The protection of natural rivers and watersheds face important concerns related to environmental (in)justice and (in)equity. Using the Queensland Wild Rivers Act as a case study, we advocate that ethical water governance attends to multiple and diverse values, specifically in ways that: (i) locate them within stakeholders' claims of inequality that emerge from a given or practiced water ethic; and (ii) historicize and understand them as resonating or reflecting natural resource management frameworks that have led to structural injustices. This approach, combined with adaptive co-governance, can contribute to more inclusive water ethics and even support reflexive spaces where radical change in social-ecological resource governance can be imagined.

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