Surface water modelling is vital to investigations undertaken to:
- Operate large and complex water supply systems;
- Examine the impacts of water supply system augmentations;
- Assess possible impacts of climate change on water availability;
- Maintain and improve Victoria's water allocation framework;
- Demonstrate compliance with intestate water sharing arrangements developed for the Murray-Darling Basin;
- Monitor and report on Victoria's water availability and use;
- Develop and implement long term water resource plans such as regional Sustainable Water Strategies and urban water Strategies;
- Develop and implement measures for extreme conditions such as dry contingency and flood management plans;
- Accurately quantify and verify water savings arising from irrigation modernisation works and conservation and efficiency programs;
- Establish sustainable limits on the amount of surface water that can be diverted from a river system; and
- Develop environmental watering plans.
The Department of Environment , Water and Planning (DELWP) is a key contributor to the development and maintenance of two key surface water models utilised by the Australian water industry.
The REsource ALlocation Model (REALM) can simulate both simple and large complex water supply systems.
The Spatial Tool for Estimating Dam Impacts (STEDI) can simulate the impact of farm dams on streamflow.
The Department is also contributing to development of new surface water modelling platform, SOURCE being developed by eWater on behalf of Murray-Darling Basin jurisdictions.
The eWater SOURCE is designed to simulate all aspects of water resource systems to support integrated planning, operations and governance from urban, catchment to river basin scales, including human and ecological influences. Its purpose is to provide a common and consistent hydrological modelling platform initially across the Murray Darling Basin and Australia wide over long term.