A NSW Government website

About us

How water is managed

We work to ensure there is an equitable and transparent approach to the management of NSW water now and for future generations.

An aerial view of Menindee Lakes.

Water is one of our most valuable natural assets. We have a responsibility to the people of NSW to ensure we have an equitable and transparent approach to the management of our water now and for future generations.

We manage water to:

  • support jobs, economic growth, the environment, and our health and wellbeing
  • deliver efficient services with a focus on innovation, performance and affordability
  • improve the health of waterways and their catchments to support our environmental, social, cultural and economic needs and values
  • support the sustainable use of and access to water
  • enable farmers and all water users to achieve and improve water efficiency with the available water, while supporting regional communities to adjust to a changing climate
  • plan infrastructure that secures water supply and increases drought resilience across our communities
  • support the wellbeing of rural and regional communities who enjoy the recreational benefits our regional waterways provide.

Who’s who in NSW water management

Local, state and federal agencies all play a part in managing water in NSW.

Water management, Alpine Way Kosciuszko National Park

Ensuring water is equitable and fair for everyone

The NSW Government has built a compliance and enforcement regime that ensures strong and certain regulations for water in the state.

Bellinger River on the mid-north coast.

Roles and Responsibilities Agreement

Learn how the Department of Planning and Environment - Water, WaterNSW and the Natural Resources Access Regulator work together.

Snowy environmental flows.

Independent review of water management and compliance

The department received Ken Matthews’ final report into water management and compliance in NSW.

The Darling River from Wetherell Lake regulator.