Sunset over the Murray River, SA
Integrated Water Resources Management Theme
The Integrated Water Resources Management Theme is one of four research themes within the Water for a Healthy Country Flagship. This research aims to improve the social, economic and environmental benefits from the management of Australia’s rivers and groundwater systems.
4 March 2010 | Updated 24 May 2013
Water use in Australia faces a major transformation as a result of the high and growing pressures on rivers and aquifers to meet multiple demands: for irrigation, for expanding cities and for the burgeoning resources sector. There is also a wide recognition that rivers, lakes and wetlands have specific environmental water needs as well as less tangible social and cultural values.
The Integrated Water Resources Management Theme’s goal is to improve the social, economic and environmental benefits from the management of rivers and groundwater systems realising market and non-market benefits of A$750m per annum by 2030.
To meet competing demands for water resources requires system-wide understanding as well as robust science to underpin trade-offs. Developing information systems and services can increase efficiencies in water planning, water trading, river operations and sustainable catchment management.
The Integrated Water Resources Management Theme addresses the issues of how to manage rural water resources in an integrated way to better meet the needs of irrigation, the resources sector, urban demand and water for the environment.
The theme also seeks to apply its research to water resources management issues in developing countries. Water use in these countries is often characterised by transboundary ownership of the relevant basin with neighbouring countries. This situation often generates multiple competing demands from owners over development rights, use and access.
Find out more about the Water for a Healthy Country Flagship.