Water breakthrough hailed

LOWER Darling landholders have welcomed the NSW Government’s temporary restrictions on upstream extraction as precious flows make their way into the Barwon-Darling river system.

Alan Whyte

Alan Whyte

The order, which took effect yesterday, allows water to be taken from the Barwon-Darling only for town water supply, domestic use, stock watering and irrigation for permanent plantings such as vineyards and orchards.

The restrictions on A, B and C class water licences in the Barwon-Darling were imposed to protect low flows after recent widespread rain across the system’s Queensland catchment.

Horticulturists Alan Whyte and Rachel Strachan hailed the decision as a breakthrough after years of concerted lobbying for a change in the state’s policy on river management.

While recent rain is not enough to reach the lower Darling, Ms Strachan said it was a return to a policy used successfully in the past to help small flows wet the river bed and allow water to pass through the system.

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