Environment Victoria has welcomed tougher water restrictions for Melbourne announced by Premier Steve Bracks today.
Environment Victoria Healthy Rivers Campaign Director Dr Paul Sinclair said: “Most Victorians understand the urgent need to save water and are making a real effort to cut their water use. But we need to do more,’’ Dr Sinclair said.
“We simply can’t keep sucking our rivers dry. Melburnians have responded well to restrictions in the past and reduced water use by 22 per cent the last time we faced Stage Two water restrictions.”
“It’s time we faced up to the fact that we are still using far too much water at a time when our limited water supplies are being further pressured by climate change and increasing population.”
Dr Sinclair said households could save significant amounts of water by installing simple water- saving devices including dual flush toilets – which can save more than 35,000 litres a year – and installing a low-flow shower – which can reduce water use by 30 per cent.
“We congratulate the Government on its proposed 25 per cent reduction target for Melbourne’s residential water use by 2015. It’s time it matched that with stronger targets for industry and agricultural industries which are our state’s biggest water users.”
In response to the Nationals calls to build another dam: “Many of our existing dams – which can hold about half the entire flow of Victoria’s rivers combined – are almost empty,” Dr Sinclair said.
“Building another dam won’t solve anything and will only cause further damage to our already stressed rivers, the natural environment and downstream communities. We need 21st Century solutions for 21st Century problems.”