QFF: Buybacks in basin plan to harm farming
COMMUNITY members, business owners, growers and irrigators are being urged to make their voices heard by lodging a written submission on water buybacks.
Submissions to the Murray-Darling Basin Authority' Northern Basin Review close on Thursday.
As part of the MDB Plan, 278GL of water was already taken from production across Northern Basin communities to date.
At the end of 2016, the MDBA released its draft proposal to reduce the total volume of recovery from 390GL to 320GL.
Cotton Australia general manager Michael Murray said the recommendation to strip even more water was unacceptable.
"The MDBA's plans to remove more water from irrigation-dependent communities across the Northern Basin will continue to inflict unnecessary economic pain,” Mr Murray said.
"The proposed 320GL target for water recovery will mean around 450 jobs will be lost from the communities across the Northern Basin.
"These job losses are not just from the agricultural sector, but from businesses supplying farmers and local businesses and providers servicing local towns.”
Queensland Farmers' Federation president Stuart Armitage said it was essential affected communities across south-western Queensland had their say on the proposed buybacks.
"The MDBA's own research shows that the communities in the Northern Basin are already feeling the impacts of the water buybacks, with more on the way,” Mr Armitage said.
"Continued buybacks will decrease agricultural production in the region, negatively impacting people that are directly and indirectly employed, as well as the community as a whole.
"It is hard for even the most resilient of communities to recovery from this level of economic and social damage.”
To make a submission by Thursday, go to the website www.farmers.org.au.