Richmond River
Water Quality and River Flow Objectives

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This section gives the Water Quality Objectives (WQOs) and the River Flow Objectives (RFOs) for the Richmond River catchment, which should be used to develop plans and actions affecting water quality and river health. Only the priority RFOs are listed in this section, but the remaining objectives still need to be considered when developing flow management plans or dealing with particular local river conditions.

Town water supply subcatchments

Streams in town water supply subcatchments typically feed into a town's water supply storage. In many cases the catchment may be declared as specially protected to minimise the land-use impacts on water quality.

Map: These subcatchments are coloured light blue on the map.

Top of PageWater Quality Objectives

Protection of:

Aquatic ecosystems

Visual amenity

Drinking water-Disinfection only

Drinking water-Clarification and disinfection

Drinking water-Groundwater

Top of PageRiver Flow Objectives

Protect pools in dry times

Protect natural low flows

Protect important rises in water levels

Mimic natural drying in temporary waterways

Maintain natural flow variability

Maintain natural rates of change in water levels

Manage groundwater for ecosystems

Minimise effects of weirs and other structures

Minimise effects of dams on water quality

Make water available for unforeseen events

Supporting Information

Mainly forested areas

Streams in mainly forested areas are often valued for their conservation or recreational values. They often have relatively natural flows and water quality. Many are in national parks or state forests.

Map: The objectives apply to streams running through areas coloured green on the map (state forests, national parks and nature reserves); and through other forested areas, if any are defined locally.

Top of PageWater Quality Objectives

Protection of:

Aquatic ecosystems

Visual amenity

Secondary contact recreation

Primary contact recreation

Drinking water at point of supply-Disinfection only

Drinking water at point of supply-Clarification and disinfection

Drinking water at point of supply-Groundwater

Aquatic foods (cooked)

Top of PageRiver Flow Objectives

Protect pools in dry times

Protect natural low flows

Maintain wetland and floodplain inundation

Maintain natural flow variability

Manage groundwater for ecosystems

Minimise effects of weirs and other structures

Supporting Information

Waterways affected by urban development

Streams within urban areas are frequently substantially modified and carry poor quality stormwater. Local communities are often keen to see such streams returned to more natural conditions.

Map: Urban development areas are shown in orange on the map.

Top of PageWater Quality Objectives

Protection of:

Aquatic ecosystems

Visual amenity

Secondary contact recreation, as a short-term objective, within 5 years

Primary contact recreation: assess opportunities to achieve as a longer term objective, 10 years or more

Top of PageRiver Flow Objectives

Mimic natural drying in temporary waterways

Maintain natural flow variability

Maintain natural rates of change in water levels

Manage groundwater for ecosystems

Minimise effects of weirs and other structures

Supporting Information

Uncontrolled streams

Uncontrolled streams and waterbodies are not those that are in estuaries or the other categories. Their flow patterns are largely natural but may have been altered to a limited degree.

Map: These streams are shown as blue lines on the map.

Top of PageWater Quality Objectives

Protection of:

Aquatic ecosystems

Visual amenity

Secondary contact recreation

Primary contact recreation

Livestock water supply

Irrigation water supply

Homestead water supply

Drinking water at point of supply-Disinfection only

Drinking water at point of supply-Clarification and disinfection

Drinking water at point of supply-Groundwater

Aquatic foods (cooked)

Top of PageRiver Flow Objectives

Protect pools in dry times

Protect natural low flows

Protect important rises in water levels

Maintain wetland and floodplain inundation

Mimic natural drying in temporary waterways

Maintain natural flow variability

Minimise effects of weirs and other structures

Supporting Information

Regulated rivers

These rivers have large dams supplying irrigation water (and usually town and industrial water) for substantial distances downstream. They are defined as section 22c streams under the Water Act. Flows are typically supplemented during the irrigation season resulting in fairly stable and unnaturally high water levels. River flow is substantially reduced during non or low irrigation seasons and in high-flow periods.

Map: These rivers are shown as yellow lines on the map.

Top of PageWater Quality Objectives

Protection of:

Aquatic ecosystems

Visual amenity

Secondary contact recreation

Primary contact recreation

Livestock water supply

Irrigation water supply

Homestead water supply

Drinking water at point of supply-Disinfection only

Drinking water at point of supply-Clarification and disinfection

Drinking water at point of supply-Groundwater

Top of PageRiver Flow Objectives

Protect natural low flows

Protect important rises in water levels

Maintain wetland and floodplain inundation

Maintain natural flow variability

Maintain natural rates of change in water levels

Manage groundwater for ecosystems

Minimise effects of weirs and other structures

Minimise effects of dams on water quality

Make water available for unforeseen events

Supporting Information

Estuaries

Being dominated by saline conditions ,estuaries have hydraulic and water quality characteristics, and potential problems, that are often very different from those of freshwater systems.

Map: Estuaries are coloured purple on the map.

Top of PageWater Quality Objectives

Protection of:

Aquatic ecosystems

Visual amenity

Secondary contact recreation

Primary contact recreation

Aquatic foods (cooked) and commercial shellfish production

Top of PageRiver Flow Objectives

Maintain wetland and floodplain inundation

Manage groundwater for ecosystems

Minimise effects of weirs and other structures

Maintain or rehabilitate estuarine processes and habitats

Supporting Information

This page was published 1 May 2006

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