Greater Sydney households and businesses will continue to benefit from low water bills following the NSW Government’s release of the metropolitan water plan.
The new plan will save an average of $20 million a year by using existing water supplies, delaying the need for investment in major infrastructure such as new dams. Minister for Energy and Utilities Don Harwin said the plan shows current supply is able to deliver enough drinking water for the next 10 or more years.
“This Government is doing more to reduce the cost of living and keeping downward pressure on water prices was a focus area of the 2017 Metropolitan Water Plan. Our water supply will remain affordable, safe and reliable,” Mr Harwin said.
“I am proud to say that under our Government the people of Greater Sydney are experiencing the first ever water bill reduction. A typical Sydney Water customer is now saving nearly $100 a year on their water bill.”
Minister for Western Sydney Stuart Ayres said the plan, which includes a Drought Response Strategy, credited community efforts to conserve water during and since the Millennium drought for putting the region’s water supply in a strong position.
“Greater Sydney used 530 billion litres of water last year, around 100 billion litres less a year than 25 years ago. Despite our demand for water declining since the 1990s, we need to plan for the region’s growing population, which is projected to increase by two million people over the next two decades,” Mr Ayres said.
The plan will introduce environmental flows for the Hawkesbury-Nepean River from Warragamba Dam. This will improve the health of the river for our native species, and improve fishing, swimming and boating in Western Sydney.
Another feature is the new WaterSmart Cities program, which ensures water in the urban environment is managed in a way that keeps communities green and healthy. The plan was informed by technical studies, economic analyses, community and stakeholder consultation and social surveys over the past four years.
For more information or to view the 2017 Metropolitan Water Plan in full visit https://www.metrowater.nsw.gov.au/planning-sydney.