Member update 06/01/2020

Photo courtesy of ABC

Have your say on the water sharing plans

The interim Inspector-General, Mick Keelty, is inquiring into the arrangements for sharing water in the southern Basin between NSW, Victoria and South Australia. The timelines are very tight, as he will be reporting to the Commonwealth Water Minister David Littleproud in March 2020.


The Murray Darling Basin Agreement, which predates the Basin Plan, sets out how Murray system water is shared between the three States.

Inflows into the Murray above the Hume Dam are allocated equally between NSW and Victoria, after a minimum 2163GL a year is deducted to cover conveyance to the SA border and SA’s 696GL dilution and loss entitlement.

NSW and Victoria must then deliver 1154GL to SA from their allocations, shared 50:50, before making allocations to their Murray system entitlement holders.

SA’s 1154GL covers its entitlements held by irrigators, urban, and other commitments.

These sharing arrangements can be suspended under extreme conditions, as occurred late in the Millennium drought.

NSW and Victoria have total control over water in tributaries such as the Murrumbidgee and Goulburn.


Have your say on these water sharing arrangements by responding to the online survey before it closes on Sunday 12th January.

Register your interest in attending a Town Hall session between 13th January and 7th emailing and indicating your preferred location.

  • Swan Hill: 10.00-11.00AM, Tuesday 21st January, Swan Hill Town Hall. 
  • Deniliquin: 10.00-11.00AM, Tuesday 23rd January, Deniliquin RSL.
  • Mildura: 10.00-11.00AM, Wednesday 29th January, Alfred Deakin Centre.
  • Renmark: 10.00-11.00AM, Thursday 30th January, Renmark Hotel.
  • Griffith: 10.00-11.00AM, Wednesday 5th February, Griffith Leagues Club. 
  • Langhorne Creek: TBC
  • Shepparton: TBC
  • Albury: TBC
           The final times and venues to be advised closer to the date.

The Interim Inspector-General is exploring the scope of the Inquiry through these 4 themes:

  1. Inflows and supply into the Murray–Darling Basin.
  2. Delivery of water.
  3. Water sharing.
  4. Potential opportunities for enhancement.   


Rob Massina,


Ricegrowers' Association of Australia


Claire Miller,

Acting Policy Manager, 

 Ricegrowers' Association of Australia