Do full MD Basin study, says minister

09 Mar, 2017 10:40 AM
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 NSW water minister Niall Blair and Victorian water minister Lisa Neville met on the banks of the Murray River on Friday determined to get a better deal for Murray Darling Basin communities. Picture: MARK JESSER
There does need to be a comprehensive review...
NSW water minister Niall Blair and Victorian water minister Lisa Neville met on the banks of the Murray River on Friday determined to get a better deal for Murray Darling Basin communities. Picture: MARK JESSER

Minister, Lisa Neville, has said she would continue to push for a comprehensive socio-economic review of the southern Murray-Darling Basin, at next week's Mildura ministerial council meeting.

Ms Neville said she'd also be seeking to present the state government's TC&A and Frontier Economics report, to the Murray Darling Basin Ministerial Council (MinCo) meeting.

The report found the Murray Darling Basin Plan had slashed northern Victorian milk production by 30 per cent in the past three years.

"There does need to be a comprehensive review, not what the Murray Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) is doing now," Ms Neville told a Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF) water forum, in Echuca.

"They will find what they want to find - which is that it's all okay - but everyone knows it's not," she said.

"I will be pushing to get them to change their terms of reference, for a more comprehensive review of the southern basin.

"What is clear in the legislation is the 450 gigalitres can only be delivered in a scenario where there is a better or neutral economic outcome.

"What our report is saying is that is pretty hard to do."

Mead, Vic, dairyfarmer Di Bowles said she was pleased to hear the minister's "very strong stance" on Victoria.

She also praised the move to join with New South Wales in putting forward the case.

"Historically Victoria and New South Wales have generally worked very well together, but I still think its going to be very hard to shift South Australia," she said.

A spokeswoman for the MDBA said the organisation was undertaking socio-economic analyses in the southern basin.

"This evaluation will use the Northern Basin Review findings, as well as new socio-economic research on the experiences people in about 30 southern basin centres have had in relation to the plan," the spokeswoman said.

"The community-level information will be combined with analysis of outcomes at the Basin-wide, catchment and industry levels."

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Peter R. Smith OAM
9/03/2017 2:18:14 PM, on Australian Dairyfarmer

RE, "Minister, Lisa Neville, has said she would continue to push for a comprehensive socio-economic review of the southern Murray-Darling Basin, at next week's Mildura ministerial council meeting" any review must be of the entire Basin and remember all buy backs were choice that is VOLUNTARY.

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