Have your say on water use in northern Victoria

The Victorian Government is getting on with delivering the Murray-Darling Basin Plan in a way that balances socio-economic impacts while delivering real environmental benefits for the river system.

The community now has an opportunity to get involved and have its say about the draft Northern Victoria Resource Plan, with consultation open until 4 March 2019.

Community input is critical to ensure the draft Water Resource Plan reflects reality on the ground across northern Victoria and there is confidence in how the Basin Plan is implemented.

The draft Water Resource Plan for the north of the state and Victoria’s share of the Murray outlines how much surface and groundwater can be taken for use on farms, towns, industry, recreation and the environment.

The draft Water Resource Plan shows Victoria’s strategies to manage risk, including from climate change and drought, a plan to manage water quality, and arrangements for groundwater trade.

The draft Water Resource Plan also includes identifying and responding to Traditional Owner water values and uses, underpinned in Victoria through its water policy, Water for Victoria.

It is a significant step toward Victoria’s implementation of the Basin Plan on time and in full, and demonstrates how Victoria will be able to rely on its existing water management framework to meet the requirements of the Basin Plan, including complying with sustainable diversion limits.

The Government recognises the recent devastating fish death events on the Darling River, which underscore the importance of proper planning and water allocation processes plus ongoing investment in broader river health actions to deliver environmental outcomes for the Basin.

The Water Resource Plan includes the River Murray, and its tributaries, including the Mitta Mitta, Kiewa, Ovens, Goulburn, Broken, Campaspe and Loddon river systems – as well as the groundwater beneath them.

Public consultation sessions are being held in Wangaratta, Yea, Shepparton, Kerang, Bendigo and Mildura throughout February 2019 to provide an overview of the plan and the opportunity to ask questions.

Consultation sessions will be advertised through multiple avenues to ensure as many people as possible can attend and additional sessions will be scheduled as required.

The draft Water Resource Plan is available for community consultation until 4 March 2019, 5pm.

Source: Vic Government