Victorian Water Accounts 2016-17 now available

This report is the 14th in the annual series and summarises Victoria’s water availability, distribution and use for the 2016-17 year. Data in the report is provided by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, water businesses, the Essential Services Commission, the Bureau of Meteorology, and major water users.

Victorian Water Accounts 2016–17 at a glance

• This report provides statewide and system pictures of water availability and use for each of Victoria’s 29 river basins and 20 groundwater catchments, and for each of the state’s rural and urban distribution systems.

• 2016–17 was a wetter-than-average year for most of Victoria. Most of Victoria received very much above-average rainfall during September, including areas in the north and west of the state where rainfall was the highest on record.

• Despite the above-average rainfall in spring, rainfall for June 2017 was very much below average, with the driest June on record overall for Victoria.

• The total available volume of surface water, groundwater and recycled water was higher than in the previous year.

• The increased rainfall meant there were fewer restrictions in 2016–17. Water use was restricted for fewer urban and rural users, with one town and 76 rivers affected.

• All high-reliability entitlements received 100% allocation in regulated systems.

• Almost all storage levels ended the year higher than they began it. Surface water consumption decreased from the previous year.

• In most groundwater systems, water levels stabilised and groundwater use decreased, compared to 2015–16.

• Recycled water use decreased, compared to 2015–16.

• This year was the Victorian Environmental Water Holder’s sixth year managing water for the environment across the state. In 2016–17, 98% of identified potential watering actions were fully or partially achieved through a combination of naturally wet conditions and managed environmental flows. This is the highest proportion of actions the VEWH has achieved since it started.

Reports for previous years are available here.