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New policy-plan: NSW towns to purchase water on the open market in deal to go level 4 to level 3a, others must plan to truck water, open channels banned

Posted by waterweek on 28 September 2007

The NSW Department of Water and Energy, said sufficient water will be provided to all towns to meet demands under Level 4 restrictions. Level 4 restrictions would continue until allocations of at least 20 per cent for high security licences were announced.MBDC flows

New idea: An option was currently being considered that would allow towns to purchase water on the open market if they wish to ease the level of restrictions from level 4 to level 3a. This would be on the basis that towns acquire 20 per cent of the volume to meet level 4 restrictions for that month. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted in agriculture, Allocations, australia, Drought, Emergency, Evaporation, Irrigation, Murray Darling Basin, New ideas, nsw, Policy, Regulation, Town Water, Trade, Water Markets, Water Trade | Leave a Comment »

Qld: Warrego River water licence auction: Private trust backed by six environment groups to attempt to buy new water licences

Posted by waterweek on 21 September 2007

A bid by the Nature Conservation Water Trust backed by six environment groups would attempt to buy new Warrego River water licences due to be auctioned by the Queensland Government next week – the first of its kind in Australia where a private group of conservationists would go head to head with agriculture businesses to buy water for the environment, reported The Sydney Morning Herald, (11/09/2007, p.7).
The last resort: “All other avenues have been closed off,” said Professor Richard Kingsford, a wetlands expert from the University of New South Wales who was advising the trust. “The auction date has inexorably been coming on us with no action to stop it.” The new trust’s backers included National Parks Australia, the Australian Conservation Foundation, the Inland Rivers Network and the Wilderness Society.

Trust raising $2.5m to secure licences: A member of the new water trust had registered to bid at the auction and Kingsford said it was now trying to raise $2.5 million in the next week to secure the licences. Some money had already been collected and local graziers were “handing around the hat”.

Pvt ownership may threaten wetlands: Kingsford was also concerned that if the water licences were bought by private irrigators the survival of the Warrego and the Paroo wetlands attached to it would be under threat from cotton and crop development. The Paroo was considered one of the last natural wetland refuges in New South Wales for many inland bird species, including brolgas, egrets and the speckled duck.

NSW graziers, environmentalists protest: The auction was being held just over the border from New South Wales and was being strongly opposed by New South Wales environmentalists and graziers who feared it would cut flows to flood-plain properties in north-western New South Wales outside Bourke.

Graziers to call upon Federal, Qld Govt: A meeting of local graziers would take place on Thursday where they would again call on the Federal and Queensland governments to halt the auction.

Turnbull urges Beattie to review decision: Last Friday the Environment Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, made a plea to the outgoing Queensland Premier, Peter Beattie, to review the auction. His assistant minister, the National Party’s John Cobb, called for the auction to be delayed, calling it “ridiculous”, while the former deputy prime minister John Anderson described the Queensland actions as “provocative and unhelpful”.

Last auction in the system: The auction of 8000 megalitres of water from the Warrego River on 18 and 19 September, by the State Government, would be the last water licence auction allowed on the Murray-Darling system.

The Sydney Morning Herald, 11/9/2007, p. 7

Posted in algae, nsw, Price, qld, water, Water Markets, Water Trade, Water Week Vol 0411, Wetlands | Leave a Comment »

Adel­aide should be securing its own core independent water supply and possibly building three or four water desalination plants: Leader editorial in Advertiser

Posted by waterweek on 21 September 2007

The State Government needed to understand the financing of water infrastructure such as desalination plants was not simply a public sector issue, according to The Advertiser (7/9/2007, p.18).

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Posted in Bursts, desalination, Policy, Public Opinion, River Murray, Water Markets, Water Security, Water Trade, Water Week Vol 0411 | Leave a Comment »

Vox pop: Gardens take miniscule amounts of Murray water but contribute significantly to economy

Posted by waterweek on 20 September 2007

South Australia receives 8 per cent of the Murray/Darling inflows, of which Adelaide uses on average 130 gigalitres for industry, commerce, business and community, houses and gardens, according to John Calder, Hallet Cove, in a letter to the editor of The Advertiser (17/9/2007, p. 17). Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Allocations, Conservation, Consumption, Domestic, Irrigation, mdb, Public Opinion, River Murray, SA, water, Water Markets, Water Trade, Water Week Vol 0411 | Leave a Comment »

Compulsory water entitlement reductions under clause 77 of Water Bill allows de facto compulsory acquisition: Labor MP

Posted by waterweek on 20 September 2007

The possibility that the long-term average sustainable water diversion limit or cap would have to be reduced meant that there would be compulsory water entitlement reductions under clause 77 of the Water Bill 2007, said Labor’s Anthony Albanese in the Federal Parliament on 14 August 2007. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Allocations, australia, Drought, Environmental Flows, Irrigation, Water Markets, Water Trade, Water Week Vol 0411 | Leave a Comment »

State governments share liability with Commonwealth for post-2014 water compensation: NSW government says change “unacceptable”

Posted by waterweek on 20 September 2007

Clause 255 of the Water Bill 2007 provides that nothing in the Bill or regulations authorises the Commonwealth or any other agency to compulsorily acquire a water access right or an interest in a water access right, according to advice released by the Department of Parliamentary Service on 14 August 2007. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Allocations, Energy, Environmental Flows, Law, nsw, Policy, Regulation, water, Water Markets, Water Trade, Water Week Vol 0411 | Leave a Comment »

Snowy sells more water to Murrumbidgee Irrigators on credit, despite non-payment of 2002/2004 bill

Posted by waterweek on 19 September 2007

“Snowy Hydro is pleased to confirm.. that the NSW Department of Water and Energy has endorsed a proposal from Snowy Hydro and Murrumbidgee Irrigation Limited that will see Murrumbidgee irrigators being able to use the 5pc of allocation water that had been suspended last year and reinstated in August 2007. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Allocations, Irrigation, nsw, Water Markets, Water Trade, Water Week Vol 0411 | Leave a Comment »

$300/ML compo to 900 irrigators in seven NSW ground-water zones for cuts to water they got for free, in the first place: but irrigators to sue, for more

Posted by waterweek on 19 September 2007

About $118 million in financial assistance will start flowing to about 900 NSW irrigation licence holders, while a further $7 million will be offered to Lower Lachlan Valley groundwater licence hold­ers once the region’s water shar­ing plan has been finalised. Groundwater users group chair Greg Sandford, of “Noorumboon”, Deniliquin, said irrigators initially were told cuts to water entitlements would occur “across the board”, and it was only when the ASGE scheme was announced in 2005 they learned payouts would be based on history-of-use instead. Sandford said irrigators were losing about 168,000 megal­itres of water entitlement but only about 20,000ML would be covered by ASGE payments at about $300/ML, wrote Alan Dick in The Land, 13/9/2007, p. 25. The rest will not get any money at all,” he said.

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Posted in Irrigation, nsw, Policy, Price, Water Markets, Water Week Vol 0411 | Leave a Comment »