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.
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.
West Wimmera Groundwater Management Area - Local Management Plan (1.6MB, 48 pages)
West Wimmera GMA Management Strategy (4.5MB, 65 pages)
West Wimmera Information Sheet (0.4MB, 2 pages)
The West Wimmera area is managed by rules according to the West Wimmera Groundwater Management Strategy.
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:
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 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.
Groundwater is an essential resource for our community, especially in the western parts of the region.
If you're planning to construct or alter a groundwater bore, you need to apply for a licence before you can start works.
To use groundwater for irrigation or other commercial purposes, you must have a ‘take and use’ licence.