About our water

Every great city owes its prosperity and growth in part to healthy water resources. Many of Melbourne’s reliable water resources were established decades ago – some last century.

In addition to maintaining these resources, long-term projects are in place to address the challenges of climate change, increased climate variability and population growth.

Did you know that:

  • Melbourne has had access to safe and reliable water services for over 125 years
  • most of our drinking water comes from forests high up in the Yarra Ranges
  • to get to your tap, water travels through reservoirs, treatment plants and many kilometres of pipes
  • we built the underground sewerage system in the 1890s
  • our rivers, creeks and wetlands are home to 36 species of freshwater fish and many other animals and plants

What we’re responsible for

We protect and manage Melbourne’s important water assets on behalf of the community.

Some of the work we do includes:

  • drinking water - we supply water retailers over 400 billion litres of drinking water each year
  • reservoirs – our 10 major reservoirs have a storage capacity of 1,812 billion litres
  • catchments - water is collected from a total catchment area of 157,000 hectares 
  • sewerage – we treat over 320,000 million litres of sewage each year and turn a lot of this into valuable resources
  • recycled water – we produce high quality recycled water for our retail and business customers
  • waterways – we manage 8,680 kilometres of rivers and creeks that flow into Port Phillip Bay or Western Port
  • drainage systems and flooding – we look after more than 1,491 kilometres of drains and deliver projects and services to reduce flood risk
  • liveability – we manage over 33,000 hectares of land and provide opportunities for the community to use this land 
Last updated:
22 September 2019