Parliament

Murray-Darling Basin Plan concerns

August 27, 2019

Question without notice - My question is for the Minister for Water. Minister, the ongoing rollout of the Murray-Darling Basin plan is a cause for great concern throughout the southern basin, and there is little confidence that there will be integrity in its ongoing management, given the litany of mismanagement, questionable water purchases and fraudulent behaviour, particularly in the northern basin. More recently allegations of tampering have occurred in relation to evidence about South Australia’s scientific reports into the Coorong lakes. The ministerial council meeting last December agreed the 450 gigalitres of up-water would only be achieved if there were no negative social or economic impacts in the wider community. The importance of that socio-economic test being applied transparently and evenly across the whole basin is essential. What steps will the Victorian government take to ensure that the socio-economic test will be applied fairly and that no further water will be removed from the consumptive pool as part of all these projects? 

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Supplementary question - Minister, the inspector-general has been appointed now by the federal Minister for Water, David Littleproud. I am interested to know what role you see for him in really trying to increase that social understanding of what is going on but also to be really the policeman of the basin and to do the job that I think many of us in Victoria would hope he would do.

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