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Published: 14 March 2022

The opportunity to listen to the Boggabilla, Goondiwindi, Dirranbandi, St George and Roma communities about local water issues important to them will be the focus of a series of onsite visits this week with the Chair of the Murray–Darling Basin Authority (MDBA).

Sir Angus Houston and MDBA acting Chief Executive Andrew Reynolds will lead the four-day listening tour. It will see representatives from the MDBA, Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder, federal Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, and Queensland Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing and Water visit various sites from Boggabilla in the far north of NSW to Goondiwindi, Dirranbandi, St George and Roma in southern and south-west Queensland.

"This is my seventh listening tour since taking on the role of chair where I have the opportunity to meet in person with a wide range of stakeholders who have varied interest in and connections to water in the Murray–Darling Basin," Sir Angus Houston said.

"It is the first time I have been in this part of the Basin as Authority Chair as sadly the tour had to be rescheduled from August last year due to Covid-19.

"Recent flooding was potentially going to disrupt or postpone this tour again. We have managed some workarounds, but unfortunately, we won't get to all the sites we had planned.

"We will get out on what might be soggy ground to see and hear from farmers, local government, industry and community representatives and First Nations peoples about what matters most to them when it comes to water management and water security.

"Obviously I am here in a season where there is plenty of water around, but we all remember that not too long ago it was a scarcer resource.

"What's clear to me is that regardless of its availability, water still needs to be very carefully managed now and for future generations.

"Seeing firsthand the Basin Plan in action, including progress with the Northern Basin Toolkit measures, is a key reason we're here so we can better understand both the opportunities and risks.

"I am looking forward to listening, learning and reflecting on what I've seen and heard so we can navigate some of the challenges ahead together."

Key aspects of the tour include:

  • Visiting a range of farming operations including "Morella" at Boggabilla, Goondiwindi's Woods Group Algae Pharm, "Bullamon Plains" at Thallon, and "Cubbie Station" at Dirranbandi
  • Seeing some environmental watering mechanisms at various locations including Munya Lake
  • Meeting with local government, community and industry leaders to better understand the importance of access to water for economic development in the region and
  • Hearing more about First Nations values and involvement in water management at some significant sites.



Sir Angus Houston Bio
The Authority | Murray-Darling Basin Authority (

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