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Provide your feedback on an issues paper on the management of salinity impacts from irrigation along the South Australian River Murray.

What is being decided?

The South Australian salinity zoning policy is a key element of South Australia’s broader salinity management program. The policy aims to minimise impacts on river salinity from new irrigation development, by managing additional water use in defined salinity management zones. It is supported by a water use efficiency policy that guides how water should be used to minimise drainage below the root zone of irrigated crops.

Over the past ten years there has been considerable change in irrigation and land and water management practices. It is therefore timely to review South Australia’s irrigation salinity management policy. An issues paper has been prepared to seek community input into the review as part of the first stage of consultation.

The issues paper provides information on the current policies and their operation and outlines a number of issues identified through the review to date. This includes issues previously identified by stakeholders as part of consultation on the River Murray Water Allocation Plan. It also provides background information on the current status of salinity management in South Australia in relation to Basin wide management programmes.

How can your input influence the decision?

By providing your views on the issues paper you can influence development of policy recommendations by assisting in identification, clarification and analysis of issues associated with the salinity zoning policy. We want to ensure your concerns are understood and considered in the development of the policy.

Following consultation on the issues paper, feedback received from stakeholders will inform the development of a policy options paper for future irrigation salinity management.

Stakeholders and the broader community will have additional opportunities to provide input into the review through consultation on the policy options paper as part of the next stage of the two stage consultation process.

Once the second stage of consultation on the options paper is complete, a set of recommendations will be provided for consideration by the Minister for Water and the River Murray.

Get involved

Feedback on issues relating to salinity management policy in the South Australian Murray-Darling Basin are welcomed as part of the review and participants should not feel limited by the issues identified in the paper.

A series of questions have been included in the paper to assist stakeholder input on the issues paper and development of an options paper. We want to hear your ideas, suggestions and opinions on the issues paper, in particular the following questions:

  • What are your thoughts on how the salinity zoning policy and its administration could be improved?
  • Have you had experience in finding and varying site use approval volumes? How could the process and market be improved?
  • Do you have any thoughts about other mechanisms for supporting new development within current total site use approval volumes and assigned salinity credits?
  • Do you have any thoughts on opportunities to improve flexibility to change crop types, including indicators or metrics that could be used to regulate salinity impacts from irrigation?
  • Do you have any feedback about the water use efficiency policy?
  • What additional information would be useful to help understand the salinity problem and how it is managed?

Submissions in response to the issues paper are requested by Sunday 30 April 2017.

Provide your feedback by:

How will your input be used?

Feedback on the issues paper will be considered during the preparation of an options paper on irrigation salinity management, which will be out for a second period of consultation in mid to late 2017.

Want to find out more?

Upcoming key dates

Sun, 30 Apr 2017 at 5:00 PM

River Murray irrigation salinity management policy - feedback closing

Visit the SA Murray Darling Basin website

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