Anglesea borefield

As a result of a very dry and hot start to the year and below-average rainfall for six of the past nine months, Barwon Water has made the decision to call on the Anglesea borefield to supplement water supplies for customers from early November.

Groundwater from the borefield can supply Anglesea, Aireys Inlet, Torquay, the Bellarine Peninsula, and parts of southern Geelong.

Our access to groundwater from the Anglesea borefield is governed by a bulk entitlement, issued by the Victorian Government. Under the terms of the bulk entitlement, we are licensed to extract a maximum of 40 million litres per day, 10,000 million litres in any year, and 35,000 million litres in any 5-year period.

We will operate the borefield below these limits to ensure groundwater levels remain above the triggers that have been set to protect groundwater dependent ecosystems. This means we will take up to 13 million litres per day, or 5,000 million litres a year (5 GL per year).

The Anglesea borefield is one of a number of critical backup water sources that can supplement the existing supply system in response to dry conditions. Accessing backup sources is part of a balanced approach to managing the region’s water resources and providing greater water security.

The Anglesea borefield will operate in conjunction with an extensive environmental monitoring program, which includes community oversight through the Anglesea River Working Group.


Extraction rates

DateDaily volume extracted (ML)
Daily Limit** (ML)
Total volume extracted – year to date (ML)
Yearly limit*** (ML)
Pre 1/11/2019*


21.8
1/11/191.14022.910,000
2/11/190.04022.910,000
3/11/193.44026.310,000
4/11/197.84034.110,000
5/11/198.54042.610,000
6/11/198.24050.810,000
7/11/198.04058.810,000
8/11/198.34067.110,000
9/11/198.84075.910,000
10/11/198.64084.410,000
11/11/197.24091.610,000
12/11/194.84096.510,000
13/11/19
5.340101.810,000
14/11/195.440107.210,000
15/11/197.640114.810,000
16/11/198.640123.410,000
17/11/198.540131.810,000
18/11/198.340140.210,000


(Table updated weekly - last updated 19/11/2019)

*Between 17 August and 31 October 2019, a total of 21.75 ML of groundwater was extracted as part of the re-commissioning process of the Anglesea borefield.

**The Bulk Entitlement restricts the volume that can be extracted in any given day to a maximum of 40ML.

***The Bulk Entitlement also restricts the total volume that can be extracted in any given year to an annual limit of 10,000ML. It also restricts the total volume that can be extracted over a five year period to 35,000ML.

More information

You can read more about the role the borefield plays in our region’s water security, and how it will be managed to highest environmental standards, in the Document Library section of this page.

Please feel free to ask us any questions via the online Q&A tool below.

As a result of a very dry and hot start to the year and below-average rainfall for six of the past nine months, Barwon Water has made the decision to call on the Anglesea borefield to supplement water supplies for customers from early November.

Groundwater from the borefield can supply Anglesea, Aireys Inlet, Torquay, the Bellarine Peninsula, and parts of southern Geelong.

Our access to groundwater from the Anglesea borefield is governed by a bulk entitlement, issued by the Victorian Government. Under the terms of the bulk entitlement, we are licensed to extract a maximum of 40 million litres per day, 10,000 million litres in any year, and 35,000 million litres in any 5-year period.

We will operate the borefield below these limits to ensure groundwater levels remain above the triggers that have been set to protect groundwater dependent ecosystems. This means we will take up to 13 million litres per day, or 5,000 million litres a year (5 GL per year).

The Anglesea borefield is one of a number of critical backup water sources that can supplement the existing supply system in response to dry conditions. Accessing backup sources is part of a balanced approach to managing the region’s water resources and providing greater water security.

The Anglesea borefield will operate in conjunction with an extensive environmental monitoring program, which includes community oversight through the Anglesea River Working Group.


Extraction rates

DateDaily volume extracted (ML)
Daily Limit** (ML)
Total volume extracted – year to date (ML)
Yearly limit*** (ML)
Pre 1/11/2019*


21.8
1/11/191.14022.910,000
2/11/190.04022.910,000
3/11/193.44026.310,000
4/11/197.84034.110,000
5/11/198.54042.610,000
6/11/198.24050.810,000
7/11/198.04058.810,000
8/11/198.34067.110,000
9/11/198.84075.910,000
10/11/198.64084.410,000
11/11/197.24091.610,000
12/11/194.84096.510,000
13/11/19
5.340101.810,000
14/11/195.440107.210,000
15/11/197.640114.810,000
16/11/198.640123.410,000
17/11/198.540131.810,000
18/11/198.340140.210,000


(Table updated weekly - last updated 19/11/2019)

*Between 17 August and 31 October 2019, a total of 21.75 ML of groundwater was extracted as part of the re-commissioning process of the Anglesea borefield.

**The Bulk Entitlement restricts the volume that can be extracted in any given day to a maximum of 40ML.

***The Bulk Entitlement also restricts the total volume that can be extracted in any given year to an annual limit of 10,000ML. It also restricts the total volume that can be extracted over a five year period to 35,000ML.

More information

You can read more about the role the borefield plays in our region’s water security, and how it will be managed to highest environmental standards, in the Document Library section of this page.

Please feel free to ask us any questions via the online Q&A tool below.

  • Groundwater level monitoring and triggers

    15 days ago
    Img 4179
    As part of our comprehensive monitoring and assessment program, we have 42 observation bores that monitor groundwater levels across the Anglesea catchment. These observation bores are located at different depths to monitor groundwater levels in different geological formations – in the Perched Water Table (PWT), Upper Eastern View Formation (UEVF) and Lower Eastern View Formation (LEVF).

    View the Anglesea borefield cross section to see the different formations.

    Groundwater levels are continuously monitored to ensure that operation of the Anglesea borefield does not cause significant drawdown, particularly in the Anglesea Swamp. If groundwater levels remain within the likely range of natural...

    As part of our comprehensive monitoring and assessment program, we have 42 observation bores that monitor groundwater levels across the Anglesea catchment. These observation bores are located at different depths to monitor groundwater levels in different geological formations – in the Perched Water Table (PWT), Upper Eastern View Formation (UEVF) and Lower Eastern View Formation (LEVF).

    View the Anglesea borefield cross section to see the different formations.

    Groundwater levels are continuously monitored to ensure that operation of the Anglesea borefield does not cause significant drawdown, particularly in the Anglesea Swamp. If groundwater levels remain within the likely range of natural variation, then we can be confident that operation of the Anglesea borefield is not threatening groundwater dependent ecosystems.

    Of the 42 observation bores, there are two key bores that are critical to ensuring groundwater levels can continue to support groundwater dependent ecosystems. These bores measure groundwater levels in the PWT (P8) and in the UEVF (P19).

    It is the combination of groundwater levels in both of these bores that is important. If groundwater levels in both bores fall below a certain threshold level, then action must be taken to prevent any potential damage to groundwater dependent ecosystems.

    The threshold level (also known as a “trigger”) is determined by comparison to a control bore, to account for climatic influences on groundwater levels. The control bore (P17) is located in the Salt Creek swampland outside the predicted area of influence of any operation of the Anglesea borefield. This means the control bore provides a useful comparison of the natural variation in groundwater levels due to seasonal conditions.

    We will report monthly on status against the threshold level for the two key bores. The first update will be provided in December 2019.

  • Anglesea borefield community pop-ups

    1 day ago
    Barwon Water is hosting a series of pop-up sessions to provide an update to the community following the activation of the Anglesea borefield.

    Our team will be available to answer your questions and explain how to access regular updates about the borefield and our comprehensive environmental monitoring and
    assessment plan.

    Drop by at any time during these sessions:

    Wednesday 27 November, 9 am to 12 pm
    Outside IGA Anglesea supermarket, 87-89 Great Ocean Road
    Tuesday 3 December, 3.30 pm to 6.30 pm
    Outside IGA Anglesea supermarket, 87-89 Great Ocean Road
    Sunday 12 January, 10 am to 1 pm
    Anglesea Riverbank...

    Barwon Water is hosting a series of pop-up sessions to provide an update to the community following the activation of the Anglesea borefield.

    Our team will be available to answer your questions and explain how to access regular updates about the borefield and our comprehensive environmental monitoring and
    assessment plan.

    Drop by at any time during these sessions:

    Wednesday 27 November, 9 am to 12 pm
    Outside IGA Anglesea supermarket, 87-89 Great Ocean Road
    Tuesday 3 December, 3.30 pm to 6.30 pm
    Outside IGA Anglesea supermarket, 87-89 Great Ocean Road
    Sunday 12 January, 10 am to 1 pm
    Anglesea Riverbank Market

    For more information please contact Kate Manning:
    Phone: 1300 656 007


  • Monitoring and Assessment Program

    22 days ago
    Under the bulk entitlement for the Anglesea borefield, Barwon Water has established a comprehensive Monitoring and Assessment Program (MAP) that has been independently reviewed by independent experts and approved by the Minister for Water.

    The objective of the MAP is to protect environmental values and the health of groundwater dependent ecosystems, whilst also continuing to collect data to build our understanding of the long-term sustainability of groundwater resources in the Anglesea area.

    The MAP was originally established in 2009 to address data gaps identified in the 2008 initial project impact assessment. In 2013, Barwon Water undertook a review of the...

    Under the bulk entitlement for the Anglesea borefield, Barwon Water has established a comprehensive Monitoring and Assessment Program (MAP) that has been independently reviewed by independent experts and approved by the Minister for Water.

    The objective of the MAP is to protect environmental values and the health of groundwater dependent ecosystems, whilst also continuing to collect data to build our understanding of the long-term sustainability of groundwater resources in the Anglesea area.

    The MAP was originally established in 2009 to address data gaps identified in the 2008 initial project impact assessment. In 2013, Barwon Water undertook a review of the bulk entitlement and MAP. This work was reviewed and endorsed by an independent Technical Advisory Panel and ultimately approved by the Minister for Water in 2014.

    What has changed?
    The review of the bulk entitlement and MAP conducted in 2013 (approved by the Minister in 2014) indicated that the areas most at risk of impact from operation of the Anglesea borefield were the Anglesea Swampland – rather than the Upper Anglesea River – and Upper Salt Creek catchments.
    This resulted in additional monitoring being established in those areas to help ensure they are not impacted from operation of the Anglesea borefield.

    When is the next review?
    A review of the bulk entitlement and MAP is conducted at five yearly intervals from the date that groundwater extraction recommences. Based on Barwon Water activating the borefield this year (2019), the next review will be due to the Minister for Water in 2024.
    The review is to inform the Minister about:
    • the long term sustainability of groundwater resources in the area
    • protecting the environmental values and health of groundwater dependent ecosystems
    • improving resource management arrangements under the bulk entitlement.

    Learn more

    • View the information posters in the Document Library on the right hand side of this page
  • Groundwater quality monitoring

    15 days ago
    A focus of Barwon Water’s groundwater quality monitoring program is to assess movement of water between the different aquifers in Anglesea and the potential for saline intrusion given the proximity to the coast.

    Of the 42 observation bores in our Monitoring and Assessment Program (MAP), 17 focus on monitoring groundwater quality for salinity, temperature and pH on a monthly basis. Twice a year, we conduct additional laboratory sampling, which also includes major Cations, Anions and Bromide.
    On a weekly basis, we also monitor the operating production bores for groundwater quality.

    Learn more

    A focus of Barwon Water’s groundwater quality monitoring program is to assess movement of water between the different aquifers in Anglesea and the potential for saline intrusion given the proximity to the coast.

    Of the 42 observation bores in our Monitoring and Assessment Program (MAP), 17 focus on monitoring groundwater quality for salinity, temperature and pH on a monthly basis. Twice a year, we conduct additional laboratory sampling, which also includes major Cations, Anions and Bromide.
    On a weekly basis, we also monitor the operating production bores for groundwater quality.

    Learn more

  • Aquatic ecology monitoring

    22 days ago
    Yabbie

    We undertake aquatic ecology monitoring to gather baseline data to better understand the health of groundwater dependent ecosystems and ensure operation of the Anglesea borefield does not have a detrimental impact on these areas.

    Learn more


    We undertake aquatic ecology monitoring to gather baseline data to better understand the health of groundwater dependent ecosystems and ensure operation of the Anglesea borefield does not have a detrimental impact on these areas.

    Learn more


  • Terrestrial ecology monitoring: Vegetation and frogs

    22 days ago
    Frog pic

    Terrestrial ecology monitoring consists of vegetation and frog surveys. We capture information over time to develop a baseline data set, which is used to assess changes over time and identify if pumping from the Anglesea borefield is contributing to these changes.

    Learn more

    Terrestrial ecology monitoring consists of vegetation and frog surveys. We capture information over time to develop a baseline data set, which is used to assess changes over time and identify if pumping from the Anglesea borefield is contributing to these changes.

    Learn more

  • Acid sulfate investigations

    22 days ago
    The 2013 review of the Monitoring and Assessment Program (MAP) identified the need for further understanding of acid generation within the Anglesea catchment. This includes risk of exacerbating existing issues through groundwater pumping from the Anglesea borefield.

    In 2017, Barwon Water engaged Dr. Vanessa Wong from Monash University to conduct a study to investigate the distribution and characterisation of acid sulfate soils (ASS) across the Anglesea catchment.

    Learn more

    The 2013 review of the Monitoring and Assessment Program (MAP) identified the need for further understanding of acid generation within the Anglesea catchment. This includes risk of exacerbating existing issues through groundwater pumping from the Anglesea borefield.

    In 2017, Barwon Water engaged Dr. Vanessa Wong from Monash University to conduct a study to investigate the distribution and characterisation of acid sulfate soils (ASS) across the Anglesea catchment.

    Learn more