Increased Allocations for Murray and Goulburn Systems on 1 October

Announcement Date: 1 Oct 2008
Next Announcement Due: 15 Oct 2008

Determination Data

Seasonal determinations for northern Victoria regulated river systems.

  High Reliability Water Share Change to High Reliability Water Share Comments
Murray 13% +7% -
Broken 0% 0% -
Goulburn 9% +5% -
Campaspe 0% 0% -
Loddon 0% 0% -
Bullarook Creek 0% 0% -

Further Information

Seasonal allocations for the Murray and Goulburn systems were increased in the 1 October 2008 update announced by Goulburn-Murray Water (G-MW) today. The Murray system now has an allocation of 13% of high-reliability water shares (HRWS) and the Goulburn system has 9% HRWS. All other northern Victorian water systems remain at zero allocation.

G-MW Acting Managing Director Ian Moorhouse welcomed the small improvements in the Murray and Goulburn systems, but warned that conditions are critically dry across northern Victoria. "Inflows have been very poor during September," said Mr Moorhouse. "The Murray system received some inflows from a rainfall event over a week ago, but the other systems have recorded very little rainfall or inflow. The September inflow totals for the water systems are well short of the long-term monthly average."

Mr Moorhouse continued, "The catchments are drying and inflows are declining. The lack of rainfall, together with recent higher temperatures and strong winds, is not a promising sign for the coming months. However, useful inflows are still possible during October."

"Orders for delivery of allocation in the Murray and Goulburn systems are increasing," said Mr Moorhouse. "With limited water available for operations, planners still have to look for the most efficient timing and volume for delivery. We are trying to balance customer service with maximum efficiency."

Supply in the other Northern Victorian Systems

The Broken, Campaspe, Loddon and Bullarook systems remained at zero allocation. "Supplying qualified essential needs is the priority for these systems," said Mr Moorhouse. "Operations are difficult with the very dry conditions in these catchments."

G-MW has committed to deliver carryover water in the Broken system until the end of October, and will extend this arrangement subject to improved availability of water. Opportunities to deliver carryover in the Campaspe and Loddon systems are limited. Customers in these systems should discuss their delivery requirements with their Diversion Inspector.

Outlook for the Coming Months

The allocation outlooks will be updated on 15 October 2008. Inflows in late September have been mostly consistent with the ‘Dry' scenario, which means that the outlook for allocations under the ‘Average' scenario will decline across the year unless there is significant improvement in inflows during the next two weeks. The previously announced ‘Average' outlook for 15 February 2009 was 57% HRWS in the Murray system and 53% HRWS in the Goulburn system.

The outlook for allocations under the ‘Dry' scenario is expected to remain similar or show slight improvement relative to the outlook released in mid-September.

The latest climate outlooks issued by the Bureau of Meteorology indicate no bias towards either wet or dry conditions between October and December, and an 80% chance of the mean maximum daily temperature being exceeded.

"Given the current conditions and predicted rainfall and temperature behaviour, we must conclude that the allocation outlooks for this season have deteriorated across all systems," warned Mr Moorhouse.

The seasonal allocations for northern Victorian water systems on Wednesday 1 October 2008 are: