Ministers agree on water deal

MAYOR Mark Eckel says more socioeconomic analysis must be done into the effects any further recovery of water from irrigation.

Water ministers from across the Murray-Darling Basin yesterday agreed against offering any on-farm efficiency programs in Victoria or NSW until a more comprehensive test of impact on communities could be agreed.

Instead, any extra water savings for the environment under the Murray-Darling Basin Plan would be sought from off-farm projects, for example, to make urban and industrial water use more efficient.

That agreement was hailed as a win for irrigators by the Victorian and NSW governments yesterday, as well as the National Irrigators’ Council.

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