Environmental Entitlement Requests
Environmental entitlements are held by the Victorian Environmental Water Holder (VEWH) established in July 2011 as a new independent statutory body.
The VEWH can request the Minister for Water to allocate an environmental entitlement. This right to take, apply or store water up to a maximum volume is allocated under section 48B of the Water Act 1989 with certain conditions and obligations.
Environmental entitlements can be a combination of water in storage, minimum flow levels and protection of the flows remaining in the river after the other demands have been met (‘above cap’ flows). Environmental entitlements make it possible to actively manage water to meet specific environmental needs such as fish spawning triggers or maintaining critical habitats during drought.
Requests to allocate or amend environmental entitlementsGovernment and water corporations are investing in water savings projects and water purchases to recover sufficient water to maintain the environmental values of our rivers, floodplains and wetlands.
To convert this recovered water to environmental entitlements, the VEWH asks the Minister for Water to either allocate a new entitlement or amend an existing entitlement.
The Water Act 1989 sets out the requirements to be followed when the Minister for Water receives a request from the VEWH for an amendment under section 48K.
Requests to allocate new environmental entitlements or amend existing entitlements are advertised in local newspapers and on this website.
The process may involve consultation with stakeholders and local communities and submissions to the Department of Sustainability and Environment.
The purpose of the consultation is to identify all the potential impacts of the proposal in the request.
The Minister for Water may call for submissions when a request is received, and will consider any submissions received before he/she makes a decision about the request.