Alert: Following the earthquake on 22 September, Melbourne Water has enacted our rapid response and inspection program for all of our critical assets – including dams - across our areas of operation. Follow our updates.

Waterway diversion and stormwater harvesting

​We manage the taking of surface water from rivers, creeks and dams in the Yarra River, Lower Maribyrnong River and Western tributary catchments. This water is used for a variety of agricultural, industrial, commercial and domestic purposes.

We also issue stormwater harvesting licences for those who wish to take stormwater from one of our waterways or drains.

Licence types

  • Unregulated waterways: water irrigation licences in the Yarra catchment, Stony Creek, Kororoit Creek, Laverton Creek and Skeleton Creek are for supply of water from unregulated streams
  • Regulated waterways: water irrigation licences from the Maribyrnong River are for water supplied from a regulated river system via releases made to the river from Rosslynne Reservoir at Gisborne
  • Stormwater harvesting: you will need a stormwater harvesting licence to harvest any quantity of stormwater from a waterway, drain, channel or asset controlled by Melbourne Water

Charges from 1 July 2021 to 30 June 2022

Unregulated waterways​ Charge ($)
Licence service fee (all licence types)​ ($ per annum) 276.04
Power generation licence​ ($ per kilowatt) 24.79
Volume charge ($ per ML)
All months licence ​36.22
​On-stream winter-fill 18.24
​Off-stream winter-fill 18.24
​Licenced farm dam 18.24
​Non consumptive ​2.30
Works operating licences
Hazardous dam ($ per annum)​ 105.39
General ($ per annum)​ 62.25


Regulated waterways ​Charge ($)
Licence service fee (all licence types)​($ per annum) 276.04
Volume charge ($ per ML)  ​
All months licence​ 75.81
​Off-stream winter-fill 18.24


Stormwater harvesting ​Charge ($)
Licence service fees ($ per annum) ​276.04
Volume charge ($ per ML)  ​
All months licence​ 36.22


Application fees ​Charge ($)
​Transfer - Sale of Land  333.86
​Amalgamation, subdivision (existing licences) 437.48
​Minor amendment
(e.g. add/remove parcel, party or existing entity )
​Transfer - downstream trade 736.86
​Transfer - upstream trade 1,088.04
​Transfer - repeat trade application 161.16
​New licence - stormwater 1,093.78
​New licence - non consumptive/power generation 736.86
​Additional charge where irrigation and drainage plan required 287.80
​Works licence - amendment (e.g. pump replacement) 391.44
​New works construction licence - dam/stormwater 834.74
​New works construction licence - pump only 656.24
​Re-issue - failure to renew -  domestic & stock 189.93
​Re-issue - failure to renew - all licences 287.80
Re-issue - following revocation​ 1,519.78
​Copy of record 57.54
​Application to renew 333.86
​Land information statement 115.09

These charges were reviewed through a public process, where the Essential Services Commission:

  • completed extensive analysis of Melbourne Water’s 2021 Price Submission, which sets out the expected costs to deliver planned capital works programs, service standards and forecast volumes for each prescribed service
  • reviewed capital expenditure, operating expenditure and forecast demand
  • consulted with stakeholders, including a review of submissions made by interested parties

The 2021 Water Price Review covers a five year regulatory period from 1 July 2021 to 30 June 2026.

Metering charges

All new licences must be metered at the applicant's cost, which varies according to the size of the irrigation meter needed. For more information:

Last updated:
30 June 2021