Lessons in Sustainability from the Murray–Darling Basin
Edited by John Quiggin, Thilak Mallawaarachchi and Sarah Chambers
In Australia today, there is universal acceptance that the Murray–Darling Basin is an area vital to the nation’s food security and environmental well-being. Planning for the future of this waterway is one of the most complex public policy challenges we face, as evidenced by the breadth of issues covered in the ‘Guide to the Proposed Basin Plan’ released by the Murray–Darling Basin Authority in October 2010. In response to this complexity, the Risk and Sustainable Management Group (RSMG) at The University of Queensland (UQ) convened a workshop of leading scholars in late October 2010 to ask the question: ‘Water policy in the Murray–Darling Basin: Have we finally got it right?’ This volume draws on the papers presented at that workshop to offer a broad range of answers to that core question. As this book goes to press, with many of the key issues unresolved, I trust it will provide much valuable grist to the mill as policymakers and communities work together to find a balanced solution. Whatever policy is ultimately adopted, rigorous analysis, evidence-based critiques and a broad range of perspectives must be part of the solution. I am particularly pleased that The University of Queensland was able to host the workshop that led to this volume because, in partnership with other Australian universities, we have international experience to share on restoring the health of river systems. For example, through the International Water Centre – a joint venture between UQ, Griffith University, the University of Western Australia...