Rain extends Barwon-Darling temporary pump restriction

Rain extends Barwon-Darling temporary pump restriction

06 May 2019

Water users are advised that the NSW Government will extend the temporary pump restriction for the Barwon-Darling River system following significant rainfall across north-western NSW over the past month.

The extended section 324 order means that the temporary pump restriction now applies to the Barwon-Darling river system from Mungindi to Lake Wetherell near Menindee, from Wednesday, 8 May.

The order limits extraction of the river flows to stock and domestic use, the environment and critical supplies including town water. The restriction will remain in place until 30 August.

Government issued an initial section 324 temporary pump restriction on 17 April to protect environmental releases from Copeton Dam and Glenlyon Dam.

That restriction was for:

  • Unregulated river (A Class, B Class and C Class) access licences in Barwon-Darling unregulated water source from Mungindi to Tilpa.

Following significant recent rain events, government has now extended the temporary restriction to cover the following areas:

  • Unregulated river (A Class, B Class and C Class) access licences in Barwon-Darling unregulated water source for Tilpa to Wilcannia and Wilcannia to Lake Wetherell.

Recent rain events have led to small inflows to the Barwon-Darling, with 1800 megalitres occurring at Walgett and the Brewarrina weir pool filling. Over Easter, western NSW received more rain, with approximately 70mm recorded in some western towns like Bourke. This also resulted in some small inflows to the Darling River.

Significant rainfall across north-western NSW over the past month has provided inflows to the Barwon-Darling, producing critical inflows for local communities.

Cyclone Trevor produced solid rainfall across inland Queensland and parts of NSW in late March, which resulted in small inflows to the Namoi and Macquarie Rivers in NSW. It also resulted in significant flows in the Warrego system, which flows through outback Queensland and connects with the Barwon-Darling from the west, upstream of Louth.

These events have led to small inflows to the Barwon-Darling, with 1800 megalitres occurring at Walgett and the Brewarrina weir pool filling.

With flows from the Warrego now reaching the Darling River at Louth, water is likely to extend further down the system than originally forecast.

Flows are now at Louth and are progressing south along the system and should reach Tilpa later this week. And with flows likely to continue from the Warrego for up to six weeks, water may reach Wilcannia and potentially Menindee.

“These flows are filling holes and weirs along the Barwon-Darling, providing essential water resources for stock and domestic use, town supplies and the environment – some of these areas have not received flows for 12 months,” said Adrian Langdon, WaterNSW’s Executive Manager Water System Operations.

“These flows will provide some respite for communities and stock and domestic users in parts of the state hardest hit by the drought. While the rain is welcomed, much more is needed to end drought conditions in the northern basin.”

For automated updates on dam releases and river information, customers can register for WaterNSW’s early warning network (EWN) service by calling the customer help desk on 1300 662 077.

Stay up to date with our drought information.

Media Contact – Tony Webber 0428 613 478.

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49.2
Wednesday 18 September
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1,276,511 ML
2,596,150 ML
8,655 ML
1,237 ML
-675 ML
Wednesday 18 September