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Permanent water saving rules
The permanent water saving rules are common-sense rules to help us use water efficiently across Victoria. These rules are always in place across the state. The more severe rule or restriction applies when water restrictions are in place. Breaking these rules could result in penalties.
The rules are uniform across Victoria and are included in each water corporation's permanent water saving plan. The rules will not prevent the need for water restrictions during major drought periods but will help us use water more efficiently and encourage all Victorians to value this precious resource for the long term.
Water corporations sometimes use water restrictions to help manage urban water use when water supplies are low. There are 4 stages of restrictions, ranging from stage 1 (mild) to stage 4 (severe).
Water restrictions only apply to customers on a piped (reticulated) supply. They do not apply to recycled, reclaimed, rain or grey water unless supplemented/topped up by drinking (potable) water.
Who manages water restrictions?
Victoria’s urban water corporations manage water restrictions. Each stage of restriction is set out in the water restriction by-law of your water corporation and implementation of these restrictions is guided by its Drought Preparedness Plan.
Although restriction policies are based on uniform guidelines, your water corporation may have minor variations in the details to account for local conditions.
Water corporations may grant exemptions to those with special needs and who have principles in place to ensure consistent exemption allocations.
Contact your water corporation for more information regarding restriction by-law or exemptions from water restrictions.
Your water corporation also prepares Drought Preparedness Plan (DPP) that can be accessed through its website.
When do water restrictions apply to me?
- Stage 1 water restrictions
- Stage 2 water restrictions
- Stage 3 water restrictions
- Stage 4 water restrictions
Annual Water Outlook
Each year, the Victorian water industry prepares Annual Water Outlooks that are used to inform the community and outline actions that will help to protect the security of Victoria’s water supply.
Water corporations' water saving tips and rules
Metropolitan Water Corporations
- Greater Western Water – Target 150
- Melbourne Water – Permanent water-saving rules and Target 150
- South East Water – Current water use rules
- Yarra Valley Water – Permanent water use rules
Regional Water Corporations
- Barwon Water – Permanent water saving rules
- Central Highlands Water – Saving water at home or work
- Coliban Water – Permanent water saving rules
- East Gippsland Water – Water efficiency tips
- Goulburn Valley Water – Being waterwise
- Gippsland Water – Target your water use
- GWM Water – Target your water use program
- Lower Murray Water – Permanent water saving rules
- North East Water – Target your water use
- South Gippsland Water – Permanent water saving rules
- Wannon Water – Target your water use
- Westernport Water – Target your water use
Page last updated: 25/09/23