A $50 million grant from the federal government through the Commonwealth Cooperative Research Centers program, along with $106.5 million from 85 partners, will support a new partnership to achieve a more productive Murray-Darling Basin, resilient and sustainable and beyond through the new One Basin Cooperative Research Center (CRC).
A collaborative partnership, the One Basin CRC, led by the University of Melbourne and comprising the Australian National University, Charles Sturt University, the Goyder Institute, Hort Innovation, the Murray-Darling Basin Authority, Sensand Technologies and the University of Sydney, will develop and market opportunities for Australia’s irrigated agriculture and rural water industries.
One Basin CRC will create and evaluate new sustainable water and agricultural technologies and encourage their adoption by water managers and farmers to increase agricultural production while ensuring environmental resilience and sustainability. Inclusion, recognition and respect for First Nations is central to CRC One Basin.
The initiative aims to secure the future of Australia’s irrigation regions through the successful development, commercialization and adoption of new business models and technologies that will respond to challenging climatic events and support effective water management. the environment.
Professor Mike Stewardson of the University of Melbourne is leading One Basin CRC as interim CEO, while Mallee Regional Innovation Center CEO Rebecca Wells leads CRC’s Mallee Regional Hub based in Mildura.
Prof Stewardson said the One Basin CRC is shaped by industry and will lead the way in transforming irrigation regions in Australia and around the world.
“By 2037, an estimated $4.3 billion in economic impact will be generated by innovation in water, agriculture and energy technologies, improved forecasting capacity and decision-making, with a focus on sustainability and resilience in the face of climate change,” said Professor Stewardson. .
“Australia’s irrigated regions are the engine of Australia’s agricultural sector, producing 50% of Australia’s agricultural profits, with the Murray-Darling Basin being central to two-thirds of this irrigated agriculture.”
Over its ten-year duration, One Basin CRC’s activities will be concentrated in four regional basin centers located in Loxton, Mildura, Griffith and Goondiwindi, working directly with industry, business, First Nations, community and the government.
Regional research and development will support farmer and community innovation and adaptation, resulting in more resilient farms and diversified sources of income. Regions will benefit from job growth and socio-economic improvements.
Ms. Wells said research in the regions enables meaningful collaboration and engagement with our partners.
“This ensures that the research is fit for purpose and directly relevant to the region – which will lead to greater uptake and uptake, which is critical to delivering the innovation we need for productivity and growth growth. sustainability,” said Ms. Wells.
Dr. Wendy Craik AM, President-elect of One Basin, said First Nations participation is an important part of the One Basin CRC.
“Participation, recognition and respect for First Nations peoples are at the heart of CRC One Basin. With First Nations board members, two full-time organizers, and participation through regional hubs and research projects, the One Basin CRC partnership will further support First Nations participation in the management of the water,” Dr. Craik said.
University of Melbourne Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), Professor James McCluskey, welcomed the announcement.
“The University of Melbourne’s work in convening the One Basin CRC with its partners signifies our commitment and dedication to protecting one of Australia’s most important assets. By addressing this challenge through the CRC program, we recognize the value of collaborative and community-based research for environmental and economic sustainability in our irrigation regions,” said Professor McCluskey.