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Lower Bellinger and Kalang Rivers Floodplain Risk Management Study and Plan

Bellingen Shire Council has engaged specialist flood consultants WMAwater to investigate the flooding mechanisms and flood risk management in the Lower Bellinger and Kalang River catchment.  A Flood Study was completed in 2016 which identified areas of flood risk.

This project follows on from the work completed in the Flood Study to address the existing and future flood problems within the Lower Bellinger and Kalang River Catchment. This project has been titled the Lower Bellinger and Kalang Rivers Floodplain Risk Management Study & Plan.

The Bellinger and Kalang Rivers are located within Bellingen Shire Council area. The total catchment areas of both rivers is 1,110 km2. During heavy rain, the capacity of the river systems to convey runoff can be exceeded, resulting in flow over the floodplain, across roads and through private properties. In urbanised areas, this flooding has the potential to cause major damage to property and risk to life. The most notable floods in this catchment occurred in 1974, 1977, 2001, and 2009.

As part of the study, computer models will be further refined to determine the extent and nature of potential flooding in the catchment. Following this, various mitigation measures including those identified by the community, where appropriate, will be assessed. The measures are aimed at managing the current and future flood risk in the Lower Bellinger and Kalang River catchment and can be structural and planning measures or ‘response’ measures.

The draft study and newsletters will be posted on this website as they become available.  

An information session will be conducted to allow the community to ask questions about the upcoming study and provide information on their own experiences. A flexible format where community members can drop in at any time during the session allows those who would like to have a conversation about flooding to attend. These will be held at the following locations:

  • The Council administration Centre Bellingen (33-39 Hyde Street, Bellingen)
  • Bonville Street, Urunga

We encourage everyone to provide comments and feedback on any aspect of the study. The local knowledge and personal experiences of residents and business operators are an important source of information. Questions about the Study can be directed to the following contacts at Council or WMAwater:

Patrick Carolan, Bellingen Shire Council, Tel: (02) 6655 7300 Email:

Mikayla Ward, WMAwater, Tel: 02 9299 2855 Email:

Lower Bellinger and Kalang Rivers