Review and Amendment of the Mersey Water Management Plan

​The current Mersey Water Mana​gement Plan was adopted in 2005.

  Mersey Water Management Plan   (1Mb)

The Plan sets out the framework for managing the water resources in the Mersey Water Management Plan Area, in accordance with the Water Management Act 1999, to ensure that water resources in the Plan area are managed to optimise its benefits for a range of users, including the community, the environment and commercial users.​

Since the Plan was adopted, many changes have occu​​​​​​rred in the catchment – a shift in enterprises, two new irrigation schemes and an increase in water allocation. NRE Tas has reviewed the existing management arrangements and has prepared a Draft Amended Plan, that reflects these changes and aims to improve the way we manage water for the future.​

​​Draft Amended Mersey River Catchment Water Management Plan 2023

A review of the Mersey Water Management Plan has been conducted and draft amendments have been prepared in consultation with key stakeholders, see review and amendment process below for more information.  The Draft Amended Water Management Plan has been prepared by NRE Tasmania and was made available for public comment between 19 July and 18 September 2023 (the public comment period is now closed) The submissions received on the Draft Amended Plan are now being considered.

Documents​ that make up the Plan include:

Draft Amended Mersey River Catchment Water Management Plan 2023 

 Draft Amended Mersey Water Management Plan 2023 (PDF 2Mb)

Draft Amended Mersey River Catchment Water Management Plan 2023 – Statutory Assessments 
A range of supporting documents are available via the link below, including summary and technical information on:
  • the main changes in the Draft Amended Plan. 
  • how the Department came to make certain decisions on the amendments to the Draft Amended Plan (Impact Assessment Document)
  • the Draft Mersey River Catchment Water Management Protocols - detailing operational and other water management arrangements that are applied under the Water Management Act 1999 and the Draft Amended Plans provisions.
  • information and assessments that supported the review of the Draft Amended Plan. 
Supporting information on the Draft Amended Mersey River Catchment Water Management Plan

Following the close of the public exhibition period

  • Any representations received will be considered by the Department and a public report will be prepared by the Secretary of NRE Tasmania providing written responses to representations with recommendations for any changes in response to representations of merit.  
  • After preparation of the report by the Secretary, a copy of the report containing: a summary of the representations; the Department’s response to those representations; and a summary of any recommended amendments to the Draft Amended Plan will be forwarded to the Tasmanian Planning Commission for review
  • The Tasmanian Planning Commission (TPC) is then directed by the Minister to review the representations and the Secretary’s Report. The Secretary’s Report is made publicly available on the TPC web site. The Commission may, within 21 days hold a hearing to assist in the review.  
  • The Commission then publish their report with recommendations, in addition to those already provided by the Secretary of NRE Tasmania.
  • The Minister then makes the final decision to adopt the Draft Amended Plan considering the TPC report, NRE Tas Report and public representations.

Review and amendment process

The review and amendment of the Plan is being undertaken according to Part 4 of the Water Management Act 1999.

Information on the process to review and amend the Plan is provided in the Water Management Planning Guiding Principles for the Development of Statutory Water Management Plans. 

  Guiding Principles for the development of statutory water management plans in Tasmania   (1Mb)

The Water Management Planning process is rigorous, collaborative, transparent, and based on science and evidence, and goes​ through several stages.

The first stage of the review of the Plan is conducted in consultation with the key stakeholder representatives through the Mersey Water Management Plan Consultative Group.

The Consultative Group is advisory and provides NRE Tas with a balanced range of views, local knowledge, advice and feedback from key stakeholder groups on matters relating to the review and amendment of the Plan.

The Consultative Group provides preliminary input to support the NRE Tas to draft amendments to the Plan (prior to its release for formal public feedback). Stakeholder input through the plan drafting and feedback stages supported the development of a Plan that best meet the needs of local water users and recognises water resource complexities in the Plan area.

​The Consultative Group consists of the following members and stakeholder groups.

​​   ​Member
​   Organisation
Marie Egerrup
Hydro Tasmania
Rob Freeman Inland Fisheries Service
Brett Perkins
​Mersey Irrigators Group
​​Iona Flett
​​Cradle Coast Authority NRM
​David Skipper
​Tasmanian Irrigation
​Nathan Richardson
​Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association
​Nick Cramp
​Tributary water licence holder
​Anglers Alliance Tasmania
​David Addison
​Tasmanian Agricultural Productivity Group
​​John Borojevic​Paddle Tasmania

Further infor​​​mation

If you would like further information on the Draft Amended Water Management Plan, please contact a member of the Consultative Group that best represents your interests or Nerida Bleakley on 0439 636 256 or via e-mail ​