Future of Water in Australia

Thursday, 11. October 2007 | 9:50 Uhr


Alexander Marks / Christopher Hedemann


ETHsustainability and Youth Encounter on Sustainability (YES)


Using the motto “Delusions in the desert“, Alexander Marks and Christopher Hedemann present the situation in Australia. The Murray-Darling Basin in Southeast Australia covers 75% of Australian water consumption. A large part is used for farming, mainly for meat production that is being promoted and extended by the government, and also for the export of water-intensive products. Australia is currently experiencing a millennium drought and soil salination is a problem. In addition to that, the Australian backyard lifestyle is water-intensive. Nowadays, the right to extensive water consumption is a creed, while the aborigines considered their environment as a loan that had to be treated carefully. In order to solve these challenges, the following basic approaches have to be included: change and improvement of agricultural factors, change of consumer behaviour (emu instead of beef), renouncement of the dream of supply independence and water- and energy-intensive export products, reduction of (sub)urban lifestyle water consumption and new management models.The fact that the central government and several states with different interests are in charge of the Murray-Darling Basin makes things more complicated.

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