Taking water for irrigation from Murray Darling

Oct 25, 2010

Q. Do you agree or disagree that the amount of water currently taken from the Murray-Darling river system for irrigation should be reduced?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Total agree 49% 51% 47% 62%
Total disagree 20% 17% 30% 14%
Strongly agree 19% 21% 16% 33%
Agree 30% 30% 31% 29%
Disagree 13% 11% 18% 6%
Strongly disagree 7% 6% 12% 8%
Don’t know 31% 32% 23% 23%

49% agree that the amount of water currently taken from the Murray-Darling river system for irrigation should be reduced and 20% disagree – 31% could not give an opinion. All demographic groups show higher agreement than disagreement.

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Statements about Economic Impact

Oct 25, 2010

Q. Which of the following statements is closest to your view?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Time is running out and strong action must be taken to restore the health of the Murray Darling river system even if it means some job losses or other economic impact 47% 52% 42% 74%
Protecting the economic well being of local communities and jobs must be the first priority in any decisions made about the Murray Darling river system 31% 28% 42% 13%
Don’t know 22% 20% 16% 13%

47% agreed that “strong action must be taken to restore the health of the Murray Darling river system even if it means some job losses or other economic impact “ while 31% agreed more with the statement “protecting the economic well being of local communities and jobs must be the first priority”.

A majority of Labor (52%) and Greens voters (74%) agreed that “strong action must be taken to restore the health of the Murray Darling river system even if it means some job losses or other economic impact” while Liberal/National voters were split (42%/42)%.

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Labor should tread (water) warily

Oct 19, 2010

First Published on The Drum 19/10/2010

As the Federal Government attempts to quell the backlash to its plans to save the Murray Darling by slowing the process to a crawl, it would do well to consider the lessons of the recently aborted Emissions Trading Scheme.

If there were a structured training program for politicians (and maybe there should be) the former Rudd government’s failure to deliver on its commitment to address climate change would be a required text.

It is a story of how tortured process can kill off reform, confuse would-be supporters, drain the public of confidence in their government and ultimately leave leaders in a no-win situation.

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