Advisory Committee Members

Call for community nominations - Murrumbidgee Environmental Water Advisory Group.

The Department of Planning and Environment is seeking applications from community members for membership to the Murrumbidgee Environmental Water Advisory Group. The Murrumbidgee Environmental Water Advisory Group (EWAG) is convened by the Biodiversity and Conservation Division of the Department of Planning and Environment.

The Murrumbidgee Environmental Water Advisory Group provides advice to the Department on the use of water for the environment in the Murrumbidgee Valley for its water-dependant ecosystems. An Environmental Water Advisory Group may include water managers, recreational fishers, landholders, First Nations peoples, environmental scientists, a variety of community and stakeholder groups, and government and non-government partner agencies.

Suitable applicants will contribute their local knowledge and relevant experience as advice to guide the beneficial use of water for the environment. Environmental Water Advisory Group members will actively participate in providing information, analysis and recommendations from their vantage point in the local community or as a representative of a stakeholder group, to assist environmental water managers with annual watering priorities, adaptive management and implementation of the Murray-Darling Basin Plan.

Areas of learning and expertise we seek include the knowledge and experience of:

  • First Nations peoples
  • floodplain and wetland management
  • water management
  • environmental science
  • related community interests

Murrumbidgee Environmental Water Advisory Group membership appointments are for up to 5 years. The Environmental Water Advisory Group meets quarterly and will also undertake occasional field trips during some meetings.

Environmental Water Advisory Group memberships are not paid appointments. However, in line with the Environmental Water Advisory Group Terms of Reference (6.8), members are compensated for their time and Environmental Water Advisory Group-related expenses, including travel, accommodation and meals. The daily sitting fee is $220, and private vehicle mileage is paid at the standard government rate. Members will receive payment within a fortnight after the meeting date. Advance payments can be made if required via arrangement.

The closing date for applications, including a curriculum vitae is 18 December 2022.

The Department of Planning and Environment is committed to the principles of Equal Employment Opportunity, Work Health and Safety, Cultural Diversity and Ethical Work Practices, and encourages applicants from diverse backgrounds. If you need to access information about the Murrumbidgee Environmental Water Advisory Group in a different way, please contact us.

Murrumbidgee Environmental Water Advisory Group

The Murrumbidgee Environmental Water Advisory Group (EWAG) is a committee formed under Section 388 of the Water Management Act 2000 and referenced by the Murrumbidgee Water Sharing Plan. The Environmental Water Advisory Group's area of focus is the river and wetlands within the Murrumbidgee valley. The Environmental Water Advisory Group's purpose is to provide advice to the Minister for Environment and Heritage, or their delegate, on the management of environmental water to maximise ecological benefits.

Purpose of the role

An Environmental Water Advisory Group member's purpose is to contribute their knowledge and experience relating to the group's overall objective of providing water for the environment. Members should participate actively by providing information, analysis and recommendations from their vantage point in the local community or stakeholder group, to assist environmental water managers make adaptive decisions. Membership is based on representation in an ex officio capacity (representing a government department or stakeholder group) or as a member of the community. This applies to all ordinary members of the group.

Key responsibilities

  • Commitment to achieving the Environmental Water Advisory Group's objectives.
  • Gather relevant information to inform inputs on behalf of a group or interest.
  • Attend meetings to contribute to the consideration, discussion and deliberation of meeting topics.
  • Contribute to formulating objectives, priorities, risks and strategies for environmental watering.
  • Relay environmental watering information to interested people or organisations, including the stakeholders they represent.
  • Contribute to the smooth operation of the committee by adhering to agreed procedures and code of conduct.
  • Review documentation between meetings when necessary.
  • Communicate with the Chair and/or Executive Officer between meetings when necessary.
  • Ability and willingness to attend meetings 2 to 4 times per year, which may include regional travel (community member costs will be met). This should not preclude community members with responsibility as caregivers.

Key challenges

  • Considering and respecting the views of others to maintain an inclusive, constructive and collaborative approach
  • Collating and considering information on a highly technical and complex topic
  • Articulating Environmental Water Advisory Group decisions to the part of the community a member represents and to the broader community
  • Developing and maintaining an awareness of social, institutional, political and ecological issues relevant to local wetlands, water quality and river flows.

Key relationships

Internal Chairperson
  • Chairs Environmental Water Advisory Group meetings
  • Responsible for ensuring member participation and performance
Executive Officer
  • Manages Environmental Water Advisory Group administrative business and logistics
  • First point of communication
  • Manages collection and dissemination of information
Environmental Water Advisory Group Members and Alternatives
  • Participate on equal terms to consolidate, deliberate and develop advice
  • Strive to reach consensus in advice
  • Represent their stakeholders’ interests and goals
  • Act as a conduit for information between the community and Environmental Water Advisory Group
Environmental Water Advisory Group Observers
  • Participate in meetings as a guest, but doesn’t participate in decision-making
External Entity or community the position represents
  • Gather and consolidate views on matters related to the work of the Environmental Water Advisory Group for referral at meetings, or beforehand directly to the Executive Officer
  • Act as a conduit for information to and from the Environmental Water Advisory Group, when necessary

Capabilities for the role

An Environmental Water Advisory Group Member should be able to, or aspire to, develop skills and knowledge to:

  • communicate effectively, including the ability to listen attentively to others, absorb alternative points of view and articulate a message
  • analyse information and arguments, think critically and objectively about a complex problem
  • exhibit goodwill and support an inclusive and collaborative approach
  • employ appropriate interpersonal skills to ensure meetings and discussions are polite and constructive
  • understand and manage conflicts of interest
  • liaise broadly with their own constituency and represent them effectively
  • work towards an objective as part of a team
  • actively assist the Environmental Water Advisory Group Chairperson and Executive Officer with the challenging job of achieving complex decision-making by consensus
  • understand the role of water for local and regional communities and their environments
  • understand the NSW water management system, including water sharing plan, policies and the Murray-Darling Basin Plan
  • understand the roles of agencies and community groups in the Environmental Water Advisory Group – where they fit, who they represent, and their perspectives.

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Diversity information

Members of the community, including women, First Nations peoples, people of culturally diverse backgrounds, people with a disability and young people, are encouraged to apply for positions on NSW boards and committees.








Special requirements in relation to the committee



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Referees

NSW Government agencies must conduct referee checks on people who apply for membership to boards and committees. Below, please provide details for 2 referees.

Referee 1





Referee 2





Authorisation and signature
  • I certify that my answers are true and complete to the best of my knowledge.
  • I approve the NSW Government undertaking the following checks as deemed appropriate for applications to this committee:
    • ASIC Banned and Disqualified search
    • ASIC Enforceable Undertakings Register search
    • Australian Financial Security Authority National Personal Insolvency Index search
    • NSW Police Force National Police Check
    • Office of the Children's Guardian Working with Children Check
  • I acknowledge that if I am approved for appointment or reappointment to the committee, that I will be required to declare my conflicts of interest.

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