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Author Topic: Murray / Darling River Operations  (Read 4287 times)

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Murray / Darling River Operations
« on: May 02, 2014, 08:00:53 PM »
River Operations - MDBA 2 May 2014

MDBA total storage increased by 15 GL this week and is currently 4,784 GL or 57% capacity.

BOX Channel Creek. Photo: MDBA

Releases from the major storages of the River Murray system continued to remain at, or close to minimum flows this week. The conservation of water in upper storages is of particular importance given current climate indicators, with BoM reporting that El Niño thresholds may be exceeded as early as July.

At Dartmouth Reservoir, storage increased by 1 GL to 3,425 GL (89% capacity). The release, measured at the Colemans gauge, remains steady at the minimum flow rate of 200 ML/day.

At Hume Reservoir, the storage volume decreased by 5 GL this week with total storage now at 1,131 GL (38% capacity). The release was increased to around 4,000 ML/day over the weekend to supply downstream demands, however releases are now being reduced following the rain. The flow at Doctors Point is currently 2,400 ML/day and expected to be at a minimum flow of 1,200 ML/day in coming days.

At Yarrawonga Weir, total weekly diversions at the major irrigation offtakes increased from 5.5 GL up to 11.7 GL this week following a fortnight of very low demand. With further rain forecast and the end of the irrigation season close at hand, demand from these offtakes is expected to reduce towards zero over the next fortnight. The pool level in Lake Mulwala is currently 124.67m AHD and forecast to remain at a similar level for the coming week. The downstream release from Yarrawonga Weir is currently at a minimum flow of 1,800 ML/day.

On the Edward River system, flow through the Edward River and Gulpa Creek offtakes is steady at 200 ML/day and 80 ML/day respectively. At Stevens Weir, the downstream release is 300 ML/day. On the Goulburn River, flows at McCoys Bridge are currently steady at 1,000 ML/day.

On the Murray at Torrumbarry Weir, diversions at National Channel are presently 1,000 ML/day. The downstream flow at Torrumbarry is currently 2,200 ML/day following a brief rise up to 2,500 ML/day; whilst at Euston Weir, the flow is 6,600 ML/day and receding.

At Menindee Lakes, the storage volume increased by 3 GL over the last week and is now at 389 GL (22% capacity). Release from the lakes is currently at a minimum flow rate of 300 ML/day at Weir 32. On the River Murray, downstream of the Darling confluence, a pulse of water has just passed Wentworth Weir following the significant rain event in the southern Basin in the week before Easter. The downstream flow at Wentworth is currently 8,400 ML/day and receding, following a peak of 9,400 ML/day.

Lake Victoria, April 2014. Photo: MDBA

Several of the weir pools on the lower River Murray are currently, or soon to be, surcharged above normal full supply levels. This includes Wentworth (raising 10 cm to 30.90 m AHD), Lock 9 (raising 10 cm to 27.50 m AHD) and Lock 8 (raising 60 cm to 25.20 m AHD). These weir pools are being raised in order to secure water that can be used to supply South Australia’s entitlement later in May. This is necessary as works currently taking place on the outlet at Lake Victoria impose restrictions on the volume of water that Lake Victoria can release.

At Lake Victoria, the storage volume has increased by 17 GL to 422 GL (62% capacity). The flow to South Australia will be around 3,700 ML/day for the coming week, which is made up of 3,000 ML/day May entitlement flow plus an additional 700 ML/day of environmental water being delivered from the Goulburn River.

At the Lower Lakes, the 5-day average level in Lake Alexandrina is 0.63 m AHD, with releases through the Barrages estimated to be around 2,500 ML/day.


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