The first cross-commodity water forum modelled on the horticulture reference forum that operated throughout the last drought to discuss the wide-ranging water challenges was convened last week. Winegrowers, citrus growers and almond growers met with representatives from the Riverland irrigation trusts.
The consensus of the group was that each of the Riverland commodities should support the ABA position regarding a moratorium on the issuing of further licenses and plantings throughout the Murray-Darling Basin. The forum also acknowledged the very large number of individual irrigator concerns underscoring the complexity of water policies and the great difficulty of developing basin wide strategies.
The forum will meet again at the end of July to consider detailed Terms of Reference and the role it may fulfil as a conduit between irrigators, governments, other groups across the Basin and the MDBA.
In the context of the Water Challenge, Riverland Wine has negotiated with CCW to repeat the water workshops program recently delivered at Loxton by Aither and the CSIRO. This is planned for August 2. Details will be widely published and promoted in coming weeks for those who were unable to attend the earlier sessions.