Our recent reports and presentations give a glimpse of the different topics we’ve been working on.
Please get in contact with the report authors to discuss more.
Released September 2023
In 2023, the Natural Resources Access Regulator (NRAR) commissioned Marsden Jacob to assess the value of water entitlements in NSW.
Building on the first value of water report in 2021-22, the 2023 report found that water entitlements have increased in value from more than $29 billion two years ago to an estimated $41 billion in 2023 – an increase of 17% in just two years.
The 2021 State of the Environment report (released in 2022) highlights the need for increased efforts in protecting Australia’s unique environment. The Australian Government’s Agriculture Biodiversity Stewardship Package, a precursor to the proposed Nature Repair Market, aims to address this need.
As part of readying for the Nature Repair Market the Australian Government is drawing lessons from existing environmental market programs around the world and Australia on how to best design and develop environmental markets in ways that increase private sector participation and deliver high-integrity biodiversity outcomes and genuine environmental benefits. The Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water (DCCEEW) engaged Marsden Jacob Associates together with our colleagues AProf Patrick O’Connor and Prof John Rolfe to deliver an independent review of the Agriculture Biodiversity Stewardship Pilots including the Carbon + Biodiversity (C+B) Pilot and Enhancing Remnant Vegetation (ERV) Pilot.
Review of the Agriculture Biodiversity Stewardship Pilots to inform the Nature Repair Market is available for download on the DCCEEW website::
Released September 2023
The NSW Government-commissioned ‘Electricity Supply and Reliability Check Up’ (the Check Up), conducted by Marsden Jacob energy expert Cameron O’Reilly, Senior Associate Dr Veronika Nemes and panel, has now been released.
The NSW Government has accepted 50 of the independent Check Up’s 54 recommendations about the NSW energy transition – either in full or in part. All recommendations are aimed at keeping up the momentum of energy transition to meet NetZero targets and deliver the renewable generation, transmission and storage solutions the state needs.
You can download the Electricity Supply and Reliability Check Up along with the NSW Government’s response from the official NSW Government website: https://www.energy.nsw.gov.au/nsw-plans-and-progress/regulation-and-policy/electricity-supply-and-reliability-check
The Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA) has released Blue x Green = Thriving – a progress report that follows on from its Blue + Green = Liveability work. The progress report advances understanding of the role played by the urban and regional water sector as a key enabler for liveable and thriving communities over the past 5 years.
Marsden Jacob was a co-contributor to this important work, which further explores how we can leverage our water resources, and the ability of the water resource sector to enhance urban and regional liveability, stimulate economic productivity and protect ecosystems.
Blue x Green = Thriving is available for download on the WSAA website: https://www.wsaa.asn.au/publication/blue-x-green-thriving-progress-report-water%E2%80%99s-role-thriving-communities
Released June 2023
The Australian Government’s Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water (DCCEEW) has released the Gunbower-Koondrook-Perricoota (GKP) Forest Icon Site Ecosystem Pilot Accounts reports. Marsden Jacob collaborated with the Murray-Darling Basin Authority, CSIRO, IDEEA Group and GHD to prepare these accounts.
The GKP pilot account demonstrates that ecosystem accounting can provide estimates of economic and societal benefits, and support decision-making. Our work estimates that the ecosystem assets at GKP are worth at least $1.7 billion.
The reports are available to view and download on the DCCEEW website: https://eea.environment.gov.au/accounts/ecosystem-accounts/gunbower-koondrook-perricoota
Published February 2023
The New South Wales EPA commissioned Marsden Jacob to identify opportunities to reduce carbon emissions through the use of low carbon recycled materials in construction and manufacturing.
Marsden Jacob’s Carbon Abatement Opportunities for Circular Economy report identified recycling and re-manufacturing opportunities that together have the potential to abate approximately 1.85 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent per year, while substantially reducing disposal of waste to landfill.
Published on the EPA website in February 2023, the Carbon Abatement Opportunities for Circular Economy report is available to download here.
You can learn more about the EPA’s strategic direction for waste in NSW here.
Marsden Jacob supported the Independent Competition and Regulatory Commission (ICRC) in its review of Icon Water’s proposed operating and capital expenditure forecasts.
The recommendations in our report contributed to the ICRC’s draft decision and proposed price direction for regulated water and sewerage services for the 2023-28 regulatory period, which are lower than those proposed by Icon Water.
Our report included assessment, review and recommendations, focusing on:
- the prudency and efficiency of Icon Water’s capital and operating expenditure (incurred and forecast)
- Icon Water’s asset management practices and ring-fencing arrangements.
The Icon Water 2023-28 Expenditure Review report is available to download here.
Independent advice on the management of the Commonwealth water holdings in the Goulburn catchment, May 2022.
Our work considered the potential to implement portfolio management options (use, carryover, transfer, trade) to help manage the impacts of constraints and protect and restore environmental assets in the Murray-Darling Basin.
Key recommendations included short-term opportunities to support the CEWO to more actively and frequently engage with water markets, as well as longer-term opportunities that could help reduce the impact of constraints on environmental water holders.
The Independent advice on the management of the Commonwealth water holdings in the Goulburn catchment executive summary is available to download here.
An economic analysis of Australian dairy farm performance with respect to productivity and its key determinants.
Dairy Australia wanted to understand the level and rate of growth of farm productivity over the past two decades at a national and regional level.
They also wanted to understand what components of productivity have been driving this growth and the contribution of productivity to farm profitability.
Throughout the project, the team engaged with key stakeholders to ensure feedback from farmers and service providers was incorporated in our analysis.
The full report is available for download here.
The second review was provided to the former Minister for Resources and Water on 20 December 2021 and tabled in the Federal Parliament on 2 August 2022.
Marsden Jacob was pleased to support the second review of Water for the Environment Special Account (WESA), which was conducted by an independent expert panel.
To support the review, the panel commissioned the following analysis:
- Marsden Jacob Associates undertook an updated analysis on water market insights and the volume of water potentially recoverable for environmental use through efficiency measures. This analysis was consistent with the approach used by Marsden Jacob to inform the first review.
- INDEC provided an updated assessment of progress made towards removing or easing the six identified constraints projects.
Our report is available for download here.
Several Councils in Victoria have established innovative stormwater offset schemes over the last three years. Councils are using their stormwater offset schemes to improve stormwater management for greener environments and healthier waterways. The Council run offset schemes can secure a low risk and sustainable funding source for Council-delivered stormwater investments.
This industry note provides an overview of what stormwater offset schemes are, outlines some benefits of setting up a scheme, and steps out how Victorian Councils can go about setting up a stormwater offset scheme. This note draws on material from Victorian Councils with established stormwater offset schemes. You can access this information on the Kingston City Council and Moonee Valley City Council websites.
Marsden Jacob originated the innovative stormwater offset approach described in this industry note with Kingston City Council and Melbourne Water in 2016. We are fortunate to have worked with Moonee Valley City Council, Darebin City Council and Mornington Peninsula Shire Council to establish their schemes. We have also worked with other Victorian Councils to restructure their existing schemes to become more sustainable funding sources and deliver better on-ground outcomes. Members of our team were part of the 2018 Stormwater Management Advisory Committee that recommended Victoria establish effective Council-run voluntary stormwater quality offset schemes across Victoria in major metropolitan and regional centres.
The Industry Note is available for download here.
Marsden Jacob Associates is pleased to have had the opportunity to provide expert support for the independent review of the Water for the Environment Special Account
Marsden Jacob Associates was commissioned to provide expert analysis and insight on:
- Water entitlement market prices
- Water recovery scenarios and ability to meet the 450GL target
- Factors that are affecting participation in the Water Efficiency Program and expert guidance on recovery opportunities
Our report is available for download here.
The Water Act 2007 requires independent reviews of the Water for the Environment Special Account (WESA) to be conducted in 2019 and 2021. The WESA sets aside $1.775 billion of Commonwealth funding with the objective of enhancing the environmental outcomes that can be achieved by the Basin Plan 2012 over the period 1 July 2014 to 30 June 2024. $1.575 billion is allocated to recovering 450 GL through efficiency measure projects and the remaining $200 million is allocated to easing river constraints through constraints measure projects.
The ERA is required to review the appropriateness of the values of the Energy Price Limits each year. Where the Australian Energy Market Operator has proposed a change in the value of one or more Energy Price Limits, the ERA must review the report provided and make a decision as to whether or not to approve the revised value.
AEMO engaged Marsden Jacob to prepare its energy price limits review modelling and report for 2019-20. Our report and the ERA determination have now been released.
The Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) engaged Marsden Jacob Associates in 2018 to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of the drought programs and provide a framework of evaluation for future programs.
This report was provided to the Queensland Government and the independent panel who provided the Queensland Drought Program Review Report to the Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries on 31 January 2019.