Burdekin Haughton

Burdekin Haughton

Scheme

Announced Allocations
High Priority
100%
Medium Priority
100%
Storages
Water Pricing
Read more about your scheme’s Fees and Charges

Scheme information

About

The Burdekin Haughton Scheme supplies water for irrigation customers in the lower Burdekin River region and supplements urban and industrial requirements for Townsville and Thuringowa.

How the scheme works

The scheme sources its water from Burdekin Falls Dam covering an area of 22,400 hectares and ponds water 50km up the Burdekin River. It operates in conjunction with existing storages including the Clare and Gorge Weir on the Burdekin River, and Val Bird and Giru Weir on the Haughton River.

  • Channels systems are located on both sides of the Burdekin River. Each section is served by major pump stations located on Clare Weir
  • The pump stations divert water into main channels on each river bank and then to customers
  • Tom Fenwick Pump Station services the Haughton and Barratta Main Channels that provides water to customers between the Burdekin and Haughton rivers
  • The Haughton Main Channel supplements the Haughton River and Giru groundwater area.
Water uses
  • Irrigation water for farmers
  • Urban water supply for Townsville and Thuringowa
  • Industrial water for local business including quarries and sugar mills
  • Supplement to groundwater supplies.

Scheme Management

Sunwater must comply with the conditions set out in the Burdekin Haughton Water Supply Scheme Resource Operations Licence (ROL), issued to Sunwater in December 2009 by the Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing and Water (DRDMW). The ROL outlines the infrastructure details, environmental release rules and all Sunwater’s monitoring and reporting obligations. The ROL also requires Sunwater to operate in accordance with an operations manual (OM) that is approved by DRDMW. The operations manual outlines the rules for the operation of infrastructure associated with the Burdekin Haughton scheme, as well as water sharing rules and seasonal water assignment (temporary trade) rules.

The Burdekin Haughton Water Supply Scheme ROL Operations Manual was issued in May 2017.

Sunwater focuses our resources towards timely and cost-efficient delivery of water to customers in the Burdekin Haughton scheme. We collaborate with our customers to ensure we understand their needs, adapt quickly to changes in the environment and make the most of the available water supply.

Taking water from the scheme

The water ordering system assists Sunwater in delivering water to its customers in an efficient and timely way, enabling them to plan and manage their water use.

Before taking any water, customers should place a water order so that Sunwater can release sufficient water and minimise losses.

Customers who take water without ordering may reduce Sunwater’s ability to supply customers who have ordered according to the above requirements.

To place an order

Customers can place their orders via:

  • Sunwater Customer App
  • Sunwater Online
  • Phone Water Ordering System (Interactive Voice Response - IVR) on 13 15 89
  • Sunwater Customer Support on 13 15 89
  • Further information about ordering water is detailed in Burdekin Haughton’s Rules and Targets.
Stopping or restricting supply

Sunwater may suspend or restrict supply in a number of circumstances, including:

  • during scheduled and emergency maintenance
  • if supply could cause Sunwater to breach its licence to operate
  • during peak demand period when delivery must be regulated
  • when infrastructure capacity limits delivery
  • when release management is required to maximise efficiency, e.g. during dry conditions when losses are high
  • when operating under exemption notices of specific direction from the Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing and Water.
Weather events and emergency shutdowns

Sunwater asks that customers notify their duty Water Officer [Link to contacts page], as soon as possible, of any rain event or other circumstances that substantially lessens their water requirements. When wide spread general rain exceeds 40 mm in a day over the Burdekin Haughton Water Supply Scheme, the duty Water Officer may shut the system down.

Customers are also asked to cancel orders if they no longer require ordered water.

For more information contact

If you experience an equipment or power failure emergency, please give immediate notice to Sunwater by calling Sunwater Customer Support on 13 15 89 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week).

Aquatic Weed Management

The Aquatic Weed Management Plan outlines dates for the following activities:

  • Acrolein injection (requires channel and/or scheme shutdowns)
  • Acrolein boom application (requires a channel and/or scheme shutdown)
  • Channel excavation (does not require a channel and/or scheme shutdown).
Burdekin Haughton’s Customer Advisory Committee

Sunwater is committed to open and transparent communication and collaboration with our customers. The role of the Burdekin Haughton Customer Advisory Committee (CAC) is to provide customers and stakeholders with a diverse forum for collaboration and consultation with Sunwater on a range of strategic matters relating to Sunwater’s innovation, management, and maintenance of assets to ensure the reliable and efficient delivery of service.

The primary purpose of the CAC is to:

  • Engage with customers to identify current and future water needs.
  • Provide a transparent view of Sunwater’s operating environment and assets, and how these influence our services to customers.
  • Build an understanding of our customer’s businesses to ensure future plans are considered in Sunwater’s strategic and operations planning.

The membership and functioning of Customer Advisory Committees are governed by the Terms of Reference (ToR) document.

Drinking Water Customer Service Standard

Our Drinking Water Customer Service Standard outlines our commitment to providing safe and reliable drinking water to customers connected to this service. You can access the standard below.

Drinking Water Customer Service Standard

February 2024

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Stay up to date with the Burdekin Haughton Customer Advisory Committee.

Announced Allocations

Water Year: 2023/2024
High priority: 100%
Medium priority: 100%

Announced Allocations effective 16 December 2023 and applicable until revised and communicated by Sunwater.

2022/2023 to 2023/2024 Carryover Parameters – Cap 269,898 ML with 100% pro rata and 10% loss factor. For more information, view the scheme's carryover conditions form.

Carryover Methodology

Maximum Volume of Carryover = 25% of the total nominal volume for the scheme.

Maximum volume of water that may be carried over by a water user must not be more than 94.6% of their remaining volume at the end of the water year.

(Water User remaining volume x 94.6%) x 100% x 90

Customers are advised to obtain information about their remaining water allocation balance by accessing SunwaterOnline.

For more information or enquiries, phone 13 15 89 or email customersupport@sunwater.com.au.

History of Announced Allocations
Burdekin Haughton

AA history

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Operational reports

Sunwater releases periodic operational reports detailing Announced Allocation levels and individual storages’ breakdowns within each scheme, the latest of which can be found below.

Operational Report

effective 16 December 2023

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Operational Report

effective 6 December 2023

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Operational Report

effective 1 September 2023

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Operational Report

effective 1 August 2023

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Operational Report

effective 1 July 2023

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Operational Report

effective 1 July 2022

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Operational Report

effective 1 November 2021

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Operational Report

effective 1 October 2021

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Operational Report

effective 1 August 2021

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Operational Report

effective 1 July 2021

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Service and Performance Plans

Sunwater prepares an annual Service and Performance Plan (S&PP) for each irrigation service contract area. S&PPs replace the former annual Network Service Plans and annual Performance Reports.

We have updated the naming convention for S&PPs to improve clarity and alignment with plan content. The new convention references the year in which the S&PP is published (or should have been published). Publication should occur within six months of the end of a financial year.

For further information about this service, please visit the Service and Performance Plan page.

Burdekin Bulk Supply

Burdekin Bulk Supply

2023 Service and Performance Plan

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Burdekin Bulk Supply

2021 Service and Performance Plan (originally published as the 2023 Service and Performance Plan)

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Burdekin Bulk Supply

2020 Service and Performance Plan (originally published as the 2022 Service and Performance Plan)

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Burdekin Distribution

Burdekin Distribution

2023 Service and Performance Plan

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Burdekin Distribution

2021 Service and Performance Plan (originally published as the 2023 Service and Performance Plan)

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Burdekin Distribution

2020 Service and Performance Plan (originally published as the 2022 Service and Performance Plan)

Download

Interruption to water supply notices

To find out more about the herbicide Sunwater uses to treat aquatic weeds during planned channel shutdowns and interruptions to water supply, view the Magnacide H Herbicide and acrolein fact sheet.

Interruption to water supply - Clare channel system

May 2024

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Interruption to water supply - Barratta BA9

March 2024

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Interruption to water supply - Gooburrum

February 2024

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Interruption to water supply - Barratta

March 2024

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Interruption to water supply - Annual shutdowns - Clare, Millaroo, Elliott and Dalbeg

May - September 2024

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Interruption to water supply - Barratta BA8 channel

February 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Elliot System

February 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Barratta channel

January 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Isis main channel - Pine Creek Road

December 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Isis main channel surface water

December 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Barrata channel system

December 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Isis main channel

December 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Millaroo channel system 2

October 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Dalbeg channel

September 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Elliot channel

August 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Millaroo channel

July 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Burdekin River

June 2023

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Interruption to water supply - Clare channel

May 2023

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Scheme news

Proposed change to annual maintenance shutdowns

December 2020

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Update - Proposed change to annual maintenance shutdowns

January 2021

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Change to annual maintenance shutdowns

March 2021

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End of water year newsletter

2023-2024

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End of water year newsletter

2022-2023

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End of water year newsletter

2021-2022

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End of water year newsletter

2020-2021

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End of water year newsletter

2019-2020

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Scheme history

A meeting of the Burdekin Catchment Advisory Committee in 1999

Burdekin Haughton Water Supply Scheme

The Burdekin is known primarily for its sugar industry — its cane has the highest sugar content in Australia. The area also produces fruit and vegetables such as capsicums, eggplant, rockmelons, squash, pumpkins, watermelons and sweet corn as well as rice. And let’s not forget the region’s famous mangoes.

The Burdekin River Project, established in 1980 as the largest land and water conservation scheme undertaken in Queensland, underpins the rich agricultural diversity of the region stretching from Townsville in the north to Bowen to the south, covering towns including Home Hill, Ayr, Giru, Clare, Millaroo and Dalbeg.

The irrigation area was established in the early 1950s as a soldier settlement scheme on 7,500 ha of the lower Burdekin floodplain around Clare, Millaroo and Dalbeg. Today the Burdekin Haughton Water Supply Scheme irrigates more than 50,000 ha of farmland through 387 km of channels and pipelines and 366 km of drains, and supplements the urban and industrial needs of the twin cities of Townsville and Thuringowa. As well as Burdekin Falls Dam, there are three weirs within the scheme: Clare, Val Bird and Giru.