A national Murray Darling Basin-wide Compliance Review is now be held with Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Barnaby Joyce writing this week to all Basin water ministers seeking their agreement to the MDBA review.
The call for the review has come from Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in the wake of allegations of mis-use of allocations in downstream areas.
MDBA Chair, the Hon Neil Andrew says the strategic review would consider the legislative, policy and practical implementation of compliance and enforcement across the Murray–Darling Basin.
“The review will consider the effectiveness of the current rules and laws, measurement and monitoring, and governance arrangements.”
Under the review, MDBA will work with independent experts to conduct the review, and the proposed review arrangements are expected to be announced shortly.
“The review will be in addition to the other important tasks ahead for the MDBA over the coming months. We must keep going with the Basin Plan.”
If accepted by the Basin states, the MDBA will present the review findings to the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) by 15 December 2017.
MDBA Chief Executive, Phillip Glyde, said the MDBA is committed to reviewing its own assessment and compliance practices as part of the review, and will seek independent advice on MDBA’s delivery of their compliance responsibilities.
“We are committed to delivering the Basin Plan on time and in full. Compliance matters must be addressed, so the Basin Plan can continue to deliver healthy and productive rivers. There is no Plan B.”