Wimmera lakes to receive more water: Walkers Lake, Lake Marma to benefit

Wimmera lakes will receive more water with GWMWater increasing the recreational water entitlement by almost 20 per cent. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

Wimmera lakes will receive more water with GWMWater increasing the recreational water entitlement by almost 20 per cent. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

A REVIEW into water sharing arrangements has recommended changes to recreational water supplies in the Wimmera.

The report recommends raising the recreational water entitlement by almost 20 per cent, from 2590 megalitres to 3090 megalitres.

Walkers Lake and Lake Marma will benefit from the increased entitlement, with GWMWater committing to their supply.

Walkers Lake will replace Lake Batyo Catyo as the recreational lake for Donald and St Arnaud.

Natimuk Lake will miss out on water supplied from the pipeline.

GWMWater managing director Mark Williams said he was confident community expectations would be able to be met in relation to access to recreational waterways.

"GWMWater has co-ordinated an exhaustive consultative process with bulk water entitlement holders, relevant stakeholders and the broader community to review the performance of the operating rules for managing the region's major water reservoirs since construction of the Wimmera-Mallee Pipeline," Mr Williams said.

"There was consensus among water entitlement holders that there were parts of the region serviced by the Wimmera-Mallee Pipeline where it was assumed that they would continue to have access to recreation water."

GWMWater spokeswoman Helen Friend said GWMWater customers paid a recreational water levy of $16 a year or $8 a year for concession card holders.

Green Lake will be reincorporated into the headworks system to assist with managing water quality.

The report found that Green Lake's water levels would be suitable for recreation for about 70 per cent of a calendar year.

Mr Williams said the recommendations represented a consensus.

"The Minister for Water Peter Walsh has acknowledged the work of entitlement holders and other stakeholders to arrive at a consensus position on the amendments required to better reflect the objectives of the Wimmera-Mallee Pipeline and protect access to water for consumptive users and the environment," he said.

"This will provide a win-win for all water users - we've made water available for recreation and the environment, and improved water quality, without impacting on the security of water entitlements."

The review also recommended increasing the maximum operating level of Rocklands Reservoir from 75 per cent to 85 per cent of its full supply level to increase water security.

The trigger for release to Lake Toolondo from Rocklands will remain unchanged.

The next review of entitlement operations is scheduled for 2019.

Smartphone
Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide
Desktop