WaterNSW updates Lake Cargelligo on drought outlook

WaterNSW updates Lake Cargelligo on drought outlook

12 November 2019

Approximately 60 Lake Cargelligo community members have attended a WaterNSW information session on future contingency measures should drought conditions persist in the Lachlan valley.

Wyangala Dam storage currently sits at 17% of storage capacity and has enough water to meet supply in the valley through to July 2020 even under a worst-case scenario.

But WaterNSW is looking at options to extend supply through winter and spring to October 2020 to maximise the chances of inflows, which typically are more likely to occur during the cooler months.

Monday night’s meeting was advised that the options being assessed across the valley by WaterNSW include the possibility of reducing inflows into Lake Cargelligo in early 2020 if necessary.

WaterNSW executive manager Adrian Langdon said WaterNSW is adopting a very conservative approach to the drought and planning for the possibility of zero inflows in light of what is being experienced in the northern river valleys.

“If we do not get significant rainfall between now and end of next winter the impact on the whole valley will be severe,” he said.

“We want to ensure we are fully aware of the impact on the local community and to look at ways to mitigate the impact – however without rain and inflows the reality is there will be impacts.”

With Wyangala Dam storage at 17% of capacity there remains flexibility to make significant water savings by implementing operational changes no longer possible in other drought-impacted valleys.

All major towns in the Lachlan valley potentially have access to alternative supply sources and WaterNSW is working closely with local councils to extend supply from the dam to give communities ample time to ensure standby supply is ready.

Carryover has already been reduced to 57% availability and flows into regulated Willandra Creek will be cut in December to reduce transmission losses.

The NSW Government has announced $659 million to raise Wyangala dam wall.

Read information on WaterNSW drought operations.

Media Contact – Tony Webber – 0428 613 478

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Friday 06 December
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Friday 06 December