Seven NSW water sharing plans to be extendedDate: 2017 07 04
The extension of seven water sharing plans, which are nearing the end of their 10 year terms, will allow a detailed review, DPI Water Acting Deputy Director General Dr Christobel Ferguson, announced today.
“The Lower Gwydir, Upper and Lower Namoi, Lower Macquarie, Lower Murrumbidgee and Lower Murray groundwater plans, as well as the plan for the Paterson Regulated River were due to expire in June 2017,” she said.
“The Lower Lachlan groundwater plan, which is due to expire in June 2018, has also been extended.
“After considering advice provided by the Natural Resources Commission, it is appropriate to make some changes to all of these plans.
“The extension to these water sharing plans will allow a review of plan outcomes, enabling current science and knowledge to be incorporated, and provides an opportunity to improve monitoring, evaluation and reporting.
“This process will also enable further community input.”
Dr Ferguson said work would be undertaken to ensure that the replacement plans would be consistent with the current legislative and policy framework.
“For the six inland groundwater water sharing plans it is important that we consider our commitments under the Commonwealth Basin Plan, as we move to water resource planning.
“The implementation of the Murray-Darling Basin Plan requires the development of Water Resource Plans by 2019. This plan extension will allow the alignment of Basin Plan and water sharing plan requirements.
“While the extension of the Paterson Plan will allow the outcomes of the Hunter Priority Catchments Program to be included in the revised plan,” Dr Ferguson said.
Consultation for the replacement of the six inland alluvial water sharing plans will be part of the development of water resource plans in these areas.
For the Paterson Regulated River Plan replacement consultation will be targeted initially to affected stakeholders.
The plans will be extended for up to two years from their expiry date.
A copy of the Ministerial report can be obtained from the Natural Resources Commission website - www.nrc.nsw.gov.au
Media contact: Laura Hutton (02) 6024 8837