Fury over Darling fish deaths

Jeremy Buckingham right could not stand the stench any longer

Jeremy Buckingham right could not stand the stench any longer

A local MP retched and was forced to rush off camera to vomit as he was filming a video highlighting this week's mass fish kill in far west NSW.

Critics have blamed state and federal governments for "throwing out the window" policies which protected the river.

In mid-December, more than 10,000 fish died in a stretch of the river a little farther upstream, the Guardian reported.

But Mr Blair insists no one is getting water because of the prolonged drought.

Mr Blair dismissed Mr Daley's demand saying that he had used his first comments about the drought to "rewrite history by ignoring the fact that similar environmental catastrophes happened under their watch when last in government".

"About 18 months ago, 2,000 gigalitres of water was in the Menindee Lakes before the Murray-Darling Basin Authority took the deliberate decision to accelerate releases from Menindee to meet downstream requirements and reduce overall evaporation losses from the Lakes".

Richard Kingsford, director of the Centre for Ecosystem Science at the University of NSW, said he was surprised by the grim sights of mired animals near Menindee Lakes.

Rob McBride, a grazier who lives south of Menindee on the Lower Darling, insists the deaths are the result of a "man-made engineered disaster".

"It's not corruption. That's a load of garbage", he tells Steve Price.

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"It's devastating to see the hundreds of thousands of fish killed earlier this week and we believe this is one of the largest fish kills ever seen", Mr Blair later said in a statement.

Its water allocation is of "high quality" and its fish stocks are grown in "purpose built ponds with high quality aeration systems".

"As much as these events are deeply distressing to all involved they have no impact on Murray Cod Australia's production for this year or coming years", the MCA board assured investors.

Mr McBride said: "This is nothing to do with drought, this is a man-made disaster".

Mr McBride's daughter, Kate, has said the deaths are due to the diversion of water from the river for irrigation and the draining of Menindee Lakes.

"You have to be bloody disgusted in yourselves", Mr Arnold said in the video posted on Tuesday.

The Board extends its sympathy to the drought affected property owners and townspeople along the Darling River that have been affected by the recent fish kills.

Commissioner Bret Walker is expected to deliver a report by February 1 but could request extra time to consider the impact of flows to SA from Menindee in the Lower Darling - where fish have died en masse.

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