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Tumut Farmers terrified of flooding as Blowering Dam fills

Wednesday August 21, 2013 - 09:12 EST

A Tumut River farmer says he's terrified at the prospect of damage from another flood as Blowering Dam fills.

The dam has risen from 85 per cent to 90 per cent full in the last week.

Peter Luders from the Tumut River Landowners' Association says three floods in three years have caused exponential damage, but Blowering is no longer used for flood mitigation.

"Damage not only to furthering erosion along the river banks but right across the flood plain," he said.

"There's always been an agreement that there should be 12 per cent of the dam kept free as airspace which would have some effect on flood mitigation."

"Over the past three years the CEO of the NSW Office of Water has decided that this shouldn't apply."

"We are quite frankly terrified about this situation."

The Primary Industries Minister is being urged to respond to concerns about the Tumut River flooding with Blowering Dam reaching capacity.

Peter Luders has again requested there be space left in the dam rather than letting it keep filling.

Mr Luders says the responsible Minister Katrina Hodgkinson was on side when in Opposition, but now he's compared her to a disgraced Labor MP.

"We've attempted to contact the Minister, we've made submissions, lots of submissions to the Tumut River Advisory Council who have or have attempted to contact the minister we're getting no response from this minister," he said.

"There's only one minister in the past, the only one that ever failed to address our concerns was of course Sir Lunchalot Macdonald. "

Mr Luders is questioning when flood mitigation releases are planned.

The Murray Darling Basin Authority began pre-flood releases into the Murray River from Hume Dam last week.

The Tumut River landowner says there is deep anxiety about another flood as Blowering Dam fills.

"If you can keep Blowering Dam with an airspace of about 12 per cent it can have a really useful effect as far as flood mitigation's concerned," he said.

"You know, if you work out that doesn't mean you're losing much water for irrigation or the environment."

Comment has been sought from the Office of Water and the Primary Industries Minister.


© ABC 2013

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