Senate debates

Wednesday, 9 May 2012


Murray-Darling Basin

3:52 pm

Photo of Barnaby JoyceBarnaby Joyce (Queensland, National Party, Leader of The Nationals in the Senate) Share this | Hansard source

I, and also on behalf of Senator Birmingham, move:

That the Senate—

  (a)   notes that:

     (i)   the Murray-Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) has modelled the average annual inflows into the Murray Darling Basin (MDB) at 31 599 gigalitres,

     (ii)   the modelling of these inflows covers a 114 year period from 1895 to 2009,

     (iii)   the MDBA has not used the past 2 years of data on inflows in calculating the average inflows into the MDB as listed in the draft basin plan,

     (iv)   the past 2 years have seen record rainfall in the Murray Darling,

     (v)   the MDBA has acknowledged that including the 2010-12 river inflow data would change inflow calculations by 0.13 per cent or 32 gigalitres of water, and

     (vi)   the MDBA has stated that 'long term average inflows do not simply translate into estimates of sustainable diversion limits';

  (b)   calls on the Government to ensure that the final basin plan is based on the most up to date data and the best available science consistent with the requirements of the Water Act 2007; and

  (c)   orders that there be laid on the table by 17 May 2012:

     (i)   annual data on the modelled inflows into the Murray Darling from 1895 to 2011,

     (ii)   any MDBA advice and assessments about how this data is used to calculate sustainable diversion limits,

     (iii)   any MDBA advice about how historical usage in different regions has been used to calculate sustainable diversion limits, and

     (iv)   any other information held by the Government which explains the methodology used in formulating modelled inflows.


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