Water restrictions eased in Namoi Valley

Namoi Valley water restrictions eased after rainfall

Irrigation
Aa

It's good news for local irrigators who feared their businesses were under threat without water assurance.

Aa
Bruce Sherwood feared his 28 year Upper Manilla dairy farming operation was under threat after, earlier this month, WaterNSW said there was no guarantee water would be available to them from the Namoi system, even if they stored it in carryover.

Bruce Sherwood feared his 28 year Upper Manilla dairy farming operation was under threat after, earlier this month, WaterNSW said there was no guarantee water would be available to them from the Namoi system, even if they stored it in carryover.

Temporary water restrictions for general security water users in both the Upper and Lower Namoi regulated river water source have been eased.

It comes after irrigators expressed their concerns about a large water loss during WaterNSW’s bulk transfer further down stream. In doing so 14 giga litres was lost compared to a typical 3GL. 

Today, Department of Industry – Water executive director Rachel Connell said water restriction in Namoi Valley had been eased thanks to 40 millimetres of rain across the catchment, replenishing weir pools and soaking the dry river bed.

“This much needed rainfall will provide temporary relief from high transmission losses during the current water delivery by block release,” she said. 

“However, it must be stressed that the drought affecting the Namoi Valley has not ended and difficult water shortage conditions remain widespread.” 

Customers can now extract any water they have ordered on or before November 5.Trade of general security allocations in the Lower Namoi remains closed due to water shortage conditions.

While the 15 per cent restriction in the Upper Namoi water source has been lifted, Lower Namoi general security water orders submitted after November 5 still cannot be accepted due to the lack of water.

Town water supplies for Manilla and Barraba from Split Rock Dam are secure for 2019/20, however delivery of water to Walgett from Keepit Dam will be delayed to avoid very high transmission losses over the long river distance.

“Water levels in Namoi Valley storages have been falling since October 2017 as the catchment has experienced low rainfall and high temperature drought conditions,” she said. 

“We are committed to being responsive in assessing and distributing improvements in water availability at this difficult time and this rain event, though small, has been very helpful.”

Catchment and water availability will continue to be closely monitored and updates provided as the situation changes.

Aa

From the front page

Sponsored by