Former Albury deputy mayor Claire Douglas has joined a Stop Adani Albury-Wodonga protest outside Farrer MP Sussan Ley's office, urging the Environment Minister to enact a "water trigger" assessment on infrastructure proposed for the Carmichael Coal Mine.
Infrastructure to be built for the North Galilee Water Scheme (NGWS) would allow up to 12.5GL a year to be taken from the Suttor River for the coal mine, for general use, dust suppression and the washing of coal.
Environment Minister Sussan Ley is reportedly assessing whether a federal water trigger should be applied to the plan, after the Australian Conservation Foundation won a legal challenge against the government.
"The government conceded it did not properly consider more than 2000 public submissions from Australians with concerns about the mine and the water scheme," ACF chief executive Kelly O'Shanassy said.
Ms Douglas, who was deputy mayor in 2003, told the group gathered outside Ms Ley's office at midday on Thursday that she tried to put into perspective the 12.5GL.
"I personally have no concept of what 12.5 billion litres of water is - my research showed the water allocation for Albury for a year is almost exactly 12.5 billion litres," she said.
"Water for 55,000 people for a year is the same as what Adani is being given for a year to wash coal for India.
"The implications of that on the driest continent on Earth are completely unacceptable."
Border water researcher Jonathon Howard said that amount of water was "four times the volume of Lake Hume at 100 per cent".
"If I was sitting at the end of that pipeline and turned it on for five minutes, I would have enough water to supply my own needs for more than my own lifetime," he said.
"It's an essential infrastructure program that's needed to support the Adani mine and it's going to support another nine proposed coal mines.
"There's no doubt when you take that amount of water from an arid environment, it will have an impact.
"Water is not something we should set aside for one organisation, for one purpose."
Registered nurse and mum Libby Driver said she had "never before been so worried for the future of her children".
"Sussan, you can do something - you can help ensure the children here have a safe and healthy Australia to grow old in," she said.
IN OTHER NEWS: