PHOTOS | Woronora Dam at 87 per cent capacity and desal plant production ramped up during deluge

It's hard to believe that just a year after being in the grip of a terrible drought, Sydney has amassed such enormous water reserves thanks to the deluge in March.

Woronora Dam, which supplies water to Sutherland Shire, has not overflowed like Warragamba Dam and others, but it came close to being 90 per cent full .

On Monday, capacity was at 88.6 per cent, a fall of 0.9 per cent in a week.

A Water NSW spokesman said the last time Woronora Dam was at a comparable level was at the beginning of 2017/18.

"However it should be noted that it was falling from its peak towards the end of 2017," he said.

While dams were overflowing, water production from the desalination plant at Kurnell was also ramped up as a contingency measure in case the quality of drinking water in dams was affected by the floods.

A spokeswoman for Sydney Desalination Plant said, "In response to extreme weather conditions, Sydney Water requested production at the plant continue.

"Having the plant online provides additional flexibility in the system while current weather situation stabilises.

"This will support on-going supply of safe, high-quality drinking water to Sydney Water's customers.

"The situation will be monitored on an on-going daily basis while Sydney Water's customers and networks are dealing with extreme environmental challenges."

A Sydney Water spokesman said the desalination plant had been in standby mode, which enabled a ramp-up in production to occur within 24 hours.

"At this stage, it will be ramped up for two weeks as we monitor the situation 24/7 while the state goes into flood recovery phase," he said.

During the deluge, Woronora Dam was closed to visitors, but since then many people have taken the chance to take a peek, with some staying longer.

"Visitors can catch a glimpse of the past while enjoying a picnic in picturesque surroundings," says Water NSW.

"The grounds are unusual in retaining workers' cottages and old platforms, plant and machinery used in the dam's construction in the 1930s."

The grounds are open from 10am to 5pm daily and entry is free.




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