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Chief executive update – September 2022

Andrew McConville

Chief Executive, MDBA

Andrew commenced as Chief Executive of the MDBA in June 2022. With 3 decades of experience in natural resource management, he has held previous leadership roles, both domestic and international, across a range of sectors including agriculture and natural resources. 

Published: 28 September 2022

Welcome to the third edition of River Reach since I have been the Chief Executive.

Andrew McConville, MDBA Chief Executive at Boobera Lagoon west of Goondiwindi
My recent travels included a visit to the northern Basin. Here I am at Boobera Lagoon, west of Goondiwindi in New South Wales.

I joined the MDBA because I think what we do is critically important, and I do genuinely think that we can make a difference. My experience so far has confirmed this belief. Over the past 2 months I have travelled widely across the Murray–Darling Basin. I’ve met irrigators, local and state government, First Nations Groups, community and environmental organisations and community leaders. I’ve also met with a variety of people who either call a river community home or are invested in the health and wellbeing of the Basin in some way.

I’ve heard people’s ideas about how to do things better, their hopes and fears, their plans for their futures, and that of their kids and grandkids. It strikes me that the future of the Murray–Darling Basin and its plan lies in achieving balance. We must balance the needs of the environment and the rivers with the needs of irrigation communities, First Nations people, the tourism sector and the 2.2 million people who call the Basin home. As we approach the 10-year anniversary of the Basin Plan later this year I am energised and inspired by the people I have met and the common passion we share for healthy rivers for the benefit of all Australians.

Andrew McConville, MDBA Chief Executive at Lachlan River west of Sydney in New South Wales.
I recently travelled to the Lachlan River west of Sydney in New South Wales. I love getting out and about early while travelling the Basin.

This edition of River Reach is arriving in your inbox as a significant event is taking place in the Basin – the spilling of the Dartmouth Dam in Victoria for the first time in 26 years. The water flowing across the spillway is likely to increase in coming days with more rain forecast, which means landholders downstream of the Dam are likely to see changes in flows. The Hume Dam is about 98% full, with releases from the Dam expected to be increased to 48,000 ML/day and there is potential for that to increase further.

Hear from Chief Executive Andrew McConville on his first few months in the top job

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