The Goulburn Murray Water Water Efficiency Project has generated its first gigalitre of water savings for the Goulburn Murray Irrigation District.
The state government welcomed progress on the $177.5 million project, that will deliver 15.9 GL of water savings by June 2024.
"This new off-farm efficiency project is reinforcing Victoria's competitive advantage in the agri-food sector, and securing the long-term future of the GMID, following the successful completion of the Connections Project," Water Minister Lisa Neville said.
The GMW Water Efficiency Project will see improvements to irrigation standards for more than 1000 customers, while producing around 900 regional jobs during construction, bringing jobs to the region.
This project builds on the successful completion of Victoria's largest irrigation infrastructure project - the $2 billion Connections Project - which delivered 429GL of water savings through irrigation upgrades.
Shepparton East is one of the most intensively developed horticultural regions of the GMID.
The winter works completed in 2021 to modernise the delivery system in this region enables greater productivity for landowners.
Over the 2021 winter the project automated over 20km of channel, converted sections of channel to pipeline, and upgraded around 50 outlets.
The GMW Water Efficiency Project team engaged with more than 300 landowners to ensure irrigators are kept informed as they plan for the projects' next major water saving milestone at the end of Winter 2022.
When the GMW Water Efficiency Project is completed in 2023, the off-farm irrigation infrastructure works will have modernised or decommissioned more than 250km of channels and upgraded more than 1000 outlets.