Water resource plans
Delivering Water Resource Plans for New South Wales
Water resource plans are a key requirement of the Commonwealth Basin Plan 2012.
There are 22 water resource plans required to be developed in NSW and each plan varies in the number of resources, their level of development, number of environmental assets, and geography affecting the way the rivers are run in each area.
To help water users understand how these plans will be developed, the NSW Water Resource Plan Roadmap 2016–2019 (PDF, 2154.05 KB) outlines the processes, key timelines and the principles for the creation of the plans. DPI Water will also provide weekly progress reports against this Roadmap and how the Department is tracking against key timelines.
Water resource plans will set out arrangements to share water for consumptive use. They will also establish rules to meet environmental and water quality objectives and will take into account potential and emerging risks to water resources.
NSW water resource plans will meet the minimum requirements of the Commonwealth Water Act 2007 and Basin Plan. Each water resource plan must:
- Describe all water rights in the plan area.
- Demonstrate how compliance with the Sustainable Diversion Limit (SDL) prescribed in the Basin Plan will be assessed and maintained.
- Include a Water Quality Management Plan.
- Provide for environmental watering.
- Address risks to water resources identified in a risk assessment.
- Explain how essential human needs will be met in extreme events.
- Take account of Aboriginal people’s water dependent cultural values and uses.
Many of the water resource plans will also include a water sharing plan.
The NSW Government has always advocated for a true triple-bottom-line approach to the Murray-Darling Basin Plan, which balances economic, environmental and socio-economic concerns, and puts local communities first.
The development of NSW water resource plans will adhere to these fundamental principles, with stakeholder and community consultation at the forefront.
This will include the opportunity to comment on each water resource plan's Status and Issues paper and each draft plan. Targeted consultation including with Stakeholder Advisory Panels (SAPs) will also be undertaken.
For further information refer to Water Resource Plans - Murray-Darling Basin Authority.
Strategy and Rule Development
Stakeholder Advisory Panels
- Surface water: Stakeholder Advisory Panel – Terms of Reference (PDF, 168.96 KB)
- Groundwater: Stakeholder Advisory Panel – Terms of Reference (PDF, 161.33 KB)
Have your say
There are currently no Water Resource Plans – Status and Issues papers currently on exhibition.
Visit Water Resource Plans under development for details of plans previously on exhibition.
Water Resource Planning newsletter
Welcome to the NSW Water Resource Planning newsletter. DPI Water will be issuing this monthly update throughout the life of the water resource planning project. If you wish to receive updates automatically, please use the subscription service listed below.
Weekly progress updates
Weekly updates on the water resource planning sub program are available. Note: These documents contain images of complex graphs, and may not be web accessible as per the Web Accessibility Initiative.
Water resource plan areas
There are 36 water resource plan areas in the Basin which cover a total of 110 surface water and groundwater SDL units. Water resource plan areas are set out in Chapter 3 of the Basin Plan and are shown in the Water Resource Plan Areas maps.
For the most part, the 22 water resource plan areas in NSW correspond with NSW's water sharing plans (WSPs).
For more information on the water resource plans, please call 1800 316 778.