A Riverina farmer has slammed the management of Burrinjuck Dam, saying "you can't keep holding it at 90 to 99 per cent capacity".
Tony Clough from Wantabadgery believes Water NSW should have been releasing water a lot earlier than now from both Burrinjuck and Blowering dams, as flooding across the region has now become a serious concern.
Water NSW were forced to release 20,000 megalitres of water from Burrinjuck Dam on Tuesday to cope with the wet weather that had hit the region.
"The dam is too high, you think about it, you have all the snow in the high country that will end up melting at some stage," Mr Clough said.
"The forecast is that we are going to have a wetter rather than dryer next few months and we don't need much water in the catchment, because Burrinjuck has a huge catchment area.
"I believe if they don't start letting a lot of water out of Burrinjuck and Blowering, we're going to end up in a lot of trouble."
"I think they [Water NSW] should have done something sometime back."
But a spokesperson from Water NSW said it is a lot more complicated than just releasing water earlier, particularly having just come out of the worst drought on record.
"All dam managers need to prioritise for the future," the spokesperson said.
"Where flood and mitigation measures are possible, Water NSW conducts those operations and is currently and has been in this case for many weeks.
"With respect to Burrinjuck it's early July, with respect to Blowering it's early June, creating air space releases. But flood mitigation always needs to be weighed up against water security, not just for this year but the years ahead."
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Despite Burrinjuck Dam water levels currently sitting at 99.2 per cent capacity, Wagga mayor Greg Conkey says the proposed plan to upgrade the dam is still "10 to 15 years" away.
But Councillor Conkey wanted to reassure the community that the facility is not "unsafe", despite more rainfall forecasted from Friday.
"We have flagged it along with other organisations such as the Murray-Darling Association and it needs to be addressed over the next 10 to 15 years, to see whether we are going to increase the capacity," Cr Conkey said.
"It is not 'unsafe', I need to stress that. There was a considerable amount of money spent on it a few years back. Not that I think it was unsafe then, but to make it safer.
"The capacity of that dam does need to be addressed and whether we need to increase the size of the wall, or whether we need a new wall.
"But it is not a cheap proposition; it will cost many many millions of dollars to do this," he said.
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