Australian Food bowl on brink of $5bn catastrophe  

Posted by Big Gav in , ,

Adelaide Now has an article on the sorry state of the Murray-Darling basin - Food bowl on brink of $5bn catastrophe.

THE nation's key food bowl, the Murray Darling Basin, is on the verge of economic collapse as the value of production plunges by at least $5 billion, experts say.

Drought and declining irrigation water have plunged inland Australia's heartland into crisis with the loss of at least one third of the basin's $15 billion annual income. Worse is predicted for the coming financial year if the drought continues.

The demise of the economic powerhouse has pushed towns throughout the basin, particularly along the River Murray, into a severe downturn and population decline.

An ABS report last week showed the population throughout the basin is declining, or static at best, with the District Council of Berri and Barmera suffering the largest and fastest recent drop in SA with 130 people moving out between 2007 and 2008.

Authorities warn the problem has become the biggest crisis Australian agriculture has experienced, threatening the nation's food supply.

Murray Darling Association general manager Ray Najar said the basin's plight will worsen substantially next financial year if the long-running drought continues and there is no water available for irrigation.

Mr Najar said the $5 billion loss of production is very conservative and the actual loss may be nearer to $7 billion.

4 comments

Triage is the word openly used now.
In my old blog (not updated for a while) I commented that that was the way things were heading. And now it has come to pass.

Australia may only have a population of ~20 Million, but we used to grow enough food for at least twice that.

Those days are passed now...

Triage makes life difficult and easy.

Difficult in that our choices are diminishing.

Easy in that the decisions themselves become easier/"clearer".

What do you choose - save a wetland "for some water birds" or kill the wetland for the irrigation district?

Birds don't vote.
Rational idnut.

I've simplified but you get the picture.

Well - I get the picture but it doesn't seem too many decision makers do.

Excellent and obvious comment. In fact it's the same comment that came out of a Murray Futures stakeholder management workshop I ran the other day. Who is the custodian of the wetlands?

However, there have been decisions made and we are trying to change it. http://www.murrayfutures.sa.gov.au/riverine.php

Thanks for that link Mark - its good to see there seems to be some progress being attempted.

Post a Comment

Statistics

Locations of visitors to this page

blogspot visitor
Stat Counter

Total Pageviews

Ads

Books

Followers

Blog Archive

Labels

australia (618) global warming (423) solar power (397) peak oil (355) renewable energy (302) electric vehicles (250) wind power (194) ocean energy (165) csp (159) solar thermal power (145) geothermal energy (144) energy storage (142) smart grids (140) oil (139) solar pv (138) tidal power (137) coal seam gas (131) nuclear power (129) china (120) lng (116) iraq (113) geothermal power (112) green buildings (111) natural gas (110) agriculture (92) oil price (80) biofuel (78) wave power (73) smart meters (72) coal (70) uk (69) electricity grid (67) energy efficiency (64) google (58) bicycle (51) internet (51) surveillance (50) big brother (49) shale gas (49) food prices (48) tesla (46) thin film solar (42) biomimicry (40) canada (40) scotland (38) ocean power (37) politics (37) shale oil (37) new zealand (35) air transport (34) algae (34) water (34) arctic ice (33) concentrating solar power (33) saudi arabia (33) queensland (32) california (31) credit crunch (31) bioplastic (30) offshore wind power (30) population (30) cogeneration (28) geoengineering (28) batteries (26) drought (26) resource wars (26) woodside (26) bruce sterling (25) censorship (25) cleantech (25) ctl (23) limits to growth (23) carbon tax (22) economics (22) exxon (22) lithium (22) buckminster fuller (21) distributed manufacturing (21) iraq oil law (21) coal to liquids (20) indonesia (20) origin energy (20) brightsource (19) rail transport (19) ultracapacitor (19) santos (18) ausra (17) collapse (17) electric bikes (17) michael klare (17) atlantis (16) cellulosic ethanol (16) iceland (16) lithium ion batteries (16) mapping (16) ucg (16) bees (15) concentrating solar thermal power (15) ethanol (15) geodynamics (15) psychology (15) al gore (14) brazil (14) bucky fuller (14) carbon emissions (14) fertiliser (14) matthew simmons (14) ambient energy (13) biodiesel (13) cities (13) investment (13) kenya (13) public transport (13) big oil (12) biochar (12) chile (12) desertec (12) internet of things (12) otec (12) texas (12) victoria (12) antarctica (11) cradle to cradle (11) energy policy (11) hybrid car (11) terra preta (11) tinfoil (11) toyota (11) amory lovins (10) fabber (10) gazprom (10) goldman sachs (10) gtl (10) severn estuary (10) volt (10) afghanistan (9) alaska (9) biomass (9) carbon trading (9) distributed generation (9) esolar (9) four day week (9) fuel cells (9) jeremy leggett (9) methane hydrates (9) pge (9) sweden (9) arrow energy (8) bolivia (8) eroei (8) fish (8) floating offshore wind power (8) guerilla gardening (8) linc energy (8) methane (8) nanosolar (8) natural gas pipelines (8) pentland firth (8) relocalisation (8) saul griffith (8) stirling engine (8) us elections (8) western australia (8) airborne wind turbines (7) bloom energy (7) boeing (7) chp (7) climategate (7) copenhagen (7) scenario planning (7) vinod khosla (7) apocaphilia (6) ceramic fuel cells (6) cigs (6) futurism (6) jatropha (6) local currencies (6) nigeria (6) ocean acidification (6) somalia (6) t boone pickens (6) space based solar power (5) varanus island (5) garbage (4) global energy grid (4) kevin kelly (4) low temperature geothermal power (4) oled (4) tim flannery (4) v2g (4) club of rome (3) norman borlaug (2) peak oil portfolio (1)