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Water Minister Must Come Clean on Sydney’s Water Quality

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Cate Faehrmann
NSW Greens MP
17 February 2020

The Water Minister must come clean as to why Warragamba Dam was temporarily shut down recently, what contaminants caused it to shut down, and how likely it is to be offline again in the near future says Cate Faehrmann Greens MP and spokesperson for water.

“It’s unacceptable that the Water Minister is keeping Sydney in the dark about the potential contamination of drinking water in our largest dam,” said Ms Faehrmann. 

“I’ve spoken with water scientists who are seriously alarmed at the potential for a full-blown crisis for Sydney’s water.

“Sydneysiders deserve the right to know how long was the dam shut down for? What contaminants in the dam caused it to be shut down? What levels did those contaminants fall to that made it acceptable to turn it back on? I will be submitting all of these questions to the minister today.

“The recent heavy rains will continue to cause water quality problems for months as an inrush of contaminants leads to less oxygen in the water, potential algal blooms and heavy metal contamination.

“If Warragamba Dam is shut off due to poor water quality Sydney may be forced to rely on just 20 per cent of its water catchment for months. 

“We need to know the level of risk to 80 per cent of our drinking water in the coming days and months and be ramping up water savings measures just in case it goes offline again.

“The government’s response to potential issues with our drinking water quality deserves the highest level of public scrutiny. They must come clean about the level of risk to our drinking water supply at Warragamba Dam as a result of this season’s bushfires so the community can be prepared,” said Ms Faehrmann.

Contact: Jacob Miller - 0428 837 292

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Cate Faehrmann
NSW Greens MP
17 February 2020
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