DOI Water issued the below media release on the 21st of May 2019.
Click here to read the whole release
Given the drought is intensifying across the state, the NSW Government continues to implement drought management measures in consultation with communities.
The Department of Industry-Water and WaterNSW are holding public forums in drought impacted regions. At these sessions we will provide an update on surface and groundwater water availability and proposed management measures if the dry conditions persist.
The NSW Government has made the following drought stage changes, indicating a growing shortfall in water supplies and the need for temporary drought measures:
- Macquarie – Stage 4 (critical)
- Border Rivers, Gwydir, Peel, and Belubula – Stage 3 (severe)
- Murray, Murrumbidgee and Lachlan– Stage 2 (emerging)
The Lower Darling, Lower Namoi and Barwon-Darling continue on the highest level – Stage 4 (critical).
Michael Wrathall, Drought Coordinator, Department of Industry-Water, said we are now in unprecedented territory.
“NSW water storages continue to fall with close to 100 per cent of the state now affected by drought. We need to protect the remaining water in our river systems as there is no significant rain or inflows predicted.
“Water availability across the Murray-Darling Basin remains low, particularly in the northern-inland and far west regions. A number of valleys have seen inflows below previous record lows. Our priority is to ensure that sufficient water is available for critical water needs,” he said.
Stage 4 drought status means that we need to consider significant restrictions and other measures consistent with the NSW Extreme Events Policy.
“Landholders and communities need information about water availability so they can plan ahead, and that’s what these consultations are all about,” Mr Wrathall said.
Water NSW will also be meeting with members of the River Operations Stakeholder Consultative Committee (ROSCCo) immediately before or after the public information sessions, Executive Manager System Operations, Adrian Langdon confirmed.
“Given the urgency of the drought situation in these valleys, WaterNSW has timed its stakeholder updates alongside the community meetings to minimise the amount of travel faced by attendees of both sessions.
“The feedback we receive is that water authorities must consider the amount of travel involved in attending meetings, especially on topics as critical as drought, and coordinate our sessions more effectively,” Mr Langdon said.
PUBLIC DROUGHT CONSULTATION SESSIONS
|Date & Time||Location||River system||Venue|
|Wednesday 22 May|
|Tamworth||Peel||West Diggers Club|
4 Kable Ave, Tamworth
|Thursday 23 May|
|Goondiwindi||Border Rivers||The Jolly Swagman Motor Inn|
2-4 Anderson St, Goondiwindi, Qld
|Friday 24 May|
|Moree||Gwydir||The Max Centre|
Lvl 1, 30 Heber St, Moree
|Monday 27 May|
|Murray||Coomealla Memorial Sporting Club|
1150 Silver City Hwy, Dareton
|Tuesday 28 May|
|Pooncarie||Lower Darling||Pooncarie Town Hall|
Tarcoola St, Pooncarie
|Wednesday 29 May|
|Bourke||Barwon/Darling||Diggers on the Darling|
23-25 Sturt St, Bourke
|Thursday 30 May|
|Warren||Macquarie||Warren Services Club|
87A Dubbo St, Warren
|Friday 31 May|
|Forbes||Lachlan||Forbes Golf Club|
17 Parks Rd, Forbes
|Monday 3 June|
|Finley||Murray||Finley Football Club, Finley Reserve,|
Tocumwal St, Finley
|Tuesday 4 June|
|Deniliquin||Murrumbidgee||Deniliquin Golf Club|
1 Golf Club Rd, Deniliquin
|Tuesday 4 June|
|Hay||Murrumbidgee||Hay Services Club|
371 Murray St, Hay
|Wednesday 5 June|
|Wednesday 5 June|
|Thursday 6 June|
|Friday 7 June|
For more information the public consultation sessions please visit: www.industry.nsw.gov.au/water/allocations-availability/droughts-floods/update/information-sessions