The Mitchell Water Plan (2007) is due to expire on 31 August 2018.
The Water Act provides for the Minister to extend a plan’s expiry date for up to 10 years. The process for assessing the effectiveness of a plan and a course of action leading up to the plan’s expiry involves a risk assessment and public consultation on the proposed course of action. Anyone with an interest in the plan could make a submission through that process.
Unallocated water allocation is another process but related through plan ‘caps’. DNRM has not announced a ‘release of new water’ yet but an ‘expression of interest’ can be made to them. One proposal for use of unallocated water has been put forward by the Lakeland irrigators who have proposed that the Palmer River supply water to Lakeland via a pipeline. We expect to follow up as more details emerge. (update provided by the Acting Manager for Water Planning, DNRM Mareeba)