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Environmental watering in the catchment in previous years

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Barwon-Darling catchment

2013-14

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2013-14
Watering action Status of Commonwealth action
Barwon Darling River unregulated In Progress
Lower Darling River regulated Completed

Environmental watering in the Barwon-Darling river, NSW 2013-14

Status

31 October 2013: In progress.

About the watering

Commonwealth environmental water will remain in-stream and contribute to protecting and restoring ecosystem functions and aquatic habitats in the Barwon-Darling River system by supporting:

  • more naturally variable flow regimes
  • ecological processes dependent on hydrologic connectivity (i) longitudinally along watercourses; and (ii) laterally between watercourses and their floodplains (and associated wetlands).

Up to approximately 25,616 ML of Commonwealth environmental water may be used as part of this watering action targeting the Barwon-Darling River system (unregulated). The total volume of Commonwealth environmental water used will depend on seasonal conditions and rainfall.

This watering action has been made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the State Water Corporation, NSW Office of Water, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, local water users and landholders.

Environmental watering in the Lower Darling river 2013-14

Status

31 March 2014: This action is completed.

About the watering

Commonwealth environmental water being released from the Lake Cawndilla regulator. Photo: Richard McLoughlin, Department of the Environment.

Commonwealth environmental water will be used to maintain ecological health and resilience of the Darling Anabranch system. Up to approximately 47 GL of Commonwealth environmental water will contribute to in-channel flows within the Darling Anabranch during spring to reconnect residual pools within the Anabranch, and provide through-flows to the Murray River.

The Darling Anabranch is located in south-western NSW, extending approximately 460 kilometres from its junction with the Darling River south of Menindee, to the Murray River downstream of Wentworth. The channel of the Darling Anabranch is broad, contains many deep holes and is connected to a complex network of channels. The main native plant communities are river red gum, lignum and river cooba in the riparian zone. River red gums occur on areas that receive water more regularly, and are particularly common in the area upstream of the junction with the Murray River.

The watering action will contribute to river flows to achieve the following expected outcomes:

  • support the dispersal of plants and animals residing in refuge pools along the Great Darling Anabranch, enabling fish, such as Murray cod and golden perch, to disperse, and potentially reconnect with populations in the River Murray
  • support improved condition of riparian and floodplain native plants, particularly river red gums that line parts of the channel
  • provide habitat for native birds and other animals such as frogs
  • enable the transfer of nutrients and energy between the Anabranch and the Murray River, supporting both longitudinal connectivity (i.e. connectivity along a watercourse) and lateral connectivity (i.e. connectivity between the river channel and riparian zones).

This watering action has been made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the State Water Corporation, NSW Office of Water, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, local water users and landholders.

2012-13

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2012-13
Watering action Amount of water delivered (ML)
Barwon-Darling River unregulated 25 616
Total in 2012-13 25 616

Environmental watering in the Barwon-Darling catchment, NSW 2012-13

Status

30 June 2013: This action has been completed.

About the watering

The Commonwealth environmental water used for this action contributed to protecting and restoring water-dependent ecosystems by supporting:

  • more naturally variable flow regimes
  • ecological processes dependent on hydrologic connectivity (i) longitudinally along watercourses; and (ii) laterally between watercourses and their floodplains (and associated wetlands).

This watering action was made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the State Water Corporation, NSW Office of Water, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, local water users and landholders.

2011-12

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2011-12

There was no use of the Commonwealth's Barwon-Darling holdings in 2011-12 due to the development of water shepherding arrangements. Unused account balance has been carried over for use in 2012-13 or beyond. Under proposed Water Sharing Plan arrangements, there are no limits on carryover of unused account balances.

2010-11

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2010-11
Watering action Amount of water delivered (ML)
Barwon-Darling catchment river flows 41 826
Total in 2010-11 41 826

Darling River flows peaked in 2010-11 in late March following the third largest flood in the last 25 years. Commonwealth environmental water was used to complement these flows with 7.6 gigalitres used to provide river flows in the Darling River to Menindee Lakes and contribute to flows downstream of Menindee Lakes to the Darling Anabranch. The watering action in the Darling Anabranch was arranged in response to a proposal from an interested landholder and provided for environmental water from the Commonwealth, the Living Murray program and the New South Wales government to create a flow down the Great Darling Anabranch and connect to the Murray River. This was the first time that the Anabranch had received significant flows in over a decade. The Commonwealth's contribution to these flows were absorbed in the Anabranch by streams and wetlands.

Condamine-Balonne catchment

2013-14

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2013-14
Watering action Status of Commonwealth action
Nebine Creek unregulated Yet to commence
Lower Balonne unregulated Yet to commence

Environmental watering in the Nebine Creek system 2013-14

Status

31 October 2013: This action is yet to commence.

About the watering

Up to 5,920 ML of Commonwealth environmental water in the Nebine Creek system (unregulated) is available to contribute to in-stream fresh flows during 2013-14. The total volume of Commonwealth environmental water used will depend on seasonal conditions and rainfall.

The expected environmental outcomes of this watering action include contributing to:

  • supporting a more naturally variable flow regime in this system
  • supporting key ecosystem functions such as carbon and nutrient cycling
  • improving the resilience of native plant and animal communities.

This watering action is being made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the QLD Department of Natural Resource and Mines, Queensland Murray-Darling Committee, NSW Office of Water, NSW DPI Fisheries, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, State Water Corporation, local water users and landholders.

Environmental watering in the Lower Balonne River systems 2013-14

Status

31 October 2013: This action is yet to commence.

About the watering

Up to 73,116 ML of Commonwealth environmental water in the Lower Balonne River system (unregulated) is available to contribute to in-stream fresh flows during 2013-14. The total volume of Commonwealth environmental water used will depend on seasonal conditions and rainfall.

The expected environmental outcomes of this watering action include contributing to:

  • supporting a more naturally variable flow regime in this system
  • supporting key ecosystem functions such as carbon and nutrient cycling
  • improving the resilience of native plant and animal communities.

This watering action is being made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the QLD Department of Natural Resource and Mines, Queensland Murray-Darling Committee, NSW Office of Water, NSW DPI Fisheries, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, State Water Corporation, local water users and landholders.

2012-13

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2012-13
Watering action Amount of water delivered (ML)
Lower Balonne unregulated 64 946
Total in 2012-13 64 946

Status

30 June 2013: This action has been completed.

About the watering

In the Lower Balonne River (unregulated) the environmental watering objectives included contributing to:

  • supporting a more naturally variable flow regime in this system
  • supporting key ecosystem functions such as carbon and nutrient cycling

This watering action was made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the QLD Department of Natural Resource and Mines, Queensland Murray-Darling Committee, NSW Office of Water, NSW DPI Fisheries, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, State Water Corporation, local water users and landholders.

2011-12

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2011-12
Watering action Amount of water delivered (ML)
Lower Balonne 307
Lower Balonne 2 743
Lower Balonne 4
Nebine Creek 62
Total in 2011-12 3 423

2010-11

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2010-11
Watering action Amount of water delivered (ML)
Nebine Creek 4 456
Total in 2010-11 4 456

Moonie catchment

2013-14

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2013-14
Watering action Status of Commonwealth action
Moonie River Completed

Status

11 April 2014: This action is completed.

About the watering

The use of 1,415 ML of Commonwealth environmental water in the Moonie River system (unregulated) contributed to in-stream fresh flows during 2013-14.

The expected environmental outcomes of this watering action include contributing to:

  • supporting a more naturally variable flow regime in this system
  • supporting key ecosystem functions such as carbon and nutrient cycling

This watering action is being made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the QLD Department of Natural Resource and Mines, Queensland Murray-Darling Committee, NSW Office of Water, NSW DPI Fisheries, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, State Water Corporation, local water users and landholders.

Moonie River catchment. Photo: Joe Walters © CEWO

2012-13

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2012-13
Watering action Amount of water delivered (ML)
Moonie River 1 415
Total in 2012-13 1 415

Status

30 June 2013: This action has been completed.

About the watering

In the Moonie River system (unregulated) the environmental objectives of this watering action included contributing to:

  • supporting a more naturally variable flow regime in this system
  • supporting key ecosystem functions such as carbon and nutrient cycling

This watering action was made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the QLD Department of Natural Resource and Mines, Queensland Murray-Darling Committee, NSW Office of Water, NSW DPI Fisheries, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, State Water Corporation, local water users and landholders.

2011-12

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2011-12
Watering action Amount of water delivered (ML)
Moonie River 1 415
Total in 2011-12 1 415

2010-11

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2010-11
Watering action Amount of water delivered (ML)
Moonie River 1 415
Total in 2010-11 1 415

Warrego catchment

2013-14

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2013-14
Watering action Status of Commonwealth action
QLD Upper Warrego unregulated flow Not commenced
QLD Lower Warrego unregulated flow Not commenced
NSW Lower Warrego unregulated at Toorale In progress
NSW Warrego high flow unregulated river access licence at Toorale Not commenced

Environmental watering in the Upper Warrego catchment, Queensland 2013-14

Status

31 October 2013: Yet to commence.

About the watering

Commonwealth environmental water will remain in-stream and contribute to protecting and restoring ecosystem functions and aquatic habitats in the Warrego River system by supporting:

  • more naturally variable flow regimes
  • ecological processes dependent on hydrologic connectivity (i) longitudinally along watercourses; and (ii) laterally between watercourses and their floodplains (and associated wetlands).

Up to approximately 6,050 ML of Commonwealth environmental water may be used as part of this watering action targeting the upper Warrego River system (unregulated). The total volume of Commonwealth environmental water used will depend on seasonal conditions and rainfall.

This watering action has been made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the QLD Department of Natural Resource and Mines, State Water Corporation, SunWater, Queensland Murray-Darling Committee, NSW Office of Water, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, local water users and landholders.

Environmental watering in the Lower Warrego catchment, Queensland 2013-14

Status

31 October 2013: Yet to commence.

About the watering

Commonwealth environmental water will remain in-stream and contribute to protecting and restoring ecosystem functions and aquatic habitats in the Warrego River system by supporting:

  • more naturally variable flow regimes
  • ecological processes dependent on hydrologic connectivity (i) longitudinally along watercourses; and (ii) laterally between watercourses and their floodplains (and associated wetlands).

Up to approximately 10,000 ML of Commonwealth environmental water may be used as part of this watering action targeting the lower Warrego River system (unregulated). The total volume of Commonwealth environmental water used will depend on seasonal conditions and rainfall.

This watering action has been made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the QLD Department of Natural Resource and Mines, State Water Corporation, SunWater, Queensland Murray-Darling Committee, NSW Office of Water, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, local water users and landholders.

Environmental watering in the Lower Warrego catchment, NSW

Status

14 April 2014: In progress.

About the watering

Commonwealth environmental water will remain in-stream to maximise passage of in-stream fresh flows through the lowest reaches of the Warrego River and to the Darling River. Commonwealth environmental water will contribute to enhancing longitudinal connectivity in the lower Warrego River, connectivity between the Warrego and Darling Rivers and end of system flows. Commonwealth environmental water is also expected to enhance the diversity of aquatic habitat and primary production in the Warrego and Darling river reaches and provide opportunities for dispersal of aquatic biota.

Up to approximately 16,212 ML of Commonwealth environmental water may be used annually as part of this watering action. The total volume of Commonwealth environmental water used will depend on seasonal conditions and rainfall.

This watering action has been made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the NSW Parks and Wildlife Service, NSW Office of Water, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage and local water users.

Environmental watering on the Warrego River Western Floodplain, NSW

Status

31 October 2013: Yet to commence.

About the watering

Commonwealth environmental water will provide overbank flows to the Warrego River Western Floodplain at Toorale National Park/State Conservation Area. Commonwealth environmental water will potently contribute to:

  • supporting the condition and reproduction of floodplain and semi-permanent vegetation communities
  • waterbird survival and condition, including supporting recruitment opportunities
  • dispersal opportunities for aquatic biota.

Up to approximately 9,720 ML of Commonwealth environmental water may be used annually as part of this watering action targeting the Western Floodplain. The total volume of Commonwealth environmental water used will depend on seasonal conditions and rainfall.

This watering action has been made possible by the collaboration of a wide range of stakeholders including the NSW Parks and Wildlife Service, NSW Office of Water, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage and local water users.

2012-13

There was no Commonwealth environmental watering undertaken in the Warrego catchment in 2012-13.

2011-12

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2011-12
Watering action Amount of water delivered (ML)
Upper Warrego 6 050
Lower Warrego 10 000
Lower Warrego (Toorale) 8 016
Lower Warrego Wester Floodplain (Toorale) 9 720
Total in 2011-12 33 786

2010-11

Environmental watering in the catchment in 2010-11
Watering action Amount of water delivered (ML)
Upper Warrego 6 050
Lower Warrego 10 000
Total in 2010-11 16 050