The Cassowary Coast region entered Level 3 water restrictions today (29/11), with water in catchment areas continuing to dry up and no sign of rain on the way.
While the region has experienced Level 3 conditions before, there usually would be long-range indications of possible rainfall to ease the drought-like conditions, according to a senior spokesman for the Cassowary Coast Regional Council.
“This time, however, the skies are dry and meanwhile water levels in streams and rivers continue to lower,” the spokesman said.
The Cassowary Coast had major regional centres spread over four main locations, stretching resources, and making the need for tighter water usage more severe.
“Because of the widespread nature of the population, and the low-lying nature of the land, the region has no reservoir or dam systems, and each year we’re vulnerable to seasonal rainfalls,” the spokesman said.
“The irony is that the Cassowary Coast is the wettest part of Australia during typical wet seasons, with rains drenching the region and sometimes creating the risk of flooding. This year however, it’s been very, very dry.”
Overall water consumption of water by the community had remained relatively high. In October the consumption per household connection was 1058 litres per day. In November it was 1153 litres per day – a slight increase.
This was despite lower rainfalls over the past few months and the recent introduction of Level 2 restrictions.
Councillor Glenn Raleigh said the Council was facing the possibility of even more severe restrictions if the situation didn’t improve in the next four weeks.
“We’re heading for unknown territory. We might have to consider entering more extreme water usage measures, if we don’t see rain soon,” Cr Raleigh said.
“In the meantime, the restrictions are there to make sure we have enough water to maintain a reliable water supply. Council officers may impose fines against consumers who don’t follow the rules. We don’t want to issue fines, so we’re hoping people will instead be very mindful of their water consumption for the time being.”
For information about how Level 3 water restrictions may affect you, please go to: www.cassowarycoast.qld.gov.au/water-restrictions