Rule changes of­fer flex­i­bil­ity

Benalla Ensign - - Front Page -

Changes to the al­lo­ca­tion trade and car­ry­over rules on the Bro­ken sys­tem will give ir­ri­ga­tors more flex­i­bil­ity in man­ag­ing wa­ter for their farm businesses.

Wa­ter Min­is­ter Peter Walsh has ap­proved changes to al­low limited al­lo­ca­tion trade out of the Bro­ken sys­tem this com­ing sea­son.

State Mem­ber for Be­nalla Bill Sykes said Bro­ken sys­tem car­ry­over rules were also chang­ing so that wa­ter could be car­ried over only against high-re­li­a­bil­ity wa­ter shares, and not lowre­li­a­bil­ity wa­ter shares.

The change af­fects un­used al­lo­ca­tion car­ried over from the end of this 2013-14 sea­son into 2014-15.

‘‘These changes will im­prove wa­ter avail­abil­ity for Bro­ken sys­tem ir­ri­ga­tors early in the sea­son and will open up more trade op­por­tu­ni­ties,’’ Dr Sykes said.

‘‘The Goul­burn-Bro­ken Re­gional Wa­ter Ser­vices Com­mit­tee has been the driv­ing force be­hind this and it’s a great ex­am­ple of the pos­i­tive im­pact of Goul­burn-Mur­ray Wa­ter’s Wa­ter Ser­vices Com­mit­tees.’’

The change comes af­ter the an­nounce­ment of the Shep­par­ton East pipe­line, which will re­sult in the re­tire­ment of 830 Ml of wa­ter.

Lo­cal ir­ri­ga­tor Mau­reen Cot­tam said it would as­sist with al­lo­ca­tion dif­fi­cul­ties that oc­cured af­ter the de­com­mis­sion­ing of Lake Mokoan.

‘‘I un­der­stand that the min­is­ter has in­structed DEPI to look at what’s re­quired to pre­pare for ac­cess to un­reg­u­lated flows early in the sea­son to al­le­vi­ate al­lo­ca­tion prob­lems cre­ated post de­com­mis­sion­ing,’’ Ms Cot­tam said.

From the start of the 2014-15 sea­son on July 1, al­lo­ca­tion trade from the Bro­ken sys­tem will be avail­able to the lower Goul­burn and down­stream within cer­tain vol­ume and date lim­its.

The lim­its will make sure that al­lo­ca­tion can be de­liv­ered ef­fec­tively to down­stream users with­out im­pact­ing on the lower Bro­ken’s en­vi­ron­men­tal val­ues.

From the end of the 2013-14 sea­son on­wards, ir­ri­ga­tors on the Bro­ken can carry over a max­i­mum vol­ume equal to 50 per cent of their high-re­li­a­bil­ity wa­ter shares.

They can no longer carry over wa­ter against their low-re­li­a­bil­ity wa­ter shares, which are not sup­ported by space in Lake Nil­lah­cootie.

For more in­for­ma­tion phone G-MW on 1800 013 357 or visit www.wa­ter­reg­is­ter.vic.gov.au

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