27/11/2020 | David Speirs MP

The South Australian Government has rejected a push by the New South Wales and Victorian governments to extend the 2024 deadline for the Murray-Darling Basin Plan.

Minister for Environment and Water David Speirs said South Australia was committed to delivering the Murray-Darling Basin Plan as already agreed.

“South Australia was joined by other states in rejecting a push by New South Wales and Victoria to extend the Murray-Darling Basin Plan’s 2024 deadline,” Minister Speirs said.

“Basin jurisdictions need to play their part delivering the Plan including the 450GL of environmental water for the good of the river and those communities that rely on it.

“Ministerial Council reaffirmed the commitment to efficiency measures projects and it’s important states now start to show significant progress.

“South Australia will continue to push for states to be better held to account when it comes to delivering these projects.”
Minister Speirs welcomed the move to make Murray-Darling Basin Ministerial Council meetings annual instead of twice a year.

“The time for talk is over and instead of playing politics we need all Basin jurisdictions just to get on with it and deliver the Plan as agreed,” Minister Speirs said.

Minister Speirs said the Federal Government has put significant funding on the table to help deliver water infrastructure projects which will have significant benefits right across the Murray-Darling Basin.

“Basin communities across Australia will play an important role in our economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic,” said Minister Speirs.

“Building water infrastructure projects will have ongoing benefits to regional communities by creating jobs during construction as well as improved water delivery which will boost productivity and improve environmental outcomes.

“These water efficiency infrastructure projects have a real opportunity to provide economic stimulus when it’s needed most as well as delivering more water for the environment.

“South Australia has led the way when it comes to these sorts of projects and the Riverland is a great example where efficiency measures have resulted in a win-win situation for farmers and the environment.

“I congratulate Federal Minister for Water Keith Pitt on his leadership and urge other Basin jurisdictions to simply get on with it.”