The Commonwealth has earmarked $205 million for the first round of water buybacks under the Albanese government.

Targeting an acquisition of 26 gigalitres per annum to bolster the environmental health of the Murray-Darling Basin, the government is making the first purchase of its kind since 2020.

Minister for Water Tanya Plibersek has announced that this initiative will divert water traditionally allocated to farming towards enhancing river ecosystems. 

However, details regarding the participating farmers or the specific prices paid per gigalitre remain undisclosed. These costs are known to fluctuate based on factors like water reliability and geographic location.

The buybacks were facilitated through a tender process initiated last March, with an objective to reclaim 43 gigalitres from Queensland and New South Wales for the "Bridging the Gap" target. 

Plibersek has confirmed ongoing contractual processes and a commitment to collaborate with state governments to secure the additional 18.05 gigalitres needed.

Shadow Water Minister, NSW Nationals senator Perin Davey, has raised concerns about the tender's outcome, questioning the efficiency of the recovery process and the cost implications. 

The government is poised to address these and other inquiries during upcoming Senate estimates in Canberra.