A water share authorises you to take water from a declared water system, including:
- a waterway (including the River Murray)
- an aquifer
- a spring or soak
- a dam (except rainwater dams supplied from the roof of a building or from a waterway or bore).
It is illegal to take water from these sources without holding a water share. This does not apply to water taken from a spring, soak or dam for domestic and stock use.
A water share authorises you to take a specified amount of water (a water allocation) at a particular time (a water season). A water allocation is a fixed percentage of water in the dam or other water source in a given year. A water share may be subject to conditions about the times when you may take water, and the places you can take water from.
A water share is considered to be a piece of property that may be resold to another person independent from the land, mortgaged or transferred (leased) for a fixed period of time. However, the Agency's approval is required to transfer ownership or assign a water share.
From time to time water shares may also be made available for purchase from the Agency by application, or by auction or tender. However, to obtain a water share, generally you will have to purchase it from an existing entitlement holder.