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Friday, October 24, 2008

Australian Water Network to be announced

Tomorrow the Rivers SOS people will be convening a meeting of coal activists at Ourimbah, near Wyong.
Bernie and I came up on the train today, to Sydney, and we are staying with Kim and Peter tonight. Tomorrow Bernie and Kim and I will travel to Ourimbah (past Gosford, south of Wyong) for this day-long conference.
Bernie will announce the formation of the Australian Water Network.

Mining companies meet little resistance polluting and destroying groundwater sources on a massive scale in every state and territory.
There is a global water crisis. Australia has just suffered the worst drought on record.
Australia has the lowest average rainfall of any inhabited continent on earth. We export huge amounts of virtual water.
The Murray Darling Basin is a near terminal basket case.
Australia is generally acknowledged as the country most prone to the effects of climate change.
Climate Change will result in lower average rainfall in our nation’s most productive areas – perhaps the most devastating aspect of Climate Change, but the least acknowledged aspect – so far.
Australians use more water per capita than any other country.
Poor administration and short-sighted state and federal government decisions have wreaked havoc on water resources for over a century.
Trans-national, un-regulated bottled water companies are free to extract groundwater as they please.
Both major parties advocate privatisation and water trading, expecting self-regulation by investment banks and trans-national corporations.
The Australian media has gone missing in action, with a handful of brave exceptions.

Water is a commons, a public trust, and a human right.

The AWN will provide an urgently needed platform for the large number of environment groups dealing with water issues around Australia. Water is a national problem: we must have a national platform

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