What we heard

The following regional water strategies were on public exhibition in 2020-21. Feedback received during the public exhibition process has been used to refine and focus the strategies and the options that will be shortlisted for further investigation. The NSW Water Strategy addresses issues raised in the feedback that are consistent across the state.

  1. Spectacular view of Ebor Falls, NSW.

    Aboriginal engagement

    The Regional Water Strategies Workshops have been held in Namoi, North Coast, Far North Coast, South Coast, Border Rivers, Lachlan, Gwydir, and Macquarie-Castlereagh regions through late 2020 and early 2021. Key themes that emerged during this consultation included Aboriginal people’s water rights and Aboriginal knowledge and connection to Country.

  2. Namoi River in Walgett, New South Wales. Image courtesy of Destination New South Wales

    Namoi Regional Water Strategy

    On public exhibition from 3 March until 16 May 2021, this strategy considers current and future water needs and water security risks. Over 120 stakeholders participated in the engagement program and 39 formal submissions were received. Key themes that emerged during this consultation include water security, inclusion of Aboriginal water rights, interests and access to water, groundwater management and quality, climate conditions and change, ecosystems, river health and connectivity, and sustainable allocation and water sharing.

  3. Mann River near Cangai, New South Wales. Image courtesy of Destination New South Wales.

    North Coast Regional Water Strategy

    On public exhibition from 3 March until 16 May, this strategy considers water supply, reliability and security for over 300,000 people. Over 100 stakeholders participated in the engagement program and 52 formal submissions were received. Key themes that emerged during this consultation include water quality, river health and ecosystems, climate change, Aboriginal people’s water rights, interests and access to water, managing increasing demand from different users, water conservation, reuse and recycling new and existing infrastructure and data collections for compliance and enforcement.

  4. Brunswick River at Brunswick Heads Nature Reserve in New South Wales.

    Far North Coast Regional Water Strategy

    On public exhibition from 30 October until 13 December 2020, this strategy considers water supply, reliability and security for a growing population. More than 70 stakeholders participated in the engagement program and 245 formal submissions were received. Key themes that emerged during this consultation include Aboriginal knowledge and connection to Country, water infrastructure, water security, flooding and flood mitigation, and groundwater.

  5. Carama Inlet northern shores of Jervis Bay in New South Wales.

    South Coast Regional Water Strategy

    On public exhibition from 30 October until 13 December 2020, this strategy considers water supply, reliability and security including water quality. A wide range of stakeholders participated in the engagement program and 12 formal submissions were received. Key themes that emerged during this consultation include water security, Aboriginal knowledge and connection to Country, environmental and ecosystem health, and climate change and data modelling.

  6. Macintyre River in Kwiambal National Park, New South Wales.

    Border Rivers Regional Water Strategy

    On public exhibition from 20 October until 13 December 2020, this strategy considers water supply, reliability and security in flood and drought. One hundred and sixty stakeholders participated in the engagement program and 42 formal submissions were received. Key themes that emerged during this consultation include using the new climate data, environmental health and connectivity, Aboriginal water rights and connection to Country, entitlement reliability and risk management, new and existing water infrastructure, strategic land use and water planning, and inter-jurisdictional water management.

  7. Lachlan River in Condobolin, New South Wales. Image courtesy of Destination New South Wales.

    Lachlan Regional Water Strategy

    On public exhibition from 25 September until 13 December 2020, this strategy considers water supply, reliability and security in flood and drought. More than 60 stakeholders participated in the engagement program and 66 formal submissions were received. Key themes that emerged during this consultation include climate and modelling, new and existing water infrastructure, town water security and water-related amenities, Aboriginal water rights and connection to Country, entitlement reliability and risk management, environmental health and connectivity, and groundwater.

  8. Mehi River in Moree, New South Wales.

    Gwydir Regional Water Strategy

    On public exhibition from 25 September until 13 December 2020, this strategy considers urban water needs, reliable water supply and the environment. Over 50 stakeholders participated in the engagement program and 32 formal submissions were received. Key themes that emerged during this consultation include climate and modelling, Aboriginal water rights and connection to Country, environmental health and connectivity, new and existing water infrastructure, groundwater, and entitlement reliability and risk management.

  9. Macquarie River in Dubbo, New South Wales. Image courtesy of Destination New South Wales.

    Macquarie-Castlereagh Regional Water Strategy

    On public exhibition from 25 September until 13 December 2020, this strategy considers urban water needs, reliability and security in drought. Over 90 stakeholders participated in the engagement program and 56 formal submissions were received. Key themes that emerged during this consultation include water security, groundwater, climate and modelling, Aboriginal knowledge and cultural heritage, entitlement reliability and risk management, new and existing infrastructure, and environmental and ecosystem health.