Monday, 2 July 2007

Have you noticed............(4)

There is a distinct similarity between the Bourke Shire Council-sponsored scheme to divert water from the Mann River (a tributary of the Clarence) and a 2000 scheme investigated by Macquarie Bank and Thiess Pty Ltd.
"The Border Rivers Scheme
Another more visionary scheme currently being evaluated by Thiess Pty Ltd and Macquarie Bank is the Border Rivers Regional Development scheme in Northern NSW. The scheme involves the pumping around 950,000 MLpa of water from a weir located on the Mann River near Grafton via a 70km pressure tunnel to the west across the Great Dividing Range. The scheme which would be financed by the private sector has the potential to support major new rural industry west of the Range as well as providing flood mitigation and hydropower to the coastal areas. The scheme also provides the opportunity for environmental releases to the Murray-Darling Basin, where, incidentally, irrigation currently exceeds sustainable levels by about the same volume, 950,000 Megalitres per year." [Albrecht,Martin C,Non-executive Chair,Thiess Pty Ltd,November 2000]
Perhaps this is why Messrs. Howard and Turnbull were so ready to give a hearing to this second 2007 Clarence catchment water diversion proposal.
Coincidentally, the Macquarie Banking Group ranks in the Australian top 40 political donors at:
Macquarie's agribusiness sector is a water trader in its own right.
The bank also led the consortium which purchased the international water company, Thames Water.

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