Article – Northern development inquiry heads to Katherine

22 May 2014
Carmen Brown
ABC Rural

PHOTO: Associate Professor Allison King says more research is needed into Top End river systems.

A parliamentary inquiry into the development of northern Australia will hear submissions from the Katherine region today.

The Joint Select Committee will consider evidence from a number of local organisations, including the Jawoyn Association, Katherine Chamber of Commerce and the Roper Gulf Regional Council.
Around 100 people attended a community water forum in the town last week, where concerns were raised over how the Northern Territory Government is allocating water for agricultural and mining activities.
Aquatic ecologist Alison King from Charles Darwin University, says as the push to develop the north gains momentum, more research will be needed, to better inform water management decisions.
“Some of the research has shown there are really tight relationships around the more water you have in a system, the better catches of barramundi, both commercially and recreationally,” she said.
“So what that’s indicating is that the more water you take from the system, the more you’re putting at risk those populations.
“It’s trying to find those balances and checks within that, to understand how much water we can extract that would be an impact.
“That’s the area that we haven’t got our science quite adequate yet, and that we would like to do more work in.”

Courtesy of ABC Rural