Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment
The Hon Andrew Cripps MP
Queensland Minister for Natural Resources and Mines
The Hon Ian Hunter MLC
South Australian Minister for Sustainability, Environment and Conservation
Lake Eyre Basin Ministerial Forum
6 November 2013
Queensland, South Australia and Australian Government members of the Lake Eyre Basin Ministerial Forum met on 6 November in Brisbane.
The Ministerial Forum is responsible for implementing the Lake Eyre Basin Intergovernmental Agreement , the purpose of which is to develop and implement policies and strategies concerning water and related natural resources of the Basin to avoid or eliminate, so far as is reasonably practicable, adverse cross-border impacts.
The Ministerial Forum appreciated the briefing provided by the Queensland Minister on his Government's proposed changes for management of Queensland's Lake Eyre Basin rivers, including the core principles of the management framework entailing the establishment of a Channel Country Protection Area and the prohibition of open cut mining in that Area.
The Ministerial Forum also welcomed advice on this matter provided by the Lake Eyre Basin Community Advisory Committee and the Scientific Advisory Panel.
Ministers agreed to give further consideration to the details of Queensland's proposals, including modelling of the hydrological effects, and flow access and trade conditions, to better understand the potential impact on river flows and water quality and compatibility with the Agreement, consistent with the agreed policies and strategies of the Agreement.
To assist this consideration, Queensland will provide relevant data, modelling and proposed flow and trade conditions to Forum members and the community and scientific committees.
Members intend provision of this information and continued co-operation of the Ministerial Forum will allow for the continued successful management of the water and related natural resources of the Basin.
Ministers also acknowledged the success of the 6th LEB Biennial Conference, which was held in Port Augusta, South Australia, in September 2013. The Conference proceedings are expected to be published shortly.
Ministers agreed to the appointment of Dr Justin Costelloe and the re-appointment of Professor Richard Kingsford on the Scientific Advisory Panel. They also agreed to the re-appointment of Ms Brenda Shields to the Community Advisory Committee.