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  • If we were to build the barrages today - Lakes Need Water
    out of the equation because of the enormous environmental impact and the lakes as storage would be doomed to failure as they are too shallow in relation to the very large surface area evaporation loss is far too high The lake beds are predominantly made of porous silt and marine deposits They leak through seepage Strategies to restore and manage the lakes are at risk of mis direction when the

    Original URL path: http://www.lakesneedwater.org/letters/if-build-barrages-today (2016-02-09)
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  • Lake Albert Seawater - Lakes Need Water
    from Lake Alexandrina is relying on pumped water to sustain any sort of level A FAST capability exists to lay a tidal pipe between the Southern Ocean Lake Albert ie not open through the Coorong so as to retain the current ecology of that environment to allow tidal flows direct into Lake Albert This solution IS economically feasible and also segments one component of the debate to allow acidification to

    Original URL path: http://www.lakesneedwater.org/letters/lake-albert-seawater (2016-02-09)
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  • Lakes No Longer Required - Lakes Need Water
    Creek completed by October 2009 the reliance on the Lower Lakes for water being transferred upstream to Tailem Bend Environment and Heritage Dept Chief Executive Mr Holmes gave the first sign sea water would not be used to flood the Lakes when quoted in last Saturday s Advertiser 31st May we re not sure if that will be the response This now shows that the January March and May 2009 meetings in Goolwa have been nothing but ROAD SHOWS BANNERS AND ALL as nothing has changed since day one and any other suggestions by the community have been ignored They have achieved at least on thing and that is to go from a FULL HALL in January down to 100 at the 16th May meeting I would like to thank him and the department on the way they spent our money having a Agriculture seeding Rye grass can be toxic to animals and limestone dusting exhibition in the Option C and F areas to be covered by water pumped from Lake Alexandrina very shortly or is it He is further quoted the decision to build the weir related solely to Adelaide s water security and not the health of the Lower Lakes The weir relates entirely to Adelaide s water supply It isn t a device to manage the Lakes he said If Mr Holmes main concern is the to manage the health of the Lakes why hasn t he objected to or stopped the above pipelines as he has to sea water Two of his fellow government departments Water Security and Agriculture Food and Fisheries have increased the problems for the Lakes as more water will now be extracted from the River before it reaches Wellington and having a weir to protect Adelaide s water supply One of the

    Original URL path: http://www.lakesneedwater.org/letters/Lakes-No-Longer-Required (2016-02-09)
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  • Inescapable Facts - Lakes Need Water
    and the drought alone They have never been empty before and they are kept artificially empty now by human intervention the barrages which are holding back the tides to confound thousands of years of natural ebb and flow built for the economic benefit of those who wanted a reliable freshwater source and the environment came last There may still be valid reasons for not wanting to let seawater into the lakes but a concern for the natural environment is not one of them there can be no doubt about that the evidence is clear So what are these inescapable facts Paleolimnology which identifies fossilised species of micro organisms in core samples of lakebed sediment taken at the northern extremes of the lakes near Pomanda Island has indicated significant estuarine salt water conditions at various times over the past 6 000 years See published work of Professor Peter Gell Captain Charles Sturt observed in 1830 on his epic expedition by boat down the Murray to its mouth that near Pomanda Island The transition from fresh to saltwater was almost immediate Near Wongulla many kilometres upstream from the lakes there is cliff and river bank evidence of extended pre settlement water levels well below that needed to maintain a freshwater flow to the lakes with further evidence of vegetative growth which could not have occurred if flow levels had been higher Those environmental activists promoting the freshwater only line would have us believe that salt water has only entered the lakes since settlement and then only as a result of extractions upstream The above hard evidence completely refutes this and refutes any computer modeling which may appear to support their views Computer modeling makes assumptions and if the conclusions don t fit the observable facts the modeling is clearly flawed and the assumptions must be changed Further supporting evidence The low lands subject to inundation around the northern shores of the lakes are characterised by salinity tolerant vegetation Samphire Sarcocornia Quinqueflora In contrast the River Redgums Eucalyptus Camaldulensis which mark wetlands and river flats all the way down the Murray from the upper reaches to the vicinity of the lakes are missing nor is there any evidence of their existence in the past The Ngarrindjeri people took their bark for canoes from the lower reaches of the Finniss Bremer and Currency creeks where Redgums abound but clearly where salt water did not penetrate When the landforms of the Lower lakes are considered together with the highly variable flow statistics of the Murray Darling Basin it is difficult to accept any other conclusion than the natural estuarine state of the Lower Lakes and Coorong The evidence for an exclusively riverine freshwater state is noticeably missing with the Sim Muller A Fresh History of the Lower Lakes cited by the activists as proof of their position so clearly flawed and biased that it cannot be taken seriously The report Murray River Barrages Environmental Flows commissioned in 2000 by the Murray Darling Basin Commission from

    Original URL path: http://www.lakesneedwater.org/letters/inescapable-facts (2016-02-09)
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  • Comments: Disaster on a Global Scale - Lakes Need Water
    by the well meaning but ill informed groups who advocate a fresh water solution at all costs As a retired aquatic biology scientist I am aware of quite a few other reputable scientists who believe that the solution to the present crisis is to open the barrages to the sea and let the system return to an estuarine condition the natural state before the barrages were built Far from causing damage this would stop the further development of acid sulphate soils which are now reaching crisis levels As well a new fluctuating marine freshwater system would develop to include seagrass meadows supporting fish nurseries and migratory birds etc Our Ramsar obligations would then be modified to accommodate the changed wetland ecology www ramsar org This is a far cry from the total destruction of virtually all living things in the system if the lakes continue to acidify There is not enough fresh water to mitigate this and it is irresponsible to allow the little that we do have to spread over the lakes surface and evaporate www lakesneedwater org Bioremediation and liming of the vast lakes area is slow and expensive and would likely not work in the longer term since it would only treat the top few cm of soil The sediments containing sulphides are metres deep just waiting to oxidise to sulphuric acid should the plants die from salinity high temperatures lack of rainfall or even the acid itself The production of lime is very greenhouse unfriendly since it involves the heating of limestone to release carbon dioxide leaving the calcium oxide lime Your own editorial in the same edition mentioned CSIRO work indicating that the seawater solution is the only practical one available however I disagree that it would be a disaster for freshwater plants and animals

    Original URL path: http://www.lakesneedwater.org/media/disaster-on-a-global-scale (2016-02-09)
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  • The Clayton Regulator - Lakes Need Water
    Wellington Weir The connection herein concerns the impact from downstream acidity near communities facing the much reduced waterway with an emphasis on airborne silt and the means to contain it with a proposal to pump water from a receding Lake Alexandrina into the Goolwa Channel Key points Without delay water levels in the Goolwa Channel must be returned to full width depth The reason for the proposed temporary regulator is reluctantly understood Option F is agreed although given that the barrages are also restricting nature it would be more realistic not to have any barriers and let nature take its course throughout Insofar as for sourcing water from Lake Alexandrina to fill the channel this is un acceptable Most known scientific data on the subject of acid sulphate soils in Australia concur when dealing with the treatment of acid soils proliferation That is to maintain a wet environment to keep acid soils covered where possible with water Simply the acid problems of the lower lakes and within the eastern extremities of the streams to the western side of the system are the results of a lack of water caused by several poorly managed factors of the past and by drought Albeit to use highly saline lake water to refill the Goolwa Channel would be retrograde notwithstanding the costs involved with pumping of water from one side of the regulator to another To cause further receding of water levels in Lake Alexandrina from an already diminished supply is not acceptable To do so will exacerbate an already tenuous acid problem throughout the western side of the system This should not in any way be agreed upon At the same time silt dust possibly acid bearing from the channel is fast becoming a real health issue for many residents This must be

    Original URL path: http://www.lakesneedwater.org/letters/The-Clayton-Regulator (2016-02-09)
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  • Lower Lake Situation Near Crisis Point - Lakes Need Water
    the situation However there are many scientists who don t agree Long range forecasts and improved science says otherwise and even if it did rain enough there are those within the scientific community advising that not even a 56 flood would reach the border let alone the lower end of the system A most recent report concerns stored river water earmarked for South Australia for 2010 The Murray Darling Basin Authority said during the past week that there isn t enough water in the system to transport the allocation into SA The decision makers then embark on a minor localised quick fix solution To contain acid and acid silt dust throughout the lower Goolwa Channel and to provide a measure to contain the lower estuaries of Currency Creek and Finniss River three temporary regulators will be installed While the structures across the lower end of Currency and Finniss will possibly give some relief upstream in those systems success is highly dependant upon eastern Mount Lofty Ranges catchments Some landowner farmers are suggesting that the catchments would not likely be great enough to make much of a difference Insofar as Goolwa Channel work will commence on May 24th this year on a temporary regulator to span between Clayton and Hindmarsh Island The government has decided that this barrier when completed will provide some protection and remediation to the lower Goolwa Channel by transferring 30 gigalitres as a one off of fresh heavily salt laden acid contaminated water from Lake Alexandrina to top up the Goolwa channel from Clayton to the Goolwa barrage For future years they say there will be enough runoff from the Finnis River and Currency Creek to top up the Goolwa Channel No this is not a long term solution Moreover taking water from the lake will create a balloon effect where they rob Peter to pay Paul It will further increase the level of sulphuric acid exposure in Lake Alexandrina which contains an estimated 500 million tonnes of acid soils Some is already exposed through drying and is producing sulphuric acid All Australian scientific papers including those from the SA Department of Environment Heritage DEH when dealing with dangerous acid soils and solutions for remediation have one thing in common DEH says as long as the soils are covered by water they are harmless to the environment but if water levels drop and the soils are exposed to the air they react with oxygen to form sulphuric acid the same acid in your car battery and can release heavy metals from the soil The acid can also cause toxic metals such as manganese aluminium and arsenic to be released When the soils get wet again through rainfall or increased river flow the acid and metals can spread and affect large areas Dept Environment Heritage brochure Acid Sulphate Soils in the River Channel and Lower Lakes 4 March09 Taking the official view In building three temporary flow regulators at the mouth of the Finniss River Currency Creek and

    Original URL path: http://www.lakesneedwater.org/letters/lower-lake-situation-near-crisis-point (2016-02-09)
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  • Remediation by seawater - Lakes Need Water
    tidal inundation can be an effective method for remediating acid sulfate soils at a landscape scale However there are a range of potential geochemical complexities which need to be considered prior to implementing this technique And Tidal inundation of ASS is a potentially lowcost landscape scale remediation technique which has recently been trialled in far north Queensland It is well suited to situations where the site is close to a large marine source where the elevation of ASS is close to mean sea level and conventional agricultural landuse has been abandoned A recent announcement on the 3rd of January from CRCCare claims success in rehabilitating 800 ha of tidal wetlands near Cairns using planned releases of seawater over acidic soils and treatment with lime Along with the restablishment of mangroves the wildlife has returned and exceeded scientists expectations Scientists say that this technique can be applied to the Lower Murray Darling area As of August 2009 over 200 ha at Loveday Bay has been classified officially as acidic So far no remediation plan has been made public Loveday Bay SA 200 ha of acidic water as of August 2009 Lake Albert is also at serious risk of turning acidic The

    Original URL path: http://www.lakesneedwater.org/feature/remediation-by-seawater (2016-02-09)
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