The 2019 Murray River Conference was an event that people Australia were looking forward to. As always, its goal to provide opportunities to raise issues regarding river operations, water availability projections, previous and updated policies about changes in supply and demand, and strategic plans were successfully achieved. The speakers that were invited to grace the event were experts in their field. These included heads from the Murray Darling Basin Authority, Lower Murray Water, and the Department of Environment Land Water and Planning, among others. Of course, the discussions were mainly about The Murray River and the improvement of the Murray Darling Basin.
Here are some interesting facts that you should know about The Murray River and the Basin.
The Murray River
For a long time, the Aboriginal Nations, specifically the Aboriginal South Australians, have lived and managed the area for hundreds and thousands of generations. It was the Murray River that helped one of the most densely occupied areas of Aboriginal Australia to thrive. Up until today, these generations still benefit from their connection to the river.
As a whole, the Murray River has always been the life-blood of South Australia, as it is located in the driest part of the country. The river continues to provide water for industrial purposes, irrigation, floodplains, and wetlands, as well as recreational and domestic purposes. It also provides water supply to metropolitan Adelaide. However, as time has gone by and after years of flooding and overuse, the river’s health and resources have been tremendously affected. Thus, people are called to help restore it by supporting river communities and industries. Management is being improved and policies regulated to ensure that it remains healthy and productive, especially during the dry season.
The Basin, on the other hand, is nestled in the south-eastern part of Australia, covering over 1 million square kilometers and draining a seventh of the whole of Australia’s land surface. This includes the New South Wales, Victoria, and the Australian Capital Territory. The Basin is made up of the country three longest rivers: Murray, Murrumbidgee, and the Darling. These incorporate an extensive network of watercourses and creeks, most of which only have water during floods. The water goes down the Murray-Darling system to become the Aboriginal Nation’s lifeblood.
The Basin also supports the state’s tourism, agriculture, and other industries and is inhabited by over two million people. Outside of the basin, there are more than one million people as well who thrive through the basin’s water resources.