Evaluation confirms Jurien and Arrowsmith water limits
Released 11 Jul 2012
An evaluation of the Midwest's groundwater resources has confirmed no change to water allocation limits across key groundwater areas.
Department of Water Executive Director Science and Planning Greg Davis said despite an increase in Midwest water demand and licences, water remained available from most aquifers in the Midwest areas of Jurien and Arrowsmith.
"In the Arrowsmith area, which extends north to Geraldton, south to Morrison and east to Three Springs, demand increased due to water for mining and industry," Mr Davis said.
"In the Jurien area, spanning south of Morrison and east to Moora, there was a small decrease in the volume of water licensed.
"Water is still generally available from all the Jurien subareas, including high use resources Watheroo, Nambung and Dinner Hill, where water is more than 70 per cent allocated."
The Jurien area had a total allocation limit of 94.6 gigalitres (GL) and 189.25 GL was set for the Arrowsmith area.
There was no over-allocation of any resources.
In Jurien, 0.82 GL was recouped and made available for re-allocation while 1.3 GL was re-allocated in the Arrowsmith area.
One licence was issued for 5.5 GL/year from Arrowsmith's Tathra subarea (Parmelia aquifer) for transport outside the subarea for mining and industrial purposes.
Currently, 11.3 GL is available for licensing from this aquifer.
Evaluation statements for the Jurien groundwater allocation plan and the Arrowsmith groundwater allocation plan are available on the Department of Water website www.water.wa.gov.au. The evaluations investigated the extent to which the allocation plan objectives were met from August 2010, when the plans were released, to August 2011.
Mr Davis said evaluation confirmed the department is on track to meet its water allocation goals for the Jurien and Arrowsmith groundwater areas.
"Current abstraction is sustainable at a regional scale.
"The department will continue to closely monitor the effects of reduced recharge and abstraction, and adapt its management accordingly to protect licensed users and water dependent ecological values."
Contact: Peter Collins
Phone: (08) 6364 6848 / 0434 603 441