Prime Minister Gillard is expected to increase the environmental flows for the Murray to 3200 Gl.October 26, 2012 8:00am
Prime Minister Julia Gillard will unveil plans to put an extra 450 billion litres back into the Murray River.
In order to head off a potential legal challenge to the Murray Darling Basin plan, Ms Gillard will announce, in South Australia that 450 billion litres of water will be back in the river from 2019, at a cost of $1.7 billion, national radio and print media are reporting.
It’s believed the increase water will come from on-farm efficiencies.
The Murray-Darling Basin Authority had earlier settled on a 2750 Gl figure.
In May, when the revised draft Murray Darling Basin plan was released, South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill said he would launch a challenge in the High Court if the federal government agreed to the plan in that form.
He said at the time the planned water flows were not enough to ensure the river system’s long-term health.
Earlier this month, the Murray-Darling Basin Authority produced modelling showing how 3200 Gl would reach more environmental targets, but failed to explore the costs to river communities.
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