Waterwise plan endorsed and awarded gold again

05 April 2022

The City of Stirling is proud to announce that its new five-year Waterwise Councils Action Plan (WCAP) 2021 – 2026 has been approved by the Waterwise Councils program, and that the City has been re-endorsed as a 2021 Gold Waterwise Council.

The City has been an endorsed Waterwise Council since 2016, when the City’s first five-year plan was submitted, and has achieved annual gold status since 2017. The development of a new WCAP was required this year for re-endorsement from the Water Corporation and Department of Water and Environmental Regulation.

The City was awarded gold re-endorsement for consistent water efficient innovation across the City’s operations, provision of waterwise support to our community, and the City’s commitment to sustainably manage water into the future under a drying climate.

Mayor Mark Irwin said he was incredibly proud of the work done by City staff and leaders over nearly a decade to ensure the City was at the leading edge of waterwise technology usage and processes.

“Water conservation and reuse are essential in a drying climate and the City participates in a range of initiatives to reduce our water consumption and manage this precious resource responsibly,” he said.

“Our progress towards becoming a Water Sensitive City was recently benchmarked by the Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities. This means the City’s performance is rated against 34 goals, including water literacy in the community, adaptive water infrastructure, and sustainable water use.

“These new actions contained within our WCAP 2021 – 2026 will enable progression toward platinum waterwise status, and will be incorporated into the City’s Sustainability Strategy, currently in development.”

The WCAP 2021 – 2026, along with committing the City to developing a new planning policy covering water in new developments and infill and a Wetlands Conservation Plan, will include:

  • retrofit facilities and irrigation systems to improve water efficiency
  • utilise water efficient fixtures and fittings in procurement processes
  • develop Water Sensitive Urban Design guidelines for City projects
  • improve groundwater and scheme water monitoring, leak detection and reporting
  • improve water quality via increased installation of biofilters and pollutant traps
  • report on feasibility of using alternative water sources for facilities and irrigation
  • identify sump and drainage sites that can be upgraded and vegetated
  • expand community education and awareness raising campaigns
  • provide community with waterwise plants, waterwise incentives and awards, and
  • provide schools with grants through Living Green Schools Program.

These actions build on the City’s key waterwise initiatives conducted over the last decade including:

  • implementing a leading Central Irrigation Management System
  • Waterwise endorsed aquatic centres
  • water sensitive urban design projects (including rain gardens and drainage upgrades)
  • an annual waterwise verge rebate and plant giveaway, and
  • ongoing community engagement around our water initiatives.

Background activities
The City launched its Sustainable Verge Awards on World Water Day, which will recognise community efforts that provided both ecological and social benefits related to key goals of our Waterwise Council endorsement, Urban Forest Plan, Local Biodiversity Strategy and Strategic Community Plan.

The City will soon host a Waterwise Pop-up Garden from 9 April - 3 May 2022 in the courtyard at Karrinyup Library, designed and installed by the Forever Project with the support of the Water Corporation.

The garden will demonstrate the benefits of greenery in urban spaces, ways to reduce water use in the garden and will inspire the community to create their own waterwise landscapes, as well as learning how to reduce the impacts of climate change.

This award and garden event comes at the same time as the City leads a group of 11 councils in a month-long WA Tree Festival, as well as continued progress toward the goals of the City’s Sustainable Energy Action Plan (Corporate) 2020 – 2030 which charts a path to net zero by 2050 and 100 per cent renewables by 2030.

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