Skip to main content
Go to search page
Published: 09 August 2018   •   Media release

The Murray–Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) has held a community forum in Northern Victoria to explain expected high river flows in the Mitta Mitta Valley over the coming month.

The MDBA plans to transfer water from Dartmouth Dam, which remains at near capacity, through the Mitta Mitta River to Hume Dam throughout August.

MDBA head of river management Andrew Reynolds said the bulk transfers would help secure water supplies for the Murray River should dry conditions continue, and would better enable Dartmouth Dam to protect the area from flooding should conditions turn wet.

"The MDBA is committed to working with local communities so people have accurate and up to date information available to them so they can undertake their own planning, particularly when we vary river levels," Mr Reynolds said.

"About 70 gigalitres will be released from the Dartmouth Dam during August, so people in the Mitta Mitta Valley will notice the Mitta Mitta River will be running a little higher for the next few weeks.

"The flows will be carefully managed rising to about 4,500 megalitres a day which means river levels will rise by about half a metre in some areas.

"We will be managing the water from this weekend to mimic natural river-flow variations, which will provide some level of environmental benefit to the area.

"The bulk flows follow a relatively small flow of 140 gigalitres into the Mitta Mitta River from the Dartmouth Reservoir in the 2017-18 water year."

Mr Reynolds said that at the end of July, Dartmouth Dam was at 89 per cent of its total capacity of about 4000 gigalitres.

"The bulk water transfers will make sure the reservoir has extra capacity to take inflows in the event the spring is ‘wet' or ‘near average'," he said.

"Transferring this water now will also lessen the potential need for bigger transfers later in the season, and ensure there is more water available at Hume should dry conditions continue."

The Hume Reservoir is currently at around 46 per cent capacity.

Dartmouth Dam provides significant flood mitigation along the Mitta Mitta Valley by capturing and storing floodwaters. Some floodwater can be stored even when the dam is full, with the water then passed downstream at a slower and more manageable rate.
The community meeting at the Eskdale Hotel was a joint event with Goulburn-Murray Water and the Victorian State Emergency Service (SES).

Further information on how the MDBA runs the River Murray can be found on our website.

Fast facts:

  • The Murray–Darling Basin covers one million square kilometres – that's four times the size of New Zealand
  • The Murray–Darling Basin accounts for about 14 per cent of Australia's land mass and produces about 40 per cent of our food and fibre.
  • 2.6 million people live in the Murray–Darling Basin and more than 3 million rely on it for drinking water.


Get in touch with the MDBA media team

Media releases

Sign me up to receive media releases:

Get in touch

Journalists can contact the MDBA 24 hour media unit on (02) 6279 0141 or reach us at

Follow us on social media

Follow @MD_Basin_Auth on Twitter
Find MDBAuth on Facebook