Wednesday, 6 February 2013
Water Amendment (Water for the Environment Special Account) Bill 2012; In Committee
There are a few things to respond to there. Firstly, I indicate that the government does not support the amendments that Senator Joyce is moving. We did seem to get off the legislation a bit, talking about some of the matters that Senator Xenophon referred to. Talking about trees being removed, one of the great benefits of this legislation will be that those beautiful red gums along the Murray will be restored to health by virtue of this legislation. There is a very famous band of that name—Redgum, which I think I have heard. In answer to Senator Xenophon's question, my recollection of the figures is that, certainly prior to the drought, Adelaide took about 200 gigalitres off the Murray. There were about 40 gigalitres from other parts of the state and the total amount extracted was about 600 gigalitres, so that would include all of the extra water for irrigation. Putting that into perspective, when Senator Joyce says that 450 is more than comes out of South Australia, in fact it is probably less.