Section 100 and State Water Rights
(2010) 21 PLR 267
19 Pages Posted: 6 Mar 2014
Date Written: 2010
The question of a State’s right to water from rivers that cross interstate boundaries or form the boundary between two States of Australia is one which has remained unresolved since before Federation. This article examines the drafting history behind s 100 of the Constitution – the only section within the Constitution to deal with water rights. The article outlines the limited judicial consideration given to s 100 and concludes that if there is a right to water from interstate rivers as between States, then s 100 is not the source of such a right. In doing so, the recent case of Arnold v Minister Administering the Water Management Act 2000 is considered. Finally, this paper identifies some of the unanswered questions regarding interstate water rights.
Keywords: interstate water rights, interstate rivers, transboundary rivers, water rights
JEL Classification: K32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation