Basin Plan

Murray Darling Basin: Recovery a dry run

16 May 2018

Peter Hunt, The Weekly Times
16 May 2018

IRRIGATORS and water brokers say its “impossible” for Federal Government to recover an extra 450,000 megalitres for the Murray Darling Basin environmental flows for $1.5 billion — equal to $3333 a megalitre.

“It’ll cost them more like $7000 a megalitre, at least $3 billion,” Victorian Farmers Federation Water Council chairman Richard Anderson said.

The Federal Government struck a deal with Labor last week to deliver 450,000ML to the basin, in return for allowing the passage of an amendment to the plan that reduces the Basin’s 2.75 million ML target by 605,000ML through environmental and water efficiency works.

But the Federal Government must recover the 450,000ML using $1.5 billion, without any negative socio-economic impacts. It means finding the water through river, irrigation network and on-farm efficiency measures.

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