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Australia’s Victoria Boosts Its Water Funding by A$50 Million

Victoria, Australia’s second-most populous state, plans to boost management of its water resources by increasing funding by A$50 million ($51 million).

“The work will make sure the use of rainfall, stormwater and wastewater is maximized to reduce the need for future large-scale pipelines, desalination plants and pumping and treatment plants,” Water Minister Peter Walsh said in a statement yesterday as the government released its annual budget.

Other water projects to receive funding include an observation bore network that studies the health of aquifers, floods mitigation, modernizing the Macalister Irrigation District and improving the Murray-Darling Basin.

Victoria is still paying about A$1.8 million a day for an idled desalination plant. Walsh’s Liberal-National coalition inherited the A$3.5 billion Wonthaggi plant when it beat Labor in the November 2010 state election. Since the plant was ordered in 2007, the nation’s most prolonged drought has ended.

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