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Tuesday, 19 July 2016

The year ahead for environmental water in northern Victoria

19 July 2016

The Victorian Environmental Water Holder (VEWH) has released its plan for watering in 2016-17.

Careful planning means water carried over from 2015-16 will supplement this year’s water allocations, providing sufficient supplies to support key rivers, wetlands, and the wildlife that rely on them.

Across northern Victoria, environmental water will be delivered to the Goulburn, Broken, Ovens, Loddon and Campaspe rivers as well as wetlands and floodplains in these regions and on the Victorian Murray system, including Barmah and Gunbower Forest, Hattah Lakes and Lindsay, Wallpolla and Mulcra islands.

Environmental water also benefits communities by improving conditions for fishing, camping
and canoeing.

It also sustains healthy Country for Aboriginal communities with a continuing connection to rivers, wetlands and floodplains, and improves water quality which can have indirect economic benefits for irrigation and urban water supply.

Chairperson Denis Flett says despite uncertainty about how the upcoming seasons will play
out the VEWH is prepared for all circumstances.

“We are subject to water allocations like any other entitlement holder and if there is less water available we will scale back the scope of our environmental objectives in 2016-17,” he says.

“Rain in early winter has wet catchments, particularly in the northeast, which are now primed
to provide good runoff after more rainfall.”

Environmental Water Resources Officer with the North East Catchment Management Authority, Catherine McInerney says, “We will be aiming to maintain water quality within the Ovens system and provide a connection between habitats for native fish when water levels are low.”

The VEWH is is an independent statutory body responsible for making decisions on the most
efficient use of Victoria's environmental water.

It’s annual plan scopes potential watering in Victoria using water held in reservoirs set aside
to be returned to rivers and wetlands for plants and animals.

In 2015-16, 27 rivers and 73 wetlands in Victoria received environmental water.

The VEWH plans for a range of scenarios – from drought to wet seasonal conditions – adjusting environmental water deliveries according to conditions.

Studies show that environmental watering results in fish spawning and increased
populations of animals such as birds, frogs and turtles around the state.

The Seasonal Watering Plan 2016-17 is based on proposals from waterway managers across northern Victoria – the Mallee, North Central, Goulburn Broken and North East catchment management authorities – which recommend the most effective watering activities for their region based on the best-available science.

Communities play a large part in these regional proposals by providing local perspectives, including historical waterway knowledge and citizen science.

The VEWH is an independent statutory body responsible for making decisions on the most
efficient use of Victoria's environmental water.

We work in partnership with the Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder and the
Murray-Darling Basin Authority’s Living Murray program when coordinating environmental
water in northern Victoria.

The plan is available at vewh.vic.gov.au

Documents to download

Author: Anonym

Categories: Media ReleaseNumber of views: 8409


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