Water saving advice
Water is a precious resource for us to use wisely.
The combined level of the SEQ Water Grid is around 90%.
While Grid levels have received a much needed top up, South East Queensland has a climate of extremes. Dry conditions could easily return, so we encourage everyone to continue to be waterwise.
There are no water restrictions at this level but there are lots of simple ways you can use water wisely, every day.
If one million people in South East Queensland make a commitment to save just three litres of water a day, we could save three million litres of water every day!
That's 15,000 bathtubs of water.
For information about water restrictions in your region, follow the links below.
- Frequently asked questions
What difference can one person make?
You may feel that your individual water saving efforts don’t make a huge difference.
But if one million people in South East Queensland make a commitment to save just three litres of water a day, we could save three million litres of water a day! That's 15,000 bathtubs.
Everyone and every drop really do count.When are mandatory water restrictions likely to be introduced?
The South East Queensland Drought Response Plan introduces mandatory region-wide water restrictions when the combined level of our drinking water dams reach 50% capacity.
If mandatory water restrictions are introduced at 50%, they will be in place across the entire South East Queensland region and ask residents to target 140 litres of water per person per day.Can I top up my empty rainwater tank with town water?
You are currently allowed to use town water to water your garden, top up your pool and for all other outdoor water use activities.
Currently there are no water restrictions on these uses, but you are encouraged to remain efficient in your water use and monitor your consumption to ensure you are aware of increases in your use. It is also a good idea to make sure your rainwater tank is available to capture any rain that does fall.
Water saving tips include: keeping the pool cover on when the pool is not in use, avoid watering the garden in the heat of the day between 8am – 4pm, and using water saving mulch to reduce water lost to evaporation.What is Seqwater doing to make sure we don't run out of water?
Seqwater is responsible for water security in South East Queensland and in line with its legislative responsibility has developed and amended its Water Security Program – a long-term plan to manage water security across the region.
This Program includes triggers for activating drought response and actions that aim to manage the water supply and demand to ensure that the region does not run out of water.
The biggest single change since the Millennium Drought has been the construction of the SEQ Water Grid which allows Seqwater to move treated drinking water around the region.
The connected water treatment plants and pipelines across the grid, and the availability of the Gold Coast Desalination Plant and the Western Corridor Recycled Water Scheme to respond to drought, means the region has more resources at its disposal than ever before to manage drought.Why are we being asked to use water wisely after significant investment in desalination and purified recycled water?
The SEQ Water Grid and the availability of climate-resilient infrastructure like the Gold Coast Desalination Plant and the Western Corridor Recycled Water Scheme has provided us with the means to better manage drought conditions. However this infrastructure only mitigates the effects of drought - it does not prevent severe drought.
Seasonal rainfall is still important because it replenishes surface water in dams, which account for most of South East Queensland’s water supply.
It is important to remember that in South East Queensland, we live in a climate of extremes and need to be ready to adjust our water use when conditions change.
We are one region with one water supply. Everyone needs to be water efficient, even when parts of our region experience wetter conditions than other areas.
By better managing our water supply we can help delay and even potentially avoid the need for mandatory water restrictions. We understand water restrictions impact our lifestyle and economy, so being water efficient whenever we can will help delay restrictions.What is Seqwater doing to prepare for climate change?
Seqwater regularly monitors the level of water in our dams (the drawdown), rainfall frequency, duration and volume. This is compared to previous data to understand any significant changes.
Seqwater is also aware of, and is considering, climate information for South East Queensland available from the State Government and other organisations. This information will form part of the considerations for the types of water supply options for South East Queensland into the future. When we are planning for the future, we will consider a number of scenarios, and continue to monitor trends, and adapt our planning accordingly.
We are also developing a business-wide Climate Resilience Strategy to deal with the many impacts of a changing climate. Seqwater has worked with the State Government in the development of the Strategy and it features as a case study within the Queensland Government’s own Climate Adaptation Strategy.When will industry be asked to save water?
Many businesses have retained their water efficiency since the Millennium Drought and will continue to do so over the years to come.
When the combined level of our drinking water dams is 60%, water conservation and business and industry voluntary programs will be made available. They will contain information for businesses to conduct their own audit to investigate further water efficiencies in their businesses.
Seqwater will work with peak industry bodies to encourage appropriate water efficiencies for that industry type.Will you close or restrict recreation at lakes if water levels drop?
Seqwater endeavours to keep recreation open at its recreational lakes, however if water levels drop to a point that recreation activities become unsafe, restrictions and subsequent closures may be required.
This is consistent with our approach across all our recreation lakes to best ensure the safety of the public.
We appreciate any closure impacts on recreation users, especially during the summer and holidays but Seqwater has a duty of care to close recreation if public safety is at risk.
If areas are closed or restricted, we will seek to re-open as soon as it is safe to do so. Seqwater informs and updates local stakeholders of potential closures before they take place.Where can I find the amended Drought Response Plan?
On 24 March 2017, Seqwater released South East Queensland’s updated Drought Response Plan, developed as part the Water Security Program 2016 – 2046, our long-term water plan for the region. A key change to our region’s drought strategy is the introduction of a drought readiness phase to help better prepare the region for the prospect of drought.
More about our Drought Response Plan is on page 10 of our Water Security Program 2016-46.