Flagstaff water managers urge Government to keep water conservation on the up

The flagstaff water authority has called on the Government to maintain its water conservation policies and ensure that people are getting as much value from their water as possible.

The Waters Protection and Enforcement Authority (WPRA) is urging the Government “to maintain the existing water conservation strategies” in light of the current drought and the impact that the drought has had on water supplies.

A recent report commissioned by the Authority suggested a “conservative” water conservation strategy was required to “keep the system stable” during the current severe drought.

Key points: Flagstaff Water Authority says water conservation is important for people, businesses and the environment, but the current water management is “not sustainable”The Authority says “water conservation should be seen as a strategic and long-term asset to local communities”The authority says “it is not feasible” to maintain “the current water conservation policy”The WPAA is one of the largest water users in the NT and the NT Council has been forced to step in to help the authority cope with the water shortage.

It said a water conservation scheme could be “more sustainable” than a “more aggressive” strategy.

“We have no choice but to take water conservation actions, whether they be targeted to specific users or to all users,” the Authority said in a statement.

“We urge the Government [to] continue to engage with us in a strategic manner to keep the system operating smoothly.”

The WPI has previously called for a “strategic water management strategy” to protect the Territory’s water supply, with a focus on water use, water quality and conservation.

In a recent report, the authority estimated that “up to 90 per cent of water usage” in the Territory was being used for private and agricultural purposes, including irrigation, agricultural production, waste disposal and residential use.

This included “a high degree of use” for the irrigation industry, and for the mining industry.

As well as the agriculture sector, water conservation was “increasingly seen as an important part of the NT’s future water security”, the report said.

Water conservation is key to NT’s water security strategy, the WPAAs statement said.

“It is imperative that water conservation be seen to be a strategic asset to the local communities and that it be managed with a view to sustainable water use.”

Our recommendations to the Government include maintaining the current policies that will provide water quality, water storage and water quality management.