Government releases final Murray plan
The Federal Government has released the long-awaited final Murray-Darling Basin Plan, with Federal Water Minister, Tony Burke, committing to 3200 gigalitres of environmental flow.
Mr Burke said that the plan delivers certainty and will restore the country’s rivers to health, support strong regional communities and ensure continued sustainable food production.
"The Government has accepted the Authority's recommendation of a Basin Plan that returns 2750GL of surface water to the environment. It sets up a mechanism which allows governments to improve environmental, social or economic outcomes provided that improving one doesn't sacrifice others,” Mr Burke said.
The Minister also said that the Government will remain committed to providing the additional $1.77 billion to relax key operating constraints and improve infrastructure quality to recover a further 450 gigalitres to deliver a final environmental flow of 3200 gigalitres.
"We have done everything we can to minimise the impact on communities short of saying we will make a compromise on the health of the system because history has shown that if you negotiate too hard against a river, it negotiates back in a completely uncompromising way and that's in no-one's interest,” Mr Burke said.
Mr Burke said the Plan would also ensure strong regional communities and sustainable food production.
"I have been clear from the start that this Government intended to deliver reform that restores the rivers to health and ensured strong regional communities and a vibrant irrigation industry," Mr Burke said.
The final Plan is available at www.mdba.gov.au