Providing Traditional Owner access to water and shared benefits

Celebrating National Reconciliation Week

Victorian water corporations are trialling a number of different ways of providing Traditional Owner access to water and shared benefits. Most of these are exploratory or in early planning stag­es, while some are currently in progress.

Wannon Water is supporting the Killara Kooyong Project, a pilot eel aquaculture project using water from Budj Bim in south-west Victoria. Wannon Water had excess aquaculture equipment and opted to donate the assets to the Guditj Mirring Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation. The aim of the project is to re-establish traditional eel farming and restore its integral role in Gunditjmara society. The project has the potential to generate an economic return to the Gunditjmara community through the sale of smoked eels and interpretive tours for visitors.

Rethinking Reservoirs is a South Gippsland Water project to potentially re-purpose four reservoirs in Korumburra and Poowong which are no longer needed for water supply purposes. South Gippsland Water is liaising with the Bunurong Land Council to ensure awareness of the project and potential op­portunity for a shared approach.

To find out more about the initiatives and activities that support Aboriginal inclusion, participation, engagement and employment in the Victorian water sector, see the Victorian Water Industry Recognising and Managing for Aboriginal Values Report (February 2020).