia is facing the consequences of ten years of denial and inaction from the Howard Government over climate change and water.

We must draw a line in the parched earth – no more denial, no more delay, no more procrastination.

The Prime Minister should be addressing climate change and water now, not waiting until COAG meets in April 2007.

Many of the answers are already on the table. The Government should ratify the Kyoto Protocol and show real commitment to a global solution to climate change.

John Howard should support Labor’s plan for water trading and emissions trading, a national water recycling target of 30% by 2015 and a substantially increased Mandatory Renewable Energy Target.

Funds under the National Water Initiative must stop trickling out. We need a flood of new money directed to projects that are sitting on the Prime Minister’s desk.

Instead of words, we need action. The Howard Government has promised buckets of money, but they stall at the barrier when it comes to actually delivering water to the Murray Darling system.