Following the implementation of moderate water restrictions across the Mid Coast region this week, the community has responded with frustration, with some commenting that restrictions could have been avoided if earlier action had been taken.
MidCoast Council’s director of water services, Brendan Guiney has shed some light on the current state of the regions water supply.
Mr Guiney said while the demand for water can reduce by 3 to 5ML/day after the tourist season, this varies greatly in any year.
“This year tourist demand was down, while the demand from permanent population was up due to the dry weather, meaning a less noticeable reduction in demand after the tourist season,” he said.
“The outside showers at the beaches are run off town water,” Mr Guiney said.
“Although usage is highly visible, since the installation of spring loaded tapware by council the actual water usage is not as significant as it used to be.
“The water used in showering at beaches is somewhat offset by people then not showering at home.”
Mr Guiney said currently the water supply for the Forster Tuncurry area, along with the Manning, is drawn from the Manning River via the Bootawa Water Treatment Plant.
“MidCoast Water Services is currently constructing a $34.6 million scheme to utilise an aquifer at Nabiac,” he added.
“You can find more information about this at http://www.midcoastwater.com.au/site/nabiacwtp.”
“Our key trigger for water restrictions is river flow,” he explained.
“As an example, the Manning River only dropped below the level where we couldn’t pump on January 23.
“Prior this point in time, Bootawa Dam was at 100% and water restrictions would not be meaningful.”
Mr Guiney said stated that rates wouldn’t go up on a short term basis.
“In the long term, MidCoast Water Services is investing in projects like the Nabiac Inland Dune Aquifer Water Supply which does increase water prices but improves water security for the Manning Great Lakes region,” he said.
For more information, visit www.midcoastwater.com.au/restrictions for full details of the moderate - level one- restrictions and any changes to restriction levels.