Rathdowney Dam – Scrapped!

The announcement that the Queensland government is now planning to build a new dam at Wyaralong rather than Rathdowney is a good example of the importance of community campaigning, and not giving up in the face of government pressure. It is big win for a local community that has been very seriously under threat, and a tribute to the work of many who refused to give up the fight.

From the information I’ve seen, a dam at the Wyaralong site is less socially and environmentally destructive than the Rathdowney site, and to this extent it is welcome. However, any extra dam along the Logan River is still going to have negative ecological impact, and I don’t believe there is a need for a dam at all if full water recycling was adopted.

This piece on The Concatenate suggests that “there’s no current need for even water recycling if agricultural water were sold to municipal water supplies at the same price the cotton growers can buy it.” Whilst I’ve no doubt our pricing mechansims could be improved, I’d be surprised if that statement is correct.

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  1. Maybe very clever of the QLD govt – talk up the first site – close it down when the heat is on but the issue is on the table and legitimised – then go to the preferred site anyway.

  2. I don’t think I can claim any credit Dodgy (although if I was any good at being a politician I probably would). The community deserves all the credit for fighting very very hard and doing so in a non-partisan, non-party political way.

    Apart from obviously attempting to make myself more informed, my visit was aimed mainly at encouraging and supporting the community to keep fighting and to talk with them about how I could best assist them.

    Other than that, my visit was just one in a whole range of different activities and events that helped keep some focus and pressure on the issue – none of which would have had an impact without the efforts and sacrificies of the community in and around Rathdowney.

  3. ABC Radio National’s “Australia Talks Back” yeaterday at 6:05pm was on the dams ((Damn, I missed it!)). There will be another chance to contribute this afternoon at 6:05pm AEST on their Week In Review. I think their call-in phone number is 1300 22 55 76 or email them through their website at http://www.abc.net.au and follow the links ((sorry, I will not be able to listen today)).

  4. We’ll give you some credit Andrew. We felt that the fact that we were able to highlight wider support (especially on the website) was an important part of our fight. It was a team effort from those within the town and wider support.

    For those with the attitude “they weren’t going to do it anyway” it’s not the message we were getting but we’ll never know for sure. Even if they never built it, once they start resuming, we lose our community anyway.

    Some really key residents were at the dam wall. They would go first.

    I tell you the view from the trenches is a whole lot different from looking in.

    We really do appreciate all those that made it their issue too rather than looking the other way.

    Cheers from Rathdowney.

  5. Lyndie Easton:
    Good on you. The resistance of your community to bullying will force the authorities to start working on a smarter way of solving THEIR water problem …. after all, it’s the “Smart State” you are living in, isn’t it?

  6. They are building dams on the wrong river system.
    Queensland is not just the south east corner.
    Too much land has been resumed by governments. Too much tax payer funded properties and businesses i.e. Telstra, have been sold by irresponsible governments, and your land could be next.

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