Save the Mary River

Independent candidate responds to water policy Questionnaire

Originally published 8 Mar 09. Updated 17 Mar 09

Update: 17 Mar 09: Response from Mount Coot-tha candidates .

Briefly: Candidates in favour of damming the Mary River and driving the lungfish to extinction: Andrew Fraser
Candidates against damming the Mary River and driving lungfish to extinction: James Sinnamon, Larissa Waters, John Pollard./p>

On Sunday 8 March 2009, I received the following e-mail from David White on behalf of the Save The Mary River Brisbane Group.

We're requesting all candidates for the State election to indicate their response to just 7 questions and to return the completed document by reply email to the address shown above, or by mail to P O Box 1092 , Toombul 4012 by 15 March, 2009. Just place an X in the box that corresponds to your reply.

The responses to the survey will be distributed to voters on and before election day.

If we do not receive a response to our survey, we'll inform voters of this fact.

If you require any explanation or information regarding the questions, please contact David White on 0403 871 082 or email us (to savethemaryriverbrisbane [ AT ]>) and we'll respond immediately.

Yours sincerely,
David White

for the Save The Mary River Brisbane Group

My response follows:

Dear David,

Firstly, can I commend you for having taken this excellent initiative?

Please advise me of any responses (or non-responses) from other candidates so that I can assist in publicising them.

Before I continue, I will take this opportunity to ask all the other candidates:

Will they commit themselves now to opposing the privatisation of any of Queensland's water infrastructure during the next three year Parliamentary term?

My responses to your questionnaire are:

1. Do you support a proposal to construct a dam on the Mary River and pipe dam water to Brisbane?


2. Should the Government consider using the $1,500 million for a dam for other water supply options such as the installation of more water tanks, harvesting stormwater in the city and suburbs, and putting water-saving and greywater devices in every home?

Yes. I should add that I object to the way that this money was raised and said so at the time in a letter that was printed in the Courier Mail. It was raised by the privatisation of the retail arm of Energex electricity and Ergon the state owned gas utility. We are now paying dearly for the Government's windfall with huge increases in gas and electricity charges. This was supported by both the major parties and almost certainly opposed by the majority of Queenslanders if other polls are privatisation are any guide.

3. Do you support a review of all possible options to provide a secure and sustainable water supply to SEQ?

Yes. This would include the option of ending population growth. We must bear in mind that all options, including even the provision of rainwater tanks, incur an environmental cost. Options which I consider unsuitable include: desalination, industrial water recycling, mining underground water aquifers, the Wyaralong Dam, taking water from Moreton Island.

4. Are you concerned that unique wildlife species in the Mary River are threatened with extinction if a dam is constructed on the river?

Yes. If it is true that the Traveston Dam is necessary to supply Queensland's current population, which I dispute, the extinction of the lungfish, the Mary River cod and the Mary River turtle will be the foreseeable consequence of the Queensland Government's irresponsible and deliberate encouragement of needless population growth. Population growth has also encouraged by the LNP opposition.

5. Do you support the use of recycled water for industrial and agricultural purposes?

Yes. Given that that recycling facilities have now been constructed at enormous expense to Queensland taxpayers, it would be foolish to now not put these facilities to use . However, I oppose making our industry or agriculture dependant upon expensive and technologically complex water recycling technologies which must ultimately depend unsustainably upon the burning of more fossil fuels.

6. In an emergency, yes. But governments must act to prevent foreseeable emergencies. Cramming millions more people into Queensland in coming years as both the current state Government and Opposition plan to do can only make such emergencies inevitable.

7. Do you support a proposal for every commercial and industrial building to be required to install tanks to collect, store and use stormwater runoff?


Please contact me if you have any other questions or seek further clarification.

Other candidates are invited to send me their responses to either the questionnaire or my responses. I will place any responses on

Thanks again and best regards,

James Sinnamon
Pro-democracy independent
candidate for Mount Coot-tha
james -dot- sinnamon |AT| gmail -dot- com
0412 319669

My response was cc'd to the following candidates: John Pollard, LNP, Mount Coot-tha; Larissa Waters, Greens, Mount Coot-tha; Andrew Fraser, Labor, Mount Coot-tha; Suzanne Karamujic, Daylight Saving, Mount Coot-tha; independent, South Brisbane; Lawrence Springborg, LNP, Southern Downs; Gary Kane, Greens, South Brisbane; Liz Cunningham, independent, Mackay; , independent, Noosa; Steve Haines, Greens, Noosa.

June 21: Protest at Queensland State Labor Party conference to Save the Mary River

The are organising a protest outside the conference of the ruling Labor Party this coming Saturday to save the Mary River, its community and rich agricultural soil together and rare endangered species in the area including the Lungfish, the Mary River Perch and the Mary River Turtle.

Sacrifice June 21 and stand with us to Save our Mary…

(We know the trip to the Gold Coast is awkward and a big day but the Mary needs you to make it.)

- Join us at the Cascade Gardens on the Gold Coast to march at 11.00am to the Gold Coast Convention Centre to tell the Qld State Labor Party Convention that there will be no dam at Traveston Crossing or anywhere else on the Mary River.*

Yes … we do have cause for optimism! Whether people have sold, moved, or just held on, we all know that even the most elementary research shows that the proposed dam at Traveston Crossing on the Mary is just plain wrong. The Qld Govt has no support for this project outside its own - and there is very good reason to believe that many within their ranks do not support it either. We need to give them encouragement to say no to this dam!

Prime Minister Rudd, Peter Garrett, and Penny Wong must assist Qld out of this Beattie made mess!

Register your bus seat now…
by emailing Helga Hill bensoncooroy[AT] or by ringing Save the Mary
Kandanga Information Centre on 54884800, Helga Hill 54479288, John Porter

See Bus details below

It's been a long and tiring fight already …
and we are bruised and sore
but one more day will show them
we are solid to the core

People power will save the Mary

Bus timetable, the rally, the route, times etc

Rally details

June 21 - 11.00 am from Cascade Gardens Broadbeach to the Gold Coast Convention Centre.


Please register for bus transport ASAP.

Pay as you board the bus


Hervey Bay – Centro (incl meal stop) Cost TBA 4.00 am

Maryborough Transit Centre (incl meal stop) Cost TBA 4.30 am


Children/Students $15 Adults $25
Gympie Civic Centre 7 am sharp
Kandanga Info Centre 7 am sharp
Tewantin Council Chambers 7.30 am

Pick-up points

Matilda – Kybong 7.15 am
Federal State School 7.20 am
Cooroy Post Office 7.30 am
or intercity bus stop across from railway station.

One brief stop on way south and north

Returning: approximately depart Gold Coast 2.30 pm

How to get there by car

  • Take Exit 71 to Broadbeach off Pacific Motorway and follow through to the Gold Coast Highway.
  • Just before you hit the Gold Coast Highway you will see Pacific Fair Shopping Centre on your right.
  • When you hit the Gold Coast Highway, Jupiters is on your left.
  • Turn left and proceed north past Jupiters and under the monorail, through the lights and on past the Convention Centre on the north side of these lights.
  • Cascade Gardens is on the left about 900m north of the Convention Centre.

How to get there by rail

  • Trains leave Brisbane for Robina on the Gold Coast about every half hour.
  • Buses connect to the Gold Coast Highway north and south.
  • We have no further detail on this at this stage.

How to help:

  • Join the forum for up to date news.
  • Tell as many people about the website as possible

Independents to challenge pro-developer Gympie Council

The of the bid of group to win control of the Gympie Council chamber is to be held at the Gympie Bowls Club at 2.00PM on Saturday 2 February 2008. Integrity Gympie was formed by independent community activists together with three currently serving councillors who were concerned that the current Gympie Regional Council led by Mayor favours the interests of developers at the expense of their own constituents.

Integrity Gympie is committed to making the Gympie Regional Council more open and accountable and to consult properly with local communities before arriving at decisions which will impact upon their lives.

Integrity Gympie will actively oppose:

  • The Traveston Dam (see )
  • The threatened dissection of Gympie with the Bruce Highway by-pass
  • The Norman Point Marina in Tin Can Bay
  • Nuclear power stations anywhere in the region

Integrity Gympie will actively pursue

  • Fair contributions from developers so that existing residents don't have to pay extra rates to maintain basic services like:
    road repairs drainage waste management
    parking community halls etc, etc
    sewerage upgrades strategic planning
  • Solutions to problems of traffic flow and parking along Mary Street
  • Rainbow Beach Centre block development
  • A more effective management of feral pests

What you can do

If you live in the area and wish to help the people of Gympie get the council they deserve on Saturday 15 March, then contact the Gympie Integrity Group through their Phone numbers of the candidates are also listed on that page.

If you live outside the Gympie Regional Council Area, you find candidates standing in your area who stand for similar policies. If not, there may still be time left for you and likeminded people to stand for council. The information on how to do so can be found on the ( The deposit for candidates is: $150.

Alternatively, if you live outside the Gympie region and wish, in any way, to help in bring about a council which would set an example for other councils to follow that help would be greatly welcomed.

Integrity Gympie Candidates

"The Watchdog", candidate for Mayor -article-1">1


-article-1">1. Ron Owen's includes a mix of quotes. These are from a number of generally admired historical figures including Edward R. Murrow, known for his stance against the McCarthyite witchhunters, George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Mark Twain, Thomas Jefferson and Martin Niemoller. However, there are also quotes from a few which the editors of the site would consider unsavoury. These include Ronald Reagan, Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman. Naomi Klein's towering work of 2007 (see also on WebDiary) demolishes a prevalent view of Milton Friedman, presumably shared by Ron Owen, that he was an idealist determined to pursue, through peaceful democratic means, for the benefit of all humanity, his goal of achieving a global free market unfettered by Government interference. Instead, he and his followers from the Chicago School of Economics, since the early 1970's collaborated with military dictatorships who murdered, tortured and imprisoned those who opposed Friedman's free market agenda. In all countries, the result was the impoverishment of the majority, destruction of much productive capacity, whilst a privileged few together with foreign corporations were enriched. Countries which were ravaged by Friedman's polices include Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, Bolivia, Poland, Russia, South Africa, Sri Lanka and Iraq. One of the last acts in Friedman's career was to help -201045">exploit the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina in order to force the privatisation of Schools and public housing in New Orleans in 2005. The fact that Ron Owen has a mistaken high regard for people such as Friedman should not detract from the fact that he is, as an elected councillor, a hardworking principled servant of the people of Gympie and is, by far, the best available candidate for Mayor.

Greens Make Call On The Evidence - Dam Should Be Scrapped

16 August 2007 - Today's Senate Standing Committee on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport majority report into water supply options for South East Queensland produced recommendations that don't go far enough, with only the additional comments by Greens Senator Rachel Siewert applying the evidence before the Inquiry and recommending that the Traveston Dam be scrapped.

"The Senate inquiry was presented with overwhelming evidence that Traveston Dam is a high-cost, high-risk approach to South East Queensland's water supply, which will not ease the current drought" said Australian Greens lead Senate candidate for Queensland, Larissa Waters.

"Yet the majority report and the additional comments by other Senators all stopped short of calling for the dam to be scrapped. Greens Senator Rachel Siewert made a call on the evidence and recommended that Traveston Dam should be stopped.

"The Greens have decried this foolish proposal since it was proposed. I have consistently said, and the evidence to the Senate Inquiry demonstrates, that Traveston dam is the most expensive, least reliable and most environmentally destructive water supply option for our region.

"It is not environmentally, socially or economically sustainable and it will do nothing to solve the short term water crisis.

"The reduced rainfall expected because of climate change means the dam is unlikely to retain much water, and 30% of what little water it would ever hold would evaporate given the mere 6 metre depth of the proposed dam.

"If we are to get serious about sustainable water supply for South East Queensland, we must do two things:

  1. invest in demand and supply management, rainwater tanks, water recycling, stormwater harvesting, evaporation reduction and water efficiency, and
  2. ensure that " id="population">population growth in our region is sustainable. We should refuse to grant new development approvals unless the proponent can demonstrate that the necessary water is available and that planning processes address sustainable water supplies" said Ms Waters.

The Greens water supply solutions put to Queenslanders in the 2006 state election have now been backed by a February 2007 report by consultants Cardno, which found that with a combination of groundwater abstraction, source renewal, desalination, indirect potable re-use and demand management, Traveston Dam is not necessary to ensure South East Queensland's water security.


For more information:

Larissa Waters

Australian Greens Lead Senate Candidate for Queensland

larissa waters|AT|qld greens org au

Cate Molloy damns Rudd over Traveston Dam

Media Release

24th July 2007

The Independent Candidate for Wide Bay, Cate Molloy, today damned her former party leader for reaching the heights of hypocrisy over his failure to take stand on Traveston while opposing the proposed damming of the Clarence River (Daily Examiner 24/7/07).

"Today Kevin Rudd demonstrated he's just as hypocritical and opportunistic as John Howard," said Cate Molloy.

"He's visited Grafton and promised to prevent the proposed damming of the Clarence and other rivers in the region because he argues it was just bad policy making on the run by the Howard Government," said Cate Molloy.

"Rudd argues the proposal doesn't make any environmental nor economic sense. Well, neither does Traveston," Cate Molloy said.

"But Rudd is stricken dumb on Traveston - and why? because the ALP supported Beattie's nonsensical policy-making on the run and Traveston is in a strong conservative seat," she said.

"As for Rudd's so-called pub test, let him come to Gympie and try it. Traveston fails any test and is nothing more than environmental and social vandalism," said Cate Molloy.

"But he won't, Rudd is just a sheep in a wolf's clothing">1," she said.

"It's time for a Southern Cross independent who'll stick up for the people and not be poll driven or dictated to by party bureaucrats," said Cate Molloy.


" id="fn1">1. Whilst Kevin Rudd richly deserves condemnation such as his from Cate Molloy, we, nevertheless, believe that the choice between John Howard's Liberal Party on the on hand and Kevin Rudd's Labor Party on the other is still important. For more information see