A bulk transfer of water from Windamere Dam to Burrendong Dam will depend partly on how the latter is faring.
On Thursday Burrendong Dam was at 3.1 per cent capacity as WaterNSW reported the transfer, part of its current emergency drought strategy, would likely take place early next year and not late this year, as previously suggested.
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"If current extreme drought conditions persist the transfer is likely to occur in early 2020, with the exact timing yet to be determined and possibly influenced by any inflows to Burrendong received in the interim," a WaterNSW spokesman said.
"The transfer is largely determined by the storage situation at Burrendong and the town water security situation in the Macquarie Valley more broadly."
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The spokesman said the volume of the water was yet to be determined but would be dictated by the storage level in Windamere Dam and the "town water/critical needs situation" in the Macquarie Valley.
The transfer from Windamere Dam, and pumping of Burrendong Dam's remnant storage water months later, are among measures aimed at keeping water flowing into downstream communities until at least mid-2020.
They are giving Dubbo Regional Council time to expand its bore field with $30 million from the state government.
The WaterNSW spokesman said "at this stage" there was only one bulk water transfer planned.