Paul Sheehan writing in today’s Sydney Morning Herald blames the Queensland National Party for Cubbie Station and the water it holes up. Water that goes to grow cotton in Queensland instead of sheep in NSW. Sheehan writes:
“The Sinkhole, for example, breaks every rule of communal morality. It is better known as Cubbie Station, and it is an act of economic war by one state, Queensland, against another state, NSW. Cubbie is a source of rage for the former NSW premier, Bob Carr. Privately, he urged his fellow Labor Premier, Peter Beattie, to buy the station and take it out of production for the national good. Beattie was sympathetic, but Queensland is Queensland, the bulldozer is still king, and the Queensland Nats will die in a ditch to protect Cubbie Station.
This applies doubly to the Canberra press gallery’s latest pin-up boy, Senator Barnaby Joyce, whose political base is dominated by Cubbie and whose Senate campaign was funded in large part by Cubbie.”
I don’t have much sympathy for Cubbie Station, the Queensland Nationals, or Barnaby Joyce, but I am not sure Sheehan has told the whole story.
Cubbie managed to get its water, and keep its water, by playing and beating consequtive state and federal governments (Labor, National and Coalition)at their own game.
Cubbie’s story as told by ‘Smart Rivers’is at http://www.smartrivers.com/background.htm .
What is most striking to me about the Dirranbandi and St George communities that support Cubbie is their holistic approach to survival. They work in with, and employ the local aboriginals. They work in with, and employ the best scientists. They somehow managed to get Barnaby Joyce to Canberra.
Cross over the border from Dirranbandi into NSW and it looks and feels different. Many of the town centres are boarded up – they obviously have a crime problem. Aboriginal problems I’ve been told. It is so bad in at least one town that they are using plastic instead of glass in the windows of new government commissioned homes – I was told.
I have previously written expressing concern for the NSW graziers, and their Coolibahs, that have lost flood waters, see
As explained in the above post of 26th May, I offered to plot the river height data against rainfall to help illustrate the problem – but they still haven’t manage to send me the data file in a format that I can open.
Not knowing that much about the players at St George and beyond. I know from a banking point of view that cotton on dry land is Russian roulette for most farmers. But I can understand why they play hard ball after the elite thinkers closed down the bush, they got pretty feral about most issues.
I don’t think the leverage the farming sector (rural and regional)uses is any different from what the feral and central green and socialist allied groups used by way of agit prop to get dumb stuff approved or almost approved while proven reasonable was knocked back for Pc. Block at all costs is not government if it is only for tiny marginal minorities and self interest groups. Cubbie sucks a fair bit of water I don’t think anyone will deny that, but the socialist governments did no water infrastructure and didn’t want to know about it. Liberal nationals haven’t been much better. The issue isn’t Cubbie or ring tanks alone, the issue is not enough thought has gone into dams or piping water long distance, politicians thought some projects like the Olympics are alright as two term projects with bipartisan support but not the wide brown lands major ecological problem, it’s mostly desert.
Shame really for a nation that done the Snowy.
Graham Finlayson says
A ‘holistic’ approach to your own survival is not any sort of holistic approach at all!!
I have been wondering when your info regarding river heights etc was coming through….I thought accessing scientific information was your speciality!!.
Your view on the differing feel between North and South may be close to the mark, but I think that it may have more to do with questionable political policies and poor funding allocation rather than the cane toads nouse.
I don’t necessarily approve of the problems here being labelled ‘aboriginal’ as they are more societal and welfare related. While ever the problems and issues are pigeonholed along racial lines then they will never be addressed.
By the way, two of the larger properties this side of the border are aboriginal owned but both are leased out rather than used to improve the prospects of the indigenous community. Due in most part to local disinterest and apathy.
Louis Hissink says
Any maps showing Cubbie’s influence ?
Lacking those, ……
R. Patterson says
The owners of cubbie would be the most selfish, criminaly selfish, people one would never want to meet or have dealings with. numbat
Caitlin Crothers says
Excuse me!!!!!! Have you ever met or spoken to the owners of Cubbie Station. Most likely not so I would stop making such acusations. Just because of what you have heard in the media gives you no clue of what they are really like. The media lies about what they do. So I would probably reconsider your comments.
Ally Hauptmann-Gurski says
Cubbie Station does not only syphon the water off that NSW is now missing out on, in South Australia we have to build a desalination plant so we can have more 5 $ T-shirts!?
Do we turn half the country into a desert so Cubbie can grow more cotton? Africans and Latin-Americans are fighting in the World Trade Organisation to get more access for their cotton crop, meaning there is an oversupply – and for this we keep Cubbie Station?
If ever there was a case for emergency legislation in Australia, the water problems Cubbie is causing, warrant that. When a road needs to be built for the greater good of the country, people lose part of their land – what’s the difference where water is concerned.
I will contact those who want my vote in the forthcoming election with regard to initiating emergency legislation which can reduce excessive egoism.