Flows in the Broken River below Lake Nillahcootie are due to increase for a short period of time this month to improve habitat for native fish, aquatic plants and water bugs.
Goulburn Broken CMA’s Simon Casanelia said this would be the first time flow down the Broken River had been modified for environmental purposes.
“Summer was hot and dry, and much of the rain and run-off into the Broken River has been captured by dams and weirs,” Mr Casanelia said.
“Therefore, we are giving nature a helping hand and delivering water at this time of year (autumn) to mimic more natural flow conditions.”
Water that is being transferred to the Goulburn River for irrigation as well as water set aside for the environment will be used to increase the flow.
Flows below Lake Nillahcootie are planned to increase from April 9 and will peak about 300 ML/day (1.44 m) before slowly dropping back to current levels of around 80 ML/day (1.20m) by late April.
If it rains it is possible the timing and size of the environmental flows could change or be cancelled.
“Rainfall forecasts are regularly monitored by Goulburn-Murray Water and the delivery of water will reduce or stop if rainfall is expected to result in higher river flows,” Mr Casanelia said.
Environmental flows are planned by the Goulburn Broken CMA in consultation with the Victorian Environmental Water Holder, Commonwealth Environmental Water Office and managed by Goulburn-Murray Water in line with the Victorian Environmental Water Holder’s Seasonal Watering Plan 2017-18. Timing of the environmental flows takes into consideration delivery orders by irrigators and other water users and feedback from the community via the Goulburn Broken CMA’s environmental water advisory groups.
More information about environmental flows can be found here.