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The West Wimmera GMA incorporates the area west of the Wimmera River to the South Australian border, and north to the Big Desert.

The area is essentially dependent on groundwater for urban and agricultural water supply, the main resource being the Tertiary Limestone Aquifer. This aquifer - or underground lake - is the primary supply for stock, irrigation and town supplies across the area.

 Adobe PDF file icon 24x24View a map of the West Wimmera GMA


Local Management Plan

In 2011, GWMWater published the West Wimmera Groundwater Management Strategy. This Strategy was devised to ensure that the precious groundwater water resources in the region are managed with the goal of long-term sustainability. The management arrangements set out in the Strategy have been further refined and simplified in the 2019 West Wimmera GMA Local Management Plan. 

Adobe PDF file icon 24x24West Wimmera Groundwater Management Area - Local Management Plan (1.6MB, 48 pages)

Adobe PDF file icon 24x24West Wimmera GMA Management Strategy (4.5MB, 65 pages)

Adobe PDF file icon 24x24West Wimmera Information Sheet (0.4MB, 2 pages)


Trading rules

The West Wimmera area is managed by rules according to the West Wimmera Groundwater Management Strategy.

  • The West Wimmera GMA consists of six management zones, some of which also have sub-zones.
  • Sub-zones have similar management goals but slightly different management rules may apply.
  • Each zone and sub-zone have declared Permissable Consumptive Volumes (PCV) which will dictate licence management.
  • A transfer of water entitlements (TWE) can be either temporary or permanent.

Restrictions on issuing TWEs and groundwater licences:

GWMWater won't approve a TWE or groundwater licence if it:

a) exceeds the PCV for a zone;

b) exceeds the Permissible Annual Volume (PAV) for a Border Zone;

c) poses an unacceptable risk to surrounding groundwater usesr including the environment.

GWMWater also won't approve a TWE or groundwater licence if it results in water being moved into any of the following sub-zones:

  • Neuarpur sub-zone 1
  • Neuarpur sub-zone 2 (temporary transfers only from Neuarpur sub-zone 1)
  • Apsley
  • Langkoop
  • Yanipy


Border Groundwaters Agreement

All groundwater resources along the Victorian-South Australian border are also subject to the Border Groundwaters Agreement. This agreement takes precedence over local water licensing authority policies (such as GWMWater's).

Find out more about the Border Groundwaters Agreement (external webpage).


Annual report

Check out our current annual report for which contains information on usage, levels and health of the West Wimmera GMA.


Further information...

Annual seasonal restriction announcement for season 2020/21

The seasonal restriction for licensed groundwater users in Neuarpur Sub-zone 1 will remain restricted to 80% of their licence volume for the 2020/21 season. This is in accordance with the West Wimmera Groundwater Management Area Local Management Plan. Licensees have been advised that the restriction levels remains the same as last season.


About groundwater

Groundwater is an essential resource for our community, especially in the western parts of the region.


Apply for a groundwater bore

If you're planning to construct or alter a groundwater bore, you need to apply for a licence before you can start works.


Apply for a 'take and use' groundwater licence

To use groundwater for irrigation or other commercial purposes, you must have a ‘take and use’ licence.




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