ISCC's recommendation

The Irrigators' Share Consultative Committee (ISCC) has recommended that the irrigators' share is provided as a once-off distribution, in proportion to the amount of delivery share held, as:

  • water shares issued to those with delivery share of 0.25 ML/day or more
  • financial benefits, equivalent to the value of the water shares, provided to those with less than 0.25 ML/day of delivery share.

Read more about the distribution at https://www.water.vic.gov.au/water-for-agriculture/irrigators-share-distribution

Want to know more about the ISCC's recommendation?

When will irrigators get their share?

The Minister has announced that water shares will be issued by 31 October 2021, with financial benefits to be provided in March 2022 as credits on GMW bills. You can read the Minister's announcement here.

Information on the delivery share held will be taken from the Victorian Water Register at a set census date. The census date will be in early to mid October 2021, a few weeks ahead of when water shares are issued.

Eligible recipients of the irrigators' share will need to ensure their information in the Water Register is up to date before the census date.

What you need to know

Based on indicative data provided to the ISCC, irrigators will receive 4.0 megalitres (ML) of high-reliability water shares (HRWS) and 1.8 ML of low-reliability water shares (LRWS) per 1 ML/day of delivery share. These figures need to be confirmed once all the Connections Project works are complete.

For more information about the make-up of the irrigators’ share, read DELWP's Connections Project Water Recovery Fact Sheet.

Eligible recipients: everyone who holds delivery share from within the six irrigation areas of the GMID and pays GMW's infrastructure access fee will receive a benefit.

Threshold level: Those with less than 0.25 ML/day of delivery share will receive bill credits, as the parcel of water shares below this level is too small to issue.

Water shares: Water shares will be issued within your trading zone, where possible.

Financial benefits: Provided as bill credits, they will be distributed at a common rate across the GMID.

This page will be kept up to date with information on key dates and actions for irrigators to take. Click the +Follow button to be notified by email when updates are made.

How the ISCC made its decision

The ISCC worked through a range of distribution options to develop a proposal. This proposal was presented to the GMID community for feedback from 20 April to 1 June 2020. The proposal was positively received. The committee refined its proposal in response to community feedback to make its recommendation to the Minister.

Community feedback is captured in the ISCC's Closing the Loop Report.

Information from the ISCC's consultation can be found under 'Consultation materials' on this page.

Further information

The irrigators' share refers to the share of water recovery that will be delivered back to GMID irrigators as part of Stage 1 of the Connections Project. The irrigators’ share is 75 GL - long term average annual yield (LTAAY) - of the confirmed water recovered.

The total water recover target for Stage 1 is 225 GL LTAAY, to be shared equitably between the environment, the Melbourne retail water corporations who contributed funding (City West Water, Yarra Valley Water, South East Water), and GMID irrigators.

The Irrigators’ Share Consultative Committee (ISCC) - appointed by the Minister for Water in June 2019 - took a close look at options to best distribute the up to 75 GL (LTAAY) of water recovery from Stage 1 of the Connections Project that will be returned to irrigators.

The ISCC explored a range of ways to share the benefits of the water recovery and delivered its recommendation to the Minister in August 2020.

The committee was guided by its terms of reference and agreed principles.

Feedback raised the following areas that the ISCC considered in finalising its recommendation:

  • How eligibility to receive the irrigators’ share would be defined, and the rationale for including or excluding different groups, such as pumped district irrigators.
  • The practical implications of altering the proposed 0.25 ML/day delivery share threshold or allowing individuals to make a choice between receiving water shares or financial benefits.
  • Concerns regarding the future of the GMID and the impact of distributing the irrigators’ share on future costs and district viability.
  • The need for clear and transparent information around the make-up and management of the irrigators’ share, including the commitments and decisions that have been made through the Connections Project.
  • The importance of providing certainty to the irrigation community, to help you to plan effectively in challenging conditions and a time of rapid change.

Thank you

The ISCC thanks the irrigation community in the GMID for providing their feedback and comments on the committee’s proposal. We acknowledge the unusual circumstances created due to the coronavirus pandemic and appreciate the willingness of the community to participate in online consultation.