Basin Plan

Water wars to continue as new SA minister heads to Canberra for Murray talks

27 March 2018

Andrew Tillet, The Financial Review
27 March 2018

Hopes the Murray-Darling Basin plan would be salvaged by a change of government in South Australia are sinking after the state’s water minister signalled he will fight a cut of 605 gigalitres meant for the environment.

Ahead of his first meeting with the federal minister and bureaucrats on Wednesday, David Speirs told The Australian Financial Review he would push Canberra and the others basin states to stick to the plan’s original 2012 water targets and reject the latest experts reviews that recommend more water for irrigators.

The basin plan faces collapse, with NSW preparing to walk away and Victoria threatening to do so after Labor and Greens senators voted last month – cheered on by Jay Weatherill’s government – to block a 70GL cut for environmental flows in the northern basin.

A similar disallowance motion for the 605GL cut in the southern basin’s water recovery target has also been tabled in Parliament and slated for debate in budget week in May.

Read full article here.