Water Week

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Murrumbidgee River, NSW: Towns along Murrumbidgee could face tougher restrictions as government considering diverting supplies from the river to the Murray-Darling Basin, which could run out of water in just six weeks

Posted by waterweek on 2 October 2007

According to Alexandria Smith, in The Sydney Morning Herald, (28/09/2007, p.5), towns along the Murrumbidgee River could be forced back on to greater water restrictions as the NSW Government was considering diverting supplies from the river to the Murray-Darling Basin, which could run out of water in just six weeks.

Young, Harden in NSW likely to face tougher restrictions: The Water Minister, Phil Koperberg, admitted on 27 September that towns such as Young and Harden could face more stringent water restrictions, but he warned that there were very few options left for dealing with the dire situation in the Murray-Darling. He said the situation was “at best, pessimistic”.

Six weeks’s supplies left: Murray Valley communities had only six weeks’ supply of water left as the drought tightened its grip, he said. “We’re now facing an unprecedented crisis in regard to water availability across the Murray-Darling Basin.

Years to recover losses: “Large parts of NSW including the Murray Valley, are still in the grip of the worst drought in recorded history. There’s no doubt these communities are doing it tough and that without significant rainfall, the losses will take many years to recover.”

Government reviewing alternatives: Koperberg, who visited Buronga and Dareton in the Sunraysia area earlier this week, said alternative sources of water for the region had to be considered. The Government was looking at a range of options to help struggling communities, including borrowing water from the Murrumbidgee River or the Snowy Mountains scheme, or suspending fixed water charges that irrigators faced for infrastructure upkeep.

The Sydney Morning Herald, 28/9/2007, p. 5

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