Myponga Reservoir is today set to have its 10,000th visitor since it was first opened for recreational access in April.
Opening Myponga Reservoir for new recreational access opportunities is the first stage of a Marshall Liberal Government program that aims to drive regional tourism, encourage community wellbeing and promote water quality and environmental education.
Minister for Environment and Water David Speirs said the huge number of visitors was a clear sign of the popularity of the government’s opening reservoirs policy.
“To have 10,000 people visit Myponga Reservoir is an outstanding result and shows that South Australians are voting with their feet when it comes to opening up our reservoirs for recreational activities,” said Minister Speirs.
“The economic impact that these visitors are having on the small town of Myponga and the Fleurieu Peninsula cannot be understated with increased tourism driving more dollars into local businesses.
“The Smiling Samoyed Brewery and Myponga General Store have since had huge uplifts in turnover, with the brewery experiencing its biggest day of sales on the opening day of public access to the reservoir.
“Importantly we have had no incidents where drinking water safety has been compromised as a result of recreational activities in the nearly six months since the opening of Myponga Reservoir, demonstrating our long held view that risks can be effectively managed in partnership with SA Health.
“South Australians take pride in their natural environment and visitors to Myponga Reservoir are enjoying this new access with the same responsible approach as we see at other parks around the state and it is likely that passive surveillance achieved by having people in and around reservoirs actually enhances safety.
“Protecting the health and quality of our drinking water will always come first which is why we have a cross-government taskforce made up of representatives from the Department for Environment and Water, SA Water, and SA Health providing advice in relation to drinking water safety to ensure all health requirements are met. This taskforce has directly informed the types of activities being enabled, which will vary from reservoir to reservoir.
Minister Speirs said expanded access to other reservoirs across the state is well underway.
“Warren, Bundaleer and South Para reservoirs will have expanded access including hiking, cycling, picnicking and kayaking in the coming months with shoreline fishing expected to be available at Myponga by the end of the year,” said Minister Speirs.
“The taskforce is continuing to work on opening up other reservoirs around the state such as Hope Valley and Happy Valley and we will continue to provide further updates as we progress.”