[As correctly pointed out in the comments following this posting, my brother Jim Turnour, also a member of the Federal Parliament, has a Batchelor of Agricultural Science. Other members with science and science-related degrees are listed in a comment in the following thread.]
Yesterday Dr Jensen suggested in the Australian Parliament that many of the current problems facing the Murray Darling Basin are the result of low runoff as a consequence of changed land management practices (including more plantations in the top of catchments), catchment-wide drainage management plans (place in the 1980s and 1990s to lower water tables) and more efficient water use (resulting in less leakage).
He explained that it was wrong to blame climate change for the low levels in the dams, because there had been no long term decline in rainfall in the Basin.
Dr Jensen also explained that many of the climate models used to predict regional rainfall, including the CSIRO models (relied upon by Ross Garnaut in his report on climate change to the Australian government), are unreliable and unduly pessimistic.
When Dr Jensen asked to table supporting information in the Parliament by way of charts and tables, the request was denied.
Much of the information that Dr Jensen was banned from tabling can be found in a recent publication from the IPA entitled ‘What’s Happening to the Murray River?’.
The picture of Dr Jensen is from his parliamentary website.