Don't get complacent about water

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

University of Adelaide scientists are calling on all South Australian residents to reduce their water use as much as possible this winter.

Professor Mike Young from the University's Water Research Cluster says that despite recent rain, there is still a serious drought facing State irrigators and water storages remain the lowest ever recorded.

"Total inflows into the River Murray are at their lowest in more than 100 years and the system is running on empty," Professor Young says. "Without massive amounts of rainfall in the upper reaches of NSW and Victoria, and also in the Adelaide Hills over winter and spring, the situation could still get worse.

"Now is not the time to stop saving water. Minimal allocations are a disaster for the industry and for the environment."

Professor Young warns householders against becoming complacent about water use, given recent good rainfalls in Adelaide.

"Irrigators in the Riverland have been told to expect a minimal allocation in July. If these allocations cannot be increased, many families will lose whole orchards, vineyards and even their businesses. The implications are awful.

"It's essential that householders continue to save water to ensure Adelaide has a water supply next summer. Saving a bit more may mean the difference between extinction and survival for businesses, regional communities, industries and ecosystems," Professor Young says.

The Water Research Cluster at the University of Adelaide brings together all academics with an interest in water. For more information on the Cluster, contact Professor Graeme Dandy on or


Contact Details

Professor Mike Young
Executive Director
The Environment Institute
University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5279
Mobile: + 61 0408 488 538

Mr David Ellis
Deputy Director, Media and Corporate Relations
External Relations
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5414
Mobile: +61 (0)421 612 762