Sunwater has prepared a fact sheet for Bundaberg Water Supply Scheme (WSS) customers and landholders adjacent to Sheep Station Creek to outline how water is shared in Fred Haigh Dam to supply both the Kolan River and Burnett River sub-schemes. Photo: File.
Sunwater has prepared a fact sheet for Bundaberg Water Supply Scheme (WSS) customers and landholders adjacent to Sheep Station Creek to outline how water is shared in Fred Haigh Dam to supply both the Kolan River and Burnett River sub-schemes. Photo: File.

EXPLAINED: Water transfer on cards if no rain in Paradise

Sunwater, like everyone else currently in drought, is " hoping for further rainfall in the coming months".

But if Paradise Dam doesn't receive any inflows soon, a water transfer may need to be undertaken.

A Sunwater spokesperson said water may need to be transferred from Fred Haigh Dam into the Burnett River Sub-scheme if further inflows to Paradise Dam don't transpire.

Under the Burnett Basin Water Plan, Fred Haigh Dam is designed to supply both the Kolan River and Burnett River sub-schemes.

"Up to 15 per cent of Fred Haigh Dam's capacity supplies water to the Burnett River Sub-scheme, with up to 85 per cent to the Kolan River Sub-scheme," the spokesperson said.

"This 15 per cent is always quarantined for use in the Burnett River Sub-scheme.

"A date for any possible transfer will be considered following customer meter reads for the January-March quarter.

"A transfer will not result in any change to announced allocations for this water year for either the Kolan or Burnett River sub-schemes."

Recent rainfall has slightly increased the current volume in Paradise.

According to Sunwater's online storage level data, at 9am Mach 22 the dam was at 30.60 per cent capacity, 52,151 ML.

The spokesperson said there was enough water within the Bundaberg Water Supply Scheme to meet allocations for the 2020-21 water year.

"Water allocations are set at the start of the water year and cannot decrease as dam capacity levels reduce.

"Should inflows occur however, allocations can increase - to a maximum of 100 per cent.

"Allocations for the next water year will be announced in July 2021.

"Sunwater is hoping for further rainfall in the coming months, particularly within catchments still experiencing dry conditions."

A Sunwater fact sheet about the Bundaberg Water Supply Scheme - Fred Haigh Capacity Share has been released.

This document outlines that while this transfer is not made regularly, it has happened before.

It states: transfers from Fred Haigh Dam have only been made on very few occasions since Paradise Dam was built (but occurred regularly prior to that under earlier operating rules).

According to the document, a transfer would not result in any change to announced allocations for this water year for either sub-scheme.

If a transfer goes ahead, the document states water would likely be pumped from Fred Haigh Dam via Monduran pump station, into the Gin Gin Main Channel.

It further reads, water is then diverted into Sheep Station Creek; this natural watercourse then traverses a number of private properties into the ponded area of Ned Churchward Weir on the Burnett River.

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