A substantial piece of Yarrawonga infrastructure has received recognition, with the Yarrawonga Weir awarded the 2018 Senator JS Collings Trophy.
An annual award for best maintained and managed asset along the River Murray system, the award highlights the social and economic importance of maintaining river infrastructure.
Construction of the weir began in early 1935 and was completed in 1939 with water impounded by the Yarrawonga Weir forming part of Lake Mulwala, which has a capacity of 117500Ml.
A hydro-electric generation facility at Yarrawonga Weir was also commissioned in June 1994, with the facility having a maximum capacity of about 9.6MW.
Murray-Darling Basin Authority’s river management head Andrew Reynolds said the weir currently provided water to more than 8000sqkm of prime agricultural land.
‘‘The team at Yarrawonga has managed to deliver a number of improvement projects while ensuring routine maintenance and ensuring presentation of the site overall was a very high standard,’’ Mr Reynolds said.
Goulburn-Murray Water maintains and operates the weir on behalf of the MDBA.
G-MW managing director Pat Lennon said dams and engineering staff at G-MW had great expertise in keeping major infrastructure operating efficiently, effectively and safely, despite their age and complexity.
The system of 16 locks and weirs along the Murray River from Hume Dam down to the Murray’s mouth underpin the $7billion generated each year by irrigated agriculture.
About 17 per cent of the Murray’s annual flow is diverted each year from the Yarrawonga Weir to irrigators in Victoria and southern NSW.