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Water Planning for Sydney
Water planning for Sydney

Water for people and water for the environment

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River health

Protecting greater Sydney's rivers, aquifers and catchments is essential for a healthy environment as well as for recreation, business and tourism. The main focus of Metropolitan Water Plan initiatives in this area is environmental flows.

The dams for greater Sydney have been built specifically to capture water that can be used for supply to people. Recognising the importance of maintaining some flows down stream has resulted in major works to modify dams and weirs to allow for these environmental flow releases.

Improving and protecting the quality of water in the rivers both upstream and downstream of major water reservoirs is important both for drinking water supply and for maintaining and improving river health. 

An environmental flow is water released from a dam or weir, or left in the river, to improve the health of the river downstream.

Under the Water Management Act 2000, the NSW Government has developed draft water sharing plans for surface and groundwater sources for greater Sydney.