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Minister says there’s ‘no need to panic’ as dam level falls

NSW Utilities Minister Don Harwin says there’s “no need to be alarmist” as Sydney’s dam levels approach dangerous lows.

There are fears a desalination plant may not be ready in time to make up for a shortfall in water, as our dam levels decline.

Dam levels have dropped to 65 per cent and are edging closer to the threshold of 60 per cent, the level at which the desalination plant at Kurnell would be required.

The plant may be needed as early as October but isn’t expected to be ready until December.

NSW Energy and Utilities Minister Don Harwin assures Chris Smith there’s “no need to panic” but admits the plant won’t be ready to be commissioned until mid-December.

Even then, it will take a “matter of months” before the plant’s water flows into our dam’s reserves.

“Sydney has one of the largest water catchments of any city in the world.

“We’ve got two years worth of water in our water catchments, even if it doesn’t rain at all, any time, in the next two years.

“There’s no need to panic and no need to be alarmist.”

Despite the entire state of New South Wales now being in drought, Mr Harwin says there’s no need to implement “extreme water restrictions” yet.

“Level One water restrictions don’t become compulsory until catchment is at 50 per cent.”

Click PLAY below for the full interview

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