DON’T BE A WASTER: Usage is being exceeded across the Southern Downs, accroding to council record.
DON’T BE A WASTER: Usage is being exceeded across the Southern Downs, accroding to council record.

Councillor warns Southern Downs of ‘bleak’ summer ahead

CONCERN is mounting over water usage on the Southern Downs after meter readings revealed many regions were exceeding the daily restrictions.

In Wednesday’s council meeting Cr Sheryl Windle warned drought was being “forgotten” as the COVID-19 pandemic weighed heavily on residents’ minds.

“Allora, Yangan and Ballandean have been very conservative with their usage and should be congratulated,” she said.

“We are still in drought but it seems to be forgotten by a lot of people.”

Statistics from the meeting’s agenda show usage is still highest among residents in Pratten, followed by Stanthorpe and Warwick.

Despite the target consumption of 120 litres per person per day, Pratten usage was sitting at 200 litres according to April metre readings.

Warwick’s usage sat at approximately 130 litres per person per day while Stanthorpe residents used on average about 140 litres per person per day.

The residents of Wallangarra, Allora, Ballandean, Yangan, Dalveen and Leyburn managed to stay under the daily target of 120 litres per person.

Cr Windle said the region will be devastated if rain doesn’t fall during winter.

“If we don’t get good winter rain, our summer is going to be looking very bleak,” she said.

“Our dams will be further depleted.”

Restrictions were lifted up to 120 litres per day in the response to COVID-19, to ensure residents were able to practice safe hygiene.

But despite the need for safe hygiene practices, Cr Windle warned residents not to be complacent about their usage.

The current level in Leslie Dam is 13.28 per cent and the volume is 12,110 megalitres.

Connolly Dam’s level and volume is 82.2 per cent and 178 1 megalitres.

Storm King Dam is at 17.5 per cent and 362 megalitres.

“It’s important that people really still try to focus on the drought and realise we do still have a water shortage and we can’t forget that,” she said.