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Valuing Water: The Australian Perspective. Environmental values of water in the Murray-Darling Basin

This is one in a series of four reports that examine how the diverse values placed on water have shaped the development and management of water resources in the Murray Darling River Basin.

The report provides an overview of the Australian experience with environmental water reform and gives a detailed account of the current management regime for environmental water, showing how environmental water policy has developed in the context of the Basin’s unique set of social, economic, political, institutional and hydrological variables. Development of a policy framework that recognised the environment as a legitimate water user in the Basin has had to respond to major droughts, competing societal interests, a transboundary system (albeit within a single nation), political power contests and interests, and stakeholder groups with often divergent values.

The report provides lessons about generalisations that can be made from the successes and challenges in management of water for the environment in the Basin. These lessons are presented according to three themes: recognition and acceptance of environmental values, identification of environmental water policy options, and implementation of environmental water policy.

Valuing Water: Environmental values (PDF, 11MB)

Report series

Valuing Water Synthesis Report

Valuing Water: The Australian Perspective. Economic values of water under scarcity in the Murray-Darling Basin

Valuing Water: The Australian Perspective. Cultural values of water in the Murray-Darling Basin

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