The National Farmers Federation has voiced concern over the mining sector’s increasing demand for water that would normally be used for irrigation. 


Speaking in an interview on ABC radio about the release of the Blueprint for Australian Agriculture discussion document, NFF President Jock Laurie said water was the biggest issue facing Australian agriculture.


Mr Laurie said that government's around Australia needed to "step up to the plate" to resolve issues with the mining sector.


"Federal politicians keep saying it's a state issue not a federal issue, but the Federal Parliament needs to start setting some pretty clear parameters around what's acceptable, what's not acceptable," he said.


"We've got to have a clear understanding about the impact of coal seam gas, for instance, is having on water, on aquifers, short-term or long-term.


The Blueprint for Australian Agriculture, a joint initiative of the NFF and Westpac, will be developed over the coming year in collaboration with the agricultural sector.  The Blueprint development will include a series of workshops, hosted by Westpac, around the country, commencing with Rockhampton QLD in November 2011.

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