Surface and Groundwater Management, Availability, Allocation and Efficiency of Use
State of Queensland Water Resources Overview
Water is a precious commodity. The Queensland Department of Natural Resources has the responsibility of managing water to ensure the present and future rural, industrial and urban needs of Queenslanders are met whilst ensuring our river and groundwater systems remain healthy. This includes developing new water industry policies to comply with state and national agreements, facilitating community catchment management and planning for adequate supplies of water to meet the economic growth of Queensland.
It also means implementing the Government's program to develop an adequate, cost-effective and well-managed water infrastructure, to supply bulk water, distribute water for irrigation and reduce the effects of flooding through the development and implementation of water management schemes and stormwater drainage.
Ongoing planning and development of new water infrastructure will support continued economic growth and enhancement of community lifestyles. The Department is undertaking a major water infrastructure planning and development program in consultation with our clients. This will result in the supply of additional water for rural, industrial and urban use, improved groundwater management, increased water use efficiency, wastewater reuse, water quality monitoring and enhanced environmental management of waterways.
Enhanced environmental management of waterways is affected by regulating water use, environmental impact appraisals and management plans, water works licensing and the issuing of sand and gravel permits.
The Water Allocation and Management Plans (WAMPS) will have a primary role in managing the water resources of the State. A WAMP determines the amount of water available for use and the amount of water that must be left in the system for the environment.
The Queensland Wastewater Reuse Strategy provides a framework for the reuse of wastewater. The project was developed in partnership with many community groups and will address specific policies, guidelines and community education programs for the safe use of reclaimed water.
Monitoring the safety of dams to ensure the highest structural soundness and safety of large water storages and mine tailings dams, is another key role for the Department.
Within this Department the state water infrastructure is managed by the commercial operator, State Water Projects, through three separate regional offices. It supplies more than 6300 farms and 220000 hectares of land with irrigation water. More than 54 towns and 16 mining/industrial enterprises are provided with bulk water.
The Water Resources Act (1989) is the primary legislation under which water is currently allocated and managed in Queensland. The Water Resources Act has a number of deficiencies as follows:
- It does not explicitly provide for the protection of surface flows and groundwater levels to protect the environment. Although policies are adopted at an administrative level in this regard, there is no explicit head of power to provide for the environment.
- It does not adequately provide for a planned base for the making of water allocation and management decisions. Rather, it provides for an incremental system of decision making under which the security of supply for existing water users can be progressively eroded over time.
- It is directed at the construction and authorisation of works for water supply with the allocation and management of water being a somewhat incidental matter. It fails therefore to separate development issues from resource allocation issues.
- It ties water to land. This means in order to obtain water it is often necessary to purchase additional land to which water is attached.
- It provides no power for the State to manage the sharing of overland flow. Under modern farming practice extensive diversion of overland flow is taking place in some parts of the State which could place at risk the health of watercourses.
- It fails to properly recognise and separate the roles of water resource management, water infrastructure development, and water supply scheme operation.
New legislation is being prepared to address these issues. A Draft Water (Allocation and Management) Bill was released for public consultation in December 1999. It is due to be introduced to the Parliament in July 2000. The features of the Bill are as follows:
- It provides for the sustainable management and allocation of water resources in accordance with the principles of ecologically sustainable development.
- It provides for allocation and management decisions to be made in accordance with plans prepared through consultative processes.
- It establishes the role of the water resource regulator separate from the roles of infrastructure development and water supply scheme operator. It provides for the State to be subject to the same regulatory framework as the private sector in the construction of works and the operation of water supply schemes.
- It provides water allocation decision to be made under the Bill, but for decisions on works approvals to be made under the Integrated Development Approval System within the Integrated Planning Act.
- It provides for the progressive replacement of water licences which attach to land, with tradeable water allocations which do not attach to land, which are well specified and which have improved security.
Under the new system the taking of water from watercourses, lakes and springs or the taking of artesian groundwater will need approval. The taking of overland flow or subartesian groundwater will need approval only if a Water Resource Plan declares that an approval is required. Such declaration would be made where a water resource is under threat from over development.
The Queensland water industry is currently undergoing a significant reform process. One component of this process relates to the COAG program of reform for the urban and rural water industries. The Queensland Government has agreed to implement the Competition Principles Agreement, which covers issues of generic application to industries (structural reform, competitive neutrality, prices oversight), as well as the COAG Water Resource Policy, which deals specifically with, water issues. The COAG Water Resource Policy covers matters such as institutional reform of service provision, cost recovery targets for water pricing, transferable water entitlements and environmental issues.
Quite apart from the Queensland Government's commitments under the COAG Agreements, the reforms are being undertaken on the basis that they provide a framework for achieving an economically efficient and sustainable Queensland water industry with appropriate market signals and regulatory arrangements for sustainable resource use.
Reform of the water industry includes:
- The adoption of pricing regimes based on the principles of consumption-based pricing, full cost recovery and, desirably, the removal of cross-subsidies which are not consistent with the efficient an effective service, use and provision. Where cross-subsidies continue to exist, they will be transparently reported;
- Institutional separation of the roles of water resource management, standard setting and regulatory enforcement and service provision, as far as possible. The benefits of institutional separation arise from ensuring that there is clear differentiation between commercial objectives, regulatory objectives and community service obligations;
- Service delivery organisations, particularly in metropolitan areas, having a commercial focus (for example, through commercialisation or corporatisation). A commercial focus for water providers will encourage investment to be demand-driven and provided at minimum cost; and
- Constituents being given a greater degree of responsibility in the management of irrigation areas - for example, through operational responsibility being devolved to local bodies subject to appropriate regulatory frameworks being established.
Further, the water reform program seeks to improve water allocation or entitlements system by requiring:
- Introduction of comprehensive systems of water allocations or entitlements backed by clear specification of entitlements, separate from land title; and
- That trading arrangements in water allocations or entitlements be implemented once the entitlements have been settled. This includes the development of necessary institutional arrangements, from a natural resource management perspective, to facilitate trade in water.
Historically water has been provided for domestic purposes, industrial consumers and irrigators by State and local government owned entities. Governments regulated these activities through direct ownership and control of water service provision. Urban water services are provided primarily by local governments and by four urban water boards (Gladstone, Townsville-Thuringowa, South-East Queensland and Mt Isa Water Boards). Water is also provided to eight irrigation areas (Mareeba Dimbulah, Burdekin, Eton, Dawson Valley, Emerald, Bundaberg, Lower Mary, St. George) and twenty-eight water supply projects.
However, institutional reforms currently occurring within Queensland water industry, there is increasing private sector involvement in the industry and a stronger emphasis on water service providers responding to customer expectations and needs.
For this Audit, the basins as designated by the Australian Water Resources Council (AWRC) have generally been adopted as a reporting unit in Queensland. A number of these basins have been further subdivided to smaller areas which reflect operational areas within the basin. All reporting units are referred to as Surface Water Management Areas (SWMA's). A total of 99 SWMA's have been defined.
The mean annual streamflow of the State as determined by this study is 160630 GL.
River flows in Queensland show distinct variations with time, with streamflows showing both a seasonal pattern and substantial year to year variability in discharge. There is also a distinct variability of discharge with location that reflects the variability of rainfall across the state. The El Nino effect has significant influence on the long-term variability rainfall within the State.
The wet season in Queensland generally occurs in the summer months and winter is generally significantly drier.
Streams in the west of the State and around the Gulf of Carpentaria frequently cease to flow for 6 months of the year. Streams on the eastern coast of Queensland generally have flow all year but show distinct seasonal variation.
The total annual divertible surface water resource was not determined for Queensland. Because of the seasonal and annual variability of stream flows in the State, the divertible resource is very dependent on the pattern of use and the location of use.
Water Allocation and Management Plans (WAMP's) and Water Management Plans (WMP's) are currently being developed for many catchments throughout the state. Environmental strategies are being developed as part of these plans. The plans will guide the future development of the catchments.
The volume of water allocated for use in Queensland is 3072000 ML annually. In addition to this considerable water is extracted by water harvesting.
Allocations are generally made in three ways.
- Water on regulated streams is allocated on a volumetric basis.
- Water on unregulated streams is allocated on a right to irrigate a defined area.
- Water Harvesting is regulated by defined streamflow conditions.
Water use on regulated streams and for some water harvesting is metered. All other water use and allocations have been estimated.
Some major water users have their allocations defined by an Order in Council or a Government act.
The major water users in the State are on rivers flowing to the eastern coast. There is considerable water use in the Condamine and Border Rivers Basins, which flow into the Murray Darling Division. The State Government has developed a number of major irrigation areas throughout the State.
Although there is a high mean annual flow into the Gulf of Carpentaria, there is very little use due to the isolation of this region.
Urban water services are provided primarily by local governments and four urban water boards (Gladstone, Townsville-Thuringowa, South-East Queensland and Mt Isa Water Boards).
Water is also provided to eight irrigation areas (Mareeba Dimbulah, Burdekin, Eton, Dawson Valley, Emerald, Bundaberg, Lower Mary, St. George) and twenty eight water supply projects (Bowen-Broken Rivers, Mt Isa Dams, Eungella Dam And Pipeline, Pioneer River, Proserpine River, Riverside Pipeline, Callide Valley, Blackwater Pipeline, Awoonga-Callide Pipeline, Fitzroy Barrage, Stanwell Pipeline, Boyne River, Barker-Barambah, Mary Valley, Upper Burnett, Three Moon Creek, Tarong Pipeline, Cressbrook Creek, Logan River, Lower Lockyer Valley, Central Lockyer Valley, Warrill Valley, Chinchilla Weir, Dumeresq River, MacIntyre Brook, Maranoa River, Upper Condamine).
There are 183 key storage locations across the State. These represent a total capacity of 13389 GL for Queensland. This does not include privately owned offstream storage sites used for water harvesting. Water harvesting storages in Queensland vary considerably in size and the largest storage constructed to date is 370000ML. In western areas considerable water is harvested from the floodplains during floods.
Categorisation was not carried out for the Queensland SWMA's. Water Allocation and Management Plans (WAMP's) and Water Management Plans (WMP's) are currently being prepared for many areas in Queensland. The studies for these plans will identify areas in which the water resources are available for further development and areas which are stressed.
Groundwater abstraction, allocation and use information has been reported at two levels - Groundwater Management Units (GMU's) and Unincorporated Areas (UA's). These units fall within Queensland Province boundaries, which were the reporting unit for the 1985 Audit.
Groundwater Management Units fall into either the subartesian or artesian category and may overlap. The subartesian GMU's have been defined in accordance with current management practices applied by the Department of Natural Resources. Artesian GMU's have been defined into hydrologic zones in accordance with the guidelines set by the Great Artesian Basin Consultative Council.
Groundwater Provinces are based on the principal hydrogeologic basins within Queensland. The Unincorporated Areas comprise the area between the GMU's and the Province boundaries. A total of 113 areas are reported including 79 subartesian GMU's, 23 Great Artesian Basin GMU's and 11 UA's. The Great Artesian GMU's are divided into 13 in Queensland, 4 in New South Wales, 4 in South Australia and 2 in Northern Territory.
The groundwater resources of Queensland are contained within three basic aquifer types:
Porous Sedimentary Rocks: Sedimentary rocks such as sandstones and conglomerate, which allow flow through their coarse granular structure. The most common aquifer material in this group in Queensland is sandstone. The largest artesian basin in the world, the Great Artesian Basin, underlies about 65% of the State and is composed largely of sandstone. Other rock types that occur in this category include mudstone, siltstone and limestone.
Unconsolidated Sediments: Alluvial deposits of sand and gravel laid down on valley floors are a common source of water, as are coastal sand dunes and sand islands. These aquifers are principally Quaternary in age and occur mainly along the coastal plain of Queensland. Unconsolidated sediments contain a significant portion of the groundwater used in the State.
Fractured Rocks: Basalt and other volcanic rock, metamorphic rock and limestone with cracks, joints and voids. These aquifers often provide low supplies that are used for urban, stock and domestic purposes but can supply at rates suitable for irrigation such as at Atherton in northern Queensland. Within the volcanic rocks in this category, water occurs in gas bubbles, cracks and joints. Sandstone, shale and metamorphic rocks in this category also contain water in cracks, joints and bedding planes and in limestone may also occur in solution channels.
Bore yields in the entire range of aquifer types throughout the State commonly vary from as little as 0.5 l/s through to large diameter irrigation bores producing in excess of 100 l/s.
It is estimated that the annual sustainable yield of the groundwater resource in Queensland is approximately 2.5 million megalitres. Actual usage of the resource would however be limited to approximately 1.8 million megalitres annually. This is due in large to protection of National Parks, State Forest and World Heritage Areas as well as the low demand on available groundwater in coastal regions where the tropical climate provides high annual rainfall. Within Great Artesian Basin GMU's, a reduction in future use is also anticipated through reconditioning of bores and reduced losses.
Current use data for the Queensland groundwater resource indicates that 14% of GMU's have category 1 abstraction status. Those with moderate abstraction levels account for 12% and those with category 3 and 4 abstraction status represent 22% and 33% of GMU's respectively. The remaining 19% of GMU's are without current use data.
Figure: Use category proportions for GMU's and UA's in Queensland, and use category coverage in Queensland (including all GAB) GMU's and UA's.
Sustainable yield has been defined as: " the groundwater extraction regime, measured over a specified planning timeframe that allows acceptable levels of stress and protects the higher value uses associated with the total resource."
Assessment of sustainable yield in each of the Groundwater Management Units aimed to satisfy the definition given although half of the GMU's had sustainable yield figures determined without investigation data and a further 8 had no sustainable yield figure. Only 11% of GMU's had a sustainable yield based on intensive investigation. Sustainable yield figures based on limited regional drilling and groundwater monitoring, and those based on reconnaissance data account for 20% and 12% of the GMU's respectively.
Categorisation of allocation and abstraction of groundwater in each of the Queensland GMU's (including UA's) resulted in the following:
|Category Number||Category Description||Number of GMU's (%)|
|1||Allocation< 30% of Sustainable Yield||42*|
|2||Allocation between 30% and 70% of Sustainable Yield||6|
|3||Allocation between 70% and 100% of Sustainable Yield||11|
|4||Allocation > Sustainable Yield||37|
Areas without allocation categorised amount to 4% of all GMU's.
* includes areas with sustainable yield figure and no allocation.
|Category Number||Category Abstraction||Number of GMU's (%)|
|1||Abstraction < 30% of Sustainable Yield||14|
|2||Abstraction between 30% and 70% of Sustainable Yield||12|
|3||Abstraction between 70% and 100% of Sustainable Yield||23|
|4||Abstraction > Sustainable Yield||32|
Areas without allocation categorised amount to 19% of all GMU's.
The total volume of 'spare' water (sustainable yield less the total annual use) available for development is estimated to be between 500000 to 700000 ML annually.
Potential for joint groundwater and surface water use in Queensland required that there be known or estimated use of both groundwater and surface water within an SWMA. Overlapping groundwater and surface water use data was identified in 85 of 99 Queensland SWMA's which contain, or partially contain, one or more Groundwater Management Unit's. As each of these has overlap of Surface Water and Groundwater Management Areas/Units it is considered that they each possess potential for joint use.
Significant groundwater recharge works have been installed on Cressbrook Creek (SWMA143.A), Lockyer Creek and tributaries (SWMA 143.B), Three Moon Creek (SWMA 136.D), Lower Burdekin (SWMA 120.A) and Callide Creek (SWMA 130.D).
Level and type of connectivity are summarised broadly below:
|Category Number||Level of Connectivity||Type of Connectivity|
|Subartesian Aquifers||Medium||Physical and Policy / Management|
|GAB Recharge Aquifers||Medium||Physical and Policy / Management|
|Sand Island Aquifers||High||Physical and Policy / Management|
|Non-recharge GAB Aquifers||Medium||Policy / Management|
GAB - Great Artesian Basin.
Demand for groundwater in Queensland is primarily from urban users for stock and domestic purposes and from irrigation. Where applicable and/or available, water demand was projected for the years 2020 and 2050 in each GMU. Based on the collective projections for all GMU's in the State it is expected that groundwater use will remain between 1.8 million ML/yr and 2.0 million ML/yr in 2020 and 2050. One of the major potential markets that may increase this potential is the tourist industry, particularly in the north-eastern coastal zone of Queensland.
Surface Water demands in Queensland currently come from irrigation (2171000ML), urban (593000ML) and industrial (267000ML) users. Future requirements are currently being assessed in the major use areas with the formulation of Water Allocation and Management Plans (WAMP's). Results of these studies will be released as they are completed.
There are several constraints on the future development of the groundwater resources of Queensland. Currently, 32% of all Queensland GMU's have reached their threshold year for sustainable yield (year in which use reaches the sustainable yield) while a further 23% have high level abstraction levels. In addition to these high usage GMU's, Queensland's National Parks, State Forest and World Heritage Areas, particularly in the northern and far northern coastal zone of the State also impose limits on the potential for groundwater development.
Within the Great Artesian Basin (GAB), GMU's have been affected by declining pressure levels and/or flow rates in the artesian groundwater. Additionally the GAB groundwater resource is considered over or fully abstracted and suffers losses of up to 90% of the groundwater that reaches the surface.
Future development of surface water resources in Queensland are constrained by the availability of suitable storage sites, the demand for water in isolated areas, and the management plans which are being developed. In common with groundwater resources, National Parks, State Forests and World Heritage Areas, will impose some limits on development.
Cultural and historic issues that consider the importance of retaining an appreciation of influences of the past, respect for the original inhabitants and new settlers who developed the region and the relevance of the regions history are also considered when considering the direction of future development.
The WAMP process will guide future developments.
Development potential of the groundwater resources of Queensland, considering the constraints mentioned, finds the following distribution:
|Development Potential||Number of GMU's (Total 113)|
Forecast use estimates, for the years 2020 and 2050, were made for 102 of the 113 Queensland GMU's based on their current and historical use data, and projected development. Total forecast use for the State is anticipated to be between 1.8 and 2.0 million ML annually in both 2020 and 2050.
Forecast use estimates for the years 2020 and 2050 were not made for surface water use in Queensland.
Past experiences indicate that demands for water from urban, industrial and agricultural users will increase. Unmanaged growth in demands will place considerable strain on existing infrastructure and available water resources.
The approach of demand management is to reduce demand for water through minimising wastage and reducing consumer demands. This can delay the need for capital investment, reduce operating costs, minimise environmental impacts on natural systems and provide additional water for new users. In parts of Queensland the urban use is as high as 1000ML/person/day. Experiences in some areas indicate that demand management can reduce water demands by 20 - 30% for urban consumers.
Currently 78% of water use in Queensland is for irrigation. Major crops such as sugar cane and cotton are dependent on world markets for sales. Changing crops in an area can significantly change the water requirements.
Future development in Queensland is to be guided by the WAMPs that are currently being developed.
Industrial use is largely associated with the mining and power industries.
Categorisation for forecast groundwater use in the Queensland Groundwater Management Units are summarised below:
Number of GMU's (Total 113)
Number of GMU's (Total 113)
|Low Level Resource Abstraction||12||12|
|Medium Level Resource Abstraction||4||4|
|High Level Resource Abstraction||81||81|
There are 11 GMU's without forecast use figures.
No categorisation or forecast use was made for surface water use in Queensland.
Water Allocation and Management Plans (WAMPs) and Water Management Plans (WMPs) are currently being developed for much of the State. Under the Statuary Instruments Act 1992, the life of a Plan cannot exceed a period of 10 years and at that time must be reviewed and either amended or renewed.
Specific environmental water requirements vary between GMU's and regions, however a common goal of maintaining long term sustainable supply applies to all areas.
A Rural Water Use Efficiency Initiative, introduced by the Queensland Government in partnership with industry, aims to improve water use in the States rural sector. Strategies are in place to ensure that total extraction of water is ecologically sustainable. A direct benefit of the initiative to the environment is the reduced run-off of pesticides and nutrients into rivers and streams.
Within the Great Artesian Basin the Department of Natural Resources and landholders are working together on a water conservation strategy. Since the advent of uncontrolled artesian bores and open bore drains in the Great Artesian Basin, there has been an increase in breakouts (breaching of drain banks), salinisation, erosion and the spread of weeds and feral animals. The Great Artesian Basin Bore Rehabilitation Project aims at ensuring that old artesian bores are reconditioned to stop leakage. Similarly the Great Artesian Basin Drain Replacement program encourages users to pipe water instead of using open earth drains.
There are currently no specific surface water environmental allowances made in most areas of Queensland.
Environmental flow requirements are currently being assessed as part of the studies for Water Allocation and Management Plans and Water Management Plans.
Streams in the north and west of Queensland are isolated and generally have very little or no development. These streams, as well as some isolated coastal streams, are essentially in a natural condition.
Any major developments, which require the use of water or are liable to effect the quality of water within Queensland, are required to carry out an Environmental Impact Assessment. This is required for both developed and undeveloped catchments.
The Queensland Government has introduced two planning processes to provide improvements to the allocation and management of water in the State. These are the Water Allocation and Management Planning (WAMP) process and the Water Management Planning (WMP) process. It is anticipated that each of Queensland's basins will be subject to either a WAMP or a WMP process, which will result in the development of a management plan and assist in overcoming the problems associated with the previous Water Resources legislation.
The WAMP process is an integrated and consultative whole-of-basin planning process designed to determine the appropriate balance between water for the environment and water for consumptive use. The process takes into account scientific, environmental, social and economic considerations in determining the volumes and flow regimes needed to maintain the health of riverine systems and water that can be drawn for urban, industrial and agricultural purposes. The ultimate objective of WAMP's is to manage water resources in accordance with the principals of Ecologically Sustainable Development.
The WAMP and WMP processes will benefit groundwater areas in the development of a management plan in similar ways to that of surface water. Also active within catchments are such groups as River Improvement Trusts, Catchment Coordinating Committees and Landcare to name a few. Throughout Queensland, these groups operate locally to address a range of problematic issues in aid of improving contributions at all levels of catchment management. Other management initiatives such as the Rural Water Use Efficiency Initiative, already mentioned, also aim to achieve the best practice in irrigation water management. Recharge weirs and dams are also used throughout the State to increase the amount of surface water returning to the groundwater system.
Licensing systems of water management operate in Declared Groundwater Areas. The Government declares these areas and, will continue to, where there is competition for the available resource.
Queensland experiences extremes in climate and has a history of severe droughts and major flooding. With the possibility of drought lasting several years and high rainfall over short periods, there is a direct impact on the volume and reliability of supply of water in the State. In parts of Queensland west of the Great Dividing Range, there is a lack of suitable dam sites due to flat terrain and braided streams. Losses are high due to overland flow and high evaporation. Water management and infrastructure are therefore considered critical for ensuring the availability of reliable supplies of water in the future.
Localised management issues, such as salt water intrusion in coastal and sand island aquifers and leaching of pesticides and herbicides in agricultural areas also exist and vary between GMU's and regions, however aim at a common goal of maintaining long term sustainable supply in all areas.
Improvement of Queenslands rural water use, outlined earlier, aims to achieve better efficiency by:
- Adopting programs to improve water use efficiency on farms.
- Reduce water losses from storages on farms.
- Financial incentives to achieve best practice irrigation water management.
- Reducing water losses in irrigation water supply and distribution.
Management issues that are specific to the Great Artesian Basin GMU's include:
- Licensing of new bores with regard to satisfying State or Territory legislation and being consistent with all devised national policy frameworks, which implicate the entire GAB.
- Rehabilitation of all uncontrolled (ie. leaking and no headworks) bores.
- Replacement of all open bore drains with pipelines and promotion of increased distribution and use efficiency.
- Continuation of the present broad scale level of compliance and hydrologic monitoring.
All artesian bores are licensed, and at November 1998, 14% of bores were known to be uncontrolled, 54% were controlled or capped and the remaining 32% had unknown status.
Queensland's data and information is available by way of written reports, GIS data and data extracted from the Department of Natural Resources groundwater database. Overall the Sate has good coverage of monitoring and reporting of groundwater in GMU's. Unincorporated Areas (UA's), are in contrast to this generalisation on the basis that monitoring bores that fall exclusively within UA's are not designed to monitor these regional resources but rather those periphery to the GMU's.
Within Great Artesian Basin (GAB) GMU's are several issues concerning groundwater monitoring. Monitoring points are not dedicated and are generally not in static condition at the time of testing. Furthermore, the extent of the GAB, and residing water resource, limit the ability to assess or investigate groundwater in time series. There are no recorded allocations or abstractions for artesian bores limiting assessment to broadscale estimation.
Surface Water data gaps encountered commonly include:
- Limited information is available for water allocations, which do not form part of the WERD database. This includes allocations made under an Order in Council or Government Act. There is no centralised database for these allocations.
- No use data available for water users on unregulated streams.
- No use data available for Water Harvesting
- No diversion data available for private users who own their own headworks. eg. Local Authorities, Mining Companies and Industry.
- Little yield data available for privately owned storages.
Planning and development of the States water resources should be in accordance with the implementation of WAMP and WMP processes, improvements to rural water use and all critical industrial and regional development.
Specific to the future of the Great Artesian Basin, a GMU level of allocation planning or better is desired. Monitoring of abstraction quantities, salinity and water quality are expected to continue on a broad scale. Degree of licensing will continue unchanged and bore construction will be to minimum legislative requirements requiring a licensed driller. Reconditioning and controlling of all current bores is required where necessary.
Department of Natural Resources (Queensland), 1997. Water Allocation and Management Planning (booklet).
Department of Natural Resources (Queensland), 1999. Improving Queensland's rural water use efficiency, the fact (booklet).
Great Artesian Basin Consultative Council, 1998. Great Artesian Basin Resource Study.
Queensland Government, 1997. Water Infrastructure Task Force, Final Report, 28 February.
Queensland Department of Local Government and Planning, FNQ2010 Integrated Regional Strategies for Far North Queensland, Draft Report for Public Consultation, March 1998
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