The Living Murray
The Living Murray program is Australia’s largest river restoration program. It is a joint initiative funded by the New South Wales, Victorian, South Australian, Australian Capital Territory and the Commonwealth governments, coordinated by the Murray-Darling Basin Authority. The one-billion-dollar river restoration program began in 2003 in response to the declining health of the river system.
The Living Murray aims to return the River Murray to a healthy working river by recovering 500 GL of water for the environment and using this water to achieve environmental benefits at six icon sites, including the River Murray Channel. The program includes an environmental works program that will allow water to be delivered to floodplain icon sites in the absence of floods, maintaining important wetland habitat and providing critical drought refuges under drought and climate change. Together, the works planned for the icon sites will deliver water to more than 37,000 hectares of significant forests, wetlands and lakes of the River Murray.
The Mallee region has two of The Living Murray’s Icon Sites – the Hattah Lakes Icon Site, and the Victorian component of the Chowilla Floodplain and Lindsay-Wallpolla Islands Icon Site, which includes Lindsay, Mulcra and Wallpolla Islands.
Works to improve the health of the Murray River and surrounding wetlands and floodplains are planned for:
Community Reference Groups have been established to help guide community engagement regarding The Living Murray works planned for these areas.
In line with Victorian cultural heritage legislation, Cultural Heritage Management Plans have been completed, in consultation with Indigenous stakeholders, for each of the Icon Sites in the Mallee CMA region.
More information on The Living Murray program is available from the Murray Darling Basin Authority website.
A Living Murray fact sheet will be available soon.