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Irrigation district to soak up rain

Wednesday November 7, 2012 - 10:25 EDT

Farmers in the Macalister irrigation district near Sale are welcoming forecasts of more rain this week.

The weather bureau is predicting about 50 millimetres of rain in East Gippsland from an east coast low from today until Saturday.

Gavin Prior from Southern Rural Water says Lake Glenmaggie is about 95 per cent full and can do with a top-up.

He says farmers have been busy irrigating because of a drier than average October.

"In fact, the usage today is about 24,000 megalitres, which is 10,000 above last year's usage, so that gives us, they're starting to draw down Lake Glenmaggie and it's currently about 95 per cent and we would welcome a little bit of rainfall in the catchment at this point in time," he said.

Mr Prior says farmers in the district are using more water because of the conditions.

He says irrigators have used about 24 gigalitres of water so far this season compared to 15 last year.

"Our customers now are currently using water off their allocation, so a bit of rainfall in the catchment at this time would be good because if it did top her up a little bit we would be able to offer spill entitlement again and that means that all customers' usage would be retrospectively put back to spill," he said.


© ABC 2012

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