A NSW Government website

Drought recovery

Drought information

Information about our public drop-in sessions.

Information sessions during 2019 and 2020

During 2019 and 2020, the department together with WaterNSW, held a series of public information session across drought affected areas of the state. These sessions provided an update on water availability, climatic trends and storage levels. Sessions also covered how the NSW Government managed risks during drought, including ensuring water reliability and managing water quality.


Drought affected communities in regional NSW asked us to do a better job sharing information, including people in decisions and taking action.  From February 2019 we have:

Provided more information on:

  • Drought updates
  • Allocations and trade
  • Environmental water
  • Restrictions and their justifications
  • Carryover
  • Groundwater allocations
  • Water sharing plan suspensions
  • Options and assistance for water users

Included more people in decisions through:

  • Expanding Critical Water Advisory Panels and publishing communiques from the meetings
  • New River Operations Consultation Committees
  • Engaging on temporary water restrictions
  • Working more closely with Councils
  • Continuing our public drought information sessions

Taken action to:

  • Protect small flows in the northern basin
  • Restrict carryover in severely affected valleys
  • Reassess capacity of near-empty storages
  • Secure and fast track approvals of emergency water infrastructure for rural towns
  • Permit some trade of water from NSW Murray towns when Menindee Lakes is low
  • Assess and consult on a range of drought management measures
  • Fast track approval processes for emergency and longer term water supply options