South Australia’s Strategic Plan is comprised of 100 targets. These targets are specific and measurable and enable us to measure our progress towards achieving the Plan’s visions and goals.

Each target is reported on through this section of the website. Data is analysed and uploaded as it becomes available.


77. River Murray – salinity:

South Australia maintains a positive balance on the Murray-Darling Basin Authority salinity register

Key Measure


Explanatory Comments

Under Schedule B of the Murray-Darling Basin Agreement (Schedule 1, Water Act 2007 (Cth)), South Australia is accountable for actions that will change salinity in the River Murray. 

The actions are recorded as debits or credits on the Murray-Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) Salinity Registers. Actions such as irrigation development increase the salinity impacts and result in a debit on the Salinity Register, whereas actions such as salt interception, improved irrigation efficiency and rehabilitation of drainage schemes decrease the salinity impacts and result in credits on the Salinity Register.

As at November 2014 (the most recent published data), South Australia maintains a positive credit balance of $7.408 million per year on the Salinity Registers.

The Y-axis on the above graph is “Salinity cost/benefit in $m/year”, which is an MDBA approved formula used to calculate the conversion of the salinity impact in tonnes per day to a salinity cost/benefit in dollars per year for the Salinity Registers.

The above graph incorporates scenarios for what the Salinity Register’s balance would have been had no remedial actions been taken to date and the Salinity Register’s balance with current remedial actions taken to date.

The graph does not predict the impacts of any future irrigation development. It is important to note that any future irrigation development, depending on location and rate of development will erode available credits more quickly.

Lead Agency

Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources