The majority voted in favour of paragraph (a)(i) to (iv) of a motion introduced by South Australian Senator Tim Storer (Independent), which means it succeeded. Motions like these don't have any legal force on their own but are politically influential as they represent the will of the Senate.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) the Murray-Darling Basin needs more water to ensure its survival, the latest evidence of this being the fish-kills at Menindee Lakes,

(ii) the management of the Murray-Darling Basin requires urgent reform,

(iii) the Murray-Darling Basin Royal Commission delivered its findings on 29 January 2019, including recommendations to:

(A) improve transparency by "requiring real-time data sharing and publication on water extractions",

(B) abolish the water buybacks cap of 1,500 gigalitres, and

(C) undertake further research into return flows so that we know the effects of irrigation efficiency projects, and

(iv) the Productivity Commission delivered its findings to the Federal Government on 19 December 2018, pointing out that:

(A) the Murray-Darling Basin Authority's twin roles as overseer of the Plan and its regulator are "conflicted and the conflicts will intensity in the next five years", and

(B) structural separation of the Murray-Darling Basin Authority into a Basin Plan Regulator and Murray-Darling Basin Agency is required to ensure effective implementation of the Plan; and


Votes Passed by a small majority

Nobody rebelled against their party.

Party Votes
Cory Bernardi SA Australian Conservatives Absent
Australian Greens (100% turnout) 9 Yes 0 No
Richard Di Natale Victoria Yes
Mehreen Faruqi NSW Yes
Sarah Hanson-Young SA Yes
Nick McKim Tasmania Yes
Janet Rice Victoria Yes
Rachel Siewert WA Yes
Jordon Steele-John WA Yes
Larissa Waters Queensland Yes
Peter Whish-Wilson Tasmania Yes
Australian Labor Party (80% turnout) 20 Yes 0 No
Catryna Bilyk Tasmania Yes
Carol Brown Tasmania Yes
Kim Carr Victoria Yes
Anthony Chisholm Queensland Yes
Jacinta Collins Victoria Yes
Patrick Dodson WA Yes
Don Farrell SA Yes
Alex Gallacher SA Yes
Kristina Keneally NSW Yes
Chris Ketter Queensland Yes
Gavin Marshall Victoria Yes
Jenny McAllister NSW Yes
Malarndirri McCarthy NT Yes
Deborah O'Neill NSW Yes
Helen Polley Tasmania Yes
Lisa Singh Tasmania Yes
David Smith ACT Yes
Glenn Sterle WA Yes
Anne Urquhart Tasmania Yes
Murray Watt Queensland Yes
Doug Cameron NSW Absent
Kimberley Kitching Victoria Absent
Claire Moore Queensland Absent
Louise Pratt WA Absent
Penny Wong SA Absent
Centre Alliance (100% turnout) 2 Yes 0 No
Stirling Griff SA Yes
Rex Patrick SA Yes
Nigel Scullion NT Country Liberal Party No
Derryn Hinch Victoria Derryn Hinch's Justice Party Yes
Sue Lines WA Deputy President Yes
Fraser Anning Queensland Independent Yes
Tim Storer SA Independent Yes
Steve Martin Tasmania Independent No
David Leyonhjelm NSW Liberal Democratic Party No
Liberal National Party (50% turnout) 0 Yes 1 No
James McGrath Queensland No
Matthew Canavan Queensland Absent
Liberal Party (91% turnout) 0 Yes 20 No
Simon Birmingham SA No
Slade Brockman WA No
Michaelia Cash WA No
Richard Colbeck Tasmania No
Jonathon Duniam Tasmania No
David Fawcett SA No
Concetta Fierravanti-Wells NSW No
Mitch Fifield Victoria No
Lucy Gichuhi SA No
Jane Hume Victoria No
Ian Macdonald Queensland No
Jim Molan NSW No
James Paterson Victoria No
Marise Payne NSW No
Linda Reynolds WA No
Anne Ruston SA No
Zed Seselja ACT No
Arthur Sinodinos NSW No
Dean Smith WA No
Amanda Stoker Queensland No
Eric Abetz Tasmania Absent
Mathias Cormann WA Absent
National Party (67% turnout) 0 Yes 2 No
Bridget McKenzie Victoria No
Barry O'Sullivan Queensland No
John Williams NSW Absent
Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party (100% turnout) 2 Yes 0 No
Peter Georgiou WA Yes
Pauline Hanson Queensland Yes
Scott Ryan Victoria President No
Brian Burston NSW United Australia Party Yes
Totals (87% turnout) 38 Yes – 27 No