Nambucca Water Security Project


On 21 September 2015, responsibility for water policy and resources was transferred to the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources - Administrative Arrangement Order made on 21 September 2015.

This website will be updated to reflect these changes.

About the project

Project location:  Macksville, Bowraville, Nambucca Heads, Scotts Head, New South Wales

Funding recipient:  Nambucca Shire Council

Total Australian Government funding: $10 million (GST exclusive) under the National Water Security Plan for Cities and Towns.

The total project cost was $54 million, with the remaining funding provided by the Nambucca Shire Council and the NSW Government.

The Nambucca Shire Council  implemented this project to secure the water supply for residents in the townships of Macksville, Bowraville, Nambucca Heads, Scotts Head and various satellite communities through the construction of an off river storage dam. New infrastructure allows for water from the Nambucca River to be transferred to the new storage dam during times of high flow. The stored water will then be used during periods of low flow.

The project involves the construction of a 5.5 billion litre storage dam at Bowraville with supporting infrastructure, including expanding the Bowraville borefield, pumping station, collection tanks and pipelines.

Project benefits

This project will:

  • secure the water supply for the Nambucca Shire and provide for sustainable growth and development.
  • maintain environmental flows in the Nambucca River during periods of drought.


This project was completed in October 2014 and officially opened on 28 February 2015 by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development.

Final report

Nambucca District Off River Storage project - Final report (PDF - 11.65 MB)