Regional dam storages rise as rain forecast remains

Blowering Dam. Photo courtesy ipfoto.

WaterNSW will continue to work with the Bureau of Meteorology to ensure the effective management of airspace releases and storage levels while maintaining water security for local communities.

While the Bureau has predicted no significant rainfall for the next week, there is an 80 per cent chance of higher-than-average rainfall for the next three months.

Burrinjuck Dam is currently at 96.5 per cent, with inflows of 19 GL per day and releases of 20 GL per day. 

Blowering Dam is currently at 94.4 per cent, with inflows of 0.6 GL per day and releases of 5 GL per day

Since the beginning of 2020, dam levels across regional NSW have improved significantly.

In January, 2020, Burrinjuck Dam was 31 per cent full. It was 86 per cent full on April 19 this year, 99 per cent full on July 20 and 100 per cent full on September 8.

In January, 2020, Blowering was 39 per cent full. It was 79 per cent full on April 19 this year, 96 per cent full on July 20 and 95 per cent full on September 8.

Meanwhile, WaterNSW welcomes the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) rural valleys bulk water and Water Administration Ministerial Corporation (WAMC) determinations, handed down last Thursday.

The four-year determinations will come into effect from October 1.

Since the draft determination in March, WaterNSW has worked with customers and IPART to incorporate price reductions in the final determinations, including lower costs associated with the implementing the NSW Government’s non-urban metering policy.

IPART’s decision for WaterNSW’s rural bulk water charges results in an average increase of 30 per cent in prices across 12 valleys and Fish River.

IPART’s decision for WAMC water management charges results in prices capped at 2.5 per cent, excluding inflation, for each of the next four years, with average cost increases for licence holders on regulated water sources of 16 per cent, 8 per cent for unregulated licence holders and 3 per cent for groundwater licence holders.

IPART has also approved new prices for the costs of implementing the NSW Government’s non-urban metering reform program.

WaterNSW’s costs have been influenced by factors such as drought, including the delivery of emergency infrastructure in some valleys, ongoing investment in dam safety upgrades, along with implementing significant long-term water sector reforms.

WaterNSW fully supports the implementation of the government-led metering reform which is in response to a number of independent and government inquiries into improving management of the state’s water sector, according to WaterNSW CEO, Andrew George.

“In its submission WaterNSW sought sufficient funding to effectively perform our role in implementing the non-urban metering policy, as one of the key foundations of the reform activity taking place across the water sector in recent years,” Mr George said.

“WaterNSW’s overall costs have been greatly influenced by these reforms and our role in implementing them, through the need for expanded IT capability, our involvement in supporting increased compliance functions and ensuring our extensive asset base is fit for this new operating environment.

“WaterNSW works with our customers to ensure that our operations meet their needs and drives continuous improvement as efficiently as possible to minimise costs.”

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