Funding for Great Artesian Basin Groundwater Project announced in Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2018-19
21 December 2018
The Australian Government has announced in the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook for 2018-19 that it will invest $6.5 million over three years in the Great Artesian Basin Groundwater Project.
The project will be led by Geoscience Australia in partnership with Department of Agriculture and Water Resources and state and territory government water agencies from Queensland, South Australia, New South Wales and Northern Territory.
The Chief Executive Officer of Geoscience Australia, Dr James Johnson said the project will utilise geoscientific data and technologies to improve understanding of groundwater systems in the Great Artesian Basin, using the Surat Basin as a case study.
"The Great Artesian Basin is a resource of considerable national importance. It sustains a range of unique groundwater dependent ecosystems, is a vital water source for a large portion of Australia and supports traditional Indigenous values," Dr Johnson said.
"It is the largest groundwater basin in Australia, covering approximately 22 per cent of the continent. It underlies parts of four states and territories - Queensland, South Australia, New South Wales and Northern Territory.
"The Great Artesian Basin Groundwater Project will gather information that will support responsible management of basin water resources and also enable us to provide timely information for better decision making in the Basin."
Dr Johnson said Geoscience Australia was well-placed to lead the project, having undertaken extensive research over many years to establish an understanding of how groundwater is replenished and how it flows through the Basin.
"As recently as 2015, we completed the Hydrogeological Atlas of the Great Artesian Basin, the most comprehensive mapping report on the Basin produced to date."