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Regional water strategies in New South Wales

Sustainable and integrated water resource management for the benefit of present and future generations

As part of the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment's program of investment and reform, we are preparing new regional water strategies that will bring together the best and latest climate evidence with a wide range of tools and solutions to plan and manage the water needs in each NSW region over the next 20-40 years.

Led by the department, we are preparing 12 regional water strategies in partnership with water service providers, local councils, communities, Aboriginal people and other stakeholders across NSW.

We will be working with communities to ensure local and traditional knowledge informs the strategies and that long-term water strategies serve regional communities, including Aboriginal people, the environment and industry.

The final strategies developed over 2020, 2021 and 2022 will be adaptive, with inbuilt review processes to ensure each region has an effective and relevant strategy in place for future water management.

Outlining our approach to the sustainable and integrated management of water resources of the State for the benefit of both present and future generations.

Download PDF (3.5 MB)

The water strategy regions are:

  • Greater Hunter
  • Macquarie-Castlereagh
  • Lachlan
  • Gwydir
  • Far North Coast
  • Border Rivers
  • North Coast
  • South Coast
  • Namoi
  • Western
  • Murrumbidgee
  • Murray
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Regional water strategies bring together the most up to date information and evidence with all the tools we have – policy, planning, behavioural, regulatory, technology and infrastructure solutions – in an integrated package that is based on the best evidence and that balances the needs of different water users and delivers the right amount of water, at the right time, to people and businesses across NSW.

A key objective of the regional water strategies is to recognise and protect Aboriginal water rights, access to water, and heritage assets. We welcome your thoughts and ideas on the regional water strategies.

What we heard

Regional Water Strategies previously on public exhibition and what we’ve heard so far.

Public exhibitions

Your feedback, alongside other engagement, continued research and further analysis, will help us make sure our strategies improve the security, reliability, quality and resilience of the state’s water resources.

Upcoming public exhibitions

Work is underway on all strategies with public exhibitions planned in 2022.

Objectives of regional water strategies

Regional water strategies will set out a long-term ‘roadmap’ of actions to deliver five objectives.

Development of regional water strategies

We are working to improve the resilience of our water resources for communities, the environment and industry.

New climate data and modelling

We are using the best available evidence including new climate data and updated modelling.

Identifying and assessing strategy options

We have developed a decision-making process to help identify options that meet our objectives.

Community engagement

We are working with local councils, water service providers, Aboriginal people and other stakeholders.

Objectives and principles for engaging with Aboriginal people

We are working with an Aboriginal advisory group to co-develop an approach for engaging Aboriginal communities.