Federal Election - 21 August 2010
20 August 2010: Summary Report published in The Independent Weekly. More to come.
18 August 2010: The Water Election Team (WET) releases its Report of Questionnaire.
WET is back in action with a Questionnaire for candidates in the upcoming federal election. As with the March 20 South Australian election, we think water is a key issues but the major parties are avoiding any real engagement with the big questions. We have joined forces with the Save our Gulfs Embassy in our campaign for healthy water ways.
Why not release the Murray-Darling Basin Authority Plan/Guidelines?
Should voters not be able to ask their candidates where they stand on the management of Australia’s River?
Is desalination the answer? What about the pollution from the hyper-saline brine discharges?
Should our water resources be privatised?
Who speaks for the environment?
As well as asking candidates to respond to the questions, WET is inviting voters to ask their candidates about the issues raised in the Questionnaire and to talk to their friends, families and colleagues about water issues.
This WET survey builds on the highly successful questionnaire they ran during the 20 March 2010 state election in South Australia (see below).
WET is a most unusual group. We are not running for office. We are not candidates. We are voters who want our politicians to give us real answers.
The 20 March 2010 Questionnaire
WET identified water as the key issue in the SA March election of March 20, 2010 and asked all candidates to complete a questionnaire by Friday March 12. So what did the candidates say?
Download the documents
1. Preliminary Report of the River, Lakes and Coorong Action Group Inc on the WET Candidates’ Questionnaire. The report contains the score card, methodology and an analysis of the issues and party platforms (10 pages). questionnaire-report
2. Summary of the Report - 2 pages the-water-election-report-summary
- All respondents gave a priority to the needs of the River as a living system but not all supported actions that would achieve that goal.
- All respondents opposed a permanent weir across the River Murray below Wellington.
- All respondents (except the FREE Party) opposed opening the barrages and flooding the lakes with seawater.
Of seated members in the Upper and Lower Houses, the ALP, Family First, Liberals, The Greens and Independent David Winderlich responded in detail to the questionnaire. The ALP left 17 questions blank and offered notes on 53 of the 76. They relied on the promise of the Murray-Darling River Basin Authority Plan - due to appear in draft in June and constrained by state agreements that stay in place till 2014 and 2018.
Water Security Minister Maywald (National Party) declined to respond to the specific questions and provided an email that restated general principles.
WET has found that voters are following water issues and want to hear from their candidates. They want to see the floodwaters flow through the ailing River Murray to Lakes Alexandrina and Albert, the Murray Mouth and Coorong. They do not want to see this opportunity squandered and do not want to hear the states squabbling.
What else has WET been doing?
March 14. Real Water Solution Press Conference. See “Events and Updates” for details
February 25. WET launched its questionnaire with street theatre and a quiz for politicians. See the “Events and Update” page for details.
The WET Committee includes people from around Lake Albert, Lake Alexandrina, the River Murray and Coorong.
The campaign is educational and action oriented.