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Sydney rain not enough to break the drought

Published: 6 June 2019
More than 30 millimetres of rain has fallen across Sydney in the first week of June 2019, only a third of what is needed to significantly impact dam inflows.

Sydney’s dams currently need at least 100 millimetres of rain to start filling up. The rain produced 40 millimetres of rainfall over the Upper Nepean, Woronora and Shoalhaven catchments.

The Warragamba catchment received 30 millimetres with 20 millimetres recorded over the Blue Mountains catchment.

In 2018, rainfall levels in NSW were among the lowest ever recovered. In some areas, the state is the driest it has ever been and worse than the millennium drought.

Minister for Water, Property and Housing Melinda Pavey said a single rain event is not itself enough to break the drought and people across the state have to be mindful that water restrictions are in place.

“Water restrictions will mean households across Sydney are doing their bit to conserve water," Mrs Pavey said.

"Reducing shower time by one minute can save around nine litres of water every shower. This equates to 45 million litres of water across the city, every day."

On 1 June 2019, Level 1 water restrictions started across Sydney, the Illawarra and Blue Mountains.

Under the Level 1 water restrictions residents and businesses are not able to:

  • use standard sprinklers and watering systems at any time
  • leave hoses running unattended
  • wash vehicles and buildings with a hose that isn’t fitted with a trigger nozzle or high pressure cleaning equipment
  • clean hard surfaces such as paths, driveways and paved areas with a hose as part of general clean.

Find out more about the current drought in NSW

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