In the year ahead, the department will focus resources where possible on supporting river health and avoiding unrecoverable losses of ecological assets and functionality.
Water for the environment in other valleys
Water for the environment is also delivered to other valleys in NSW in collaboration with relevant state and Commonwealth agencies.
The Namoi catchment is in north-western NSW.
In 2019–20, water managers will focus their efforts on supporting native fish populations. With the prospect of no water for the environment available to support critical refuge habitat, the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) will work with WaterNSW to advise on how flows released for human needs can also help support the water quality and small-scale movement of native fish.
The Border Rivers valley is located across northern New South Wales and southern Queensland.
The Intersecting Streams are located in southern Queensland (Warrego) and northern New South Wales (Darling River).
Intersecting Streams catchment
With drought in the northern basin now in its third year, environmental demands are increasing, particularly in relation to connectivity and native fish. In 2019–20, the focus of water managers will be to minimise unrecoverable losses of ecological assets and functionality.
The Barwon-Darling river system connects the river systems of the northern Murray-Darling Basin with those of the south.
Barwon Darling rivers
As the region is experiencing protracted drought conditions, the focus of water managers will be to direct available resources to avoid unrecoverable losses of ecological assets and functionality, with a specific focus on supporting native fish habitat.
The Narran Lakes wetland ecosystem comprises the terminal lakes and surrounding floodplains of the Narran River in the Condamine–Balonne Catchment and includes the internationally significant Ramsar-listed Narran Lake Nature Reserve. The Narran Lakes are one of the most significant bird breeding sites in the Murray–Darling Basin.
The Australian Government has purchased water licences in the Condamine–Balonne Catchment and will manage water for the environment in collaboration with relevant state agencies to achieve outcomes in the Narran Lakes system.
Hawkesbury–Nepean river recovery
The Hawkesbury–Nepean River Recovery Program (2009–12) aimed to achieve environmental outcomes for the Hawkesbury–Nepean River System by making more water available for the environment and reducing nutrient inputs.
The program was funded by the Australian Government and managed by the former Office of the Hawkesbury–Nepean in partnership with other NSW agencies. It is currently managed by the Department of Primary Industries.
The former NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) has purchased 4912 megalitres of unregulated river access licence shares across the Hawkesbury–Nepean catchment.