The City has achieved Waterwise Council status through the Department of Water and the Water Corporation’s Waterwise Council program. The City has set strict targets to achieve this and has proven its ability to reduce water use whilst also implementing measures to improve the water quality in local wetlands.
Council recently endorsed the City’s Water Efficiency Action Plan (WEAP) as part of the Waterwise Council Program.
The objectives of the WEAP are to:
- Assess current water use across council operations and the community.
- Identify inefficiencies and potential water savings.
- Set goals and benchmarks to improve water use.
- Implement water efficiency actions to progress towards our targets
- Provide a process for annual reporting on implementation of water efficiency actions.
Whilst the primary focus of this Action Plan is water conservation, to facilitate a more
streamlined process for management of local water related actions, sections four and five have been expanded to incorporate water quality goals, benchmarks and actions.
The City of Cockburn has reviewed previously adopted goals for water efficiency and proposes the following updated goals in recognition that a number of the original goals have been achieved under its Water Efficiency Action Plan:
- To improve efficiency in corporate groundwater use by reducing consumption to 6,750 kL per hectare by 2020
- To investigate and implement opportunities for alternative sources of non-potable water and limit any increase from 2016 licenced allocations of 2.8 GL/year to less than 15%
- To reduce corporate scheme water consumption by 5 percent below 2014-15 levels per head of population served (0.7 kL/person) by 2020
- To maintain per capita residential water use below 100 kL/person/year
- To influence other community sectors to reduce their water consumption by 5% below by 2020.
Some of the City’s key strategic documents related to the WEAP include:
- City of Cockburn Sustainability Strategy 2013 -2017
- City of Cockburn Local Planning Strategy
- City of Cockburn Public Open Space Development Guidelines.
This plan will be valid for a period of five years and will form the basis of annual reporting requirements.
The City of Cockburn has a licence extract groundwater for the irrigation of Public Open Spaces, Sporting Ovals and Streetscapes from the Department of Water. The licence sets the amount of water that can be taken from the ground at specific locations and outlines other management conditions.
The Parks Team have developed and implemented a water conservation strategy, to ensure the City complies with the licence. Actions include:
- Bore metering
- Replacing inefficient irrigation systems
- Grouping plants of similar water requirements to conserve water
- Designing irrigation systems for these plant species.
- Soil monitoring equipment (indicates the water levels in the soil profile)
- Undertaking turf renovation programs
- Applying watering programs to meet the amount of water that can be taken from the ground
- Planting of appropriate trees and shrubs that require minimal water.
- All Local Governments are not permitted to irrigate between 9am and 6pm, however the following exemptions apply:
- Installing, testing and repairing reticulation systems
- Applying wetting agents and fertilisers
- Fire fighting requirements
- Establishment of new turf, gardens or grass covered sporting grounds & turf renovation programs.