The Great Artesian Basin (GAB) is one of the largest groundwater basin complexes in the world. It lies beneath 22% of Australia and intersects four state and territory boundaries. About 70% of the GAB lies within Queensland and is a major source of water for inland communities and industry.
The GAB also feeds numerous springs of significant environmental and cultural conservation value. There are over a thousand springs in the Queensland part of the Basin.
- Download an overview fact sheet for Queensland Great Artesian Basin (PDF, 2.8MB).
- Download the current map of the Great Artesian Basin water plan area (PDF, 103.6KB).
Note that the water plan area is currently being reviewed as part of the development of the new Great Artesian Basin and other regional aquifers water plan.
Have your say
Find out how to have your say on the draft water plan and water management instruments.
The water of the Queensland section of the Great Artesian Basin is currently managed through the Great Artesian Basin Water Resource Plan 2006. The water resource plan is implemented through the Great Artesian Basin Resource Operations Plan (PDF, 4.2MB) which was finalised in December 2006.
These plans are due to expire on 1 September 2017 and we are currently preparing their replacements.
The first step in the development of the replacement plan was the September 2015 release of a Statement of Proposals (PDF, 824.9KB) which provided background information on the plan area and key issues for the new water plan. The Minister's Performance Assessment Report (PDF, 1.1MB) which provided additional contextual information and assessed how well the current water resource plan had performed was released at the same time.
The department received 69 submissions on the statement of proposals, and these were considered in preparing the draft new plan. A consultation summary report (PDF, 747.1KB) provides an overview of the issues raised in the public submissions.
Under the Water Reform and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2014, resource operation plans and water resource plans are being replaced. Find out more about these changes to the planning process.
A number of supporting documents have been prepared during the development of the draft water plan and protocol that may assist the community in understanding how the GAB is managed.