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Water Amendment Bill 2008

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2008

 

 

THE PARLIAMENT OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA

 

 

THE SENATE

 

 

Water Amendment Bill 2008

 

 

Schedule of the amendments made by the Senate

 

 

 

 

 

(1)     AG (2) [Sheet 5660]

          Clause 2, page 2 (table item 4), omit “Schedule 3”, substitute “Schedules 3 and 4”.

(2)     Xenophon (1) [Sheet 5649]

          Page 2 (after line 11), after clause 3, insert:

4  Review of operation of Water Act 2007 as amended by this Act

             (1)  The Productivity Commission must, by 30 June 2010, and each 30 June thereafter, prepare a report on the operation of the Water Act 2007 as amended by this Act and provide it to the Minister.

             (2)  In preparing a report required under subsection (1), the Productivity Commission must consider but is not limited to the following matters:

                     (a)  the environmental impact on inflows;

                     (b)  the economic sustainability of Basin water resources;

                     (c)  the environmental sustainability of Basin water resources;

                     (d)  the relative efficiency of water trading rules;

                     (e)  the effectiveness of the Authority in carrying out its functions;

                      (f)  the adequacy of the powers of the Authority;

                     (g)  alternative models buying back tradeable water rights;

                     (h)  the effectiveness of infrastructure projects and other water-saving measures funded (in whole or in part) by the Commonwealth;

                      (i)  any other matter relevant to the objects of the Water Act 2007 .

             (3)  The Minister must ensure that the Productivity Commission has sufficient resources to prepare a report required under subsection (1).

             (4)  The Minister must cause a copy of a report prepared under subsection (1) to be tabled in each House of the Parliament within 5 sitting days of that House after receiving the report.



(3)     Opp (1) [Sheet 5657]

          Schedule 1, item 1, page 11 (after line 2), after subsection 18H(1), insert:

          (1A)  Until the States of New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia have each achieved the objective of increasing the flow of water in the River Murray as required by the Living Murray Initiative , these States’ water savings programs are to be independently audited and, as soon as the saved water becomes available, the water must be allocated to the Living Murray Initiative and must not be used for any other purpose.

(4)     Opp (1) [Sheet 5650]/ AG (1) [Sheet 5659]

          Schedule 1, item 2, page 11 (lines 28 to 35), omit subsection 86A(2), substitute:

             (2)  Critical human water needs are the needs for a minimum amount of water, that can only reasonably be provided from Basin water resources, required to meet human drinking, sanitation and health requirements in urban and rural areas.

(5)     Xenophon (3) [Sheet 5649]

          Schedule 2, page 293 (after line 7), after item 45, insert:

45A  Before paragraph 20(a)

Insert:

                    (aa)  the Authority to take a whole of Basin approach in managing Basin water resources, taking into account environmental, social, economic and hydrological considerations; and

(6)     Opp and AG (1) [Sheet 5622 Revised 3] ( As amended by Opp (2) on sheet 5657 )

          Schedule 2, page 294 (after line 2), after item 50, insert:

50A  At the end of section 21

Add:

Basin Plan not to permit taking water for additional uses outside Basin

             (8)  The Basin Plan must ensure that no water is taken from Basin water resources for use outside the Murray-Darling Basin unless, prior to 3 July 2008, water would have been taken from Basin water resources for that use.

Note:          3 July 2008 is the date the Commonwealth, the Basin States and the Australian Capital Territory entered into an intergovernmental agreement on Murray-Darling Basin Reform.

             (9)  The Basin Plan must not permit:

                     (a)  the construction or operation of water infrastructure; or

                     (b)  work in the nature of a river flow control work;

if the primary purpose of that construction, operation or work is to enable water to be taken contrary to subsection (8).

Note 1:       water infrastructure is defined in section 7(3).

Note 2:       river flow control work is defined in section 8 but has a meaning affected by subsection (10).

           (10)  For the purposes of this section, river flow control work has the meaning it would have if paragraph 8(2)(b) were repealed.



        (10A)  To avoid doubt:

                     (a)  the delivery of water for the initiatives of the Water for Rivers project was an existing use of water prior to 3 July 2008; and

                     (b)  the taking of water for the initiatives of the Water for Rivers project is not contrary to subsection 21(8); and

                     (c)  the construction and operation of water infrastructure for the initiatives of the Water for Rivers project is not contrary to subsection 257(1); and

                     (d)  all commenced and provisionally agreed Snowy River environmental flows are preserved and excluded from the provisions of subsections 21(8), 21(9) and 257(1).

(7)     AG (2) [Sheet 5659]

          Schedule 2, page 294 (after line 2), after item 50, insert:

50B  At the end of section 21

Add:

Basin Plan to provide for reduction in use in additional population centres outside Basin

           (11)  The Basin Plan must provide for a reduction over time in the amount of water taken from Basin water resources to meet the needs of population centres outside the Murray-Darling Basin.

(8)     Xenophon (2) [Sheet 5649]

          Schedule 2, page 306 (after line 1), after item 97, insert:

97D  Before paragraph 172(1)(a)

Insert:

                    (aa)  to pursue and, where appropriate, make recommendations to other agencies to pursue the objects of the Act as set out in section 3;

(9)     AG (21) [Sheet 5629]

          Schedule 2, page 308 (after line 5), after item 106, insert:

106A  Subsection 175(1)

After “directions”, insert “, which must be consistent with the objects of this Act,”.

(10)   AG (22) [Sheet 5629]

          Schedule 2, page 308 (after line 5), after item 106, insert:

106B  Before paragraph 175(2)(a)

Insert:

                    (aa)  those aspects of the Basin Plan excluded from Ministerial direction under subsection 44(5);



(11)   AG (23) [Sheet 5629]

          Schedule 2, page 308 (after line 5), after item 106, insert:

106C  Subsection 178(6)

Omit “must”, substitute “may”.

(12)   AG (1) [Sheet 5663] ( As amended by Opp (1) and (2) on sheet 5677 )

          Schedule 2, page 318 (after line 8), after item 161, insert:

161A  After section 255

Insert:

255A Mitigation of unintended diversions

                   Prior to licences being granted for subsidence mining operations on floodplains that have underlying groundwater systems forming part of the Murray-Darling system inflows, an independent expert study must be undertaken to determine the impacts of the proposed mining operations on the connectivity of groundwater systems, surface water and groundwater flows and water quality.

(13)   Opp and AG (2) [Sheet 5622 Revised 3]

          Schedule 2, page 318 (after line 32), after item 162, insert:

162A  At the end of Part 12

Add:

257  Prohibited water infrastructure operations

             (1)  An infrastructure operator must not:

                     (a)  construct or operate water infrastructure; or

                     (b)  undertake work in the nature of a river flow control work;

if the primary purpose of that construction, operation or work is to enable water to be taken from Basin water resources for use outside the Murray-Darling Basin.

Note 1:       infrastructure operator and water infrastructure are defined in section 7.

Note 2:       river flow control work is defined in section 8 but has a meaning affected by subsection (3).

             (2)  Subsection (1) does not apply if, prior to 3 July 2008, water would have been taken from Basin water resources for that use.

             (3)  For the purposes of this section, river flow control work has the meaning it would have if paragraph 8(2)(b) were repealed.

(14)   Opp (5) [Sheet 5640] ( As amended by AG )

          Schedule 2, page 318 (after line 32), after item 162, insert:

162E  At the end of Part 12

Add:

261  Water market transparency

                   The Minister must, by legislative instrument, determine a scheme to ensure transparent operation of the water market in respect of the purchase of water entitlements by the Commonwealth.

(15)   Opp (1) [Sheet 5664 Revised]

          Schedule 2, page 318 (after line 32), after item 162, insert:

162G  At the end of Part 12

Add:

263  Lower Lakes and Coorong emergency assistance

             (1)  As soon as practicable after the commencement of this section, the Government must determine an assistance package of a minimum $50 million for Lower Lakes and Coorong communities to help farmers, small businesses, tourism and community sectors to respond to the crisis caused by the lack of water.

             (2)  Payments of assistance in accordance with a scheme determined under subsection (1) are to be made from money appropriated by the Parliament for that purpose.

(16)   AG [Sheet 5660]

          Page 326 (after line 32), at the end of the bill, add:

Schedule 4—Amendments related to the recognition of Indigenous water rights

Water Act 2007

10  After paragraph 202(3)(b)

Insert:

               and (c)  an Indigenous water subcommittee, to guide the consideration of Indigenous matters relevant to the Basin’s water resources;

11  At the end of subsection 202(5)

Add:

             ; and (c)  an individual with expertise in Indigenous matters relevant to the Basin’s water resources.

 

 

 

 

 

HARRY EVANS

Clerk of the Senate

The Senate

27 November 2008