Senate debates

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Bills

Water Amendment (Long-term Average Sustainable Diversion Limit Adjustment) Bill 2012; In Committee

9:46 am

Photo of Barnaby JoyceBarnaby Joyce (Queensland, National Party, Leader of The Nationals in the Senate) Share this | Hansard source

There is already in this legislation the capacity that you cannot adjust down unless there is environmental neutrality. That is already part of the structure. If there is environmental neutrality and you want to help citrus growers or stock and domestic water suppliers as stated by Senator Hanson-Young then why should those people not have the capacity to utilise that water for irrigation? It is not saying that it is going to happen but in fact it is weighted more towards the environment—vastly more towards the environment—because you can only go down if there is environmental neutrality. One of the issues we have is that you can go up without economic and social neutrality.

To agree to this would be to go completely against all the negotiations that have happened thus far over a very protracted period of time where we are trying to get people from all sides of this debate together and this would work completely at odds with that.

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