Great Artesian Basin Water Resource Assessment

Funded by the Australian Government Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Populations and Communities and the National Water Commission, the Great Artesian Basin Water Resource Assessment (the Assessment) carried out a basin-scale investigation of water resources across the Great Artesian Basin (GAB), assessing the status of water resources, identifying the potential impacts of climate change and resource development on those water resources and filling knowledge gaps in our understanding of the resource. The Assessment provides an updated interpretation of the geology and hydrogeology of the GAB resulting in an update of the conceptualisation of how the groundwater system operates.

This web page provides access to reports and data produced for the Assessment.

Data from the Assessment
Access the data used to create Assessment outputs.
Three-dimensional visualisation of the Great Artesian Basin
A 3D visualisation of contact surfaces between major aquifers and aquitards in the Great Artesian Basin.
Numerical Modelling
Scenarios, predictions and outputs from the modelling used to assess the potential impact of climate change and future development on water in the Great Artesian Basin.
Reports
Reporting outputs from the Assessment, including technical reports and region reports.

The Great Artesian Basin

The GAB encompasses several geological basins that were deposited at different times in Earth's history, from 200 to 65 million years ago in the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. These geological basins sit on top of deeper, older geological basins and in turn, have newer surface drainage divisions situated on top of them (e.g. the Lake Eyre and Murray-Darling river basins). In this context - as a groundwater basin - the GAB is a vast groundwater entity underlying one-fifth of Australia.

The GAB contains an extensive and complex groundwater system, comprising a complex of multi-layered aquifers of variable character composed of predominantly continental sandstones. These aquifers are separated and partly confined by aquitards of both fluvial and marine mudstone and siltstone.

GABWRA team members examining a GAB outcrop.

Members of the GABWRA project team
(Photo H.Carey 2012)

Contributors

The Assessment was prepared by CSIRO. Geoscience Australia was a significant contributor to the Assessment. Important aspects of the work were undertaken by Flinders University, South Australian Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources (formerly Department for Water), MA Habermehl Pty Ltd and Sinclair Knight Merz.