Warragamba Dam

Precautionary measures taken by WaterNSW in response to unprecedented bushfire damage and the largest rainfall event since 1990 have enabled it to successfully protect Sydney’s dam water quality.

Warragamba Dam will resume supply of raw water to the Prospect Water Filtration Plant (PWFP) after WaterNSW experts made a considered decision to draw upon Prospect Reservoir as a precaution in case of water quality issues. 

WaterNSW CEO, David Harris, said, “Since December last year, WaterNSW has been quite clear in saying that we wholly expected to encounter water quality challenges if large rainfall fell on bushfire-damaged parts of the Warragamba catchment, and were well-prepared with scientific expertise and operational contingency plans if that’s what eventuated.

“We had a month’s supply in Prospect Reservoir available so we could draw on it until our expert monitoring team could fully understand the effects of the prolonged drought and extensive fire followed by heavy rainfall and confirm their confidence in the water quality in Warragamba.”

Having monitored the intrusion into the Warragamba system, WaterNSW is confident in resuming supplying raw water to Prospect Water Filtration Plant. 

“Prospect Reservoir is regularly used to supply raw water to Prospect Water Filtration Plant. It’s a critical part of the system and it’s used quite often, when we take other parts of the supply system offline for planned maintenance,” Mr Harris said.

“This is a standard part of operating Greater Sydney’s water supply network. Our experts regularly re-configure our network to deal with these issues and do so with minimal interruption to Sydney’s drinking water supply or quality.

“With safe raw water supply available from Prospect Reservoir, the people of Sydney would rightly have considered it irresponsible if we had not taken every precaution with our decisions around raw water from Warragamba.”

Charlotte Pordage is Editor of Utility magazine, a position she has held since November 2018. She joined the team as an Associate Editor in October 2017, after sharpening her writing and editing skills across a range of print and digital publications. Charlotte graduated from Royal Holloway, University of London, in 2011 with joint honours in English and Latin. When she's not putting together Australia's only dedicated utility magazine, she can usually be found riding her horse or curled up with a good book.

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