We need a Royal Commission into the management of the Murray Darling Basin now

BREAKING: 60 Minutes, with the help of Australia Institute research, has revealed that the Murray Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) caused ecological harm and reduced water to irrigators when it caused floods at the ‘Barmah choke’ and drained the Menindee Lakes.

Our report Southern Discomfort: water losses in the southern Murray Darling Basin exposed how, while everyone else in the Basin was dealing with drought, the MDBA created a flood and lost large volumes of water. The artificial flood from August to January was not for environmental purposes, in fact it caused environmental harm. The out of season flooding eroded banks and damaged the internationally significant Barmah-Millewa forest. This would not have happened if the MDBA had managed the river in line with its official objectives, which expressly prioritise water conservation and efficiency.

In fact, our research has shown a long history of suboptimal and suspect decisions, and downright dubious policymaking. Big business is consistently winning in the Murray-Darling, at the expense of smaller farmers, communities and the environment. Our reports on dodgy major water purchases throughout the basin led to the #Watergate scandal revelations. 

Taxpayers are paying billions to help the Murray Darling, but there is little transparency around how taxpayer money is spent. Corporations make huge profits on deals with Government, yet communities have no drinking water, the Darling River is dry, and huge amounts of water have been wasted in the Murray.

Add your name to the call to stop the mismanagement and maladministration of the Murray Darling Basin Plan. We need a Royal Commission now.

To our Political Leaders


The systemic mismanagement and maladministration of the Murray Darling Basin Plan needs to stop. Australia’s water resources need to be managed in the public interest, not for the benefit of corporations and lobbyists.


We need a Royal Commission into the management of our greatest rivers.

15,884 signatures

Will you sign?

  • Lisa Eagle
    signed 2019-11-04 23:02:42 +1100
  • Anthea Dunlop
    signed 2019-11-04 21:45:29 +1100
  • Lucia Simmons
    signed 2019-11-04 21:30:56 +1100
    The farmers and Australian people have been totally let down by the decision makers who need to be accountable for the appalling state of the Murray /Darling
  • Kylie Slater
    signed 2019-11-04 21:22:46 +1100
  • Jan Heys
    signed 2019-11-04 20:45:11 +1100
  • sean sawyer
    signed 2019-11-04 19:48:13 +1100
  • gordon cameron
    signed 2019-11-04 19:46:48 +1100
  • Debbie Mcdonald
    signed 2019-11-04 19:39:13 +1100
  • Rebecca McManus
    signed 2019-11-04 19:20:26 +1100
  • Juen Ambler
    signed 2019-11-04 19:07:30 +1100
  • Zare Edwards
    signed 2019-11-04 18:44:16 +1100
  • Kate Sanderson
    signed 2019-11-04 17:59:38 +1100
  • Fiona Allan
    signed 2019-11-04 16:44:03 +1100
  • Kyle Dundas
    signed 2019-11-04 16:21:31 +1100
  • Omali Hungerford-mason
    signed 2019-11-04 16:07:21 +1100
  • Reece Hepner
    signed 2019-11-04 15:59:56 +1100
    You bastards
  • Nikki Treanor
    signed 2019-11-04 15:56:23 +1100
    The corruption and miss management of our water is a criminal offence of the highest order. Water belongs to everyone, it is a human right. We need s Royal Commission in to the miss management of the Murray Darling. It provides water for our food bowl and it is not/should not be sold off to large corporations.
  • Maria Jimenez
    signed 2019-11-04 15:42:14 +1100
  • alex logie
    signed 2019-11-04 15:08:10 +1100