21 March 2023

La Niña is over! Here’s what we can do to prepare for a potentially drier future

After three years of record-breaking rain, active cyclone seasons and a cooling of the Pacific Ocean, the Bureau of Meteorology has officially declared La Niña to be over.

With the naturally-occurring climate pattern in the rear-view mirror, meteorologists are already looking to the future with predictions of an El Niño pattern developing later this year.

This means Australia could face hot and dry weather and our water storages could be vulnerable to drought again.

Hunter Water Managing Director Darren Cleary says now is the time to work together to ensure our water storages remain fuller for longer.

“Here in the Hunter we have a variable climate which means we can go from our current healthy levels of water storage to empty in just three years,” Mr Cleary said.

“That may sound like a fair amount of time, but it's really not when you're looking at what we might need to do to ensure that our region doesn't run out of water.

“It’s why we’ve developed the Lower Hunter Water Security Plan with the NSW Government so that we can play our part in ensuring our region can manage drought.

“We’re acting now by designing and building the Belmont desalination plant, investigating a connection on the Paterson River to the proposed project to install a two-way pipeline between Lostock Dam and Glennies Creek Dam, as well as increasing recycled water use across the region.

“But one of the most important things the community can do is make the most of what we’ve got.”

Hunter Water has Smart Water Choices are the region’s permanent water conservation measures. They primarily apply to outdoor water usage. However, our customers and community are encouraged to continue saving water inside their homes.

“It’s the little things we can all do now that can make a big difference,” said Mr Cleary.

“Whether that’s having a four-minute shower, waiting for a full load before doing the washing or fixing leaks around the home.

“These little acts make a big difference and allow us to be prepared for the future.”

More information

Information for homes

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