Environment SA News

Lower River Murray levees flood recovery funding agreement

Critical remediation works to government-owned levees in the Lower River Murray Reclaimed Irrigation Area (LMRIA) will progress with the announcement of government funding.

Lower River Murray levees flood recovery funding agreement

Up to $17.1 million in funding will provide for remediation of government-owned levees between Mannum and Wellington which were damaged in the 2022-23 River Murray flood.

This assistance is jointly-funded by the Federal and State Governments through the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).

Immediate stabilisation works started in March 2023, which included short-term repairs and reinforcement of damaged levee sections to enable dewatering of flooded agricultural areas to take place.

The next stage of intermediate remediation works will help to bolster the works completed to date to assist with protection of the region’s economically significant agricultural land and floodplain infrastructure in the event of high flow.

In addition to the jointly-funded DRFA funding, the South Australian Government has allocated $14.2 million in state funds for works to undertake initial repairs to privately owned LMRIA levees.

Assessments undertaken as part of these works will underpin the development of a longer term resilience strategy for privately and publicly owned levees within the LMRIA.

The Department for Environment and Water will continue to work closely with the LMRIA landholders, irrigation trusts and community members.

Birgitte Sorensen, the department's Levee Recovery Manager, said the commitment acknowledged the importance of the LMRIA agricultural area to the regional economy of South Australia.

“The levee remediation works build on considerable flood recovery efforts undertaken to date to support the region’s businesses and agriculture," she said.

“This funding will allow for the completion of intermediate works as an interim measure while a longer-term strategy is developed to bolster resilience of the region’s levee network, which is comprised of both government and privately-owned levees.”

The Department will also engage with the First Peoples of the River Murray and Mallee region, Ngarrindjeri Aboriginal Corporation, SA Dairyfarmers Association, Livestock SA and other local and state government agencies and organisations.