The Hawkesbury Nepean River Recovery Project: Improving Hawkesbury Nepean water balance accounting (metering) Project Component


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.

Funding: Up to $ 28,600,000 from the Australian Government.

About the project

The Sydney Basin, which represents the majority of the Hawkesbury Nepean catchment, provides the majority of the water supply (approximately 570 gigalitres per year) for Australia's largest urban centre. The economic value of irrigated agriculture and horticulture using water from the catchment has an estimated value of $259 million per year. The maintenance of a reliable and productive food bowl close to the local market is a major benefit to Sydney.

The Hawkesbury Nepean River Recovery Project - Improving Hawkesbury Nepean water balance accounting (metering) project component will provide real time information essential for the management of licences and entitlements in terms of water sharing, water accounting and trading, billing and compliance activities, and is estimated to make 2.85 gigalitres of water savings, above agreed river health actions.

Project benefits

The project aims to:

  • install or upgrade up to 2000 telemetered meters in the Hawkesbury Nepean catchment. This will include National Water Initiative (NWI) compliant meters, data loggers, telemetry and connection to a Water Information Exchange (WIX) communication system
  • protect environmental flows, from illegal extraction including those under the Water Sharing Plan and the water savings for additional environmental flows generated by this Project
  • establish a more accurate assessment of water availability and usage patterns including level of licence activation
  • manage cumulative extraction within the long term average extraction limit or sustainable yield under the Water Management Act 2000
  • implement an effective, comprehensive reporting system that enables more efficient compliance, billing and water trading
  • secure the water property rights for all entitlement holders and therefore reduce social conflicts resulting from water theft.