Water entitlements

The Queensland water legislation administers a range of water entitlements and authorisations which are important to consider in the review. These entitlements include water licences and water allocations.

Water licences

A water licence is an authority to take water and/or interfere with the flow of water (for example a weir interferes with a watercourse). It is usually attached to a parcel of land and subject to an expiry.

Within the Flinders and Gilbert river water management areas an application may be made to transfer all or part of a water licence to take surface water or overland flow water. We call these relocatable water licences.

Water allocations

A water allocation authorises the holder to take a certain volume of water from a particular water source, such as a watercourse or aquifer. Allocations have a separate title, similar to a land title, and they can be bought and sold on the water trading market. They can also be used as a mortgageable asset.

Water allocations provide long-term security because:

  • they do not have an expiry date
  • they specify a nominal volume of water that can be taken which is considered as the allocation’s long-term water share.

Water allocations support additional businesses through water trading without compromising other water needs in the catchment.

We want to know how current water licences are working for water users in the Gulf.

What do you think?

  • Should change more water licences into water allocations? This will work best if all water licences in a water management area are converted to water allocations.
  • What concerns do you have about what it might mean to change your water licence to a water allocation?
  • How does your current water entitlement impact on your decision making around water trading?
  • Do you think greater transparency around trading of water allocations would be useful in this plan area?
    Tell us in your submission.

Last updated: 15 Mar 2024