The Victorian Government is reviewing delivery share arrangements in northern Victoria to support irrigation communities and districts as they adjust to rapid, continuing changes in land and water use.
This is part of action 4.3 in Water for Victoria to examine how delivery shares are working now and how their future use can support affordable and resilient irrigation districts that are attractive to new businesses.It has been 10 years since reforms separated water from land in Victoria and delivery shares were introduced, giving rights to irrigators to access water delivery infrastructure.
There have been dramatic changes over this time, with less water available in the irrigation pool through climate change and environmental water recovery under the Basin Plan, adjustment after extreme drought and floods, new irrigation and crop production technologies, shifts in global markets, fluctuating commodity prices and changes in regulation.
The Delivery Share Review began in 2017 with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning(DELWP) working closely with Goulburn-Murray Water, Lower Murray Water and other key stakeholders.
The review has drafted options to change or replace delivery share by consulting with water sector and irrigator representatives and looking at the data and evidence around current delivery shareholdings and water use.
This collaboration has produced a Preliminary Findings Report with a range of options to consider.
DELWP invited irrigators and community members to help refine these options and develop recommendations for improving the performance of delivery shares in the Goulburn-Murray and Sunraysia Irrigation districts. The valuable feedback is currently being analysed and this input will be utilised to develop final policy recommendations to the Minister.