On this page:

Many catchments supplying water for domestic, irrigation or other purposes within Victoria are protected under the Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994.

These catchments have significant value as a water supply source for stock and domestic use. By having safeguards in place, we can protect our catchments and water quality for health, agricultural and industrial uses.

An up-to-date list of special water supply catchment areas is provided below.

This list varies from the historical list in Schedule 5 of the Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994. Changes include declaring Barham River, revoking Skenes Creek and West Barham catchments in 2009 and corrections to the area of square kilometres.

There are 123 declared special water supply catchment areas in Victoria. Mapping of these areas (spatial layer SWSCA100), is available in Mapshare and VicPlan.

Guidelines have been developed to support proposals for recommendations to declare, amend or revoke special water supply catchment areas. Catchment management authorities can make recommendations to the responsible Minister, in collaboration with water corporations.

Land use planning

Everything we do on land within special water supply catchment areas can affect our water quality.

Development can affect water quality through run-off and waste contamination entering our catchments. Farming activities can affect our water quality when nutrients and sediments flow into our waterways.

Guidelines have been revised to help responsible authorities, typically local government and water corporations, assess planning permit applications for the use and development of land within open, special water supply catchment areas.

In these areas, water corporations are the determining referral authority within the Victoria Planning Provisions, ensuring that all use and development is sited and managed to protect the quality of water collected from the catchment.

Page last updated: 19/04/24