Irrigation supplies plentiful

by | Mar 15, 2023 | Australia, News

In an update to its Annual Operating outlook for 2022/23, the Murray-Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) details how it may run the River Murray under different climate and rainfall scenarios. The southern Murray-Darling Basin tracked some of the highest rainfall and inflow totals on record at the end of 2022.

MDBA executive director of river management Andrew Reynolds said it was unlikely the MDBA would need to draw water from the Menindee Lakes into the Murray system anytime soon due to the largest volume of water flowing into the river Murray system in November and December. Water storages in the Murray River system are at high levels for this time of year with Dartmouth Dam and Hume Dam virtually full and the Menindee Lakes above 100%.

Despite full irrigation dams, prices are likely to run high for producers seeking to buy temporary water with opening prices expected between $110 – $140ML. Prices in the long-term will be determined by the Bureau of Meteorology outlook and how inflows fare in winter.