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Salinity Impact Rapid Assessment Tool - Stage 1 review

The Salinity Impact Rapid Assessment Tool (SIMRAT) is one of a suite of tools developed for estimating salinity impacts of accountable actions to support Basin Salinity Management Strategy (BSMS) objectives. SIMRAT was developed for the Murray– Darling Basin Commission (MDBC) and accredited in 2005 for assessing salinity debits due to water trades to greenfield irrigation sites within the Pilot Interstate Water Trading area (i.e. Mallee region of Vic, NSW, SA).

SIMRAT’s hydrogeological assumptions are treated as valid over an area following the River Murray from Nyah in Victoria to the Goolwa barrages in SA, within 15 km of the discharge edge. The discharge edge is considered the sink for groundwater, i.e. the location at which groundwater accessions driven by irrigation activity arrive. Within South Australia, the discharge edge is considered to be the outer edge of the floodplain based on the 1956 flood level. East of Chowilla, the discharge edge is considered to be the closest bank of the River Murray.

SIMRAT is used to fulfill requirements of BSMS Schedule B but its implementation differs across the three states.

The review of SIMRAT described in this report, Stage 1, is to:

  • review the accredited SIMRAT documentation, including peer review reports to inform reviewers of the current status of the model
  • review capabilities and limitations as pertaining to current use of the model
  • conduct a literature review to determine the best practice to inform review recommendations
  • investigate alternatives for the upgrade of the SIMRAT model platform through consultation with GIS experts within NSW and SA to inform the most appropriate model platform in which to rewrite the model (there is a need to consider updating the SIMRAT code as the language it is implemented in ESRI ArcGIS is no longer supported).


Salinity Impact Rapid Assessment Tool - stage 1 review