Forum Topics D2O D2O General discussion
2 months ago

i would say it’s unlikely to be taken away. Approximately, 10% of the water rights are owned by international interests with the major countries being China, USA, U.K. and Canada. In recent times the Canadian pension fund has been accumulating. The Federal government would have to buy at market rates or risk becoming a pariah investment country if they were suddenly to just take back rights without compensation at market rates. The nswfarmers websites gives updates on land and water ownership breakdowns.

2 months ago

@AlphaAngle my concern with is that water rights could be voided and taken away by the federales.

If water control or usage or access becomes political, the feds would destroy the likes of if it helped them win votes. owns rights along rivers that supply our food bowl regions if i remember correctly. Thats a lot of commerce tied in there.

The risk could be made up and not possible. Its just a thought i've had for a few years around water usage rights and farmers and this dry continent of ours.

Happy to be shouted down. I don't own irl and won't.


2 months ago

Knowing government they would probably do a forced acquisition of the rights rather than void them.


2 months ago

It’s protected by the constitution so they’d have to compensate at market value - it would be a nightmare to change too, we did it in law school getting the states and federal government all to agree was no mean feat to establish the system. Now you have farmers and foreign investors too.

Id say water rights prices have taken a mighty hit this year - with no really knowledge of the market - given la niña. SA is having real issues with all that water going down now. I wonder how well the NTA reflects this given i imagine water rights are pretty illiquid? let along the delay in valuing them? So some questions about the NTA. Riperian Capital is another water rights fund might be worth looking at, i haven’t looked at them in ages but remember them saying the worst thing that could happen to them was non stop rain. So seeing if they’ve taken a hit to value or now - but guess both biased view reading stuff from duxton and riperian - just to keep in mind.

I remember being at school back in the mid 2000s and the Murray being describes as the worlds longest lake as the water didn’t reach the sea - imagine it’ll happen again when el niño returns so i’m sure the prices will recover.


2 months ago

The Murray does reach the sea, and I'm pretty sure it always has except for brief periods when the Murray mouth became blocked by sand and you could drive a 4WD across it. The Murray flows into Lake Alexandrina and then down to Goolwa and out into the ocean, although some of it also flows into the Coorong. The mouth now has a couple of permanent dredges parked there and they will dredge it if it becomes too shallow, to allow access to the sea for boats, out of the river (and the Hindmarsh Island Marina).

Here's a photo of the Murray mouth that I took from Hindmarsh Island a few months ago.


There's a dredge and a barge there on the right alongside an excavator parked on the sandhills between the River and the ocean. That whole section across from that excavator on the right to the land that is out of shot on the left was sometimes passable by 4WD years ago when the river flow was low enough - before they started regularly dredging.

Here's the second dredge boat parked in the Murray just north of the mouth. I reckon they use this one to tow the barge and to empty it.


Some video of some info about the Goolwa Barrages (before the mouth) here:

That should start at or around the 6:47 mark. Also good video about how far the River has come up around Renmark and Berri down to Barmera (all on the SA side of the Vic border) here:

They filmed that one a couple of weeks ago and posted it to YouTube on Dec 2nd. That Caravan Park (the Riverbend Caravan Park) they show at around the 6 minute mark - that is on the left bank of the River as they cross the Paringa Bridge is now flooded after the river breached the new levee. The SES issued an evacuation order for that park last week (on the 6th) before the levee was breached. They have also now closed off part of a southern part of Renmark (which is called Crescent) due to flooding.

There's a second Renmark caravan park (the Renmark Big 4 Riverfront Holiday Park) just to the west of that flooded one (the Riverbend Caravan Park) and that second one (the Big 4 Holiday Park) is still open, or was when I typed this. Here's a photo I took of the entrance to that one 3 weekends ago with a new temporary levee being built in the foreground.


And here's what was left of the Boat Ramp just to the left of that photo above where they used to hire out Kayaks to tourists.


That hut used to be on the foreshore and the car park stopped just short of it. It's in the River now. And that was three weeks ago.

The following was the car park entrance. [remember - the water level is much higher now than when I took this snap]


Here's how the Berri Boat Ramp looked a couple of weeks ago - and the water is more than a metre higher now.


The following image is of the main road between Berri and Loxton - called the Bookpurnong Road - back at the start of December


That road is now closed. This is what it looked like about 3 days after they posted that video.



It's fully underwater now. That whole area is under water.

Here's another image from the "Our Whittle Adventure" video posted to YouTube on December 2nd [ - I provided a link to it above also.]


It would be interesting to see what that looks like now.

Most of the ferrys have already been closed, with the rest expected to come offline during the next week. [December 9th]

Rising River Murray leads to power worries for Riverland farmers, as some Renmark aged care residents to be evacuated - ABC News [December 4th]

Daily River Murray flows crossing SA border reach levels not seen since 1970s as date for first peak pushed back - ABC News [December 1st]

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese praises Riverland's resilience ahead of predicted River Murray flood peak - ABC News [December 3rd]

The River is expected to peak in the area towards the end of December and then again in January or February due to more water being released from the Hume Dam (near Albury/Wodonga).

Lake Hume (shown in the first image below) and the Hume Dam (location shown in the second image below) are partly in NSW and partly in Victoria as the border runs through the middle of the river - and through the middle of the upper part of Lake Hume - which the river runs into from the east. You can usually click on these images to enlarge them and then click again to return to this post.



Flooded river communities on high alert as more water released from Hume Dam - ABC News [November 11th]

The Hume Dam water levels can be checked any time from here: Hume Dam - WaterNSW

Currently 98% full. They will need to release more water soon.

Everything that is added to the River upstream flows down to SA. It takes a few weeks to get here, but it gets here.


2 months ago

The story about the gas bottle made me smile...

Source: Daily River Murray flows crossing SA border reach levels not seen since 1970s as date for first peak pushed back - ABC News

Debris seen floating down the river

Apricot grower Peter Conrick urged people travelling in boats along the river to look out for debris.

The farmer from Murbko told ABC Radio Adelaide he had seen some odd sights in the past few days.

"I was out checking a pump for a friend out on the dinghy the other day and saw quite a few things you don't normally see floating down the river," he said.

"There was a couple of fridges, a lounge chair, some fence posts and wooden timber.

"Then the most interesting one was we saw a gas bottle floating. I said to my grandson to pull that out and he said 'I can't pull it up' and then he pulled a bit harder and up came the barbecue still hanging off it."

"That's all through the rising flood waters and people not preparing their properties correctly for flood inundation."


Flood waters creeping up to properties along the river at Morgan.(Supplied: Cody Campbell)

Mr Conrick said anyone going out on the water needed to be extra vigilant over coming months.

"The big worry is probably the logs that are floating down because they are probably 99 per cent submerged and even some of them could be just right under the surface and you'd have no idea until you hit it."

While Mr Conrick's home and farm are safe from floodwaters, he said the irrigation pump that waters his crops was near the river.

Looming power outages are also a risk to his crops.

"It's part of living on the river, you'll see floods come and go, some higher than others, the big ones are certainly always going to do some damage of some sort — no matter how well you prepare, somebody is going to get hurt," he said.


Flooding along the River Murray at Morgan in South Australia.(Supplied: Cody Campbell)


a month ago

Hi y'all. Merry Christmas. Season's Greetings! Went for a drive up the through the SA Riverland again yesterday (Saturday) to Renmark and back (so almost to Victoria) and things have gotten a fair bit worse. Here was what the Berri Boat Ramp looked like at the start of the month:


Here's what it looked like yesterday:


The car park is completely submerged now. You can see the rooftops of those shelters that have picnic tables and BBQs under them - which are now underwater also. I took the following photo from a little to the right of that one above.


So as we enjoy our Holiday period and celebrate what we celebrate, spare a thought for some of these people. The following photos are of Blanchetown, which is downriver from Renmark, Berri, Loxton, Waikerie and Morgan, but upstream from Murray Bridge, Mannum and Swan Reach.






A Little further upstream from Blanchetown is a small community called Pelican Point - which is between Murbko and Wombats Rest - here's what Pelican Point looked like from the Pelican Point lookout on Murbko road (below):



Wombats Rest is upstream just around the corner at the top right of the screen.

I checked the SA Gov website before the drive and the only ferry that was supposed to still be operating upstream from Murray Bridge (all the way to the Victorian border) was the Cadell Ferry, which we used to cross the river to the north side.



The reason this ferry was still operating was that it had steep declines down to the berthing points which allowed them to change to higher berthing points. They could not do that with the other ferrys because the approach roads had become submerged.

As we approached Waikerie, we were surprised to find that they also had a ferry operating, but from a much higher point on the north side of the river and also a little to the east of the old approach. Here's the flooded road that used to take you to the Waikerie Ferry:


And here's the new northern approach to the new Waikerie Ferry Crossing of the Murray River:


If you look to the right of the ferry, you can see the old berth point in the river now, with just the top of the "Stop" sign and a little of the top of the infrastructure showing. I'm guessing they removed the boom gate and the electricals before they got flooded. This boomgate above was a temporary one from a hire company. The berth point for the ferry on the south (Waikerie) side of the river is on the far side and to the left of the ferry. The current was so strong that the ferry and the steel ropes that it uses to cross back and forwards were being swept to the right (i.e. downstream) as it crossed.

A little further upstream we came across this road - which was just east of the small town of Kingston-on-Murray (there is another Kingston in SA which is known as Kingston South East, it's down near Mt Gambier). This is Rogers Road, Overland Corner, about 1 km NW of Cobdogla, between Kingston-On-Murray and Barmera (the home of Lake Bonney):


This is what it's supposed to look like according to Google Maps (street view):


They say that was snapped in 2014. That tree hasn't grown much in the past 8 years... That orchard on the left is obviously now under water, as is pretty much everything else shown in this 2014 image.

I'll see if I can post this as is and then I'll add a little more.


a month ago

@Bear77 I’m nowhere near the region and haven’t heard much on this. Has there been persistent rain recently or is this all lingering from the late-October heavy rains?


a month ago

That seemed to work. The following are photos I took yesterday at Renmark:




Where the Houseboats are in the first two photos is where the bank of the River was before it flooded. There was a road that went around to all of those houseboats, but that road is now fully submerged. You can see the tops of the guide posts that are on the left of that road curving around to the houseboats in the second image (2nd one up from here).

Both of those photos were taken from the same spot - which is here (image from Google Maps, Street View, circa 2010, 2nd image below = 2008):





That's the entrance to the carpark at the Nardoo Lagoon (see map above). That was prior to the recent flooding. Below is what that looked like yesterday:


Renmark has had some flooding, but they've managed to save a lot of houses by building new levees or raising old ones, as shown below:


I've added a blue arrow on that image above to show the location of Jane Eliza Avenue, with the closed (flooded) roads shown (marked red, including Ponde Road). The image of the picnic table with a line through it to the left of the tip of my blue arrow is where the Nardoo Lagoon carpark and recreation area has been closed (shown in the photo two up from here).

The green lines are where they have now completed new levees or finished raising old levees. Roads and houses on the River side of the levees are now flooded. Amazingly, the Renmark Riverfront Holiday Park have built their own levee and have saved the park, and it was actually still open despite being surrounded by flood water.


I'm not sure how bad the Riverbend Caravan Park is - to the right of the Renmark Riverfront Holiday Park, but the entrance was blocked off at Sturt Highway yesterday and it was closed back on December 6th.

All things considered, while some homes and businesses have been inundated with floodwater, the Council and the SES have done a brilliant job to save so much of the town.

As well as the levee work, they have also installed a lot of pumps, as shown below (light blue dots as per legend on right side):


As explained there, the levees have been constructed to withstand 250 GL per day, and the Innundation Level is currently 200 GL per day, so as long as things don't get too much worse from here on, they should be OK. I've marked Renmark on that image above (in white) but Renmark is on the left of the river, it's called Paringa on the right, however it's the same council - the Renmark Paringa Council. They are both in SA. The river doesn't become a border between states for another 40 odd km upstream (to the north east). The Victorian border is about 20 km east of Paringa and NSW is about 30 to 40 km north east of Paringa, which is where NSW, Victoria and SA all meet.

I'll finish with one last photo from yesterday's trip. I took the following photo at Kingston-On-Murray and it shows the new levee that they have built there to protect the lower part of the town from flooding. You can see the river on the other side of the levee and how high the water is in the river. The levee is not shown above because Kingston-On-Murray is further to the left of Lake Bonney and is not part of the Renmark Paringa Council area. The levees are doing what the are supposed to, however if the river was to rise another metre it might be a different story.



a month ago

Season's Greetings @Timocracy - this flooding along the Murray in SA is a result of the flooding they had in NSW and Victoria in recent months, plus snow melting up in those states and that also feeding into the rivers. There are a number of rivers that all feed into the Murray River and the Murray gets bigger as it has more and more water flowing into it. Because the Hume Dam near Albury is almost 100% full (was 99% last time I checked), there is water coming over the spillway there and they may release more water shortly to lower the level. Water from the Hume takes a few weeks to reach SA, but it does get here. They've recently closed the River here in SA for all recreational use, so no boats, swimming or anything else (I'm not sure about fishing, but if allowed it would be from the shore only) due to fast flowing water and a lot of debris and rubbish floating down the river from upstream, plus a lot of dead animals and sewage from where homes have flooded along the River. So basically the River is not safe at this point for normal River activities. The last time the Murray was this high in SA was almost 70 years ago, so most of us weren't around back then. See here: River Murray flooding to be worst in almost 70 years with hundreds of properties already deluged - ABC News

We have had a reasonably wet year here in SA, but the bulk of this water is coming from interstate, as most of the water always does for the Murray River in SA. We're at the bottom end of the River, so when it floods upstream, we get it downstream a few weeks later.


Floodwaters peaked above 12 metres in parts of the region during the 1956 disaster.(Supplied: State Library of SA (B70727_1))

Source: Riverland flooding: Community remembers one of SA's worst natural disasters - ABC News


Then and now: A 1956 flood memory of Kingston-on-Murray.(ABC Open Riverland)

"Now" was July 2016, when that article was published.

The new flood levee at Kingston-on-Murray as of yesterday (Saturday) looked like this:


As you can see, the River is getting pretty high on the other side of that levee.

The following photo was taken on Tuesday 13th December (12 days ago) and is of the River Murray town of Walker Flat, where I have often caught a ferry across the river when out on a weekend drive. That Ferry stopped operating in early December.


The water in front of those houses, i.e. closer to the cliffs from where this photo was taken, is the "old" river. Due to rising water levels, the low area behind the houses has now flooded and has basically become part of the river, so that strip of houses that had been on the Western side of the river is now in the middle of the river. Walker Flat extends further to the right of this photo and that is where the old ferry used to operate, about 500m upstream (to the right).


a month ago

@Bear77 I was in the Snowy Mountains for a few years and still have family there. Similar situation for the past 3 years where the lands downstream of Lake Jindabyne (Snowy Hydro dam) aren’t in a state to accomodate surplus dam releases. The snow melt then comes in and raises the water levels further and further and the onus falls on Snowy Hydro for any implications resulting from either having the town flood OR damaging property downstream as it practically flows out to the ocean.