Sheed calls on Victorian Water Minister to stop river damage

By Tara Whitsed

Suzanna Sheed has called on Victorian Water Minister Lisa Neville to limit inter-valley transfers of water.

The minister is set to meet with stakeholders in the region next month.

The request comes after the State Member for Shepparton welcomed news the minister would visit the Shepparton district to see the damage to the Goulburn River which Ms Sheed said was a result of the transfers and environmental flows.

‘‘It has taken a while for water managers and the industry to be heard but the fact is our Victorian iconic Goulburn River is being significantly damaged by the high flows that are required to transfer water to the Sunraysia region and South Australia,’’ she said.

‘‘I have seen for myself the damage occurring to the banks of our river and been provided with video footage by recreational users and those who live along the river showing the evidence of this. These high river flows are damaging the environmental work that has been undertaken in previous years to improve our waterways.’’

Ms Sheed said the situation was ridiculous and it was time for the Victorian Government to take action.

‘‘I have called on the Minister for Water Lisa Neville to use her powers under the Water Trading Rules to limit these inter-valley transfers,’’ she said.

According to Ms Sheed’s office, the Goulburn Valley Environment Group also expressed its concerns to the minister about damage to Goulburn River as a result of transfers.