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Anti pipeline petitions flood in

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Petitions against the North-South Pipeline which will transfer water from the Goulburn River to Melbourne are flooding into the office of Bill Sykes, Member for Benalla.

Dr Sykes said, “We already have thousands of signatures on the petition against the pipeline but we need thousands more. Signed petitions need to be returned to my office by 13 July so that I can table them in Parliament on 17 July.

“More copies of the petition are available from my office by phoning 5762 2100.”

Dr Sykes continued, “There is a massive and growing wave of public opinion against the pipeline. Over 600 people attended an anti pipeline rally at Shepparton yesterday and they were unanimous in their opposition to the pipeline whilst calling on the Government to fund much needed water savings projects in the Northern Irrigation area.

“Those people who support the pipeline as part of the water infrastructure package have been conned into accepting second best because the Federal Government’s National Water Plan will provide more money for water savings with all savings staying in the Murray Darling Basin for the benefit of irrigators and the environment on a 50/50 basis.

“Supporters of the pipeline proposal also have misplaced trust in the Bracks Government to deliver on its commitment to deliver water savings rather than just put in the pipeline and start sucking water from the north – keeping in mind that irrigators have zero water allocation for season 2007/08.

“The Bracks Government’s track record of broken promises would make most thinking people be extremely careful in accepting their spoken or written commitment on anything.

“Can you believe that if the Bracks Government is faced with Melbourne ‘running dry’ that they will not pump water to Melbourne regardless of the impact on Lake Eildon and irrigators and communities dependent on it for water for their livelihoods?

Dr Sykes concluded, “This will not be an easy fight but we must make it clear that country Victorians will not accept their water being stolen by a city centric, inept Government which has failed to invest in recycling plants and storm water recapture over the past eight years to secure Melbourne’s burgeoning demand for water.

“Whisky is for drinking and water is for fighting over and we are prepared to fight to the end.”

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Written by Greg Naylor

6 July 2007 at 6:14 pm

Posted in media release

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