Northern Territory Government Newsroom

Restoring Trust: Contemporary Water Reform Directions Paper

The Territory Labor Government is restoring trust in government by better protecting our precious water resources in the Northern Territory.

Unlike the previous CLP Government whose water policy damaged our unique environment, damaged business confidence and investor certainty, destroyed trust in Government processes and cost the Territory jobs.

Minister for Environment and Natural Resources, Eva Lawler, has today released the Northern Territory Water Regulatory Reform Directions Paper.

The Directions Paper outlines proposed reforms to the water resource regulatory framework and shows how different elements might fit together to provide a more comprehensive and contemporary management framework.

The key areas of focus in the Directions Paper include:

-    Clarifying the Water Controller’s role;

-    Greater clarity of the NT Water Allocation Planning Framework;

-    Protecting the future water supply;

-    Installing a “water for purpose” principle;

-    Management of unused water;

-    Promoting and supporting the trade of water;

-    A pricing framework for water and;

-    Definition (only) of stock and domestic use

Feedback on the Directions Paper is open until 31 March 2019, Territorians can have their say via the https://haveyoursay.nt.gov.au/waterreform website

The reform process is not fixed and will be dynamic, adaptable and flexible in response to community views.

Quotes from Minister for Environment and Natural Resources, Eva Lawler:

“Water is a precious resource and we need to manage it responsibly to ensure its sustainability. Protecting the environment creates jobs - good environmental policy is smart economic policy".

Territorians want and deserve a Government they can trust and these changes to the Water Act fulfil a key election promise of the Territory Labor Government”.

“Failure to follow science puts at risk the many recreational activities loved by Territorians and visitors alike, especially fishing. The Territory Labor Government has a strong record of respecting science, listening to the community and allocating water fairly through an open and transparent process”.

Media contact: Ellie Clancy 0417 910 720