WaterConservation Handbookfor Local Government
Water Conservation Partnership Project                        AcknowledgmentsDepartment for Environment and Heritage      ...
ForewordThe sustainable use of our water resources is crucial to   The case studies contained in the Water Conservationens...
Water Conservation Handbook   i
Table of ContentsWelcome                                      1    SECTION 5How can you implement the ideas in this       ...
LIST OF FIGURES                                           LIST OF TABLESFigure 1     The natural water cycle              ...
WelcomeThis Handbook has been prepared as a water                 Where can you go for moreconservation resource for Local...
2   Water Conservation Handbook
S E C T I O NWhy worry about water?                                                                                       ...
FIGURE 2 Human impacts on the water cycleMany human activities impact significantly on the          Rural and remote commu...
FIGURE 3 Regions in South Australia supplied by            FIGURE 4 Adelaide metropolitan water supply         the River M...
Environmental                                              2. Structural and operational measuresConserving water helps to...
S E C T I O NWhat is happening in water                                                                                   ...
National Water Conservation                                                         The Waste Control Regulations come int...
SA Water is a corporation wholly owned by the             Adelaide Hills catchments and groundwater resourcesGovernment of...
Principal role of CouncilsSection 6 (b) outlines Council’s roles to provide and      The ICLEI Water Campaign is based on ...
S E C T I O NPlanning for water conservation                                                                              ...
Third Principle – Recycle                                   1. Developing your approachThis principle seeks to use wastewa...
You need to decide whether you will develop a              3. Investigation and dataseparate water conservation plan or wh...
For example, if outdoor water use in your area is high,      Select and design water conservationthen a program targeted a...
CASE STUDY:                                                       Rous Water  Rous Water, a bulk water supplier in norther...
because consumption would have been even higher if         There are several ways to assess the effectiveness ofyou had do...
S E C T I O NChanging Council policies                                                                                    ...
Water conservation strategies that are appropriate to                                                                     ...
The 2002 Ministerial PAR for Stormwater                                  CASE STUDY:and related documents                 ...
FIGURE 7 Council policies and plans related to water management Built Environment and Environmental Design               D...
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia
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Water Conservation Handbook for Local Governments - Australia

  1. 1. WaterConservation Handbookfor Local Government
  2. 2. Water Conservation Partnership Project AcknowledgmentsDepartment for Environment and Heritage The Department for Environment and Heritage on behalf ofGPO Box 1047 Adelaide South Australia 5001 the project partners of the Water Conservation Partnership Project (WCPP) would like to thank the following groups andJuly 2005 individuals for their valuable contribution.ISBN 0 7590 1055 2 Project Management Group:Disclaimer Martin Allen (DWLBC)The views contained in this handbook do not necessarily Marilla Barnes (SA Water)represent those of the Department for Environment and Natasha Davis (NABCWMB)Heritage or the South Australian Government or the partners Janet Inman (OCWMB)engaged in the Water Conservation Partnership Project. Tanya Miller (Office of Sustainability, seconded from the City of West Torrens)The Water Conservation Partnership Project Stephen West (City of Burnside)2000- 2004 partners were: Consultants:• Local Government Association of South Australia Sustainable Focus Pty Ltd (LGA) 11 Gething Crescent, Bowden SA 5007• River Murray Urban Users Local Action Planning Tel (08) 8340 8666 Committee (RMUULAPC) Email info@sustainablefocus.com.au• Department for Environment and Heritage (DEH) Web www.sustainablefocus.com.au• Department of Water, Land and Biodiversity Conservation (DWLBC) Other contacts:• Planning SA Jade Ballantyne (City of Holdfast Bay)• SA Water Graham Brook (City of Tea Tree Gully)• Torrens Catchment Water Management Board Ben Calder (City of Onkaparinga) (TCWMB) Jeremy Cape (CSIRO)• Patawalonga Catchment Water Management Board David Cooney and Graham Webster (Alexandrina Council) (PCWMB) David Cunliffe (Department for Human Services)• River Murray Catchment Water Management Board Trudi Duffield (Murray Darling Association) (RMCWMB) Michael Howley (City of Unley) Tim Kelly (SA Water)• Onkaparinga Catchment Water Management Board Jacob Kochergen (City of Mitcham) (OCWMB) David Lane (Streaky Bay District Council) • Northern Adelaide and Barossa Catchment Water Justin Lang (City of Campbelltown Management Board (NABCWMB) Rima Lauge-Christensen (Hornsby Shire Council• CSIRO Marnie Lynch (City of Prospect)• Natural Heritage Trust Rebecca Neumann (WaterWise) John Salter (City of Adelaide)Project Manager Verity Sanders (City of Port Adelaide Enfield) Phil Donaldson Chris Tually (City of Unley)Office of Sustainability Glen Williams (Adelaide Hills Council) and many others. The assistance of the Graphic Design Unit, Public Affairs Branch (DEH) and the Murray Darling Association is appreciated in the final production of the manual.
  3. 3. ForewordThe sustainable use of our water resources is crucial to The case studies contained in the Water Conservationensure that future generations will enjoy the same Handbook for Local Government demonstrate thequality of life that we now enjoy. The stresses on the leadership shown by a number of councils in SouthRiver Murray, a key water resource for Adelaide and Australia to reduce their own water use, and to providemany South Australian country towns, and the pressure water conservation educational and incentive schemeson water resources in the Eyre Peninsula and Kangaroo for their communities. The Handbook sets out howIsland regions have become increasingly evident. councils can develop polices and plan for waterRising water salinity, stressed water dependent conservation in their community and within councilecosystems and increasing pollution in our coastal and operations. It provides an opportunity for each councilriverine environments are an indication of the impact in South Australia to mobilise resources to implementwe have had on our water resources. The potential for water conservation initiatives within its community.climate change to alter rainfall in South Australia, The Water Conservation Partnership Project (WCPP)highlights the need for flexible and sustainable partners have been responsible for the production ofmanagement of our water resources. this handbook. The WCPP (2000-2004) has been aAt the same time community expectations in relation to joint partnership between the Local Governmentwater are beginning to change. The community expects Association and local councils, the Department forall levels of Government to assist in protecting water Environment and Heritage, the River Murray Urbanresources. The South Australian Government has Users Committee, the Department of Water Land andintroduced permanent water conservation measures for Biodiversity Conservation, Planning SA, SA Water,the first time and embarked on a WaterCare community Patawalonga and Torrens Catchment Watereducation campaign to increase awareness of the Management Boards, River Murray Catchment Waterprecious nature of our water resources. The community Management Board, Onkaparinga Catchment Wateras a whole is beginning to accept an obligation on all Management Board, Northern Adelaide and Barossausers to become efficient in their water use and to Catchment Water Management Board and the CSIRO.reduce wasteful practices. It was funded through the Commonwealth’s Natural Heritage Trust and with the assistance of the projectThe Water Conservation Handbook for Local partners.Government is a recognition that all sections of theSouth Australian community, including State and Local We recommend this handbook to everyone in SouthGovernment, need to respect our water resources to Australia as an important resource to assist inensure the long term sustainability of the State. The community water conservation efforts. It is anState Government, in response to this need, has excellant resource to focus councils on their efforts tolaunched its Greening of Government (GoGO) policy use their water resources in their community in aframework. The Government has eight priority areas sustainable way.including water conservation and wastewatermanagement. GoGO gives a clear message that theState Government is serious about managing theenvironmental impacts of its own operations and thesustainable use of water resources.Hon John Hill MP Hon Karlene Maywald MPMinister for Environment and Conservation Minister for the River MurrayDate 1st July 2005 Date 1st July 2005Cr John Legoe Colin HillPresident of the Local Government Association of Chairman of the River Murray Urban Users CommitteeSouth Australia Date 1st July 2005Date 1st July 2005 Water Conservation Handbook
  4. 4. Water Conservation Handbook i
  5. 5. Table of ContentsWelcome 1 SECTION 5How can you implement the ideas in this How to conserve water in CouncilHandbook? 1 operations 21Where can you go for more information? 1 Introduction 21 Approaches 21SECTION 1 A different approach – using an Energy andWhy worry about water? 3 Water Performance Contract 21Why is water conservation important? 3 Planning sheet 1: Undertaking a Water Audit 23Where does our water come from? 3 Planning sheet 2: Irrigation water use 25Where is water used? 4 Planning sheet 3: Facility water use 29What are the benefits of conserving water? 5 Planning sheet 4: Alternative supplies of water 31How can we conserve water? 6 Planning sheet 5: Construction and refurbishments 35SECTION 2 SECTION 6What is happening in water conservation Community programs for waterinternationally, nationally and in South conservation 37Australia? 7 Introduction – Planning your community programs 37The International context 7 Where are the largest savings in householdThe Australian context 7 water use? 38National Water Conservation Labelling How using logic can help with your planning 40Scheme and the Water Services Association Describe and plan the program 42of Australia (WSAA) 7 Options for water conservation activities 43The South Australian context 8Catchment Water Management Boards and SECTION 7NRM Boards 9 References and contact details 49Local Government 9 Resource materials included in Section 7 49 Contacts and resources 50SECTION 3 References 50Planning for water conservation 11Introduction 11Principles 11 Resources on CDThe Planning Process 12 Information sheets and resources developed for this1. Developing your approach 12 handbook:2. Preliminary approval 13 - Best practice water conservation principles3. Investigation and data collection 13 - Rainwater tanks information sheet4. Design 15 - Greywater systems information sheet5. Implementation 15 - Home water self-audit worksheet and manual6. Review – monitoring and evaluation 16 - Community program planning worksheet Water Conservation Partnership Project 2003- 2004SECTION 4 demonstration projectsChanging Council policies and plans 17 Australian and International case studiesIntroduction 17 Other case studiesStrategic Management Plans 17 MaterialsDevelopment Plans 17Internal policies and procedures 18Stormwater 18Council policies and plans related towater management 20 Water Conservation Handbook ii
  6. 6. LIST OF FIGURES LIST OF TABLESFigure 1 The natural water cycle 3 Table 1 Possible stakeholders in waterFigure 2 Human impacts on the water cycle 4 conservation 14Figure 3 Regions in South Australia supplied Table 2 Estimated annual water use by by the River Murray 5 dwelling type (1993) 39Figure 4 Adelaide metropolitan water supply 5 Table 3 Indicative savings for using water conservation methods or devices 40Figure 5 Water use in South Australia 5 Table 4 Examples of incentive programs 44Figure 6 The water conservation management hierarchy 11 Table 5 Examples of education and communication programs 46Figure 7 Council policies and plans related to water management 20Figure 8 Example chart of water use at an urban Council depot 23Figure 9 Example breakdown of water use in a Council office building 24Figure 10 Unley Museum Rainwater Tanks Project Demonstration Site 31Figure 11 Aquifer Storage and Recovery 32Figure 12 Laratinga wetlands 34Figure 13 Typical household water use 37Figure 14 Efficient household water use 38Figure 15 Components of a basic program logic model 41Figure 16 Worked example – right-to-left program logic model 41Figure 17 Worked example – left-to-right program logic model 42iii Water Conservation Handbook
  7. 7. WelcomeThis Handbook has been prepared as a water Where can you go for moreconservation resource for Local Government staff andelected members. Whether you know a little or a lot information?about water conservation, this Handbook is designed to Section 7 can be found on the attached CD, It containsassist you to: information about organisations that may be able to1. understand why water conservation is important, help you with resources and advice in implementing especially in South Australia (Section 1); water conservation programs. It includes information sheets, a household water audit manual and other2. understand what is happening in water selected resource materials. conservation – internationally, nationally and at a state level (Section 2);3. develop an overall water conservation plan (Section 3);4. alter Council policies and plans to assist water conservation (Section 4);5. improve Council operations so that they conserve water (Section 5); and6. undertake community programs in water conservation (Section 6).The Handbook is an outcome of the WaterConservation Partnership Project 2000- 2004 (refer tothe inside of the front cover for a list of projectpartners).How can you implement the ideasin this Handbook?If you are new to water conservation, you might like toread sections 1 and 2 to understand the issuessurrounding water conservation and the context forLocal Government water conservation programs.Section 2 gives an overview of international, national,State and regional initiatives, current legislationrelevant to water conservation and the context of waterconservation within the South Australian LocalGovernment Act.If you have sufficient time and resources, it is best toprepare a water conservation plan to cover Councilpolicies, operations and community education. Section3 provides guidance on planning your approach towater conservation. If you have limited time andresources, you could focus on changing Council plansand policies, as outlined in Section 4.Saving water in Council operations will reduce yourCouncil’s water bills and the savings can be used inturn to fund other programs. Section 5 providesguidance for saving water in Council operations.Section 6 is an overview of incentive and educationprograms that Councils can run for the community. Water Conservation Handbook 1
  8. 8. 2 Water Conservation Handbook
  9. 9. S E C T I O NWhy worry about water? 1Why is water conservation water supply will fail World Health Organisation Guidelines for drinking water on average 40% of theimportant? time. The situation will be worse in areas that relyWater is a precious resource that needs to be used solely on the River Murray for their water supply. Inwisely, especially in Australia, which is the driest addition, if action is not taken, increasing streaminhabited continent on earth. At the moment we don’t salinity in the River Murray is projected to raise wateruse water wisely; in fact, we use more water per person costs in South Australia by $17 million a year3. Majorthan every other nation on earth, except for the United interventions such as dredging of the Murray Mouth,States. In addition, salinity and deteriorating water salinity interception schemes and permanent waterquality are seriously affecting the sustainability of restrictions are contributing to the sustainableAustralia’s agricultural production, the conservation of management of our water resources.biological diversity and the viability of ourinfrastructure and regional communities (CoAG Conserving water is an effective way of maintaining anCommunique, see www.coag.gov.au/ for full details). adequate quality and quantity of water for the environment and for future generations. Fortunately,Conserving water is particularly important in South most people in South Australia recognise that waterAustralia because it is the driest state in Australia. On quality and conservation are crucial issues. Foraverage, 48 per cent of Australia receives more than example, in a survey of residents of the West Torrens300mm of rainfall each year, whereas only twelve per Council area, the 200 respondents rated water qualitycent of South Australia does1. As a comparison, the and water conservation as their primary and fourthannual flow of the Murray–Darling River system carries issues of environmental concern (from sixteen options).less water than the Amazon River does in one day2. These issues also rank highly in environmental perspective surveys of South Australians undertaken byThe effects of our high levels of water use have been the Australian Bureau of Statistics.dramatic. For example, currently the lower RiverMurray effectively experiences drought conditions one Where does our water come from?year in two, whereas before European arrival theseconditions only occurred once every twenty years. If Water circulates through the natural environment in anothing is done, reduced flows and increased salinity continuing cycle powered by the sun. This is known as the water cycle and is shown in Figure 1.will mean that within twenty years Adelaide’s mainFIGURE 1 The natural water cycle CLOUD FORMATION SUN CONDENSING WATER VAPOUR SNOW PRECIPITATION HAIL EVAPORATION FROM PRECIPITATION, RAIN SURFACE WATER, RESPIRATION SURFACE (ANIMALS), COMBUSTION (MACHINES), RUNOFF TRANSPIRATION (PLANTS) LAKES EVAPORATION OCEAN CONTRIBUTES INF ABOUT 80% OF TOTAL I LT R A GR TIO N WATER VAPOUR IN AIR OU ND WA TE RESERVOIRS OCEAN R SALT WATER IMP INTRUSION ERV IOU S LA YER Water Conservation Handbook 3
  10. 10. FIGURE 2 Human impacts on the water cycleMany human activities impact significantly on the Rural and remote communities rely on a wide varietywater cycle. For example, clearing vegetation degrades of water sources including groundwater, small localwater quality through soil erosion and changes water dams, household rainwater tanks and water piped overflow patterns because of altered rates of evaporation, many kilometres in regional pipeline systems.transpiration and infiltration. Some human impacts onthe water cycle are shown in Figure 2 from Where is water used?www.watercare.net. South Australia uses water for irrigated agriculture,South Australians receive their water from a number of manufacturing, domestic use, dryland farming andmajor water supply systems, some of which rely on mining. Figure 52 on page 5 demonstrates where waterlocal water sources, but many of which rely on the is used in South Australia.River Murray. In an average year, the River Murraysupplies almost half the States urban water needs. In While 80 per cent of water used in the State is used fordry years, the River Murray supplies up to 90 per cent irrigation, reducing water use by Local Governmentof the State’s urban water needs. Major regions in and the community is important in that it shows we allSouth Australia supplied by the River Murray are need to work together when asking irrigators to makedepicted in Figure 3. A recent offtake to the Barossa is efficiency improvements. Water conservation in thenot included. community provides many benefits in addition to water resource conservation.Adelaide is supplied via large pipelines from the RiverMurray and from the Adelaide Hills Catchment area, asshown on page 5 in Figure 45.4 Water Conservation Handbook
  11. 11. FIGURE 3 Regions in South Australia supplied by FIGURE 4 Adelaide metropolitan water supply the River MurrayWhat are the benefits ofconserving water?There are benefits for Local Government across thetriple bottom line (economic, social and environmental)from conserving water. FIGURE 5 Water use in South AustraliaEconomicConserving water within your own Council’s operationscan reduce water bills significantly – see Section 5(page 21) for a case study. The implementation ofwater conservation measures can also delay the need toaugment water supply and disposal infrastructure.Social/communitySocial and community benefits of water conservationinclude the flow-on savings of reduced water bills (andenergy bills where hot water is conserved) to residentsand the conservation of water resources for futuregenerations (contributing to inter-generational equity).In addition, water conservation ensures food and other Irrigated agriculture 80%goods can continue to be grown and manufactured atcurrent prices. Industry, manufacturing, services 6% Dryland farming and rural living 4%Water conservation improves people’s quality of life as Urban domestic water services 9%it enables them to enjoy recreational activities such as Mining 1%fresh water fishing, boating and water sports.By taking action on water conservation LocalGovernment can meet community expectations anddemonstrate local leadership. Water Conservation Handbook 5
  12. 12. Environmental 2. Structural and operational measuresConserving water helps to improve environmental Three types of structural measures for waterflows in our rivers and reduces demand on conservation exist:groundwater sources. This in turn improves river and • the use of more water efficient plumbing fixtures inecosystem health and groundwater quality, decreases buildings and within the water supply system;salinity and maintains biodiversity. Conserving wateralso has end-of-pipe benefits for the environment. For • more efficient use of water outdoors; andexample: • access to alternative water sources such as reuse, rainwater and groundwater.• reducing indoor water usage decreases sewage volumes, leading to a reduction in treated and Local Government can demonstrate leadership by untreated effluent discharges to water bodies; and improving the performance of its own operations. Refer to Section 5 for further information about• capture and use of rainwater reduces stormwater improving water conservation in Council operations. volumes, leading to reduced volumes of street run­ off. This may reduce flooding, erosion and 3. Community programs – education and environmental damage to our streams and coastal incentives waters. Education and incentive schemes can be used by Local Government to encourage the uptake of waterConserving water can also help to reduce greenhouse conservation practices and technologies, see Section 6gas emissions. In addition to the energy saved from for further information.reduced use of hot water, electricity use and associatedgreenhouse gas emissions are reduced because less 4. Economic instrumentswater is being pumped from the River Murray to urban Economic instruments are market-based mechanismsareas in South Australia. Currently, the energy required such as pricing, tradeable property rights and economicto do this is 906 kWh/Ml (three times the Australian or enforcement incentives to encourage water users toaverage) and the associated greenhouse emissions are modify their behaviour to achieve sustainability.in excess of 200 000 tonnes per annum (this is Economic instruments can be established by Federalequivalent to the annual emissions from 40 000 cars)8. and State Governments and water utilities, and are seldom used by Local Government.How can we conserve water? Overall, Local Government has an important role inCouncils are increasingly being encouraged by their facilitating water conservation as it is:communities to address water conservation as a priorityenvironmental issue. Conserving water means using • responsible for the provision of infrastructure andwater resources more wisely. In the water industry this services;is known as ‘demand management’. Demand • responsible for local environmental managementmanagement can often be undertaken without changing and regulation; andthe way we live or dramatically changing our lifestyles. • able to provide opportunities for local education,Four major types of demand management instruments public participation and local action.exist to encourage water conservation. NOTE:1. Regulatory instrumentsThe State and Federal Governments have a role inregulation through methods such as mandatory A national mandatory water efficiency labellinglabelling of the water efficiency of appliances and and standards scheme is likely to be in operationrestricting the sale of non-water efficient devices. from 1 July 2005.There are various regulatory methods that LocalGovernment can use to encourage water conservation, The scheme will ensure consumers havesee Section 4 (page 17). South Australia has in place knowledge about water efficiency of domesticthe capacity to introduce water restrictions which products, such as dishwashers, taps, showerpermit or prohibit certain water use behaviour, see systems and washing machines in the firstSection 4 for details instance.6 Water Conservation Handbook
  13. 13. S E C T I O NWhat is happening in water 2conservation internationally,nationally and in South Australia?The international context These have included charging for the full cost of supplying water, creating a market to allow theConserving water is one of the many challenges for water to move to higher value crops or uses, andhumanity in moving towards sustainability. At an separating the regulatory and supply functions ofinternational level, there have been a number of water management agencies. Since 1996, thereagreements and events that have focused on the has been some progress in most states andimportance of water conservation including: territories. Reforms are not yet fully and• the UN Conference on the Human Environment equitably implemented, however. For example - (Stockholm, 1972); users of urban water largely meet the environmental costs of urban water supply in• the International Drinking Water Supply and most states and territories, but the costs of rural Sanitation Decade launch (Mar del Plata, 1977); water generally do not account for the full• the World Conference on Water and the environmental cost of extraction. For details go Environment (Dublin, 1992); to www.deh.gov.au/soe/2001/water.html.• the UNCED Earth Summit - Agenda 21 (Rio de Janeiro, 1992); In 2002, a Senate Inquiry into Australias Urban Water• the Drinking Water and Environmental Sanitation Management made recommendations for Conference on the Implementation of Agenda 21 Commonwealth-led reform of urban water management (Noordwijk, Meeting of Ministers, 1994); in Australia. The Senate Report The Value of Water is available at www.aph.gov.au/senate/committee/• the Global Water Partnership meeting (Stockholm, ecita_ctte/water/report/contents.htm. 1996);• the 1st World Water Forum of the World Water At its meeting on June 25 2004, COAG agreed to a Council (Marrakesh, 1997); National Water Initiative (NWI), covering a range of• the World Summit (Johannesburg, 2002); and areas in which greater compatability and the adoption• the 3rd World Water Forum (Japan, 2003). of best practice approaches to water management nationally will bring substantial benefits. Key elementsThe Australian context of the NWI include the return of over allocated systems to sustainable levels and actions to better manage waterThe Commonwealth Government has a limited role in demand in urban areas.water conservation, as resource issues are generally the www.coag.gov.au/meetings/250604jurisdiction of State and Local Governments. InFebruary 1994, the Council of Australian Governments A potentially powerful regulatory role for the(COAG) consisting of the Prime Minister, Premiers, Commonwealth Government and its agencies is theChief Ministers and the President of the Australian Building Code of Australia (BCA), which can be usedLocal Government Association agreed to implement a as a significant tool to ensure water efficient appliances‘strategic framework to achieve an efficient and are standard in new buildings. For example, under thesustainable water industry’. BCA only dual-flush cisterns can now be installed in Australia. The COAG Water Reform Framework aims to improve water management and to ensure that the extraction of water is sustainable. Governments have introduced a range of reforms to the water industry (see www.deh.gov.au/water/policy/coag.html Water Conservation Handbook 7
  14. 14. National Water Conservation The Waste Control Regulations come into effect inLabelling Scheme and the Water those areas where the SA Water Corporations sewageServices Association of Australia services are not available. About one third of South Australians (400 000 people) are serviced byMany water efficient products are rated under a wastewater systems administered under the WasteNational Water Conservation Labelling Scheme Control Regulations. The Waste Control Regulationsadministered by the Water Services Association of are administered by Local Government or authorisedAustralia (WSAA). Under the scheme products can be officers of the Department of Health with delegatedlabelled from ‘A’ (a moderate water efficiency rating) authority from the Minister of Health, depending onto ‘AAAAA’ (the best rating of all). Many products are the type of system. For details refer toavailable that are rated at least ‘AAA’. www.dh.sa.gov.au/pehs/branches/wastewater/wastewate r-legis.htmThese include showerheads, washing machines, toilet All public water supplies (including communalsuites, flow restrictors and some other appliances and rainwater tanks) are subject to the Food Act andfixtures. A listing of products certified under the Regulations.Scheme is available on the WSAA websitewww.wsaa. asn.au.Refer to Section 7 for further contact details. Water supply and treatment Water supply and infrastructure in South Australia isThe Department of Environment and Heritage managed by SA Water. There are some exceptions(Commonwealth Government Department) will where water is supplied by private companies, forintroduce a national mandatory water efficiency example at Skye, Coober Pedy, Leigh Creek, Woomeralabelling and minimum water efficiency standards and Roxby Downs. In turn, rainwater tanks are(WELS) for domestic appliances, fixtures and fittings managed by individual householders or businesses.as a method of reducing urban water consumption. Seewww.deh.gov.au/water/urban/final-report.html for SA Water manages the bulk of the state’s reticulationdetails. systems, especially in the metropolitan area and large country towns. There are some private reticulation systems in smaller country towns (e.g. WeeroonaThe South Australian context Island).LegislationThe Water Resources Act 1997 sets the legislative SA Water also manages the bulk of SAs wastewaterframework in South Australia for water resource treatment. There are some private wastewater treatmentmanagement. It includes a requirement for the State and re-use schemes and many smaller country areasGovernment to prepare and keep an up-to-date State have septic tank effluent disposal system (STEDS)Water Plan (the current plan was released in September schemes operated by Councils. In country areas many2000) and provides the powers for the creation of households and businesses have individual on-siteCatchment Water Management Boards with delegated wastewater treatment systems.authority to prepare Catchment Water ManagementPlans. Other Acts which contain provisions relevant to Stormwater infrastructure is managed by localwater management include the Environment Protection Councils. Refer to Section 4 for details.Act 1993 (water pollution), Sewerage Act 1929,Waterworks Act (restrictions) and the Public and State Government bodies and partnershipsEnvironmental Health Act 1987 (sanitation and The Department of Water, Land and Biodiversitydrainage). The Natural Resources Management Act Conservation (DWLBC) is the principal Department2004, has recently been passed which will eventually which assists the Minister responsible for thereplace the Water Resouces Act 1997 and allow for the administration of the South Australian Water Resourcesdevelopment to Natural Resource Management Boards Act 1997. Through effective administration of the Act,instead. the Department seeks to encourage use of water for its highest and best return within sustainable limits.The safe collection, treatment and disposal of non­industrial wastewater (sewage and wastewater of The Environment Protection Authority (EPA) regulatesdomestic origin) is managed in South Australia under and prosecutes for water pollution activities and alsothe Sewerage Act administered by SA Water or the provides water education programs for business and thePublic and Environmental Health Act (Waste Control community including Codes of Practice for StormwaterRegulations) 1995. Pollution Prevention.8 Water Conservation Handbook
  15. 15. SA Water is a corporation wholly owned by the Adelaide Hills catchments and groundwater resourcesGovernment of South Australia (with United Water also face competition for water from the various waterand United Utilities as subcontractors) responsible for using sectors. The second issue is Adelaide’s increasingreticulated water supply, wastewater treatment and thirst.infrastructure throughout much of South Australia. Although South Australia is at the forefront of waterPlanning SA is a State Government agency, part of the conservation and reuse initiatives, in the absence ofDepartment of Transport and Urban Planning, further action, as foreshadoweed in the draft Waterresponsible for guiding and administering the South Proofing Adelaide strategy - the trend of increasingAustralian Planning and Development Assessment demand for water in Adelaide would be expected toSystem. Planning SA has developed a Stormwater continue. The Water Proofing Adelaide documentPlan Amendment Report and guidelines for Local provides strategies for ensuring our water supplies areGovernment, as well as information on good sustainable well into the future through better landresidential design and planning frameworks. management and in developing alternative water suppliesThe Environmental Health Service of the Department For more information go to:of Health provides a range of scientific, engineering www.waterproofingadelaide.sa.gov.auand technical services related to public andenvironmental health, specifically in the areas of Catchment Water Managementdrinking water (including rainwater), sanitation and Boards and NRM Boardswastewater management. This includes administrationof the Waste Control Regulations, assessment and The Catchment Water Management Boards (Riverapprovals for wastewater systems and reclaimed water Murray, Patawalonga, Torrens, Northern Adelaide andre-use systems, and support for Local Government in Barossa, Arid Areas, South East, Eyre Peninsula andthe administration of the Public and Environmental Onkaparinga) have three main legislative functions:Health Act and Regulations. • to prepare and implement Catchment Water Management Plans;The River Murray Urban Users (RMUU) Group is a • to provide advice to the Minister and Councils aboutlocal action planning group addressing natural water resource management; andresource management issues in the Murray-DarlingBasin in South Australia, to help to preserve and • to promote awareness and involvement in bestrestore the health of the River Murray. The RMUU practice water management.Group target area is all of the regions outside theMurray-Darling Basin that receive piped River Catchment Boards may fund or part-fund stormwaterMurray water in South Australia. pollution prevention officers in their areas. For more information on Catchment Water Management BoardsThe Water Conservation Partnership Project (WCPP) visit www.catchments.net.(1999–2004) was administered by the Department forEnvironment and Heritage on behalf of a number of The system of Catchment Management Boards is beingState, Local Government and community revised and will be replaced with Regional Naturalstakeholders. The Project aimed to reduce urban Resource Management (NRM) Boards - which willdependency on River Murray water in the RMUU produce Natural Resources Management Plans for theirregion by increasing water use efficiency and the respective regions. A NRM Reform Unit has beensustainable use of alternative water supplies. Twelve established by the State Government within theLocal Government and community based pilot water Department of Water, Land and Biodiversityconservation education and incentive projects and Conservation to implement the NRM Integrationdemonstration sites, a symposium and several studies Project. For more details, seeand publications were funded. www.dwlbc.sa.gov.au/nrm_reform/.Water Proofing Adelaide is a South Australian Local GovernmentGovernment initiative that seeks to establish ablueprint for the management, conservation and The important role of Local Government in promotingdevelopment of Adelaide’s water resources to 2025. sustainability initiatives is acknowledged through theAdelaide faces several significant issues. The first is Intergovernmental Agreement on the Environment,the escalating risks facing our environment. The River Local Agenda 21 and the following sections of theMurray, which we rely heavily for our mains water in Local Government Act 1999:South Australia, is under continued stress as is the Water Conservation Handbook 9
  16. 16. Principal role of CouncilsSection 6 (b) outlines Council’s roles to provide and The ICLEI Water Campaign is based on the Localco-ordinate various public services and facilities, and Government water code known as The Lisbonto develop its community and resources, in a socially Principles. Further information on the Water Campaignjust and ecologically sustainable manner. is available in Section 7 (on CD).Functions of CouncilsSection 7 (e) outlines Council’s functions to manage, For more information go to www.iclei.org/water.develop, protect, restore, enhance and conserve theenvironment in an ecologically sustainable manner.Objectives of CouncilsSection 8 (d) outlines Council’s objectives to give dueweight in all its plans, policies and activities toregional, State and national objectives and strategiesconcerning the economic, social, physical andenvironmental development and management of thecommunity.Section 8 (f) outlines Council’s objectives to encouragesustainable development and the protection of theenvironment and to ensure a proper balance within itscommunity between economic, social, environmentaland cultural considerations.A Statement of Joint Intent (SOJI) can be used tosupport the development of partnerships in LocalGovernment to undertake water conservationinitiatives. A sample SOJI is included in Section 7.The International Council of Local EnvironmentalInitiatives (ICLEI) has developed a new program forCouncils, the ICLEI Water Campaign. ICLEI will buildon the work of the WCPP to facilitate councilsundertaking the ICLEI Water Campaign. The Water Campaign provides Local Governments with a framework for addressing their unique local water management concerns while contributing to an international effort to mitigate the current global water crisis. It was developed in response to the mandate that ICLEI was given by its membership in 1995 to develop an international campaign focusing on water. The Water Campaign focuses on the need to improve dialogue between water managers and water users. This dialogue begins with improved water management within Local Government itself, and extends to the community and the watershed area. Improving Local Government service delivery places value on community input and participation. This participatory approach to water management recognises that modern water management solutions are increasingly non- technical in their emphasis.10 Water Conservation Handbook
  17. 17. S E C T I O NPlanning for water conservation 3Introduction First Principle – Avoid This principle seeks to encourage, where possible, theThis Section provides some guidance on planning your use of waterless options where they exist. This isapproach to water conservation. If you have the time achieved through the use of alternative techniques toand resources, it is best to develop a comprehensive reduce dependency on reticulated water such aswater conservation plan, including changing Council sweeping paths and pavements, instead of hosing them,policies and plans, improving Council operations and and using dry composting toilets.undertaking community programs. You can use theplanning framework provided here to develop your Second Principle – Reduceplan. This principle seeks to reduce the amount of water useIf you only have limited time and resources, start with through:some targeted initiatives that you can build into • water efficient building and garden design whichexisting programs. You can use parts of the planning can be achieved through practices such asframework provided to design these initiatives. appropriate plant selection with preference to local indigenous species and efficient irrigation practices;Principles • the efficient use of locally collected and alternative water supplies, for example collecting and usingThe Water Conservation Partnership Project worked rainwater for irrigation and internal buildingwith Local Government to develop the five Best purposes;Practice Water Conservation Principles. These arebased on the waste management hierarchy (avoid, • the installation of water efficient devices, such asreduce, re-use, recycle and disposal). Understanding low flow showerheads, dual flush toilets, low flowthe Principles may be useful in developing your taps and front-loading washing machines; andCouncil’s approach to water conservation, they are • adopting ‘water conservation managementoutlined in Figure 6. practices’ that educate residents and Council staff.FIGURE 6 The water conservation management hierarchy AVOID WATER USE Where possible avoid use of water where waterless options exist REDUCE WATER USE Reduce water use through the sustainable use of alternative water supplies and through reducing the amount of water used from reticulated supply RECYCLE WATER Recycling treated wastewater originating from reticulated supply DISPOSAL OF WATER Disposal of un-recycled or untreatable FEEDBACK AND wastewater in an appropriate manner ADAPTIVE MANAGEMENT so as not to cause detrimental A continuous feedback loop impact on the receiving on Councils implementation environment of water conservation initiatives leading to adaptive management Water Conservation Handbook 11
  18. 18. Third Principle – Recycle 1. Developing your approachThis principle seeks to use wastewater or reclaimed This part of the planning process will determine yourwater from one application such as wastewater overall approach to water conservation.treatment for another application. When using recycledwater, Councils must ensure that they comply with the What is the context for water conservationEnvironment Protection Policy 2003 (Water Quality). in your Council? The water conservation initiatives you decide toFourth Principle – Disposal develop and implement will depend on many factorsThis principle seeks to ensure that the disposal of water including the location of your Council, the level ofor treated wastewater that is not recycled or reused senior management support for water conservationdoes not cause degradation of catchment, coastal, initiatives and the funding available. It is worthmarine or terrestrial environments. This principle considering your Council’s context by thinking aboutshould be employed as a last resort. questions such as:Feedback and Adaptive Management • is water conservation important in your Council?Feedback and adaptive management is a continuous • how is water conservation incorporated into existingapproach used by Councils in determining the success Council plans and operations (if at all)?of implementation of the best practice principles. • are there any specific drivers or anticipated circumstances that will heighten the importance ofRefer to Section 7 on the CD for a full description of water conservation in your Council?the Best Practice Water Conservation Principles. • can you realise any synergies between delivering stated Council objectives (such as Strategic Goals)The Planning Process and water conservation initiatives?Developing a plan for your Council’s approach to • how can Council address the different levels ofwater conservation will assist you to take a strategic water restriction?and systematic approach to the business of savingwater. Your plan will help you to gain support for water Some of the drivers for promoting water conservationconservation initiatives within your Council and the at your Council might include:community and to achieve the most significant • water supply security and/or reliability;outcomes possible given your level of resources. A • constraints on water treatment/supply, wastewaterwell-developed plan will help to establish shared treatment, peak demand (i.e. the demand for waterexpectations, roles and responsibilities and generate on hot, dry days);ownership. • flood mitigation through stormwater detention;It is useful to consider your plan as a ‘living’ • community service (e.g. through the provision ofdocument. A good plan is reviewed and modified on a information and low-cost products and services toregular basis and used to report on progress, highlight householders);successes and identify areas for improvement. • water quality issues;The following generic planning process is suitable for a • drought response/management; andcomprehensive water conservation plan, but the areas • demonstrating Council’s commitment to sustainableof emphasis and level of detail that you put into your development.plan will depend on the size and structure of yourCouncil, the available funds and human resources and It is valuable to identify where water conservation mayyour particular water conservation goals. You may wish link to, or generate benefits for, other programs,to refer to more specific approaches such as the initiatives or objectives being implemented by yourimplementation of the Best Practice Water Council (for example, greenhouse programs, such asConservation Principles or the ICLEI Water Campaign. Cities for Climate Protection, community environmental education programs or infrastructure upgrades). This will increase both opportunities for support and funding for water conservation initiatives. Where will your approach to water conservation within the Council exist?12 Water Conservation Handbook
  19. 19. You need to decide whether you will develop a 3. Investigation and dataseparate water conservation plan or whether you willintegrate water conservation into other Council collectionplanning processes. For example, your approach to This stage of the planning process provides thewater conservation could be integrated into your structure and background that will help you select andEnvironmental Management Plan. develop specific programs.Assess resources Develop an overview of waterAt this stage you should make a preliminary conservation initiativesassessment of the human and financial resources that You can learn a lot from water conservation programsare likely to be available for Water Conservation Plans that have been undertaken elsewhere. You will findand initiatives. This is where you can begin to case studies throughout this Handbook and you can useunderstand the scope of your plan. your Local Government networks. However, each Council is unique and you should also investigate what2. Preliminary approval has already been done within your Council. This will be important for maintaining your credibility withinThis stage of the planning process outlines what you Council.will need to consider in seeking approval for yourapproach to water conservation. Collect data In planning your approach to water conservation it isIdentify internal partners crucial to understand how much water is used, where,Developing and implementing water conservation by whom and how. Council water use data is availableinitiatives by yourself is hard work. If possible you from SA Water – refer to Section 5 (page 23) forshould identify members of staff to work with. This details. Water data specific to your Council can becould include, for example: broken down into residential, non-residential and commercial sectors. The non-residential data includes• a member of senior management (or an elected Council, State Government and industrial water use. member) with a genuine level of commitment to supporting water conservation initiatives; or Relevant data to collect might include:• a cross-functional team of Council staff who can work with you to develop and implement water • average household usage (indoor and outdoor, or by conservation initiatives across Council and within end-use); the community. • Council consumption (buildings, facilities, parks and grounds);Create a business case for involvement • population growth and the projected demand forTo obtain approval for developing and implementing water (and possible implications);your approach to water conservation you may need to • other Council information: demographics, area, etc;put together a business case for Council senior • water supply source(s) cost of water, groundwatermanagement (and elected members) stating the broad information etc.;goals of the Water Conservation Plan and the resourcesthat will be required. • wastewater treatment, recycling, effluent discharges, water quality, costs; andGain approval to proceed • stormwater volumes, infrastructure costs, upgradeDepending on the scope of your plan you may need requirements etc.approval and commitment from senior management(and possibly elected members). This could include: It is important to identify the usage by sector in each Council, so that the right priorities are targeted. For• formal approval of staff-time to work on the project; example in the City of Port Adelaide Enfield, two• initial funding to undertake any investigations thirds of water consumption is by the commercial and required; and industrial sectors, so education programs focussed• a commitment to invest in identified projects (within purely on residential use may have minimal impact on agreed capital costs and returns on investment, water consumption. where appropriate). Once you have collected this data you can start toWithout this commitment, initial time and funds may identify water conservation opportunities that will bebe wasted. most effective and give ‘value for money’. Water Conservation Handbook 13
  20. 20. For example, if outdoor water use in your area is high, Select and design water conservationthen a program targeted at this will have the greatest initiativespotential for saving water. Current consumption data The range of water conservation programs are outlinedmay also be necessary for setting and monitoring as follows:targets. 1. Changing Council plans and policies – refer toWork with stakeholders Section 4 (page 17 ) for details. 2. Saving water in Council operations – refer toThe value of your plan, and the success of its Section 5 (page 21) for details.implementation, will be strengthened by involving the 3. Community programs – refer to Section 6 (page 37)community and other stakeholders in its development. for details.This involvement is the key to capacity building, whichwill support, promote, contribute to and sustain your When reviewing and selecting programs, assess whichWater Conservation Plan. The effort you put into are most strategic for your Council in terms of:involving stakeholders will depend on the scope ofyour plan. • links to your Strategic/Corporate Plan; • achieving significant reductions in water use;It will be important to include some stakeholder groups • the provision of community services;directly in the process, while others may just be keptinformed. Potential stakeholders to include in the • establishing partnerships with government bodiesdevelopment of your plan are outlined in Table 1. and the private sector; and • promoting your Council as responsible.Understanding stakeholders is critical to designing andimplementing appropriate and effective water The most effective Water Conservation Plans areconservation programs. This involves understanding generally implemented through a variety of programwho will influence the implementation of your Plan, types. If you have limited resources, it is best to focustheir level of understanding, values, perception and on one or two initial programs.practices in relation to water conservation, and howyou can ensure they support your goals. Gatheringknowledge about your community is explored furtherin Section 6.TABLE 1 Possible stakeholders in water conservationStaff and elected members Community representatives• Management, staff and elected members • Local environment groups & branches of• Finance, corporate support, grounds staff, State/National groups property and facilities management, • Schools procurement etc • Education (e.g. TAFE) • Community groups (e.g. Lions Club, Rotary) • Catchment groupsPrivate sector Government bodies• Council’s contractors • Water suppliers (wholesale and retail) (SA Water)• Local retailers of water using products (e.g. nurseries, • State Government agencies (Department for garden supplies & irrigation equipment specialists) Water, Land and Biodiversity Conservation etc)• Hardware retail outlets • Federal Government agencies (Environment• Electrical retail outlets (e.g. washing machines, Australia, Australian Greenhouse Office etc) dishwashers) • Catchment Water Management Boards• Manufacturers / importers of water using products• Landscape businesses• Local builders and developers• Energy suppliers14 Water Conservation Handbook
  21. 21. CASE STUDY: Rous Water Rous Water, a bulk water supplier in northern The program was so successful that some outlets NSW, initiated a program offering householders a produced their own promotional material, $150 rebate on the purchase of a water efficient including window displays, or supplemented the front loading washing machine with an energy offer with additional ‘cash back’ on some brands. rating of four stars or above. The program was run Since the start of the program there has been in partnership with the NSW Sustainable Energy interest from both washing machine manufacturers Development Authority and the local energy and retailers to join the partnership and contribute provider NorthPower, with each contributing $50 to the rebate. For further information contact John to the rebate. Local electrical goods retail outlets Rutledge on (02) 6621 8055. participated in the program.4. Design 5. ImplementationAt this stage of the planning process you can fully This is the important part! Your plan should providedevelop specific water conservation initiatives. you with the steps to follow through the implementation phase. However, during theDo a detailed design implementation phase you will most likely need toRefer to Sections 4, 5 and 6 for details on changing adjust your plan to take advantages of opportunities asCouncil policies and plans, improving Council they arise and to manage unforeseen events.operations and undertaking community programsrespectively. Choose the programs that will suit your Remember that implementing your plan is what youcircumstances and adapt them to the resources and should spend most of your time doing. It is importantcontext of your Council. to find the right balance between planning and action.Set targets It is likely that your Council will already have management systems or processes in place, and youTargets specific to each initiative may be set. Targets should integrate your plan with these where possible.should be SMART:Specific: clearly state what you aim to achieve. Manage and review dataMeasurable: ensure that the data is available and that Data management is the most commonly neglected partsystems are in place to manage the data. of water conservation programs. It is crucial to set up aAchievable: assess if it is possible to meet the goal tailored data management system that collects waterwith the available resources and timeframe. use data as it is generated, to monitor the success ofRealistic: set targets that are possible to achieve for the water conservation initiatives.type of program you are implementing.Timely: set a timeframe for achieving each target and The water use data should be reviewed regularly to:goal, and monitor on a regular basis. • ensure that water conservation initiatives that haveSeek formal approval been implemented are meeting their predicted savings; andAt this stage you may need to seek approval to expendfunds on the delivery of the Water Conservation Plan • identify any unexpected changes in use as thisPlan. You should have enough information by this enables quick rectification if required (for example,stage to provide costs, benefits and a detailed plan. You if there are system leaks).may also be able to apply for external funding throughthe Office of Local Government, Local Government When analysing water use data, you will need to takeAssociation, National Heritage Trust, Community climate variability and varied usage patterns intoDevelopment Grants, Catchment Water Management account. Water savings may not be reflected initially inBoards (or NRM Boards) etc. the water use data. For example, if you implement water saving initiatives during an unusually hot year (as in 2002), consumption may appear to increase when water is still being saved relatively speaking Water Conservation Handbook 15
  22. 22. because consumption would have been even higher if There are several ways to assess the effectiveness ofyou had done nothing. It is possible to correct your water conservation programs, including:data for climate and usage variations, but this is not • surveys, questionnaires and feedback forms;straightforward and you should seek professionalassistance if this is of interest to you. • statistical analysis; • cost-benefit analysis;It is crucial to manage your data well (both in terms of • participation (or uptake) rates; andwater and budgets) in order to demonstrate savings to • the amount of positive publicity received.management and elected members. It is critical to identify early in the planning processManage roles and responsibilities what information or data will need to be collected orTo generate shared expectations and ownership it is maintained in order to monitor the effectiveness ofimportant to define the roles and responsibilities of programs. It is better to gather more information thanCouncil staff and management, and other stakeholders less, as it is often impossible to collect it after theinvolved in your Water Conservation Plan. Defining program has finished.roles and responsibilities also strengthens commitmentthrough a sense of accountability. Celebrate! And communicate your success In conducting programs for water conservation, it isCommunication is crucial important to celebrate your successes.Regular updates should be provided to management,elected members, staff, stakeholders and the Communicate the success of your programs throughcommunity to inform them about progress. These Council internal and external processes, for example:updates can go beyond reports and be in the form of • Council internal newsletters or via an internal email;staff training and site visits. • at a Council meeting or committee meeting (forWhen addressing communication issues, consider not example, the environment committee);only what information needs to be communicated, but • Council’s state of the environment report (if youalso the audience, the most appropriate communication have one);media (e.g. newsletters, email) and necessary frequency. • meetings with managers and/or directors; • your Council’s page in local newspapers;6. Review – monitoring and • on Council’s web page; evaluation • at Council stalls at festivals and fairs; andMonitoring your plan and individual programs is • public events with the media (for example, whenessential to ensure you are on track to meeting goals new rainwater tanks are installed in communityand targets. It ensures that all the hard work of facilities).designing and implementing water conservationinitiatives is generating benefits, as well as providing You could also ask any stakeholders, sponsors oran opportunity to fine-tune and improve programs. In community groups to include information on thesome instances, particularly for larger, more costly program in their newsletters and publications as well asprograms, it may be appropriate to seek an independent, display information in libraries and customer servicespecialist evaluation. centres.Program evaluation can be used to:• influence elected members, senior management and other Council staff, and funding bodies;• build community capacity and engage communities;• communicate about your successes or failures;• ensure accountability for your work; and• reflect on and improve the program.Plan your evaluation and monitoring at the outset,otherwise you may not be able to get the data orinformation you need.16 Water Conservation Handbook
  23. 23. S E C T I O NChanging Council policies 4and plansIntroduction Regular reviews of Councils’ Development Plans are required to be undertaken, via ‘Section 30 Reviews’One of the most effective mechanisms to achieve and under the Development Act 1993. Councils can preparepromote water conservation outcomes in the broader Plan Amendment Reports (PARs) to update or amendcommunity is via the various regulatory, planning and each Plan, based on detailed investigations andpolicy tools that Councils are responsible for consultations with the broad community. Where it isdeveloping and administering. Water conservation can identified that water conservation has become an issuebe integrated into existing frameworks through to be incorporated into planning policy, each CouncilStrategic Management Plans, Development Plans and can, via a PAR, include appropriate planninginternal policies and operations. provisions in its Plan to promote or mandate particular water conservation strategies that are appropriate for itsUnderstanding your Council’s corporate and Council area. These provisions can then be applied tocommunity water consumption, relevant legislation, new developments in the Council area. Encouragingdemographics and community opinion will help you to water sensitive urban design is an important issue forprovide justification for changes to your Council’s Local Government.policies and plans. Planning provisions to reduce water (and energy)Figure 7 on page 20 depicts a typical Council Strategic consumption through the planning and regulatoryand Policy structure. It may be useful to draw this framework may include requiring or encouraging well-diagram for your organisation and consider the changes designed rainwater collection systems in newnecessary to facilitate water conservation. developments, and requiring existing buildings that are being renovated to be fitted with water efficientStrategic Management Plans devices. The Building Code of Australia is also an important tool, particularly regarding the provision ofAll Councils are required by the Local Government Act water efficient fittings in new buildings, such as the1999 to prepare Strategic Management Plans, that standard requirement for dual flush toilets.should provide direction and accountability in Councilachieving its functions and responsibilities under the The State Government can prepare a Ministerial PARAct. These functions include ‘to manage, develop, that will, on adoption, be applied to all or selectedprotect, restore, enhance and conserve the environment Council Development Plans in a synchronised wayin an ecologically sustainable manner’, and to ‘seek to across the State.facilitate sustainable development and the protection ofthe environment’. Environmental and natural resource CASE STUDY:management issues (including water conservation) are Marrickville City Council (NSW)now a core statutory focus for Councils, and should bereflected in Council’s strategic planning processes and Marrickville Development Control Plan No 32 –documents. Energy Smart Water Wise contains requirements for energy and water efficiency in both newCouncils also prepare profession-specific strategic developments and in alterations and additionsmanagement plans, which can include water to existing buildings. The main water efficiencyconservation considerations. controls are dual flush toilets and AAA rated water fixtures. A Comprehensive Water CycleDevelopment Plans Assessment and a Water Efficient Landscaping Assessment are required for majorCouncils administer urban planning policies and developments. For further information refer toregulate development through reference to a Section 7 on CD.Development Plan that is prepared for each Councilarea. Water Conservation Handbook 17
  24. 24. Water conservation strategies that are appropriate to CASE STUDY:Council could therefore be implemented via a South AustraliaMinisterial PAR. Local Government can collaboratewith the State Government (Planning SA) to develop Permanent water restrictions in South AustraliaMinisterial PARs to address the issue on a regional or were enacted on 26 October 2003 and predictedState-wide basis, as well as amending its own to result in a maximum reduction of 20% ofDevelopment Plan to reflect the particular needs and water use across the board (including irrigators,opportunities of its Council area. industry, residential and government). There will be four levels of restriction addressing:Internal policies and procedures • private gardens, lawns, paved areas, sportsCouncils can integrate water conservation into day-to- grounds and recreation areas;day business through altering internal policies and • fountains, ponds, pools and spas;procedures to incorporate water conservation. • vehicle washing, building development and construction activities; andFor example, water conservation considerations can be • farm dams and rainwater tanks, commercialincorporated into Purchasing and Procurement Policies nurseries, garden centres and poultry sheds.and Standard Operating Procedures. SA Water has begun a community educationAlterations to the Purchasing and Procurement Policy program and the level of restrictions will becan reduce the environmental impacts of goods and determined based on seasonal variations inservices purchased by Council. Some Councils include demand, river levels and rainfall. Refer toan overall environment statement within this policy, www.sawater.com.au/restrictions/index.html.referring to a number of key outcomes such as waterconservation, pollution prevention, minimising andrecycling wastes and minimising greenhouse gas CASE STUDY:emissions. For example, changes to this policy may Barwon Waterlead to your road reconstruction contractor usingmachinery that vacuums up and recycles the water used Barwon Water is the first Victorian waterin the wet saw road cutting process. The more specific authority to introduce a Water Conservation By­you can be about how environmental impacts are to be law, which came into effect from 1 Februaryminimised the better. 2003. Eighteen months community consultation into the future of the regions water supplyStandard Operating Procedures are the procedures preceded the by-law’s introduction. Throughoutwritten to govern many Council activities. These were the consultation process there wasoften written initially due to the need to make overwhelming support for water conservation.procedures clear for new staff members and/or the need The by-law is a permanent measure to conserveto protect staff from Occupational Health Safety and water now and for future generations. ItWelfare risks. These procedures may be changed to involves restrictions on watering gardens,incorporate water conservation outcomes. For example, cleaning vehicles, cleaning driveways and pathsan irrigation procedure may be altered so that and construction activities. For further detailssprinklers are only operated between certain times. refer to Section 7 on CD.Obviously these changes should only be made inconsultation with the relevant managers and staff. To Stormwater Infrastructure Planningchange these procedures in a systematic, holistic, Councils are largely responsible for the planning,environmental way some Councils have chosen to development and maintenance of stormwaterundertake an Environmental Management System. infrastructure within their areas. There are opportunities to incorporate water conservation into theOnce you have established good practices, altering planning for new infrastructure, and in the ongoingpolicies and procedures to reflect this is a good way to upgrades and rehabilitation of existing infrastructure.ensure that water conservation gains are maintained. Where greenfield development is occurring (land that has previously been undeveloped or has beenStormwater used for agricultural purposes) there are enormous opportunities for Councils to work with developers inStormwater is a key area for Council action with regard designing stormwater master plans that allow bothto water conservation. stormwater management, and water collection and harvesting ( if site conditions allow).18 Water Conservation Handbook
  25. 25. The 2002 Ministerial PAR for Stormwater CASE STUDY:and related documents Urban Stormwater Master PlansPlanning SA has prepared a Stormwater InfrastructurePlanning package to promote an integrated approach to The Cities of Port Adelaide Enfield, Charles Sturtcatchment management. The package includes: and Prospect, supported by the Torrens Catchment Water Management Board, are• Planning Bulletin: Urban Stormwater Infrastructure developing detailed integrated Urban to assist Councils in the process of policy Stormwater Master Plans during 2002–05 for development at the level of zone or policy area by each of the 23 independent water sub- raising awareness and generating debate among catchments in the north-west Adelaide region. stakeholders on catchment water management policy These will include investigations and the issues; identification of opportunities regarding the• Guidelines for Urban Stormwater Management; and best mix of planning, engineering and• Draft Ministers Specification: On-Site Retention of environmental policies and strategies in each Stormwater which is a technical standard to provide sub-catchment to achieve a range of desired cost effective technical solutions to the requirements outcomes, including improved water quality and for on-site retention and detention of stormwater. conservation. For further information contact Verity Sanders (08) 8405 6765.Councils located wholly or partly within the catchmentareas of the Patawalonga and the Torrens CatchmentWater Management Boards are also affected by theStormwater in Urban Areas Plan Amendment(November, 2002). This Plan Amendment Reportprovides a development assessment framework tofacilitate appropriate management of stormwater, andincludes some broad principles regarding waterconservation.The PAR has been incorporated into the relevantDevelopment Plans. For more information, theresources listed above can be accessed from PlanningSA’s website at www.planning.sa.gov.au/publicationsor you can contact Malcolm Govett at Planning SA bytelephone (08) 8204 8394 or emailgovett.malcolm@saugov.sa. gov.au.The State Government’s Guidelines for UrbanStormwater Management include the recommendationfor Councils to prepare Urban Stormwater Master planswhich would allow the integration of stormwaterinfrastructure planning, urban land use plannin, andenvironmental planning into a single long term Plan. Water Conservation Handbook 19
  26. 26. FIGURE 7 Council policies and plans related to water management Built Environment and Environmental Design Development Approvals and Control Policy Planners, Environment Planners or Strategic Assessments staff Planning staff Require water conservation measures in new Negotiation with major developers at Master Planning developments or modifications (if specified in the stage regarding water conservation opportunities to be Development Plan) incorporated into major developments Local Environment Strategy (LES) Local Environmental Plan (LEP) Both LESs and LEPs can include provisions for water conservation Council Management Plan and Budget Technical or Engineering Planning Aims and funding related to water conservation should Infrastructure and Asset Plans be included in your management plan and budget Can incorporate water conservation into infrastructure design and construction Allocate funding for a water demand management strategy or other major works Reducing water use in Council operations will save the Parks and Gardens council money Outdoor staff Parks plans of management Social/Community Plan Incorporate water conservation measures into parks plans of management Social planners Teach outdoor staff about water conserving practices Community education or community cultural development programs about water conservation can be undertaken with the assistance of social planners and officers, e.g. youth officer Natural Environment State of the Environment Reporting Environment staff Councils can report on water conservation activities in their state of the environment report Environment Management Systems (EMS) Water conservation measures should be part of any Council’s EMS Community education programs Environment officers can plan and implement community education programs about water conservation20 Water Conservation Handbook

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