About the Yanco Creek system projects

The Yanco Creek system links two of Australia’s largest rivers, the Murrumbidgee and Murray, through over 800 km of interconnected waterways, including Yanco Creek, Colombo Creek, Billabong Creek and Forest Creek.

There are two projects proposed for the Yanco Creek system:

  • Improved Flow Management Works at the Yanco Creek offtake
  • Modernising Supply systems for effluent creeks

Improved flow management works at the Yanco Creek offtake

The project is designed to allow environmental flows to be more efficiently delivered downstream Narrandera, which contains the largest remaining area of wetlands in the Murrumbidgee Valley and supports significant waterbird and native fish populations. The proposal includes a regulator to enable a larger proportion of river flows to pass downstream in the Murrumbidgee River, rather than Yanco Creek. The proposed new fishway at the regulator will also improve fish passage between Gogeldrie and Berembed weirs, whilst flows continue to Yanco Creek.

Modernising supply systems for effluent creeks

The project will modernise the supply arrangements within the Yanco Creek system. Current arrangements involve high flows down lengthy creek systems which result in significant water losses, poor levels of service and disrupted ecosystem functionality. The project identifies a series of controls and alternative supply arrangements to meet the same level of supply demand with lower losses. The resulting outcome is expected to be the delivery of equivalent environmental outcomes as proposed in the Murray-Darling Basin Plan, but with less water.

To aid in the successful delivery, a real-time river management system known as Computer Aided River Management (CARM) will be implemented to enable the effective delivery of water for river operators.

Outcomes

Improved flow management works at the Yanco Creek offtake:

  • Seeks to target higher flows for the mid-Murrumbidgee floodplain wetlands during rainfall and/or environmental watering events.

Modernising supply systems for effluent creeks works:

  • Seeks to improve the delivery of water up to 480 licensees along multiple creeks

Community engagement

The project stakeholder and community engagement plan outlines how the project team will collaborate with the community to design and implement the best possible project.

Advisory groups have been established with representatives from key stakeholders, traditional owners, property owners and the local community. The groups will inform decision-making throughout the project. Over the next two to three years, advisory group members will have the opportunity to inform water modelling, project options decision making, social, cultural and environmental impact assessments, design specifications and costings and operating rule development for both Yanco Creek projects

Engagement has also commenced with local Aboriginal representatives from communities along the Yanco Creek System and neighbouring Murrumbidgee, Murray and Edward Rivers. It will be on-going throughout the project.

Modelling

Water modelling will be fundamental to validating project feasibility, through considering designs, outcomes, costs and impacts, prior to commencing the design, submission and approval process. It is particularly important in understanding how a site-specific structure, such as a weir or fish ladder, will perform under various conditions.

More information