Managing water resources during extreme dry conditions

Guy Barnett,Minister for Primary Industries and Water

The Gutwein majority Liberal Government is taking action to ensure water resources are managed responsibly during extreme dry conditions to minimise hardship for farmers and protect the environment.

Today I am declaring that the Water Resource Management Extreme Dry Policy should apply to the North-East region of Tasmania, comprising the Pipers, Little Forester, Brid, Great Forester, Ringarooma, Ansons and George rivers.

Water is the lifeblood of our farms and this Government is unashamedly putting farming families and rural communities first when it comes to accessing it.

The Policy provides improved opportunities for trading of stored water and the movement of this water to where it can be best used.

It is a transparent set of provisions that provide for more flexibility in how and when cease-to-take restrictions are applied on a catchment by catchment and case by case basis.

It means that in some catchments farmers may have access to a share of small amounts of remaining licensed water for longer than they otherwise would have until restrictions kick in.

This measure also helps protect water for critical human and stock use and significant environmental assets during periods of low rainfall and river flows.

The Tasmanian Government is standing side-by-side with our farmers, and together we are working towards the best water management for our state.

The Department continues to regularly assess the environmental conditions for if the policy can be triggered in other regions.

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