Statement on the outcome of MinCo
14 December 2018
When I became Agriculture Minister I said I wanted to take the politics out of the Murray-Darling Basin Plan and lead.
Today's agreement on a neutrality test guarantees all water recovered towards the 450GL will create positive or neutral socio-economic outcomes.
This is the last major piece in the Murray-Darling Basin Plan puzzle. This will protect both jobs and production and will be applied at a local, regional and state level.
It's a historic agreement and means the Murray-Darling Basin Plan will be delivered.
The two million people who live up and down the Basin now have certainty.
The Coorong, which I visited recently, will see Commonwealth investment to deliver real environment benefits.
The board of the MDBA is being expanded to include Indigenous representation to ensure our First Australians are heard.
A further $132 million will be allocated to the southern states to deliver the 605GL of down water projects.
Further, a new regulation under the Water Act 2007 will give Basin States more time to fully engage with their communities and deliver better outcomes under the Murray-Darling Basin Plan.
If more time delivers better results, then it makes sense to give states that time.