THE livelihoods of 46 families and the fate of almost 200,000 sheep, cattle and goats along the lower Darling will be at risk when the river stops flowing at the end of the year.
WaterNSW is preparing for flows from the Menindee Lakes to stop in December and while a plan is under way to store an emergency water supply for farmers between Ellerslie and Pooncarie, landholders upstream of Pooncarie have been told they will need to have potable water trucked to their farms.
It’s left families like the McBrides, of Tolarno Station, desperate for the NSW Department of Industry to install two earthen banks in the river between Pooncarie and Menindee.
“We’ve been through this once and it decimated us in 2015-16 and we can’t go through it again,” pastoralist Katharine McBride said.
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