Murray Darling Basin Guide to proposed Basin Plan Science Review
Susan Cuddy, CSIRO
The purpose of the science review was to review and interpret the science underpinning the proposed Basin Plan with the objective of better understanding the implications of the proposed Basin Plan for South Australia, both in terms of the volume of water coming over the border and the local effect of the proposed sustainable diversion limit.
Progress Update and Key Findings
While the focus of the review was on the ability of the proposed Plan to meet environmental watering requirements, it was also to address effects of changes in sustainable diversion limits on other water users, including quality and reliability of town water supply, and water for industrial and agricultural purposes. These objectives did not change during the project.
Adoption and Impact
An independent and international review of the Coorong, Lower Lakes, and Murray Mouth science that underpins the environmental water requirements identified to date by South Australia.
Analysis of aggregate environmental water requirements and new sustainable diversion limits for River Murray System and whether these meet SA requirements, including achievability of proposed salinity targets under new sustainable diversion limits.
Analysis of sustainable diversion limits for other SA Murray-Darling Basin regions.
Analysis of the socio-economic work undertaken to date by the Murray-Darling Basin Authority being used to support the development of the sustainable diversion limits and other relevant studies to understand implications for South Australian communities.
Advice from lead scientists on key issues identified post release of the Guide and ultimately the Proposed Basin Plan.
Response developed to the key focus areas identified and additional issues identified by the Basin Plan Chairs’ Coordinating Group.