Water security the key for authority

Water security heading into what is shaping up as a dry summer continues to be the key focus for Grampians Wimmera Mallee Water.

Responding to questions raised about water allocations in a letter from the Lake Lonsdale Action Group, the authority has maintained its commitment to ensuring communities have access firstly to quality water for consumption and where possible, for the purposes of recreation.

GWM Water spokeswoman, Helen Friend, said the authority was still fighting against the elements, given the continued dry spell across the region.

"Even though we have had reasonable rainfall, we have still received well below the average inflows into the headworks system," Ms Friend said.

"If you take the 2010 and 2011 floods out of the equation, the dry sequence we have experienced over many years is continuing.

"We need to take that into account and look at water security going forward."

Some of the concerns raised by Lake Lonsdale Action Group president Ray Howard in his letter to the authority, centred around water allocations being made to Green Lake near Horsham.

Mr Howard questioned whether or not the allocations made to Green Lake had been due to a directive from the state government, or a private arrangement between GWM Water and the Green Lake Action Group.

Ms Friend said every action taken by GWM Water had been in line with the operating rules that are in place.

"We need to make sure that water is stored in the most efficient and sustainable reservoirs within the system," Ms Friend said.

"Water quality is also important and we need to ensure the quality is maintained for consumption.

"There are operating rules in place for the region's storages and everything we do in terms of water releases, is in line with the operating rules.

"While we are focusing on water security and water quality going forward, we are also mindful of the need to sustain recreational opportunities for communities.

"We are confident we can sustain Lake Fyans at a suitable level for recreation over summer. We will be doing our best to ensure this happens, so the Stawell district does have one recreational lake available for the summer."

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