Call for a renewed and modernised National Water Initiative
Infrastructure Australia has joined the Productivity Commission this week in calling for a renewed and modernised National Water Initiative. Following two of the worst droughts recorded in recent history, it is time to update Australia’s national water plan.
“WSAA is pleased to see the comprehensive Water Chapter in the Plan and supports the recommendations on the development of a renewed National Water Initiative incorporating a national approach to water security”, said Mr Lovell.
“As the Plan outlines, water is critical to our cities and communities in contributing to liveable and healthy environments and as a key economic enabler. We are pleased to see recognition that the water industry is uniquely exposed to pressures from climate change, and as an industry we are seeking to accelerate our response through mitigation and adaption measures as we transition to a net zero future.
We must ensure that all options for water supply are on the table
“We note there are challenges, including ensuring that all options for water supply are on the table. We will continue to advocate for the consideration of all safe, climate‑resilient and economically efficient sources to be discussed with communities when planning future water supplies.
“We agree that given the critical role of water in creating prosperous and liveable places, it needs to be better valued with a national focus and a renewed National Water Initiative with independent oversight. In addition, we support the recommendations in the Plan to prioritise a whole-of-water-cycle management approach including establishing a national stormwater management framework”, said Mr Lovell.
The Plan also acknowledges the need for consistent and reliable water and wastewater services in remote communities. We support the call for better servicing of remote communities and the role that collaborative arrangements can play, particularly in communities with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations.
We congratulate Infrastructure Australia on the release of the Plan and the associated suite of documents, in particular the addition of chapters for Waste and Social Infrastructure. The urban water industry in Australia already plays a role in the circular economy and seeks to increase awareness of its broader role in communities through contribution to resource recovery and blue and green infrastructure to enhance quality of life.
The 2021 Australian Infrastructure Plan is available here.