The Murrumbidgee River is located within the Murray-Darling Drainage Division in southern New South Wales. Although the complete Murrumbidgee River catchment includes the regulated and unregulated areas within New South Wales and covers the entire Australian Capital Territory, only the regulated area was assessed for the water balance.
The Murrumbidgee River is a major tributary of the Murray River. It has several tributaries, including the Yass River, Tumut River, Kyeamba Creek, Hillas Creek, Tarcutta Creek and Jugiong Creek.
Intensive irrigation occurs within the Murrumbidgee River – Regulated WMA, including the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area and Coleambally Irrigation Area. There are two primary water storages in the area (Blowering and Burrinjuck Dams) and a further 6 major storages (above 1,000 ML in capacity). Major towns in the area include Wagga Wagga, Tumut, Narrandera, Leeton, Griffith, Hay, Balranald and Coleambally.
The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is the licensing authority and manages both surface and groundwater diversions for urban, commercial/industrial, irrigation and environmental purposes. The Murrumbidgee CMA is responsible for managing the native vegetation, soil and other natural resources in the catchment in conjunction with the local community, local government, industry and State Government. State Water manages the major water supply storages in New South Wales and supplies bulk water to the irrigation authorities, town water supply authorities, mines, electricity generators and other industry by releasing water from its dams into rivers to be accessed by downstream water users. State Water also delivers water for private irrigators and stock and domestic users and is responsible for delivering environmental flows, in accordance with rules as set out in NSW Water Sharing Plans, on regulated rivers in the state. Local councils treat the bulk water and deliver it to urban users in the major towns within the catchment (e.g. Riverina Water County Council supplies Wagga Wagga and the surrounding region). Local councils also manage the wastewater collection and treatment network (e.g. Wagga Wagga City Council for Wagga Wagga and the surrounding area). Both surface and groundwater resources are used for town water supplies in the Murrumbidgee River – Regulated WMA.
Figure 1 Murrumbidgee River - Regulated water management area locality map
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Murrumbidgee River - Regulated water management area locality map (2.0 Meg)
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Related Water Management Areas
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