Election 2013 Western Australia March 9

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Infrastructure Matters

Greens water policy identifies up to 260GL of water savings

Greens Statement

The Greens have identified ways to potentially save more drinking water through conservation efforts than the combined output of the Kwinana and Binningup desalination plants . 

The Greens Smart With Water Action Plan is based on comprehensive research and shows that simple measures like providing incentives for  greywater plumbing for homes; expanding managed aquifer recharge; increasing the use of  treated waste water by industry; and rolling out more smart meters could save up to 260 billion litres a year by 2029. 

The figure equates to one and a half times the expected annual output of the two desalination plants by 2029. 

Greens Water Spokesperson Alison Xamon MLC said reducing the need for new water supplies through water conservation was the most economically efficient solution to averting a future water crisis. 

“Desalination plants are not only extremely expensive to build but cost vast amounts of money and electricity to run,” Ms Xamon said. 

“By taking the steps identified in the Greens’ Smart With Water Action Plan, the need for more expensive and new desalination plants can be avoided without harsh water restrictions or the loss of amenity. 

“Our preliminary assessments show that several key water-saving measures could be introduced at a cheaper capital cost per litre than desalination and are certainly cheaper when operational costs are also factored in.” 

Ms Xamon said the average Perth per capita annual residential water use was just under 100KL, a figure higher than most other capital cities, all of which had reduced their water use by greater amounts than Perth in recent years. 

She said extending free tailored water saving advice through in-home consultations to households across the State could alone save 6 billion litres of water a year. 

“WA lags behind the rest of the nation in water recycling and reuse and this is an area that could also see substantial savings,” Ms Xamon said. 

“Plugging the leaks in the system could save an estimated 5 billion litres a year.   

“WA needs to prepare for a drier future.  The measures outlined in this Greens’ Action Plan for drinking water supplies will help secure our water future.”

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