Office of Groundwater Impact Assessment

The Office of Groundwater Impact Assessment (OGIA) is an independent entity established under the Water Act 2000.

We are responsible for assessing and managing the impacts of groundwater extraction from resource operations in cumulative management areas (CMAs). We also provide advice on related matters outside CMAs.

Role and functions

Our core functions are to:

  • undertake evidence-based independent scientific assessment of cumulative groundwater impacts from resource operations
  • set management arrangements within CMAs
  • assign statutory responsibilities to tenure holders for the implementation of management strategies within CMAs.

On matters relating to groundwater impacts from resource development, we also provide advice to the Department of Environment and Science (DES) when requested, and maintain a database of information.

There is 1 CMA in Queensland—the Surat CMA, which provides for ongoing assessment and management of cumulative impacts from petroleum and gas development. The Surat CMA was established in 2011, primarily in response to coal seam gas development.

The cumulative impact assessment and management arrangements are set out in an underground water impact report (UWIR).

We prepared the first UWIR for the Surat CMA in 2012 (UWIR 2012) and the second in 2016 (UWIR 2016). Those reports are now superseded by the UWIR 2019.

The UWIR 2019 was finalised after a public consultation process and approved by the Department of Environment and Science in November 2019.

Since then, in January 2020, the Surat CMA was amended to include, in future UWIRs, impacts from coal mining tenures located within the Surat and Clarence-Moreton basins.

Funding and administrative arrangements

OGIA is housed within the Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing and Water which provides corporate and administrative support.

We are entirely funded through an annual industry levy. The majority of the levy is paid by coal seam gas operators within the Surat CMA.

Contact us

Office of Groundwater Impact Assessment
Phone: (07) 3199 7321

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