Letter to the Editor: Victorians invited to have their say on environmental water management

Northern Victorians will now have the opportunity to have their concerns about environmental watering heard in a new parliamentary inquiry.

Following the failure of Labor and the Greens to support the inquiry in the Upper House, I have directly referred the inquiry to the Environment, Natural Resources and Regional Development Committee.

As a member of the Environment National Resources and Regional Development Committee, I would like to invite community input into the inquiry, with public submissions due by 25 August 2017.

When blackwater events occur, it can have a devastating impact on the environment and on communities.

This inquiry is our opportunity to help improve those outcomes and achieve better waterway health as well as giving communities and individuals the chance to voice their concerns.

Under the terms of reference for the inquiry, the Committee will assess:

• the role of environmental water management in preventing or causing ‘blackwater’ events

• the use of water management tools such as carryover and their impact on the availability of water for irrigators

• any barriers to more efficient use of environmental water and how those should be addressed

• the fees and charges applied and whether they differ from those imposed on other water users.

We need to try to find the correct balance to ensure environmental water is managed efficiently and that it isn’t having a negative impact on the eco-system in the form of blackwater events.

I encourage all Victorians with concerns about environmental water management to have their voices heard through this inquiry.

Anyone wishing to make a submission can send it to enrrdc@parliament.vic.gov.au with their name and contact details.


Yours sincerely,

Luke O’Sullivan MP

Nationals Member for Northern Victoria

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