On-farm options for managing stream salinity in irrigation areas: an example from the Murray Darling Basin, Australia

Khan, Shahbaz and Asghar, Muhammad Nadeem and Mushtaq, Shahbaz and Ahmad, Aftab (2008) On-farm options for managing stream salinity in irrigation areas: an example from the Murray Darling Basin, Australia. Hydrology Research: an International Journal, 39 (2). pp. 157-170. ISSN 0029-1277


Increasing salt concentration in tributaries from catchments and rising water tables are the prime
contributor to environmental degradation of rivers, creeks, streams or other water bodies. This is especially true during periods of mid- and low stream flows in arid and semi-arid regions around the globe. Catchment scale studies suggest that management of stream salinity requires greater land use change than is economically viable. Therefore, rather than focusing on the opportunity cost of catchment scale interventions, exploring interventions that are potentially viable at farm scale could be an appropriate strategy for stream salinity management. This paper presents an analysis of alternative on-farm strategies, such as evaporation ponds and serial biological concentration of salts, aimed at developing an economically self-sustainable stream salinity management system for the Box Creek stormwater escape channel located in the Murray–Darling Basin (MDB), Australia. It is concluded that
irrigation areas, with careful management of flows in tributary streams, may be able to play a role in
safeguarding the Murray River against further salinisation from irrigation and dryland areas. The outcomes of this paper will be helpful, but not limited to, the MDB in addressing environmental, economic and social issues associated with management of salt concentration in tributaries.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to paper due to publisher copyright restrictions.
Faculty / Department / School: Current - USQ Other
Date Deposited: 22 Apr 2010 07:00
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 23:47
Uncontrolled Keywords: Australia, evaporation ponds, salt concentration, serial biological concentration of salts, stream flows, stream salinity
Fields of Research : 14 Economics > 1402 Applied Economics > 140205 Environment and Resource Economics
05 Environmental Sciences > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050205 Environmental Management
Socio-Economic Objective: B Economic Development > 91 Economic Framework > 9199 Other Economic Framework > 919999 Economic Framework not elsewhere classified
D Environment > 96 Environment > 9606 Environmental and Natural Resource Evaluation > 960699 Environmental and Natural Resource Evaluation not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI: 10.2166/nh.2008.036
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/7501

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