Draft replacement of the Water Sharing Plan for the Greater Metropolitan Region Unregulated River Water Sources

Greater Metropolitan Region river water source

Recent flooding in the Greater Metropolitan Region

Some communities in the Metro region are recovering from their second flood in a year. It is not appropriate for us to engage with these flood-effected communities, at this time. We will seek the feedback of these communities at a later date, on the proposed changes to the rules that may affect their access to water.

The department made the following three changes to the approach to developing the replacement water sharing plan, acknowledging that flood effected communities can’t provide their views at this time:

  • Information sessions in Picton, Penrith and Windsor were cancelled as it is not appropriate to engage with stakeholders in these areas just now.
  • The public exhibition period was extended to allow stakeholders additional time to comment on the proposed changes outlined in the draft replacement water sharing plan.
  • Changes were limited in areas that are heavily affected by flooding.

Limiting changes where communities are heavily flood impacted

The department has undertaken an assessment of the potential effect of the proposed changes to the water sharing rules in flood affected areas across the Greater Metropolitan region. Based on that assessment the replacement plan will only include limited changes in the Hawkesbury Nepean Extraction Management Unit and the Nattai River, Stonequarry Creek and Maldon Weir Water Sources in the Upper Nepean and Upstream Warragamba Extraction Management Unit.

Any rules relating to people’s access to water, including rules relating to boundary changes and trade will stay the same as they are at present. With the intent of the rules set out in the current 2011 water sharing plan maintained in the 2023 replacement plan.

An amendment clause will be included in the replacement plan that allows these boundary changes, access and trade rules to be introduced in the future, during the life of the replacement water sharing plan. These changes will be consulted on when it is appropriate to engage with flood effected communities.

To find more information on which rules would stay the same and be consulted on during the life of the plan, see the fact sheet Consultation approach for flood effected areas in the Water Sharing Plans for the Greater Metropolitan Region (PDF, 162.12 KB).

We hope the community is staying safe in these difficult times.

If you are flood-affected

The NSW Government provides financial relief and support following a natural disaster. You can find out more by using the Disaster Assistance Finder – an online questionnaire that will provide a personalised list of available programs and services.

You can find more information on the Service NSW website about the range of support available to disaster-affected communities.

Public exhibition of the draft replacement Water Sharing Plan for the Greater Metropolitan Region Unregulated Water Sources 2023 was held from Monday, 27 June to Sunday, 21 August 2022 and has now closed.

The water sharing plan establishes rules for water management including the limit of the total volume of water that can be extracted from the unregulated water sources in the Greater Metropolitan region.

Water sharing plans are subject to review every 10 years under the Water Management Act 2000. The current 2011 water sharing plan for the Greater Metropolitan Region Unregulated River Water Sources is nearing expiry and a draft replacement plan has been prepared

The community consultation period provides opportunities for water users, stakeholders and other interested parties to learn more about the proposed changes in the draft replacement plan, and to make a submissions and comment on the draft.

Feedback and issues raised during the public exhibition phase will be considered when finalising the plan.

The replacement plan must commence by Friday, 1 July 2023.

Stakeholders can still:

If you require assistance reading these documents, please contact 1300 081 047 or water.enquiries@dpie.nsw.gov.au.

If you are in an area heavily effected by floods (including all water sources in the Hawkesbury and Lower Nepean Rivers Extraction Management Unit and the Nattai River, Stonequarry Creek and Maldon Weir Water Sources in the Upper Nepean and Upstream Warragamba Extraction Management Unit) then we will come back and talk to you later about rules relating to boundary changes, access and trade.

The replacement plan will retain the intent of these rules in the current 2011 water sharing plan and include amendment clauses to allow for boundary changes, access and trade rule changes to be introduced in the future, during the life of the replacement plan. These changes will be consulted on when it is appropriate to engage with flood effected communities.

Recorded presentations

These recorded presentations outline the proposed water sharing changes in each Extraction Management Unit.

The Upper Nepean and Upstream Warragamba presentation has not been amended to reflect the approach to limit change in areas heavily affected by flooding and contains all proposed changes. A presentation has not been provided for the Hawkesbury and Lower Nepean Rivers Extraction Management Unit as the rules in this area will be largely retained. The Department will consult on any proposed changes when it is appropriate to engage with flood effected communities.

Additional presentations on the rollout of the NSW Non-Urban Water Metering Framework and the Aboriginal Water Strategy have also been provided

Public information sessions

Engagement activities included webinars and face to face information sessions.

LocationDescription Register for event
Webinar – Surface Water Tuesday, 28 June 2022
5:00 pm – 6:30 pm
Watch the recorded webinar
Sydney city Thursday, 30 June 2022
231 Elizabeth Street,
Sydney CBD
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Session has concluded
Goulburn Information session
Tuesday, 19 July 2022
Goulburn Soldiers Club
15 Market Street, Goulburn
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Session has concluded
Bowral Information session
Wednesday, 20 July 2022
Bowral Bowling Club,
40 Shepherd Street, Bowral
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Session has concluded
Camden Information session Session cancelled due to recent flooding
Windsor Information session Session cancelled due to recent flooding
Braidwood Information session
Tuesday, 26 July 2022
Braidwood Servicemens Club,
Coronation Avenue, Braidwood
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Session has concluded
Nowra Information session
Wednesday, 27 July 2022
Nowra Golf Club
85 Fairway Drive, Nowra North
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Session has concluded
Kangaroo Valley Information session
Thursday, 28 July 2022
Kangaroo Valley Showground,
179 Moss Vale Rd, Kangaroo Valley
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Session has concluded
Wollongong Information session
Friday, 29 July 2022
WIN Sports and Entertainment Centres,
Corner of Crown and Harbour Street, Wollongong
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Session has concluded
Lithgow Information session
Tuesday, 2 August 2022
Lithgow Workies Club,
3-7 Tank Street, Lithgow
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Session has concluded
Katoomba Information session
Wednesday, 3 August 2022
Katoomba RSL,
86 Lurline Street, Katoomba
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Session has concluded
Penrith Information sessionSession cancelled due to recent flooding
Parramatta Information Session
Friday, 5 August 2022
4 Parramatta Square
Darcy and Macquarie Streets, Parramatta
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Session has concluded
Webinar Information session
Wednesday, 10 August 2022
4:30 pm – 6:30 pm 
Watch the recorded webinar