Ryan says Victorian water allocations should be protected

By Country News

Victorian Shadow Water Minister Steph Ryan is concerned a push by irrigators in southern NSW to increase water allocations would rob Victorian farmers of water.

She said Victoria had a strong, conservative system of water allocation that ensured water was being put away for future years, to provide Victorian irrigators high allocations more often.

“Make no mistake, irrigators in northern Victoria face significant challenges, but our strong system of allocation is not one of them.”

Ms Ryan said this had allowed 100 per cent Victorian Murray system high-reliability allocations in 10 of the past 11 years.

She said the NSW allocation system maximised yield, making it more suited to opportunistic crops, and the NSW system had delivered 100 per cent NSW Murray general security allocations in five of the past 11 years.

“Where more water can be delivered to farmers on both sides of the river, it should be, but it must not come at the expense of Victorian irrigators.”

Ms Ryan said the Murray-Darling Basin Plan had not changed how much water was allocated and urged NSW irrigators to lobby the NSW Government to change their allocation system.