Environmental water advisory groups

Water for the environment supports ecological, economic and cultural outcomes. Photos OEH

Water for the environment supports ecological, economic and cultural outcomes. Photos OEH

The NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) works closely with the community to deliver environmental water to priority sites across the state.

Environmental water advisory groups draw on the expertise and experience of community members to help inform the work of the OEH.

Advisory groups may include water managers, landholders, Aboriginal groups, independent scientists, local government representatives and a variety of partner agencies.

The groups meet regularly to discuss proposed or upcoming watering events, any issues or concerns, the results of watering events and future opportunities.

Field trips provide an opportunity for information sharing. Photo E Wilson OEH

Field trips provide an opportunity for information sharing. Photo E Wilson OEH

In NSW, environmental water is targeted within five main catchments:

  • Gwydir
  • Macquarie
  • Lachlan
  • Murrumbidgee
  • Murray and Lower Darling

Environmental water advisory groups have been established in each catchment including:

  • Gwydir Environmental Contingency Allowance Operations Advisory Group
  • Macquarie and Cudgegong Environmental Flow Reference Group
  • Murrumbidgee Environmental Water Allowance Reference Group
  • Lachlan Riverine Working Group, and
  • Murray Lower Darling Environmental Water Advisory Group

The aim of each environmental water advisory group is to bring together a range of knowledge and experience to advise on both planned and adaptive environmental water.

Before the start of each water year (July to June), each EWAG provides advice on developing an annual watering plan. These plans consider recent environmental watering history and forecast likely water management actions for the next water year at the valley scale, under different climatic scenarios.

They aim to anticipate short-term opportunities and identify how to implement various watering actions in order to meet identified environmental objectives.

EWAGs must ensure that the advice and reports they produce are consistent with the relevant water sharing plan for their regulated water source.

To learn more about your local EWAG, go to:

Working together

Decisions about environmental water are made in collaboration with a range of partners including industry, conservation representatives, government, research institutions, and regional communities. OEH works closely with the following government agencies:

  • Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder who also manages environmental water,
  • NSW Local Land Service responsible for natural resource management,
  • NSW Office of Water responsible for water planning and policy; and
  • Murray Darling Basin Authority responsible for Basin-wide planning of water resources.
Working together is the key to successful watering events. Photo E Wilson OEH

Working together is the key to successful watering events. Photo E Wilson OEH

The NSW Government is committed to co-operative management of environmental water as documented here Cooperative management of environmental water to improve river and wetland health in NSW (PDF 71KB).

 

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Page last updated: 09 November 2015