The Natural Resources Access Regulator (NRAR) is now inspecting agricultural operations on the Hawkesbury River to find out their level of compliance with water laws.
The NRAR’s Director Water Regulation (East) Greg Abood, said during the five-month campaign his officers will determine the level of compliance with water laws by checking water-take plant and equipment and how water take is monitored.
“Our compliance activity ensures our precious resource is shared fairly amongst all water users and with the environment. We know that fair water use is very important to the community and industry.
“Using a proactive and systematic approach when regulating water take prevents unlawful water take incidents and ensures a level playing field in the industry, which benefits all water users and the environment,” he said.
The NRAR selects properties to be inspected using local knowledge, satellite imagery, water accounting records and compliance history. During inspections, NRAR authorised officers will be available to answer questions about the water laws.
“Our work will give us a better understanding of the level of compliance with water laws. We will use it to make sure water take is legal,” Mr Abood said.
“At the end of the campaign we will openly share the findings, and any actions that come from this work, with peak industry bodies, water-user associations, the community and the broader public.”
The NRAR is an independent, transparent and effective regulator that enforces compliance with water management legislation in NSW and prevents water theft.
Compared with the 12 months prior to its establishment in April 2018, the NRAR has issued three times as many penalty notices and four times as many directions to remove unlawful water management works.