By acting now and investing smartly, the water sector is well-placed to reduce its emissions efficiently and achieve these ambitious targets.

Each Victorian water corporation has its own 2025 emissions reduction target. These targets are outlined below in both tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent and as a percentage reduction from baseline.

Under Victoria’s water plan, Water for Victoria, the water sector committed to be a leader in emissions reduction in Victoria. The sector has committed to achieving net-zero emissions by 2035, becoming the first state water sector in Australia to do so.The sector has also committed to sourcing 100% of its electricity needs from renewables by 2025. By acting now and investing smartly, the water sector is well-placed to reduce its emissions efficiently and achieve these ambitious targets.

To put the sector on the right path to achieving net-zero emissions by 2035, each of Victoria’s 18 water corporations has committed to ambitious emissions reduction targets. These targets are formalised in the Statement of Obligations (Emissions Reduction) (PDF, 1.9 MB) (Accessible version (DOCX, 51.4 KB)). The Statement also sets out the water sector’s emissions reduction priorities, affordability priorities, and rules for calculating emissions.

Victorian water corporations' emissions reduction targets for 2025, 2030 and 2035:

Victorian Water Corporation

Emissions baseline

Annual reportable emissions (in t CO2-e) in:

the 2024/25 financial year

the 2029/30 financial year

the 2034/35 financial year

Barwon Water

42,986

15,926 (63%↓)

0

0

Central Gippsland Water

42,021

32,080 (23.7%↓)

0

0

Central HighlandsWater

18,351

14,738 (19.6%↓)

3,667 (80%↓)

0

Coliban Water

33,604

29,304 (12.8%↓)

0

0

East Gippsland Water

8,272

6,496 (21.5%↓)

1,290 (84.4%↓)

0

Goulburn-Murray Water

13,053

10,399(20.3%↓)

721 (94.5%↓)

0

Goulburn Valley Water

49,575

37,416 (24.5%↓)

29,933 (39.6%↓)

0

Grampians Wimmera Mallee Water

20,017

16,244 (18.8%↓)

1,875 (90.6%↓)

0

Greater Western Water

40,307

27,586 (31.6%↓)

0

0

Lower Murray Water

44,188

24,708 (44.1%↓)

9,272 (79%↓)

0

Melbourne Water

408,860

204,380 (50%↓)

0

0

North East Water

34,551

19,817(42.6%↓)

3,967 (88.5%↓)

0

South East Water

41,744

23,016 (44.9%↓)

0

0

South Gippsland Water

7,663

6,480 (15.4%↓)

3,471 (54.7%↓)

0

Southern Rural Water

1,559

0

0

0

Wannon Water

31,626

18,976 (40%↓)

0

0

Westernport Water

6,062

5,598 (7.7%↓)

606 (90%↓)

0

Yarra Valley Water

32,004

11,664 (63.6%↓)

0

0

Annual Emissions Totals

876,428

504,828 (42.4%↓)

54,872 (93.7%↓)

Net-zero (100%↓)

  1. Different greenhouse gases have different Global Warming Potentials. This means that one tonne of one greenhouse gas, such as methane (CH4), may be “stronger” (absorb, or trap, more heat over time) than one tonne of another greenhouse gas, such as carbon dioxide.

    To standardise these greenhouse gases and make them comparable, greenhouse gases are converted into tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (t CO2-e). For example, the Global Warming Potential of carbon dioxide (CO2) is 1. So, one tonne of a greenhouse gas with a ‘Global Warming Potential’ of 100 would be 100 tonnes of CO2-e. This standardisation makes comparisons of different greenhouse gases much easier.
  2. The baseline is defined as the average annual greenhouse gas emissions emitted by a water corporation between 1 July 2011 and 1 July2016.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Each of Victoria’s water corporations are different – with different annual emissions, emissions challenges, and emissions reduction opportunities.

Each Corporation’s targets have been developed with full consideration of those differences, and the price impacts for customers. This approach ensures all Victorian water corporations are doing their bit to reduce the sector’s emissions efficiently, effectively, and at low cost.

Victoria’s water corporations are reducing emissions and achieving their targets through many different initiatives and projects. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • investing in more efficient equipment
  • capturing biogas for energy generation
  • delivering their own renewable electricity projects
  • purchasing more renewable energy
  • moving to electric vehicles, and
  • generating carbon offsets (by planting trees, for example)

Victoria’s catchment management authorities (CMAs) are working in partnership with Traditional Owners and Victoria’s water corporations. Together they are identifying opportunities for carbon sequestration. For example, by protecting wetlands and planting trees with local landholders. The Natural Resource Management Climate website provides further information about how CMAs are working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. You can also find more emissions reduction case studies on our Taking action: showcasing projects reducing the Victorian water sector’s emissions page.

By acting now and investing smartly, the sector will be well-placed to tackle climate change and reduce emissions. This will help us avoid the need for more drastic and costly action later.

Victoria’s Climate Change Act 2017 provides Victoria with a world-leading legislative foundation to manage climate change risks, maximise the opportunities that arise from decisive action, and drive our transition to a climate resilient community and economy with net zero emissions by 2050. The Act:

  • establishes a long-term emissions reduction target for Victoria of net-zero by 2050
  • requires five yearly interim targets, to keep Victoria on track to meet this long-term target
  • requires the government to develop a Climate Change Strategy every five years. The Strategy sets out how Victoria will meet its targets and adapt to the impacts of climate change

provides Victoria with a world-leading legislative foundation to manage climate change risks, maximise the opportunities that arise from decisive action, and drive our transition to a climate resilient community and economy with net zero emissions by 2050.

The water sector is playing a lead role in reaching net zero emissions, with this government initiative putting Victoria’s 18 water corporations at the forefront of emission reductions.

Our water sector is the first state water sector in Australia to commit to net-zero emissions by 2035.

These targets also put the Victorian water sector alongside the United Kingdom’s water sector as world leaders in water sector emissions reductions.

Page last updated: 16/08/22