Manton Dam, Northern Territory,,Australia

The Northern Territory Government and Power and Water Corporation have unveiled a new plan to lock in drinking water supplies for Territorians, while maintaining Manton Dam and ensuring it remains available for recreational use.

The project has two components – the Adelaide River Off-Stream Water Storage (AROWS) project, and the Manton Dam Return to Service (RTS).

Manton Dam RTS is the critical first stage of the identified solution, and will provide an additional 7,300ML of water per year to the Darwin region.

The AROWS project will secure and improve Darwin’s water security by supplying up to 67.5GL of additional water each year.

Minister for Water Security, Eva Lawler, said securing a safer, more reliable and more sustainable water supply for Darwin is essential for the region’s future growth and economic prosperity.

“It is important that we develop sustainable solutions that protect our environment and maintain our great Territory lifestyle,” Ms Lawler said.

“Manton Dam RTS and AROWS are economically viable solutions to provide water security to the Darwin region for the next 50 years and beyond.

“Power and Water Corporation has identified Manton Dam as the preferred short-term water source in its Darwin Region Water Supply Strategy and has already undertaken significant preliminary work to inform the design and delivery of the project.”

The detailed business case investigated the two short-listed options identified in the preliminary assessment to meet the Darwin region’s future water supply requirements.

After a comprehensive assessment, Manton Dam RTS and AROWS were identified as the recommended infrastructure solutions, to be developed in two stages:

  • Manton Dam RTS – short term water supply with a development timeframe of three to four years
  • AROWS – long term water supply, with a development timeframe of seven to ten years

To make sure Territorians have continued use of Manton Dam for boating, water sports and fishing, Power and Water Corporation will be tasked to treat the water prior to consumption.

Power and Water will now work on a plan as to how to treat the water, and how much that will cost annually.

During this next stage, a Catchment Management Plan will be developed to ensure that water quality safety is protected over the long term. 

Chief Executive Officer of Amateur Fishermens Association of the Northern Territory (AFANT), David Ciaravolo, said, “Manton Dam is stocked with barramundi and is a safe fishing location for families. We welcome the news that these important fishing experiences will be able to continue once the dam is brought back online.

“Manton Dam is a key public asset and by investing in enhanced water filtration the government has ensured that diverse economic, social and cultural benefits can be leveraged to benefit the community.”

In addition to the Catchment Management Plan, an assessment of the environmental and social impacts of the project will be undertaken, further stakeholder and community engagement will be carried out and a detailed design of the infrastructure components will be delivered.

Manton Darn RTS is the critical first stage of the identified solution and will provide an additional 7,300 megalitres of water per year to the Darwin region.

Recently, Power and Water released an expression of interest tender for Stage 1 of the design and construction of the Manton Dam RTS project.

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