Water Management (General) Regulation 2018
Current version for 1 July 2020 to date (accessed 11 July 2020 at 22:16)
Schedule 4
Schedule 4 Exemptions
(Clauses 21 and 42)
Part 1 Access licence exemptions
1   Definition
In this Part—
public authority does not include Landcom or the Superannuation Administration Corporation or any of their subsidiaries.
2   Roads authorities
A roads authority (within the meaning of the Roads Act 1993)—in relation to water required for road construction and road maintenance.
3   Transport authorities
(1)  A transport authority—in relation to water required for the construction or maintenance of rail infrastructure facilities (within the meaning of the Transport Administration Act 1988) if the transport authority, after considering the environmental impact of the activity in accordance with section 5.5 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (as if the transport authority were the determining authority under that section), is satisfied that the activity is not likely to significantly affect the environment.
(2)  In this clause—
transport authority means the following within the meaning of the Transport Administration Act 1988
(a)  RailCorp,
(b)  Transport for NSW,
(c)  ARTC,
(d)  the Secretary.
4   Drought relief
Any person lawfully engaged in the carriage of water for drought relief—in relation to water required for drought relief, but only for the purposes of domestic consumption, stock watering or both.
5   Dust suppression
Any public authority lawfully engaged in the use of water for dust suppression—in relation to water required for that purpose.
6   Hydrostatic testing
Any person lawfully engaged in the hydrostatic testing of a gas pipeline—in relation to water required for initial testing of that pipeline before it is put into service for the first time, up to a maximum of 7 megalitres.
7   Water taken in course of certain aquifer interference activities
(1)  Any person lawfully engaged in an aquifer interference activity carried out in connection with an authorised project—in relation to the taking of up to 3 megalitres of groundwater from a groundwater source by one or more of those activities in a water year, if the taking of that groundwater is not for the purpose of its consumption or supply.
(2)  Without limiting subclause (1), the exemption conferred by that subclause (the exemption) applies to the taking of groundwater by the aquifer interference activity for the purpose of lawfully carrying out any of the following activities—
(a)  exploration for minerals (including coal) or petroleum,
(b)  quarrying, excavation, dredging or exploration for stone, aggregate, sand or gravel,
(c)  excavation required for the construction of a building, road or infrastructure,
(d)  creation of an artificial lake that intersects with groundwater,
(e)  remediation of groundwater contamination,
(f)  investigation of groundwater resources or geotechnical investigation,
(g)  testing of water quality from monitoring bores,
(h)  conduct of pumping tests to investigate bore capacity or the capacity or connectivity of groundwater systems,
(i)  operation of ground source heating or cooling systems.
(3)  Despite subclauses (1) and (2), the exemption does not apply in relation to the taking of groundwater in the course of or incidental to mining for minerals (including coal) or petroleum under the Mining Act 1992 or the Petroleum (Onshore) Act 1991.
(4)  To avoid doubt, the maximum volume of groundwater that may be taken from a groundwater source under the exemption by all aquifer interference activities carried out in connection with an authorised project is 3 megalitres in a water year.
Note.
 Accordingly, once the 3 megalitre limit is reached, no further claim may be made for the exemption (whether by the same or a different person) in relation to the taking of groundwater in the water year from the groundwater source in connection with the authorised project. See clause 17A of this Schedule for a related exemption that applies to the taking of more than 3 megalitres of groundwater for excavation.
(5)  In this clause—
authorised project means an activity—
(a)  that is the subject of a consent, approval or other lawful authority conferred by or under an Act, or
(b)  to which Division 5.1 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 applies, or
(c)  that is exempt development under that Act.
building has the same meaning as it has in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.
mineral has the same meaning as it has in the Mining Act 1992.
petroleum has the same meaning as it has in the Petroleum (Onshore) Act 1991.
8   Domestic electricity generation
Any landholder—in relation to water required for the purpose of generating electricity for domestic consumption on that land, but only if—
(a)  the water is returned to the same water source from which it was taken and within 50 metres of the point at which it was taken, and
(b)  the returned water is of the same quality as it was when it was taken (in terms of chemical composition, temperature, sediment content and salinity).
9, 10   (Repealed)
11   Hydro-electric power stations
Any person lawfully engaged in the operation of a hydro-electric power station in connection with a water supply work owned by Water NSW or the Ministerial Corporation (such operation being authorised by Water NSW or the Ministerial Corporation)—in relation to water required for the purpose of generating hydro-electric power, but only if—
(a)  the water is returned to the same water source from which it was taken, and
(b)  the returned water is of the same quality as it was when it was taken (in terms of chemical composition, temperature, sediment content and salinity).
12   Excluded works
(1)  Any landholder—in relation to the taking of water from or by means of a work referred to in item 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7 or 9 in Schedule 1 that is situated on the land, for the purposes and in the circumstances specified in Schedule 1 in respect of the work.
(2)  Any landholder—in relation to the taking of water from or by means of a work referred to in item 5 or 8 in Schedule 1 that is situated on the land.
13   Sugar cane plantings
Any person—in relation to the taking of water from an artificial channel if—
(a)  the water is taken for the purpose of watering to establish agricultural plantings of sugar cane (with a sugar cane plant taken to be established once it reaches a height of 50 centimetres), and
(b)  the volume of water taken does not, in any continuous 12 month period, exceed 0.05 of a megalitre per hectare of land on which sugar cane is being established, and
(c)  the channel was constructed for the primary purpose of draining water from land on which sugar cane is grown, and
(d)  the channel does not have banks that are above ground level, and
(f)  any work used to take the water is not fixed to the land.
14   Taking water for basic human water needs
The Ministerial Corporation—in relation to the taking of water for approved watering for basic human water needs, being watering—
(a)  that the Minister is satisfied—
(i)  is in the public interest, and
(ii)  is urgently required for basic human water needs, and
(b)  that is in accordance with a watering program that is approved by the Minister in writing and that addresses—
(i)  the amount of water proposed to be taken, and
(ii)  the water source from which the water will be taken.
15   Taking water for environmental work construction
A public authority—in relation to the taking of up to 0.5 megalitre of water in any water year (or up to such lesser amount as the Minister may specify) that the Minister is satisfied is for the purpose of constructing on waterfront land a water supply work that will have an environmental benefit, but only if the work is in accordance with a program approved by the Minister in writing that addresses—
(a)  the amount of water proposed to be taken, and
(b)  the water source from which the water will be taken.
Note.
 The construction and use of a water supply work for the purpose of taking any such water may still require a water supply work approval under Part 3 of Chapter 3 of the Act.
16   Holders of certain approvals
(1)  The holder of an approval arising from the entitlement referred to in clause 87(a) of Schedule 4 to the Water Management (General) Regulation 2011 as continued in force by this Regulation—in relation to the taking of any water from Bungaree Creek or Bingera Creek (as described in the entitlement).
(2)  The holder of an approval arising from an entitlement referred to in clause 87(b) of Schedule 4 to the Water Management (General) Regulation 2011 as continued in force by this Regulation—in relation to the taking of any water from a river to which the entitlement relates (as described in the entitlement).
17   Emergency safety measures
Any person—in relation to the taking of water for the purposes only of complying with a direction given under the State Emergency Service Act 1989 or the State Emergency and Rescue Management Act 1989 in an emergency (within the meaning of the latter Act), but only if the person’s compliance with the direction is in accordance with the Act under which it is given.
17AA   Floodplain harvesting
(1)  Any person—in relation to the taking of water from a water source for the purpose of floodplain harvesting by means of an eligible work.
(2)  In this clause—
eligible work means a water management work (other than a work in respect of which an application for a water supply work approval has been refused)—
(a)  located on a floodplain, and
(b)  constructed—
(i)  on or before 3 July 2008, or
(ii)  after 3 July 2008 in accordance with an approval under this Act or a licence or approval under Part 2 or Part 8, respectively, of the former 1912 Act, for which an application had been made before 3 July 2008 but which, on that date, was yet to be determined.
17A   Taking groundwater for excavation
(1)  The holder of a water supply work approval in relation to the taking of more than 3 megalitres of groundwater in a water year using the water supply work to which the approval relates, but only if—
(a)  the water supply work approval is subject to a condition that limits the amount of water that can be taken using the water supply work during a water year, and
(b)  the taking of groundwater is for the purposes of excavation required for the construction of a building, road or infrastructure (other than in the course of carrying out mining operations or prospecting operations), and
(c)  the taking of groundwater is carried out in accordance with the conditions of the water supply work approval.
(2)  This clause applies to the taking of water only from the following groundwater sources—
(b)  a groundwater source specified by the Minister, by order published in the Gazette, for the purposes of this clause.
(3)  The exemption conferred by this clause in respect of a particular groundwater source ceases to have effect—
(a)  6 months after the date on which Minister makes a declaration under section 65 of the Act in respect of the groundwater source, or
(b)  on 1 July 2021,
whichever occurs first.
(4)  In this clause—
building has the same meaning as it has in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.
mining operations and prospecting operations have the same meanings as they have in the Mining Act 1992.
Part 2 Controlled activities exemptions
18   Activities under mining, crown lands or western lands legislation
Any activity carried out in accordance with any lease, licence, permit or other right in force under the Mining Act 1992 or the Crown Land Management Act 2016 or a petroleum title in force under the Petroleum (Onshore) Act 1991.
19   Activities on land of Maritime Authority or Port Corporation
Any activity—
(a)  carried out in accordance with any lease, licence, permit or other right in force in respect of land under the ownership or control of Roads and Maritime Services or the Port Authority of New South Wales (within the meaning of the Ports and Maritime Administration Act 1995), or
(b)  carried out in accordance with any lease, licence, permit or other right in force in respect of land under the ownership or control of a port operator (within the meaning of the Ports and Maritime Administration Act 1995), but only if the operator, after considering the environmental impact of the activity in accordance with section 5.5 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (as if the operator were the determining authority under that section), is satisfied that the activity is not likely to significantly affect the environment, or
(c)  for which the Minister administering the Ports and Maritime Administration Act 1995 is the consent authority under Sydney Regional Environmental Plan (Sydney Harbour Catchment) 2005.
20   Activities under water supply works approval
Any activity comprising the excavation of the bed of a river, lake or estuary for the purpose of facilitating the use of a water supply work, being an activity that—
(a)  is detailed in the conditions of the water supply work approval for the water supply work, and
(b)  is carried out in accordance with those conditions.
21   Activities with respect to domestic and stock rights
Any of the following activities for the purpose of enabling a person to take, or facilitating a person’s taking of, water pursuant to section 52 (Domestic and stock rights) of the Act—
(a)  the removal of alluvial material from the bed of a river to enable or facilitate the taking of water, if—
(i)  any excavation—
(A)  is no deeper than 1 metre, and
(B)  is no wider than 1/3 of the width of the river at that point or 6 metres (whichever is lesser), and
(C)  is no longer than its width, and
(ii)  the only alluvial material that is removed is material that has been deposited on the riverbed by the flow of water in the river such as sand, silt or gravel, and
(iii)  no material is removed within 1 metre of the bank of the river, and
(iv)  any alluvial material that has been removed is placed in the bed of the river, immediately upstream of the excavation,
(b)  any controlled activity in, on or under the bank of a river to enable or facilitate the installation of a pipe, if—
(i)  the pipe is above ground or in a trench that is the minimum size necessary to hold the pipe but is no more than 0.3 metre wide and 0.3 metre deep, and
(ii)  any material that is removed is used to backfill the trench within 48 hours after its removal,
(c)  any controlled activity in, on or under waterfront land to enable or facilitate the installation of a water supply work that is a pump, if—
(i)  the controlled activity is not on the bed or bank of a river, and
(ii)  any material removed is the minimum amount necessary to establish a suitable pump site but is no more than 1 cubic metre, and
(iii)  the area of land from which any material is removed is no greater than 4 square metres.
22   Activities in accordance with harvestable rights orders
Any activity carried out, in accordance with a harvestable rights order, in connection with the construction or use of a dam on land within the harvestable rights area constituted by the order.
23   Activities connected with construction of fencing, crossings or tracks
Any activity carried out in connection with the construction or use of fencing, or of a vehicular crossing or an access track, that does not impound water, being an activity carried out in, on or under waterfront land—
(a)  relating to a minor stream, and
(b)  within a rural zone (other than a rural village) under an environmental planning instrument.
24   Activities in connection with works under former 1912 Act
(1)  Any activity carried out in connection with the construction or use of a work to which Part 2 of the former 1912 Act applies in accordance with a licence issued under that Part in relation to that work, being an activity that—
(a)  is detailed in the conditions of the licence, and
(b)  is carried out in accordance with those conditions.
(2)  Any activity carried out in connection with the construction or use of a controlled work within the meaning of Part 8 of the former 1912 Act in accordance with an approval issued under that Part in relation to that work, being an activity that—
(a)  is detailed in the conditions of the approval, and
(b)  is carried out in accordance with those conditions.
25   Removal of vegetation
Any activity authorised under the Act or any other Act or law comprising nothing more than the removal of vegetation (other than large woody debris), but only if the activity does not include the removal or disturbance of soil or other extractive materials.
26   Development at Rouse Hill Regional Centre
The carrying out of development in accordance with section 6 of Part D (Rouse Hill Regional Centre) of The Hills Development Control Plan 2012 on the land to which that section applies (being land bounded by Windsor Road, Commercial Road and Withers Road, Rouse Hill).
27   Development on waterfront land at Oran Park or Turner Road
The carrying out of development in accordance with the Oran Park and Turner Road Waterfront Land Strategy 2009, as published in the Gazette on 17 July 2009.
28   Activities on waterfront land if river is concrete lined or in pipe
Any activity carried out on waterfront land relating to a river where the channel of the river is fully concrete lined or is a fully enclosed pipe channel.
29   Activities with respect to dwellings
(1)  Any activity carried out in connection with the erection or demolition of, the making of alterations or additions to or the provision of ancillary facilities for, a dwelling house or dual occupancy building, being activities—
(a)  that comprise exempt development or that are the subject of a development consent or complying development certificate in force under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, and
(b)  that are not carried out on or in—
(i)  the bed or bank of any river, or
(ii)  the bed or shore of any lake, or
(iii)  the bed, or land lying between the bed and the mean high water mark, of any estuary.
(2)  In this clause—
development has the same meaning as it has in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.
dual occupancy building means a building containing 2, but no more, dwellings within the meaning of the standard instrument prescribed by the Standard Instrument (Local Environmental Plans) Order 2006.
dwelling house has the same meaning as it has in the standard instrument prescribed by the Standard Instrument (Local Environmental Plans) Order 2006.
30   Emergency safety measures
Any activity carried out for the purposes only of complying with a direction given under the State Emergency Service Act 1989 or the State Emergency and Rescue Management Act 1989 in an emergency (within the meaning of the latter Act), being compliance that is in accordance with the Act under which the direction is given.
31   Controlled activities on certain waterfront land
Any controlled activity that is carried out on waterfront land in relation to a minor stream or third order stream, where the activity is separated from the bed of the minor stream or third order stream by one or more of the following that has been lawfully constructed—
(a)  a public road,
(b)  a hard stand space (such as a car park or building),
(c)  a levee bank, but only if the levee bank is in an urban area, was the subject of a development consent under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and is located within a designated high risk flood area (within the meaning of clause 45 of this regulation).
Note.
 See Schedule 2 in relation to third order streams.
32   Pontoons, jetties and moorings
Any activity carried out in connection with the construction of a pontoon, jetty or mooring pole on waterfront land relating to a lake or estuary but only if that activity does not require any of the following—
(a)  the removal of material from the land,
(b)  the depositing of material, other than that which is necessary for the construction of the pontoon, jetty or mooring, on the land,
(c)  works which change the profile of the waterfront land adjoining the lake or estuary.
33   Maintenance of existing lawful works
Any activity necessary for the purpose of the preservation, repair or upkeep of any building or structure lawfully constructed on waterfront land (other than an agricultural drain), but does not include additions or enhancements to, or the expansion of, the building or structure.
Note.
 Clause 34 makes provision with respect to repair work and the removal of woody debris arising from a storm event.
34   Repair and restoration work after storms
The following activities after a storm event—
(a)  repair work on any building or structure (including any access track, watercourse crossing, water supply works or essential services infrastructure) damaged by the storm, but only if—
(i)  the work does not involve the replacement of a structural component of any building or structure that could not otherwise be repaired under this Schedule, and
(ii)  the work does not include enhancements to, or the expansion of, the building or structure beyond its condition immediately before the storm damage occurred.
Note.
 Clause 33 makes provision with respect to repair and maintenance of certain buildings and structures on waterfront land.
(b)  the removal of detritus (including woody debris) deposited on waterfront land as a result of the storm.
35   Compliance with enforcement action
(1)  Any activity required to be carried out to comply with any direction, request or order under the Act or any other Act or law, but only if the direction, request or order was made—
(a)  by a court, or
(b)  by the Minister or an authorised officer.
(2)  Any activity that is not otherwise specified in this Part that is required to be carried out to comply with a direction, request or order made under the Act or any other Act or law (other than a direction, request or order referred to in subclause (1)), but only if the Minister approves the carrying out of the activity without a controlled activity approval.
36   Exempt development, complying development and controlled activities with development consent on certain waterfront land
(1)  Any activity on waterfront land adjoining a lake or estuary identified on a map approved by the Minister and published on the Department’s website for the purposes of this clause, before the commencement of this Regulation, that is development for which development consent has been granted, or is exempt development or complying development.
(2)  In this clause, complying development, development consent and exempt development have the same meanings as in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.
37   Activities by State or Commonwealth owned bodies
Any activity carried out by a body (whether incorporated or unincorporated) established or continued for a public purpose that is wholly owned by the State or the Commonwealth, but only if—
(a)  the activity does not cause any change in the course of the river, and
(b)  the body, after considering the environmental impact of the activity in accordance with section 5.5 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (as if the body were the determining authority under that section), is satisfied that the activity is not likely to significantly affect the environment.