Liberal Nationals securing water for Sunraysia
An elected Liberal Nationals Government will take a plan for capacity shares to Basin Ministers to increase water security for irrigators on the Murray River downstream of Nyah.
Member for Mildura Peter Crisp said significant change in water use, availability and reliability, and local agriculture production, meant change was needed to ensure security of supply.
“We’re home to the fastest growing almond industry in the world and have seen horticulture operations expand through our region, putting more pressure on our water supply to deliver through peak summer periods,” Mr Crisp said.
“Local irrigators and industry representatives have raised concerns with me on the security of supply for local irrigators at peak periods.
“Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia share the Murray River, so it’s important that a capacity share scheme is implemented jointly.”
Over the past decade, growing horticulture production has put more demand on water, with many opting to rely on allocation trade from Victorian, New South Wales and South Australian irrigators downstream of Nyah, rather than entitlements, to grow crops each year.
Despite calls from irrigators and industry representatives to assess the delivery capacity of the Murray River, the Andrews Labor Government has refused to do anything to secure water supply for Sunraysia irrigators.
Shadow Minister for Water Steph Ryan said developing a plan for capacity shares would include modellingthe capacity of the Murray River to deliver water in peak summer periods.
“Sunraysia continues to be ignored by a city-centric Premier who can’t see past Melbourne’s tram tracks,” Ms Ryan said.
“Horticulture’s thirst for allocation is putting pressure on the Murray River’s capacity to deliver water to irrigators and the environment at the peak of summer when they need it most.
“Only a Liberal Nationals Government will make sure local irrigators can get the water they need, when they need it.”