Urban Salinity

Urban salinity is recognised as one of Wagga Wagga's most significant land degradation concerns.

Salinity is the build-up of salt in the upper layer of soil that had been brought to the surface by a rising groundwater. Causes of rising ground water includes:

  • Removal of natural vegetation
  • Overwatering gardens and lawns
  • Leaking underground water pipes
  • Change in land use

What damage can urban salinity cause?

Salt can cause costly damage to both public and private property. Salinity may cause:

  • The life span of infrastructure such as roads and footpaths to be reduced, meaning more frequent repairs or replacement
  • Reduced water quality in creeks and rivers
  • Damage to houses and housing foundations
  • Loss of vegetation where the soils are too salty for plants to grow

What is Council doing to manage urban salinity?

  • Monitoring more than 200 bores within the Wagga Wagga Local Government Area to measure ground water height and test salt levels
  • Educating the community on urban salinity
  • Using planning guidelines to help lower urban salinity risk
  • Implementing the Lloyd Urban Release which ensures 80% of the suburb’s surface area will not allow water to soak into the ground
  • Replanting vegetation in key locations through National Tree Day events
  • Managing a network of de-watering bores in the Calvary area to lower groundwater levels

What can you do?

  • Be aware of urban salinity and its importance in Wagga Wagga
  • Plant species in your garden that do not need a lot of water
  • Do not over water your gardens
  • Join a Landcare group
  • Learn moreby viewing current and past Urban Salinity reports.