Following a meeting between the ACTEW Managing Director John Knox, the Mayor of Queanbeyan Cr Tim Overall and Queanbeyan City Council General Manager Gary Chapman, a joint, independent study will be commissioned to look at possible connections between the management of the Googong Dam, and future flooding events in Queanbeyan (NSW).

While both organisations have acknowledged there is no easy answer to reducing the chances of flooding in the Queanbeyan area, they have reaffirmed the importance of mutual cooperation on issues of such significance to the local region, and have committed to keep working together to further explore what measures may be available going forward.

John Knox, ACTEW Managing Director said it was important to remember that Queanbeyan, which sits downstream of the Googong Dam, is somewhat protected by the mere existence of the dam because of its water flow attenuation properties.

“However, even though the Googong Dam is not, and was not designed to be used as a flood mitigation dam, it does provide a reduction in water flow,” Mr Knox said.

“We believe at this point in time that changing the way we manage the dam levels would not have caused any significant change in flooding impact during the 2010 event. However, this doesn’t mean that there aren’t other feasible options that may present themselves during the study.” he said.

Cr Overall welcomed the study and ACTEW’s cooperation. He said any minimisation of potential flood impact would be welcomed by Queanbeyan residents and business and said the study would include a look at how dam levels are currently managed at Googong.

Parties have now agreed to commission an independent study and the terms of reference will be drawn up with the agreement of both parties, with a view to beginning the work as quickly as possible.

Michelle Goldsmith

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