Additional Funds Approved for Murray River

The Murray–Darling Basin Ministerial Council met in Brisbane today to consider a range of basin management and water reform matters and to be updated on the progress of Basin Plan implementation.

The ministers were briefed on the draft findings of the review into the cost efficiency of River Murray Operations. The review examined the costs of water management and delivery services by the Murray–Darling Basin Authority and State Constructing Authorities; Goulburn–Murray Water; State Water Corporation and SA Water.

Council noted progress with basin plan implementation and in particular the criticality of ensuring that the program of work to support the northern basin review was delivered on schedule.

Minsters were advised that while additional flows delivered through the Basin Plan have slowed the rate of sand build-up at the Murray Mouth, connectivity between the Coorong and the sea is progressively declining.

In light of low inflows expected in the system over coming year due to drier climatic conditions, ministers agreed to an additional budget of $4 million to allow the MDBA to undertake dredging to keep the Murray Mouth open, in the event it is needed.

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