Review

The Water Act 1989 requires Sustainable Water Strategies to be reviewed at least every 10 years. The review identifies changing pressures on water resources such as climate change and drought, population growth and changes in land use which allows us to better manage and protect our water resources. Water for Victoria also emphasised that a review is an opportunity to consider shared benefits, including those for recreational values and ensure the representation of Traditional owners on the consultative communities. A review is guided by a Consultative Committee with representation from across the sectors responsible for water management.  This included Traditional Owners. The draft review also has a two-month public consultation period to inform the final review.

A review of the Central Region Sustainable Water Strategy began in 2016.

Assessments

Water for Victoria identified the opportunity to complete five-yearly assessments of Sustainable Water Strategies.  The five-yearly assessments help identify any key trends and issues to be taken up in any future review of revision of the strategy development process. They are prepared by DELWP in discussion with water industry stakeholders.  

Five-year assessments of the Western Region and Gippsland Region sustainable water strategies began in 2017.

Alignment with Long Term Water Resource Assessments

The review and assessments will align with the Long-term water resource assessment process.

  • 2016-2017: review of the Central Region Sustainable Water Strategy and the five-yearly assessments of the Western Region and Gippsland Region sustainable water strategies began.
  • 2018-2019: the review of the Central Region Sustainable Water Strategy and the five-yearly assessments of the Western Region and Gippsland Region sustainable water strategies will be completed. The Long-Term Water Resource Assessment (technical assessment), the review of the Northern Region Sustainable Water Strategy and the new sustainable water strategy will begin.
  • 2020-2021: the review of the Northern Region Sustainable Water Strategy and the development of new sustainable water strategies will progress.

Stocktake of actions

Three hundred actions were identified across the four sustainable water strategies. Actions are being implemented by DELWP, water corporations, catchment management authorities (CMAs), the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR), and partners and stakeholders.

We completed a stocktake of the actions in 2016: out of 300, 239 are now complete.  Of the remaining actions:

Action Status

Sustainable Water Strategies

Central Region

Northern Region

Gippsland Region

West Region

TOTAL

Complete

103

44

47

46

239

Ongoing

2

5

11

11

29

To be implemented through Basin Plan

-

1

-

1

2

To be implemented via Water for Victoria

7

2

10

11

30

TOTAL

112

51

68

69

300

Due to changes in climatic conditions or policy and legislative settings since the release of the sustainable water strategies, some actions or subcomponents of actions may no longer be appropriate or relevant. These unresolved actions are being addressed as the reviews and assessments progress.

View stocktake

Central Region Sustainable Water Strategy

Northern Region Sustainable Water Strategy

Western Region and Gippsland Region

The review of the Central Region Sustainable Water Strategy started in late 2016. It will produce a review report, not a new strategy. The report will:

  • update the status and report on the timing for each action
  • assess how effectively those actions and policies have met the aims and targets
  • document changes in water management since the strategy was released
  • identify lessons learned and provide a roadmap for a new sustainable water strategy process

In addition to the 2016 stocktake, a progress update of actions was conducted in 2017. It was developed in collaboration with targeted water stakeholder groups and is a key component of the draft review of the Central Region Sustainable Water Strategy for public consultation. It demonstrates accountability for implementing strategy actions, highlights the achievements of the strategy and develops a narrative to explain why actions were not completed or policies were not effective.

The review will explore issues to consider in developing a new sustainable water strategy. The review will also provide an update on progress on shared benefits since the release of the Central Region Sustainable Water Strategy. This includes recreational values, Aboriginal values and clarifies links between the sustainable water strategies and our other key projects, such as the grid oversight function, the southern market trial and long-term water resources assessments. The review will identify preparatory work that should be undertaken for the development of a new strategy process.

Timing

What’s happening

EARLY 2018

The Minister for Water to appoint a Consultative Committee of regional stakeholders to provide strategic guidance and advice on the preparation of the review

EARLY 2018

Collaborative process with key water industry stakeholders

MID 2018

Public Consultation on a draft Review of the Central Region Sustainable Water Strategy

LATE 2018

Release the Review of the Central Region Sustainable Water Strategy

Download Central Region Information Sheet (PDF, 6.4 MB) or accessible Word version (DOCX, 1.1 MB)

Five-yearly assessments of the Western Region and Gippsland Region sustainable water strategies

Water for Victoria recommended five-yearly assessments of the Western Region Sustainable Water Strategy (2011) and Gippsland Region Sustainable Water Strategy (2011) to commence in 2017.  These assessments will:

  • update the status and report on the timing for each action
  • assess how effectively those actions and policies have met the aims and targets
  • document changes in water management since the strategy was released
  • identify lessons learned for a new sustainable water strategy process

Timing

What’s happening

MID to LATE 2018

Release the five-yearly assessments of the Western Region and Gippsland Region Sustainable Water Strategy by mid-2018

Download Western Region Information Sheet (PDF, 7.7 MB) or accessible Word version (DOCX, 1.5 MB)

Download Gippsland Region Information Sheet (PDF, 7.4 MB) or accessible Word version (DOCX, 1.1 MB)