Ti Tree Water Allocation Plan


The draft Ti Tree Water Allocation Plan 2019-2029 public consultation is now closed.

All submissions will be considered prior to finalising the water allocation plan.


The Ti Tree Water Control District is just over 14,000 square kilometres.

The district is named for the town of Ti Tree which is about 200km north of Alice Springs and 300km south of Tennant Creek.

The local Anmatyerr people have known about the availability of water in the district for a long time. White settlers became aware of the water resources during the 1880’s when Tea Tree Well was constructed to support the Overland Telegraph Line.

Today, the district has a population of about 1,000 people. Almost all water supplies are drawn from groundwater.

The main economic activities in the region are pastoralism and irrigated horticulture, particularly for table grapes, mangoes and fodder.

About 80% of the population is Aboriginal and mostly from the Central Anmatyerr people.

The Ti Tree Water Control District was declared in 1983. It was one of the first areas developed for irrigated horticulture in Central Australia with the first groundwater extraction license issued in 1977.

In 1975 Ian Dahlenberg took up 640 acres of the Ti Tree station and established Dahlenberg Horticultural Enterprise which grew grapes and watermelons on Ti Tree Farm. This original farm has since been subdivided between several horticultural operators, and there are now several other enterprises east and west of the Stuart Highway which have been developed for horticulture.

For the purposes of water management the district has been divided into three management zones.

The draft Plan released for consultation is entirely new. It follows the Ti Tree Region Water Resource Strategy (DIPE 2002) and the Ti Tree Region Water Allocation Plan (NRETAS 2009) (a revision of the 2002 strategy).

The draft plan outlines the key water management objectives which are:

  • avoid detrimental impacts to water dependent ecosystems as a consequence of consumptive water use
  • avoid negative impacts to cultural values of places reliant upon surface or groundwater as a consequence of consumptive water use
  • secure domestic and public water supply for current and future population
  • ensure fair access to water for economic activities for current users and future generations
  • enhance opportunities for Aboriginal people to benefit from consumptive use and management of water.

The plan was developed following consultation with stakeholders and the local community, including the Ti Tree Water Advisory Committee and Anmatyerr Kwaty Advisory Committee.

What the community consultation clearly identified was that it is important to allow use of water for public water supply and horticulture, however it should not be at the expense of the natural environment or cultural values.

The new plan acknowledges that important dreaming trails associated with water, including the Kwaty or Rain Dreaming and Hailstone and Lightening Dreaming trails, run through Anmatyerr country.

The plan establishes guidelines for protection of these important environmental and cultural values.

Go to the Northern Territory Government website to see the map and government gazette of the Ti Tree Water Control District.

More information

For further information contact:

Water Resources Division
Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Email: waterresources@nt.gov.au
Phone: 08 8999 4444.

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Last updated: 24 June 2019