The Coalition Government continues to support the Murray-Darling Basin plan with over $129 million committed to New South Wales, Victorian and South Australian governments for projects that will improve water infrastructure in local communities.

The Sustainable Diversion Limit Adjustment Package will allow the amount of water needing to be recovered across the Murray-Darling Basin to be reduced by 605 GL.

Member for Barker Tony Pasin said these projects will minimise the impact of water reform on Basin communities, and the program will fund pre-construction activities for projects that reduce the need to recover water from irrigators.

“605 GL is a significant volume of water, and the end result is that it remains in productive use to support jobs and our regional economies,” Mr Pasin said.

“We’ve seen how water buy-backs kill communities and these projects will help to find environmental water efficiencies ultimately reducing the amount of water that needs to be recovered from irrigators.

“The net effect of ensuring success for these projects will be to save water for irrigators while meeting environmental water commitments.

“Each investment we make is an essential step towards safeguarding the Murray-Darling Basin for future generations.” Mr Pasin said.

In Barker, projects being funded under this package include:

Chowilla Floodplain TLM Project
Chowilla Creek
The Chowilla Floodplain works is part of a program of The Living Murray (TLM) works at icon sites along the River Murray to ensure that environmental water recovered as part of TLM is used efficiently and ecological elements are maintained. The Chowilla Floodplain project involves a major environmental regulator on the Chowilla Creek and a range of complementary works. The environmental regulator will allow flows to be managed to enable flooding across the floodplain under relatively low river flow conditions.

Flows for the Future (F4F)
Eastern Mount Lofty Ranges, the SA River Murray and the Lower Lakes
The project proposes activities that reduce the interception of low flows and result in additional flows to riverine environments in the Eastern Mount Lofty Ranges (EMLR) and to the River Murray including the Coorong, Lower Lakes and Murray Mouth in SA. The project will help restore the natural low flow patterns within the EMLR through measures that will improve the passage of low flows and freshes to improve ecological habitat conditions.

Riverine Recovery Project (RRP)
600 km River Murray corridor between the SA/Victoria border to Wellington
This project aims to return a number of wetlands to a more natural wetting/drying regime which results in evaporative savings. These savings are assigned to the Cwlth Government as a SA Class 9 water access entitlement. This entitlement can be used for environmental purposes either within or upstream of the SA/Victoria border.

SA Riverland Floodplain Integrated Infrastructure Program (SARFIIP)
SA River Murray between SA/Victoria border and Lock 1; Pike Floodplain; Katarapko Floodplain
The project aims to create an integrated and resilient floodplain along the SA River Murray, between the border and Lock 1, through a package of works and measures that enable floodplain inundation and freshening of groundwater lenses with particular focus on the Pike and Katarapko floodplains. Environmental works on the Pike and Katarapko floodplains will optimise the frequency, duration and extent of inundation events to protect and restore these floodplain ecosystems and contribute to Murray-Darling Basin Plan (MDBP) environmental outcomes. Salinity management measures will complement the floodplain inundation works to manage ecological risk, enhance ecological condition by maximising the area of soil salinity that is within the tolerances of target vegetation and to manage any long term and real time in-stream salinity risk.

SA Murray key focus area
River Murray in SA, from the SA border to the Coorong, Lower Lakes and Murray Mouth.
Investigation of opportunities to address physical and policy constraints to the delivery of higher regulated flows up to 80,000 ML/day at the SA border. Higher flows are important for maintaining longitudinal connectivity from the border to the Coorong, Lower Lakes and Murray Mouth and promoting lateral connectivity to deliver water to the wetlands, floodplains, creeks and anabranches connected to the main river channel. Landholder acceptance of potential works will be critical. This project must be considered in relation to the other southern connected Basin constraints projects.

Media Contact: Charlotte Edmunds 8531 2466