Lake Eildon is Victoria’s biggest state run water storage dam. It was built in 1956 and provides vital irrigation to many farmers across the state. The drought that has afflicted Australia for the last 10 years has taken a particularly large toll on Eildon’s current capacity. While traveling back from Mansfield and Mt Buller, I took the time to go and have a look for myself. These photo’s simply do not do it justice! The water level is so low it’s hard to believe it was ever full! Current Dam Capacity figures quoted from “Goulburn-Murray Water” puts Eildon at 23.5%. In 2003, a report from “Goulburn-Murray Water” requesting money from the state government, highlighted that Lake Eildon’s Dam Wall was unsafe and required $30 Million to upgrade! The Dam wall had been constructed in the days when construction techniques and specifications were of a much lesser standard and with the understanding that Victoria was earthquake free. In recent years, Victoria has suffered quite a few earthquakes and is now known to be vulnerable to quakes. Down stream from the Dam Wall, there are thousands of people living in towns and farming communities. If the lake was to fill up again the wall would have to restrain 3.3 million megalitres or six times the volume of Sydney Harbour! The concerns are obvious and as it is 2008 now, 5 years after the initial report, it appears very little has actually been done about it. Instead a pipe line is to be constructed, taking what little water there is from the Goulburn Valley and sending it to Melbourne. The project is called the North-South Pipeline and is extremely unpopular with farmers in the area. Signs, Graffiti on the road and placards are everywhere you travel though the region, protesting the pipeline project. As an outsider, I can’t help but think there are more pressing issues. Lets hope it all works out ok?