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Southern Fleurieu

Sustainable-production:  Sustainable water resource management

High Priority

What is this issue

Increasing pressure on water resources.

Impacts of the issue

Steady growth and various high water use industries are placing pressure on water supplies. Will increase competition and therefore cost of available water supplies. Also has potential to impact on water quality 


  • Steady growth of high water use industries
  • High demand due to high water quality and accessible supply
  • Lower land values
  • Proximity to city


  • Salinity inflows
  • People have invested based on high allocations and are unlikely to give up any water
  • Culture of using any and all "available" water

Climate impacts and adaptation needs

Rainfall and water availability is expected to decline under climate change, further increasing pressure on water resources. Water Resource Plans incorporate climate change consideration, as required under the Basin Plan. Actions to improve the efficiency of water use will continue to provide benefit under climate change.

Who plays a role

  • Adelaide Mount Lofty Ranges Natural Resources Management Board
  • Australian Government
  • Dairy SA
  • Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources
  • Industry Groups
  • Landholders
  • Local Government (District Council of Yankalilla, City of Victor Harbor, Alexandrina Council)
  • Primary Industries and Regions SA
  • Regional Development Australia
  • Research and development providers
  • SA Murray-Darling Basin Natural Resources Management Board 

Strategies and Actions

Undertake water management planning to ensure the sustainable use of water resources

  • (Continue to) Implement the Water Allocation Plan to ensure future usage is within sustainable limits
  • Enable trade between water allocations

Support research and monitoring to improve the sustainable use of water resources

  • Identify exactly how much water is being used (extracted) and what is the condition of the resource (including long-term trends)
  • Research and monitoring in water science involving multidisciplinary teams to improve our understanding of the system
  • Research new or alternative low water use crops

Build landholder capacity in water resource management

  • Increase community understanding of pressures on water resources and the need to manage allocations to ensure its sustainable use
  • Investigate and trial new on-farm practices to improve water use efficiency
  • Establish local weather stations delivering real time data to landholders to improve water use efficiency of irrigation