Irrigating veggies brings a $40,000 fine when the water isn't yours

A local small business vegetable grower has been fined a total of $40,000 for syphoning water from the Nepean River to irrigate his vegetable farm.

Nepean River  - provided a free source of water for a market gardener

The NSW Department of Industry—Lands & Water, successfully prosecuted the Greendale business in Parramatta Court following a public tip-off.

The water user was found to have installed a diversion pipe between the river pump and water meter. The user was instructed to disconnect the unauthorised works which effectively allowed the user to bypass the water metering system.

A stop work order was issued and the pipe disconnected but a follow up inspection revealed the user had reinstalled the diversion pipe.

The Department said the fine imposed in this case should send a strong message to landowners and water users in NSW that compliance with the State’s water management laws is a serious matter for the NSW Government and for the NSW Courts.

Anyone wishing to report suspected illegal water activities can do so confidentially on 1800 633 362 or by emailing -


10 views0 comments