Transition to Water Infrastructure NSW
Responsibility for the development and delivery of the Lostock Dam to Glennies Creek Dam Pipeline project transitioned from WaterNSW to the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment’s Water Infrastructure NSW, which is a division of the Water Group on 1 July 2021.
For project continuity, previous WaterNSW project specific contact points (i.e. email and phone numbers) are being forwarded.
About the project
Currently in the initial planning stages, the proposed Lostock Dam to Glennies Creek Dam Pipeline project (the pipeline) aims to enhance water security and reliability within the current system and support improved drought resilience and water connectivity in the Upper Hunter catchment.
The proposed pipeline package of works includes:
- a new two-way water transfer pipeline between the Lostock Dam and Glennies Creek Dam. Depending on the preferred route, the pipeline may be between 22 and 34 kilometres long
- a new pumping station located upstream of Lostock Dam wall comprising submersible pumps and large booster pumps within the station
- a new pumping station located at Glennies Creek Dam (it’s location will be dependent on the route taken)
- a submerged pipe and diffuser discharge arrangement below the water surface at each dam
- electricity transmission and road infrastructure improvements.
Why the project is needed
The Greater Hunter Regional Water Strategy identifies water security as the primary economic risk facing the Upper Hunter region.
The proposed pipeline will make the best use of current dam infrastructure and catchment rainfall by transferring water from the Lostock area in times of high yield and storing it in Glennies Creek Dam for use in dry periods.
This will improve reliability for water users supplied by the two dams and will also reduce the demand on nearby Glenbawn Dam.
The proposed pipeline will benefit the Greater Hunter region by:
- increasing water availability
- improving water reliability and supply to existing and future industries and towns
- providing long-term regional water security in response to the effects of climate change
- increasing the regions drought resilience.
Water Infrastructure NSW is currently preparing a Final Business Case (the business case) for the proposed pipeline.
Its development will involve a range of technical, environmental, cultural heritage and economic studies as well as comprehensive engagement with stakeholders and community members.
The business case is expected to take approximately two years to develop, after which time the NSW Government will decide whether to proceed to construction.
WaterNSW remain the owner and operator of the Lostock Dam and Glennies Creek Dam. Water Infrastructure NSW will work closely with WaterNSW and Hunter Water during the preparation of the business case to ensure all potential project benefits and impacts are considered.
Water Infrastructure NSW is committed to building and maintaining respectful, trusted and collaborative relationships with our communities and stakeholders to ensure water infrastructure projects achieve the best possible outcomes.
We believe in engagement with real, tangible and practical outcomes enabling our communities to work in partnership to deliver projects realising a wide range of benefits with minimal disruption.
Opportunities for broad community feedback on the proposed pipeline, including feedback from Traditional Owners and Aboriginal communities, will be provided in the coming months and will continue throughout the life of the project.
For more information about the proposed pipeline or to enquire about any of the project activities email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1300 081 email@example.com
How will the proposed pipeline be operated during times of drought? What is the impact of future droughts on reliability within the Paterson River and Glennies Creek systems?
The proposed pipeline will make the best use of the available infrastructure and catchment rainfall. It will allow water to be captured when available and stored in Glennies Creek Dam to be drawn on as needed in dry periods.
Additional water modelling will be a critical component of the business case. These investigations will assist in understanding potential impacts during times of drought and will assess the potential impacts of climate change and climate variability on water availability.
These investigations will help to further realise the potential project benefits and assist in understanding how best to operate the system in drought.
The business case will also investigate potential operating rules and how we can optimise the pipeline under drought circumstances.
A working group will be established for the projects to specifically assess and develop operating rules and plans. This will also include discussions about how Water Sharing Plan rules can support improvements to reliability across the system.
How will environmental and cultural heritage impacts be assessed?
Additional studies including a range of ecological, floodplain and waterway surveys, along with cultural heritage assessments, will be required as we progress the business case. This will indicate the planning approval pathway required and will inform the type of environmental investigations and management plans required for the project.
During cultural heritage assessments, sites or artefacts of cultural significance may be identified on freehold land. Local Land Services provide comprehensive information on the steps taken upon discovery of a site or object, and the legislative requirements and support available to landholders.
Who is responsible for delivering the Lostock Dam to Glennies Creek Dam business case?
Water infrastructure NSW is the proponent responsible for developing the business case for the proposed pipeline. Once complete, Water Infrastructure NSW will submit the business case to Infrastructure NSW for assessment. Construction of the project will then be subject to a funding decision from the NSW Government.
What are the proposed operating rules for the project? When will water be transferred via the pipeline?
The purpose of the proposed pipeline is to maintain reliability within the current system and will enable the two-way transfer of water into any future Paterson River Offtake.
The business case will investigate a range of operational scenarios to determine how the pipeline can best deliver benefits to Paterson and Hunter water users.
Who will pay for the cost of the new pipeline if built
The final business case currently being prepared by Water Infrastructure NSW, is required to undergo a rigorous economic assessment as part of the submission process. This includes reviewing a range of financing and funding options for the project.
What are the impacts on the Paterson Tidal Pool?
Impacts on the existing tidal pool and access to the pool will be investigated as part of the business case.
There is the potential to create a reserve of water in Lostock Dam for salinity management and this will be considered in the development of the business case and, if required, future reviews of the relevant Water Sharing Plans.