Irrigator fined over unlawful water take

NRAR took the irrigator to court on charges related to exceeding the extraction limit over a three-year period

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Photo: Shutterstock

Photo: Shutterstock

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The irrigator was fined for exceeding the extraction limit attached to a works approval by more than 1200 megaliters (ML) over a three-year period (2017-2020).

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A Narrabri-based landholder has been fined $10,000 following prosecution by the Natural Resources Access Regulator (NRAR) for alleged breaches of the Water Management Act 2000 (WM Act)

The irrigator appeared in Narrabri Local Court on three separate charges related to exceeding the extraction limit attached to a works approval by more than 1200 megaliters (ML) over a three-year period (2017-2020).

In addition to the fine, the magistrate made a publication order and directed the farmer to pay $9,476.20 in court costs.

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Grant Barnes, Chief Regulatory Officer at NRAR welcomed the outcome of the case.

"Water is a finite resource which must be managed effectively and there's a need for strict compliance with the regulatory scheme," Mr Barnes said.

"To make matters worse, the water was taken from the Lower Namoi Groundwater source which is an at-risk source where the water in it is declining.

"The message is clear - if you break the rules, NRAR will take action."

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