Saturday, January 03, 2009

celebrities surf for desal wipeout

Today the Bass Coast Board Riders Club hosted a Celebrity Surf Challenge to highlight to Victorian’s the section of Victoria’s coast under threat from the construction of a Desalination Plant.

I was one of around 1000 people who went down to Inverloch to watch the celebrities take a wave to support their efforts and the local community.

The Celebrity Surf Challenge was a lot of fun and it was a great way to raise awareness about the impact the desalination plant will have on the environment, the climate, the economy and the local community.

This is Richmond Football player Matthew Richardson doing his bit to help the campaign.

This pipeline prostester came out to support the efforts of the Bass Coast Board Riders Club and the Victorian Water Forum.

The Victorian Water Forum, a coalition of Watershed Victoria, Plug the Pipe and Clean Oceans Foundation were there distributing information.

The group are calling for storm water harvesting, recycling and better aquifer management to manage Melbourne’s future water supply.

They are advocating for:
An upgrade of the Eastern Treatment Plant to produce over 100gigalitres of recycled and/or purified water
Harvesting of at least 75gigalitres of stormwater
Fast tracking the installation of water tanks to 8% of houses per year to yield 25gigalitres
Encouraging strong water conservation targets in the community
Underground management of water (aquifers), with top ups from recycling and storm water.

I’d add to that stop logging of Melbourne’s water catchments, the longer logging continues in our catchments the more water we lose.

The Commissioner for Environmental Sustainability Victoria’s recently released
State of the Environment report includes as the very first recommendation under section 3.2 Water Resources (WR1) The Victorian Government should assess the merit of removing logging from Melbourne’s water supply catchments, to maximise catchment yield and water quality.

All along the highway were properties with anti-desalination signs.

The finale of the day was to spell out 'DESAL WIPEOUT' on the beach.

The site of the desalination plant near Wonthaggi. Its construction will cost taxpayers at least $4 billion (and rising), create as much carbon pollution as 270,000 vehicles every year, dump 50,000 tonnes of toxic waste every year, more than double what Melburnians pay for water and secure big profits for overseas companies - why would we want it?

What we want from government is sensible water policy to secure Melbourne’s future water supply.

No pipeline, no desal plant, no logging our catchments.

Recycling, upgrading aging infrastructure, mandatory water sensitive design, water efficiencies/conservation, stormwater capture and water tanks are our water future.

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