Positive outlook for River Murray water allocations

Date posted: 29 July 2016

Hon Ian Hunter MLC

Minister for Water and the River Murray

Welcome news a second time this month for South Australian River Murray water access entitlement holders, with allocations for the majority of entitlement holders to be increased from 52 per cent to 89 per cent.

River Murray water availability continues to improve as a result of wet catchments and sustained above average rainfall, and inflows into a number of the key operational storages.

Recently, some of South Australia’s water stored under its Storage Right started to spill from Lake Victoria; this spill has been re-regulated and allocated to Metropolitan Adelaide and associated country areas, freeing-up the equivalent amount of water to be re-allocated to irrigation and other uses.

The recent improvements in inflows and rainfall as well as the reallocation of Metropolitan Adelaide’s diversion requirement provides for an increase to 89 per cent to water access entitlement holders.

Background

Opening water allocations for all River Murray water users across New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia have been affected by low inflows in 2015-16 due to below average rainfall and resulting dry catchments.

On 30 June 2016, Minister Hunter announced that opening allocations for the majority of water users would be 36 per cent, but that there would be access to private carryover.

Further information is available here.

Quotes attributable to Water and the River Murray Minister Ian Hunter

This is great news that water allocations have been able to increase more quickly than previously forecast.

It’s an excellent result for irrigators, with the recent good rains now providing greater water access to support their crops for national and international markets.

The State Government is very pleased with the positive allocation outlook thanks to wetter conditions.

Water resource availability will continue to be closely monitored by Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources and water allocation updates will be provided through the River Murray Flow Report.