Mid West groundwater-dependent ecosystem vulnerability groundwater investigation

This investigation was undertaken from 2009 to 2012 as part of our flagship State Groundwater Investigation Program and the Australian Government’s Water Smart Australia program.

Groundwater resources in the Mid West have come under increasing pressure from abstraction for the mining and agricultural industries. The region also has environmentally and culturally significant groundwater-dependent ecosystems.

This investigation supported the balanced management of groundwater resources by providing a better understanding of the interaction of ecosystems, surface water, and local and regional groundwater systems.

This investigation was undertaken from 2009 to 2012 as part of our flagship State Groundwater Investigation Program and the Australian Government’s Water Smart Australia program.

What we did during the investigation

Through the Mid West groundwater-dependent ecosystem vulnerability investigation we:

  • installed monitoring bores and staff gauges at 10 representative groundwater-dependent ecosystems
  • conducted aerial electromagnetic (AEM) surveys at the representative groundwater-dependent ecosystems between the Moore and Irwin rivers
  • installed loggers in bores and staff gauges to monitor water levels and salinity
  • characterised ecosystems.

Key findings and how we are using the information

We developed regional spatial layers that characterise and delineate how groundwater-dependent ecosystems in the Northern Perth Basin are connected to local and regional groundwater systems. We have used this information to help with groundwater allocation planning and licensing decisions in the Arrowsmith, Jurien and Gingin groundwater areas.

The findings of the investigation helped to develop our Bulletin HB1 – North Perth Basin: Geology, hydrogeology and groundwater resources, published in 2017.

Where to get more details

You can download Bulletin HB1 – North Perth Basin: Geology, hydrogeology and groundwater resources.

You can ask for copies of the internal technical reports for this investigation by emailing groundwater.info@dwer.wa.gov.au. These include:

  • Bore completion report: Mid-West groundwater-dependent ecosystem vulnerability project stage 1 drilling program, HR306 (Boniecki & Ryan 2010)
  • Bore completion report: Mid-West groundwater-dependent ecosystem vulnerability project stage 2 drilling program, HR315 (Ryan 2012)
  • Mid-West groundwater-dependent ecosystem review: part B of vegetation description and mapping along transects (Casson 2012)
  • Analysis of subterranean groundwater-dependent ecosystems of the northern Perth Basin (Susac 2012)
  • Acquisition and processing report on downhole conductivity logging: Mid West GDE vulnerability project near Cervantes, Western Australia (GroundProbe Geophysics 2011)
  • Acquisition and processing report on SkyTEM helicopter EM survey: Mid West GDE vulnerability project near Cervantes, Western Australia (GroundProbe Geophysics 2011).

To obtain the regional spatial layers for the region, email Spatial.Data@dwer.wa.gov.au.

Go to our Water Information Reporting portal to access data from the monitoring bores installed during the investigation.

You can access all government-commissioned airborne geophysical surveys via the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety website and download them free of charge from ‘Geophysical Surveys’ in GeoVIEW.WA or from the Geophysical Archive Data Delivery System (GADDS).

Read more about our groundwater investigations by region across Western Australia.

Page reviewed 26 July 2022