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February 01, 2024

Lower River Murray levees flood recovery funding agreement

Senator the Hon Murray Watt
Minister for Emergency Management

Susan Close MP
South Australian Deputy Premier and
Minister for Climate, Environment and Water

The Albanese and Malinauskas Governments are partnering to progress critical remediation works to government-owned levees in the Lower River Murray Reclaimed Irrigation Area (LMRIA).

Up to $17.1 million in funding will provide for remediation of government-owned levees between Mannum and Wellington which were damaged in the 2022-23 River Murray flood.

This assistance is jointly-funded by the Federal and State Governments through the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).

Immediate stabilisation works started in March 2023, and over the coming months, short-term repairs and reinforcement of damaged levee sections will take place. These works will help to bolster immediate protection for the region’s economically significant agricultural land and floodplain infrastructure in the event of high flow.

In addition to the jointly-funded DRFA funding, the South Australian Government has allocated $14.2 million in state funds for works to undertake initial repairs to privately owned LMRIA levees.

Assessments undertaken as part of these works will underpin the development of a longer term resilience strategy for privately and publicly owned levees within the LMRIA.

The Department for Environment and Water will continue to work closely with the LMRIA landholders, irrigation trusts and community members.

The Department will also engage with the First Peoples of the River Murray and Mallee region, Ngarrindjeri Aboriginal Corporation, SA Dairy Association, Livestock SA and other local and state government agencies and organisations.

Quotes attributable to Federal Minister for Emergency Management, Murray Watt:

“The Albanese Government is committed to providing ongoing support to affected communities.

“This flooding event has had a profound and ongoing impact for South Australian communities along the River Murray.

“We are committed to continuing work with the Malinauskas Government on measures that improve disaster mitigation for South Australians.

“This support for immediate works on the River Murray levee system will provide assurance to the community while the South Australian Government works on a longer-term strategy to maintain and make the entire levee-system more resilient to future events.”

Quotes attributable to South Australian Deputy Premier, Susan Close:

“The levee remediation works build on considerable flood recovery efforts undertaken to date to support the region’s businesses and agriculture.

“This commitment by the Australian and South Australian Governments acknowledges the importance of the LMRIA agricultural area to the regional economy of South Australia.

“This funding will allow for the completion of immediate works while a longer-term strategy is developed to bolster resilience of the region’s levee network which is comprised of both government and privately-owned levees.”