324 restrictions to save Darling flows extended to 5 Jan

324 restrictions to save Darling flows extended to 5 Jan

18 December 2019

WaterNSW is announcing that an existing NSW Government temporary pump restriction to preserve flows in the Intersecting streams and Barwon-Darling river systems for towns and stock and domestic supply, will be extended to 5 January 2020.

The section 324 order extension comes into effect Friday, 20 December and applies to the Intersecting Streams water source and the Darling River between the Culgoa confluence upstream of Bourke, and Lake Wetherell in the Menindee lakes system in the Far West.

The original temporary pump restriction was announced on 4 November and was to cease on 31 December 2019. The order means irrigators with unregulated river A, B and C class, unregulated river and unregulated river high-flow access licences who might otherwise extract the water are not permitted to do so.

The temporary restriction does not apply to the take of water for testing metering equipment and does not apply to the take of water from farm dams.

Northern tributaries s.324, 30 Dec to 5 January 2020

A temporary water restriction on pumping in the northern tributaries has also been announced from 20 December to 5 January 2020.

The temporary pump restriction applies to unregulated river licence holders and general security regulated river licence holders (listed in Table 1) and is required to address critical water needs (town water supply, basic landholder rights, high security and critical in-stream needs) should a rainfall event occur during the holiday period.

River pumping is not permitted by these licence holders to allow replenishment of town water supplies, supply for high priority and high security users, instream refuge pools in the local catchment, and flow into the Barwon-Darling and Lower Darling systems.

The temporary restriction does not apply to the take of water by regulated river general security access licence holders, if the water has been ordered and released from a dam by WaterNSW.

The temporary restriction also does not apply to the take of water for testing metering equipment and does not apply to the take of water from farm dams.

The order provides for active management and has been prepared such that should a substantial natural, unregulated flow event occur, the Department can approve the take of water by access licence holders.

Table 1: Water sources and licences subject to the restriction:

Water Source

Licences

Barwon-Darling Unregulated River Water Source

Unregulated river (A, B and C Classes) access licences from the Queensland border to the Culgoa junction

NSW Border Rivers Unregulated Water Sources

Unregulated river access licences and unregulated river (special additional high flow) access licence

Namoi Unregulated Rivers Water Sources

Unregulated river access licences and unregulated river (special additional high flow) access licence

Peel Unregulated River Water Sources

Unregulated river access licences

Castlereagh River Unregulated Water Sources

Unregulated river access licence and unregulated river (special additional high flow) access licence

Macquarie Bogan Unregulated Water Sources

Unregulated river access licence and unregulated river (special additional high flow) access licence

NSW Border Rivers Regulated Water Sources

Regulated river (general security A class) access licence and regulated river (general security B class) access licence (unless water is ordered and released from a dam by WaterNSW)

Gwydir Regulated Water Source

Gwydir regulated river (general security) access licences

Gwydir Unregulated River Water Sources

Unregulated river access licences (unless water is ordered and released from a dam by WaterNSW)

Further information regarding the temporary water restrictions can be found on the department’s website - www.industry.nsw.gov.au/water/allocations-availability/temporary-water-restrictions

For WaterNSW drought management information visit:

www.waternsw.com.au/supply/drought-information

For information on water licences and trading, contact the WaterNSW helpdesk on 1300 662 077 or visit www.waternsw.com.au

Media Contact – Tony Webber 0428 613 478.

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