(Cairns... Far North Queensland)
Revised Bradfield Scheme
It is envisaged that the Revised Bradfield Scheme will
The Battle for the Inland
UNEMPLOYMENT: Over 1,000,000 Australians cannot find a full-time job until the 1980s, official unemployment averaged 3% since the 1980s, it has averaged 9%. However, real unemployment hovers close to Depression levels of over 20%.
HOPELESSNESS: Australia has the highest youth suicide rate in the world Australia has one of the lowest birth rates in the world.
DEBT: Australias bankruptcy rate is one of highest in the world until the 1980s it averaged around 3,000 pa. for the last five years it has averaged around 15,000.
BALANCE of PAYMENTS INCREASES DEBT: Debt increases our annual interest payments: Every month, over $1,500 million goes out of the country more than comes into the country. If we had this money, every three months we could build a Bradfield Scheme, air condition every home in rural Australia, and dig a canal and fill Lake Eyre with sea water.
DEBT REPATRIATION: The interest paid on the Federal government debt in 1994 was $3,886 million in the 1996 year, it was $9,388 million 20% of our entire tax revenue goes to the banks for interest and repayments.
Collapse of the Australian Economy
Whilst Interest Rates & De-regulation of Statutory Marketing are all contributing factors, drought has always been the Grim Reaper.
In sharp contrast, sugar and cotton in Queensland - both predominantly grown using IRRIGATION - have increased - sugar production from 3.2 million tonnes in 1986, to 4 million tonnes in 1993; and cotton production from 40 million kg's in 1986, to 104 million kg's in 1993.
The National Water Distribution Scheme
In early 1995 a major breakthrough in the political fight to get Bradfield moving occurred when Hon. Ernie Bridge OAM, a long-serving minister in the WA Parliament and former Shadow Minister for the Northwest, met with the Federal Member for Kennedy, Bob Katter MP, himself also a former senior Minister in the Queensland government, in Canberra to discuss the formation of a National Water Development Committee.
The purpose of the politically bipartisan committee that resulted from this meeting is to co-ordinate a National Water Distribution Scheme that will include the Bradfield Scheme, the Kimberley-Perth Pipeline, the Daly Scheme in the NT, and the Clarence River Diversion in northern NSW
These four schemes will produce $5,000 million per year in direct export earnings for Australia from an outlay of around $7,000 million or $460 million per year for the 15 years it will take to build all the schemes.
But the real cost of this programme may be only two thirds to one half of the projected total cost because the number of people who would be employed to work on schemes would of course result in a corresponding fall in the number of people on unemployment benefits. By taking these people off unemployment benefits and giving them work, the real cost could be as low as only $260 million per year for 15 years . The Federal government is now spending $15,000 million a year on dole payments and achieving absolutely nothing in national income or in improving national infrastructure.
In 1994, the Federal government spent nearly $390 million on one-off Foreign Affairs items:
Better surely that we pay them to dig ditches and pour concrete to take water from where it is not needed and doing damage, to where it is so desperately needed to where our nations great storehouse of risks to where our cattle and sheep herds are dying to where our Australian flora and fauna are dying at the hands of natures cruel side.
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Written and Authorised by Selwyn Johnston, Cairns FNQ 4870