The Minister for Water in South Australia has announced $14M of research to underpin the development of water planning and policy in South Australia. The project "Development of an agreed set of climate projections for South Australia" will produce a single set of climate projections for South Australia, to support water resource planning and management, ensuring that policy decisions are based on the most reliable scientific evidence about both climate change and localised climate variability. This $6.6 million project will be jointly funded by the Institute and its partners and will be led by Professor Simon Beecham from the University of South Australia. It is expected to be completed by June 2014.
Murray Flood Ecology will help to facilitate efficient use of environmental flows as the River Murray receives significant inflows after the worst drought in recorded history. The institute will monitor ecosystems along the river to provide the first detailed understanding of how ecosystem and river health changes as the river refills after a long period of drought. This $1.3 million project will take approximately 15 months to complete and will be led by Dr Qifeng Ye from SARDI. The Murray Flood Ecology project will be undertaken by a research team from CSIRO, the University of Adelaide, Flinders University, SARDI and the Department for Water.
Facilitating Long-Term Outback Water Solutions (FLOWS) will identify and assess potential groundwater sources in the Far North to help underpin mining development. This project involves identifying Far North groundwater resources and assessing their capacity and quality. The findings of this project could enable further mining and energy resource development in priority areas of the Far North. It will also give us the clearest picture yet of the location and characteristics of water resources in that area and it will help to guide how they might be developed and used sustainably. Stage 1 of FLOWS has a budget of $3 million and is due to be completed by mid-2012. The project is being led by Dr Tim Munday from CSIRO and is a major collaborative effort between CSIRO, Flinders University, the University of Adelaide, SARDI, the Department for Water and the department of primary industries.
Other projects recently approved by the board will consider sustainable management of water in the South-East and will consider ways of using wetting events to detect salinity thresholds for aquatic plants in the South-East.