Community Reference Group announced for Darwin Region Water Supply Infrastructure Program


The Northern Territory (NT) Government is working to secure the Darwin region’s future water supply.

Earlier this month, the NT Government announced a new Community Reference Group to represent and discuss matters of community interest related to the Darwin Region Water Supply Infrastructure Program.

The group will provide a mechanism to share community feedback with government, help to build community understanding of the infrastructure program and communicate project development progress to the wider community.

Members have been selected based on their expert knowledge, experience and ability to represent the local community directly impacted by the project.

There are 12 members appointed on an initial 2-year term:

  • Darryl Day, Director Wongulla Waters Pty Ltd (chair)
  • Gary Higgins, former NT Minister and local resident
  • Dheran Young MLA, Member for Daly
  • Kezia Purick MLA, Member for Goyder
  • Joe Martin-Jard, Chief Executive Officer, Northern Land Council
  • Paul Burke, Chief Executive Officer, NT Farmers
  • Greg Ireland, Chief Executive Officer, Chamber of Commerce NT
  • Ruth Palmer, Public Officer, Lake Bennett Community Association Inc.
  • Stephen Hoyne, Chief Executive Officer, Litchfield Council
  • David Ciaravolo, Chief Executive Officer, Amateur Fishing Association of the NT
  • Anna Malgorzewicz, Chief Executive Officer, Coomalie Community Government Council
  • Karen May, Chief Executive Officer, Territory Natural Resource Management.

If further community representation is required as the infrastructure program progresses, additional members may be added to the group.

Chair Darryl Day said, “I am excited to be involved in this significant project for the Territory and look forward to working with fellow members of the Community Reference Group.

“We will provide a direct voice to government for key stakeholders, and through engagement of the wider community, for this transformational program of works which will address water security and economic development, but equally water conservation and water use efficiency.

“Engagement and open conversations with the community will be critical for the success of the program.”

The program will provide long term water security for the Darwin region, supplying up to 67.5 gigalitres of additional water each year and has 2 components, detailed in a business case that investigated the Darwin region’s future water supply requirements:

  • Manton Dam Return to Service (RTS) - short-term water supply with a development timeframe of 3 to 4 years
  • The Adelaide River Off-stream Water Storage (AROWS) project - long-term water supply, with a development timeframe of 7 to 10 years.

This program aligns with the NT Government’s draft NT strategic water plan that was recently released for consultation, supporting delivery of the government’s commitment to deliver the Territory’s first long-term, comprehensive plan for water security across the NT.

For more information on the Darwin Region Water Supply Infrastructure Program, go to Water Security website.


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