The Nimmie-Caira Project

About the project

The $180 million Nimmie-Caira Project is a significant water saving project for NSW  and particularly for the Murrumbidgee region.

The Nimmie-Caira project area covers 84,417 ha in the lower reaches of the Murrumbidgee River floodplain (the Lowbidgee) between Maude and Balranald, South Western NSW (Figure 1). It is a vital component the Lowbidgee being the largest remaining area of wetlands in the Murrumbidgee Valley.

The project aims to balance the environmental and Aboriginal cultural heritage protection with commercial use so as to create an asset for the local community and the Murray Darling Basin.

There are five major components to this project being:

  • Land and water purchase. The project purchased 19 properties on the Nimmie-Caira floodplain, together with their share of the Lowbidgee Supplementary Water Entitlement (381,000 shares).
  • Water Savings to 'Bridge the Gap'. Water entitlement purchased from landholders transferred to the Commonwealth to help 'bridge the gap' to meeting Sustainable Diversion Limits.
  • Environmental Watering Plan. To document the demand for environmental water within and beyond the project area.
  • Long Term Land Management Plan. To outline how the area will be managed into the future with some land managed for Aboriginal cultural heritage and/or environmental values and other land managed for commercial use.
  • Reconfiguring the water delivery infrastructure. To enhance the delivery of environmental water to lands identified as having high ecological value.

Nimmie-Caira area as part of the Lowbidgee

Click on the map below to download a high resolution version.

Nimmie-Caira area as part of the Lowbidgee


The NSW and Australian Governments entered into a Funding Agreement and Project Schedule for the Nimmie-Caira Project committing to complete the project during 2018. The agreement outlines the objectives for the project and each government's responsibilities under the project.

Expressions of interest

There was a two-stage  tender process including Expression of Interest (EOI) and Proposal Development Request (PDR) for the South Western NSW Nimmie-Caira property. The tender period marked a significant milestone in the project, providing a unique opportunity to secure the long-term prosperity of the site.

An announcement of a successful non-government entity is expected in the first half of 2018.

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