John Brumby is pouring billions of dollars down the drain while billions of litres of water run
unchecked out to sea.
Shadow Minister for Regional and Rural Development and Leader of The Nationals Peter
Ryan said heavy rain at the weekend was further proof that the north-south pipeline and the
Wonthaggi desalination plant were never needed.
“Melbourne’s storages have risen to more than 50 per cent and flood alerts have been issued
for the Yarra River,” Mr Ryan said.
“While billions of litres of water go flooding out to sea John Brumby is wasting billions of
taxpayers’ dollars on massive infrastructure projects.
“Labor has desperately tried to sell the north-south pipeline and the Wonthaggi desalination
plant to Victorians as a necessary source of ‘non-rainfall dependent’ water.
“We need to address the challenges of a changing climate by using rain where it falls and
meeting Melbourne’s water needs by substituting the drinking water used on our parks and
gardens with stormwater harvested from Melbourne’s streets.
“It’s sustainable, good for the environment and it secures a long-term supply of water in our
“Instead of investing in stormwater harvesting and recycling, Labor has locked Victorians into
an expensive and energy-intensive desalination plant.”
Mr Ryan said Victorian families could face water bills of up to $2000 a year to pay for John
Brumby’s mismanagement and waste.
“The Auditor-General has told us Melbourne water users will pay $650 million every year for
the life of the Wonthaggi desalination plant contract – even if the plant never delivers a single
drop of water,” Mr Ryan said.
“John Brumby has bungled the delivery of water infrastructure, just like he has bungled myki,
smart meters and the rollout of HealthSmart.
“At a time when cost of living pressures are uppermost in the minds of struggling Victorian
families, the energy consumption of this massive facility will be a huge drain on our state’s
“Victorians will be paying for the incompetence of this government for years and years to
come,” Mr Ryan said.