The Shire of Murray (WA) has become the Western Australia’s 26th Waterwise Council because of their improved use of groundwater and a reduction in the use of drinking water, announced State Minister for Water, Mia Davies.

“The Shire of Murray is a fitting example of how to conserve precious drinking water by implementing waterwise measures,” Ms Davies said.

“Over the last three years the shire’s annual use of scheme water has reduced by more than 30 per cent, building on a steady reduction of drinking water use over the previous decade.”

“This achievement by adoption of waterwise practices and technology is even more notable when you consider the increasing demand on the shire’s facilities during this period due to the significant population growth.”

Key drinking water conservation initiatives that were implemented include a leak detection program for shire buildings, retrofitting public toilets, 5 Star Water Efficiency and Labelling Scheme (WELS) rated fixtures, and provision for rainwater harvesting in all new buildings.

“The shire’s efficient use of local groundwater is also a high priority and has been assisted through the installation of a network of water meters linked to centralised irrigation systems,” the Minister said.

“Groundwater supplies have further been conserved through use of hydrozoning principles for recreational and sports turf areas, and use of native gardens.”

One of the shire’s most significant water efficiency measures is the implementation of a best practice Water Sensitive Urban Design Policy to guide water management in new urban projects, to support stormwater management, and water efficiency goals.

The Waterwise Council program is run through collaboration between the Department of Water, Water Corporation, and the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives – Local Governments for Sustainability.

There are 26 Waterwise councils in WA with another 30 progressing towards Waterwise status.

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