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Podcast: Forgotten River asks if floodplain harvesting is to blame for the woes of the lower Darling?

It's been nearly a decade since the river at Kallara Station broke its banks and Justin McClure had to get around his property by boat.

When there's no water in the river flowing past his house, Justin looks north.

Owner of Kallara Station Justin McClure preparing to muster sheep inside pens. Picture: Dion Georgopoulos

Owner of Kallara Station Justin McClure preparing to muster sheep inside pens. Picture: Dion Georgopoulos

In the fourth and final episode of Forgotten River we reach the top end of the Darling, quite literally at the Back of Bourke, next door to the cotton farmers blamed for syphoning off unsustainable levels of water into massive private dams.

Like many in the Lower Darling, Justin is looking closely at the proposed regulations surrounding floodplain harvesting.

And the key question is, will it remain within the cap set by the Murray-Darling Basin Authority?

The global demand for food is huge and we've got the land to do it. We've actually got everything we need but the one key element we really, really need is water. Without water, we will perish.

Justin McClure, Station Owner

Floodplain harvesting involves the construction of berms and channels to direct water from flood events into large on farm dams and reservoirs for future use.

The NSW government has twice put its regulations to the NSW parliament and twice they've been rejected because of what opponents say is a lack of proper data.

There is also a fear that the granting of licences will only entrench a practice that stops water from making its way through the river system.

You can listen to every episode of Forgotten River now, here, or by searching Forgotten River in Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen.

This story There is money in mud first appeared on The Canberra Times.