A Californian delegation is looking to Australia for advice on how to deal with drought.

Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water, Lisa Neville, hosted the Californian delegation of state senate and state assembly representatives, who visited Victoria to learn about water reforms.

The delegation is organised by the California Foundation on the Environment and the Economy, a non-partisan, not-for-profit organisation that includes scientific, business and union representatives.

Ms Neville said Victoria was a world leader in water management, having implemented significant water reforms through the experience of the Millennium drought and was continuing to look at ways to maximise use of the Victorian water grid.

The Andrews Labor Government is also investing in water efficiency and innovative ways to secure supplies and save water in the face of population growth, variable rainfall and climate change.

California is enduring its fourth consecutive year of drought, while parts of Victoria are again experiencing very dry conditions, with storage levels in some areas close to 30 per cent, and irrigation allocations at 15 per cent in areas west of Melbourne.

The delegation’s nine-day Australian visit has included meetings in Victoria with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, visits to water saving infrastructure such as water recycling at the MCG, Etihad Stadium and Victoria Racing Club as well as meetings with climate change bodies.

The delegation also visited the Shepparton region and met with Goulburn Murray Water representatives and irrigators to discuss investments in irrigation efficiency and farm productivity.

In July 2015, Victoria and the State of California signed a Memorandum of Understanding that will enable more sharing of expertise, technical knowledge and practical help during disasters such as bushfires. 


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