Adelaide
Future outlook

Future prospects

Table 1 shows that there is a surplus of 170,095 ML of available water over water liabilities and future water commitments that are expected to be settled within 12 months of the reporting date.

 

Table 1  Future prospects for the Adelaide region
 Volume  (ML)
Total water assets as at 30 June 2014211,107
less Water assets not available to accessed, taken, and delivered: 
dead water storage11,475
conveyance water2743
  
less Total water liabilities as at 30 June 201433,506
Subtotal212,395
  
less Future water commitments expected to be settled within 12 months of the reporting date: 
expected diversion of surface water allocations: urban water system80,000
expected diversion of surface water allocations: individual users1,100
expected diversion of other surface water rights2,200
expected extraction of groundwater allocations: individual users22,000
expected extraction of other groundwater rights25,000
Surplus/deficit of available water assets over water liabilities and future water commitments expected to be settled within 12 months of the reporting date82,095
  
add Future rights expected to be realised within 12 months of the reporting date: 
transfer into urban water system of River Murray water49,000
transfer into irrigation schemes of River Murray water5,000
desalinated water34,000
  
Surplus/(deficit) of available water assets, expected future inflows, and future water rights over water liabilities and future water commitments within 12 months of the reporting date170,095

 

The volumes reported for future water rights and future water commitments are indicative only. The volumes presented in Table 1 were estimated from the average diversions and extractions in the previous 4 years. The actual volume of water delivered under these future water rights and future water commitments will depend on climatic conditions and demand.

Climatic conditions varied considerably across the 3 years used to estimate future average diversions and extractions; however an average derived from 3 years is unlikely to accurately represent any given water-demand scenario. Therefore it is difficult to determine if the future prospects detailed in Table 1 underestimate or overestimate expected diversions and extractions in an average rainfall year.

It should be noted that Table 1 does not include a number of water inflows for 2014–15 due to lack of appropriate data and a suitable quantification approach. Future direct rainfall on the watercourses and storages, runoff, and groundwater recharge within the Adelaide region that could not be estimated for the 2014–15 year will contribute to meeting the region's water demands. In addition, transfers of water from the River Murray and the Adelaide Desalination Plant may also be increased in case of need.

 

Contingent water assets and contingent water liabilities

Contingent water assets

The non-extractable portion of groundwater in the Adelaide region

The Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges Natural Resources Management Board develops water allocation plans for the prescribed water resources within the Adelaide region. A water allocation plan describes the capacity of the groundwater resources to meet demand. The non-extractable portion of the groundwater asset is a contingent water asset because it is possible that a change in circumstances, such as legislative or regulatory changes that alter the extraction limits, would result in further portions of the groundwater becoming available for extraction. There is no estimate available of the total volume stored in the aquifers of the region.

 

Contingent water liabilities

Water for urban use

SA Water supplies urban water to residential customers throughout the Adelaide region. SA Water maintains water within its distribution pipes for the delivery of water to the city, but the actual delivery of water is determined by the customers when they turn on the tap. Therefore, the delivery of urban water to customers within the Adelaide region is considered a contingent water liability. During the 2013–2014 year 137,027 ML of urban water was supplied to residential customers within the Adelaide reporting region. Notwithstanding any major changes, it is estimated that a similar volume of water will be required to be delivered in the 2014–15 year.