The salinity crisis: Landscapes, communities and politics

Document Type



Faculty of Community Services, Education and Social Sciences


School of International, Cultural and Community Studies




Beresford, Q., Bekle, H., Phillips, H., & Mulcock, J. (2004). The salinity crisis: landscapes, communities and politics. Perth, Australia: UWA Press.


Salinity is destroying landscapes, communities and biodiversity across rural Australia, and further devastation will occur in the coming decades, unless urgent steps are taken. The Wheatbelt, in the South-West of Western Australia, has one of the worst cases of dryland salinity in the world, threatening the future of one of the nation's most important agricultural regions. How did Australia's salinity crisis reach such huge dimensions? This book is the first attempt to provide a comprehensive explanation. It traces the relentless drive for agricultural development through massive land-clearing programs, and chronicles the decades of denial by governments that salinity is a problem. The authors highlight the pioneering efforts of local communities to fight salinity, and emphasize the vision needed by governments to halt the damage now. The Salinity Crisis is based on extensive research, and is essential reading for anyone who is concerned about one of Australia's most serious environmental problems.

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