Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities, October 2010
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The Australian Government has committed $200 million from Water for the Future to establish the Strengthening Basin Communities program. This program is implemented through two separate components: the Planning component and the Water Saving Initiatives component.
- The Planning component is to provide grants for local governments in the Murray-Darling Basin to assist in community-wide planning for a future with less water.
- The Water Saving Initiatives component is to provide competitive grants to enable local government authorities and urban water service providers to support projects that improve water security by reducing demand on potable water supplies.
Murray-Darling Basin, SA
Photo: J. Baker
Who will benefit?
Communities in the Murray-Darling Basin will benefit by understanding the implications associated with climate change on water availability, identifying strategies to adjust to a future with less water and securing water supply through the introduction of water saving initiatives. Local governments in the Murray-Darling Basin have an important role to play in helping their communities understand and plan for the changes that reduced water availability will bring. With this funding they will be better able to plan for change and to identify and implement local water efficiency measures.
A map showing the Murray-Darling Basin boundary overlain with local government boundaries is available at: www.environment.gov.au/water/policy-programs/basin-communities/pubs/mdb-communities-map.pdf (PDF - 1 200 KB)
The Planning component enables local government bodies in the Murray-Darling Basin to apply, either as an individual local government, a consortium of local governments or an established regional organisation of councils, for grants through funding rounds designed to systematically assess the risks and implications associated with climate change, with a particular focus on water availability, and then to review existing plans or develop new plans to take account of these risks and implications.
It is expected that the updating or development of plans may identify a range of potential adaptation initiatives. Funding could be used to prepare plans and business cases for adaptation initiatives which may be eligible for future funding under the Water Saving Initiatives component of the Strengthening Basin Communities program.
Water Saving Initiatives component
The Water Saving Initiatives component supports projects to improve urban water security through water saving initiatives that reduce demand on potable supplies in the Murray-Darling Basin. The Water Saving Initiatives component enables individual local governments, consortiums of local governments, established regional organisation of councils and urban water service providers located within or intersection the Murray-Darling Basin to apply.
For more information about the Strengthening Basin Communities program phone 1800 218 478 (toll free) or or email SBC@environment.gov.au