Melbourne's water storages drop to 53%

Melbourne’s water storages have hit 53 per cent after a dry start to autumn, Melbourne Water figures show.

Melbourne’s four major harvesting catchments received just 54mm of rainfall in March, 9 per cent below the 30-year average.

Melbourne Water’s General Manager of Service Delivery, Craig Dixon, said the decline was a stark reminder of how dry it has been and the importance of making every drop count when using water.

“Melbourne’s water storages haven’t been this low since April 2011,” Mr Dixon said.

“We’re feeling the impact of the dry conditions, and this is being compounded by a decline in the amount of water entering our catchments through stream flows.”

Mr Dixon said it was important Melburnians continued to be mindful of the need to use water efficiently.

“We’re encouraging Melburnians to do what they can to reduce water use around the home, whether that’s through shorter showers or turning off the tap when brushing your teeth,” he said.

Melbourne’s residential water use in 2017/18 was 161 litres per person per day, six litres above the target of 155 litres per person per day.

Water use in March was 3.5 per cent higher than the same time last year.

The Bureau of Meteorology reported March 2019 as the hottest March on record for Australia, with rainfall below average for much of Victoria.  

Last month, the Victorian Government announced it would order 125 gigalitres of water from the Desalination Plant for the 2019/20 year to boost storages following dry conditions in spring and summer.

More information on the Target 155 campaign can be found on your local water retailer’s website or at https://www.water.vic.gov.au/liveable-cities-and-towns/target-155-target-your-water-use