Senator Perrin Davy. Penny Bradfield AUSPIC/DPS. Photo of
Two water-saving projects approved by the federal government this week complement off-farm savings targets launched as part of a coalition to protect communities dependent on regional irrigation.
The Marion Water Efficiency Project (South Australia) and Lower Murray Water Efficiency Project (Victoria) were handed over to the previous government and were being evaluated when the Acting Conference halted the process.
Shadow Water Minister Perrin Davy said both projects were unveiled under guidelines developed by the coalition to find ways to make savings without taking more water from the consumption pool.
“I applaud the approval of these state-led projects, which meet the rigorous social and economic assessment criteria agreed upon by all jurisdictions in 2018,” said Senator Dewey.
“I applaud the new water secretary for starting work but the truth is these projects were on the way to being signed before the change of government.
“The coalition has always said that if projects are submitted that don’t take the water out of farmers’ hands, that meet social and economic evaluation criteria, and that have the support of their state government and communities, then they should go ahead. necessary.
“We do not support non-strategic buybacks or a free-for-all program model that undermines the efficiency of irrigation networks and fuels growing demand in the water market.”
Senator Davy said the water savings prices being paid for these projects show that the low-hanging fruit is gone and it’s becoming harder and harder to find more savings.
“Taxpayers pay around $22,000/ml for South Australian water and over $15,000/ml for Victorian water, a total saving of just over 2.6 Gl,” she said.
“The minister has accused the previous government of letting the pool plan flow. I think as she travels to the basin and speaks to stakeholders and hears about the bottlenecks and the difficulty in dealing with the effects of earlier water reclamation, she will learn that this is no easy task.
“More importantly, I hope she hears about the good things being achieved with the current water portfolio and understands that the results exceed targets achieved by models based on 15-year-old assumptions.” should be important.
“What we really need now is a basin management plan, rather than a water reclamation plan.
“There are many ideas on how to achieve good environmental outcomes without requiring further water reclamation, and they should all be on the table to offset further water reclamation.”