Up until the 1950s, artesian water that came to the surface under natural pressure by the sinking of bores had been allowed to flow uncontrolled into open drains and creeks for distribution to stock. However, even in well-maintained drains, up to 95 per cent of this water was being wasted through evaporation and seepage.
Such uncontrolled flow of water from bores and open earth bore drains in the Great Artesian Basin threatened the health of important groundwater dependant ecosystems and the continued access to artesian water by pastoralists. In addition, it had become difficult for new water users in or near the Great Artesian Basin to obtain access to groundwater resources.
Under the Great Artesian Basin Sustainability Initiative (GABSI) the Australian Government is investing in the order of $140 million over fifteen years (1999-2014) to accelerate work on the repair of these uncontrolled artesian bores and the replacement of open earthen bore drains with piped water reticulation systems, making wasteful use of GAB water a thing of the past.
The GABSI Initiative continues to be delivered through state agencies and the Australian Government makes its contributions jointly with state governments and bore owners.
The GABSI Initiative was reviewed in December 2007, during the second five year phase of GABSI:
Strategic Management Plan
The GABSI Initiative has assisted with the implementation of key actions of the Strategic Management Plan prepared by the Great Artesian Basin Coordinating Committee. The Strategic Management Plan was endorsed by all jurisdictions in the Great Artesian Basin and was launched in Longreach on 13 September 2000.
- Great Artesian Basin Coordinating Committee
- Great Artesian Basin Coordinating Committee's Strategic Management Plan
The Strategic Management Plan is a 15 year strategic framework for responsible groundwater and related natural resource management in the Great Artesian Basin. It guides governments, water users and other stakeholders on polices, programs and actions necessary to attain optimum economic, environmental and social benefits from the existence and use of Great Artesian Basin groundwater resources.
The Strategic Management Plan was reviewed mid-term in 2007.
As a result of that Review, the Great Artesian Basin Coordinating Committee developed two documents:
which have been endorsed by respective jurisdictions.
For further information on the delivery of the GABSI contact your local state officer.
Queensland Government call centre
13 74 68 (13 QGOV)
or visit www.derm.qld.gov.au
Resource Monitoring Services Unit
GPO Box 2834
Adelaide SA 5001
Ph: (08) 8463 6958
New South Wales
NSW Office of Water
PO Box 463
7023 Gwydir Highway
INVERELL NSW 2630
Ph: (02) 6721 9823
- Farm costs, benefits and risks from bore capping and piping in the GAB
- Knowledge gaps for groundwater reforms
- Landholder contributions to the GABSI
- Review of the Great Artesian Basin Sustainability Initiative
- Review the attitudes and perceptions of pastoral water users in the Great Artesian Basin
- Great Artesian Basin Sustainability Initiative – Mid Term Review of Phase 2
- Bureau of Meteorology - water information
- Coasts and oceans
- Lake Eyre Basin Agreement
- Living Murray Initiative
- Meteorological information for primary industry and natural resources management
- National Centre for Tropical Wetland Research
- National Framework for Improved Groundwater Management in Australia
- National Principles for the Provision of Water for Ecosystems
- Water for a Healthy Country Flagship