Licensing and approvals

Licensing

Responsibilities for granting and managing water licences and approvals are split between the NRAR and WaterNSW. The NRAR is responsible for water access licences and associated approvals required by or for:

  • government agencies, including other NSW government agencies, local councils and the Commonwealth
  • state owned corporations
  • major water utilities, water supply authorities, and local water utilities
  • licensed network operators under the Water Industry Competition Act 2006
  • mining companies
  • irrigation corporations
  • Aboriginal communities and businesses
  • floodplain harvesting
  • major developments (state significant developments and state significant infrastructure)
  • schools and hospitals.

WaterNSW is responsible for water access licences and associated approvals required by:

  • rural landholders
  • rural industries
  • developments which are not state significant development or state significant infrastructure.

Visit application forms and guides for more information.

Approvals

The NRAR is responsible for all controlled activity approvals for work carried out in, on or beside rivers, lakes and estuaries. Read the Guidelines for controlled activities on waterfront land.

Visit controlled activities for further information and applications form.