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Planning for the future

Westernport Water will be testing its connection to the Melbourne Water Supply System. The Melbourne Water Supply System is a valuable source of water that we can choose to access when we need it most. It may consist of water from a number of reservoirs and catchments across the state, as well as desalinated water.

What’s happening?

Westernport Water plans to test its connection to the pipeline that links the Victorian Desalination Plant to the Melbourne Water Supply System, accessing water for up to four months, from mid December 2019 to April 2020.

How will this impact the community?

  • There will be no additional cost to customers as a result of testing the connection
  • This water supply source is a valuable source of water that provides water security for the future
  • During the testing phase, customers may notice a change to the taste of their water because of the blended supply
  • Drinking water will continue to comply with all water quality standards and guidelines.

Frequently Asked Questions

Candowie Reservoir is above 90%, why are we taking water?

We are planning for the future by testing the connection now to ensure it is ready if we need it.

The purpose of testing during peak times is to ensure that the Melbourne Water Supply System can be accessed with confidence should it be needed in the future.

When do you plan to take desalinated water or water from the Melbourne Water Supply?

We plan to test the connection to the Melbourne Water Supply for up to four months between December 2019 and April 2020.

Will I notice a difference in taste?

Customers will receive a mix of water from the Melbourne Water Supply and Westernport Water’s Ian Bartlett Water Purification Plant.

It is unlikely you will notice a change in the taste of your water, however we would love to know if you do experience a change. Please let our helpful Customer Service Team know.

What does a blended supply mean?

The Melbourne Water Supply System may include water from a number of reservoirs and catchments across the state, as well as desalinated water.

Westernport Water plans to test its connection under a variety of operating scenarios and because of the nature of the system, water from multiple sources will be blended throughout the drinking water network.

Will this cost customers more?

There will be no additional cost to customers as a result of testing the connection.

Under our Price Determination from the Essential Services Commission, Westernport Water is entitled to pass through a proportion of the difference in variable costs of drinking water from the Melbourne Water Supply System to its customers.

However, in this instance, Westernport Water has decided not to pass through costs to customers. This is subject to change in the future.

Is the water safe to drink?

All the water we supply, no matter where it comes from, must meet strict water quality requirements.

Melbourne has some of the best drinking water in the world, which is tested regularly to ensure it meets strict water quality requirements — as well as checking aesthetics like colour, taste and smell.

As with all water in the Melbourne Water Supply System, water supplied meets the requirements of the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines, Victorian health requirements and World Health Organisation guidelines.

How much water will you be taking?

Westernport Water has access to 1,000 ML of water annually via a Bulk Entitlement to the Melbourne Water Supply System – (Greater Yarra System – Thompson River Pool).

Westernport Water don’t envisage accessing 1,000ML of our entitlement during this testing period, however water will be accessed on an as needs basis to successfully test multiple scenarios to inform future operation.

Find out more about water supply sources.

Desalination requires the use of large amounts of energy to produce water. How will Westernport Water address the extra GHG emissions?

WaterSure and the Victorian Desalination Plant (VDP) has 100% offset in Green Wind through AGL’s Macarthur Wind Farm in Victoria’s South-West.

What does the weather forecast for the coming months look like?

Forecasts indicate drier than average conditions for eastern Australia. Dec – Feb are likely to be warmer than average.

Westernport Water’s Annual Water Outlook indicates that the water supply is sufficient to meet demand in the foreseeable future. Find it here…

Do permanent water saving rules remain in place?

Yes, Permanent Water Saving Rules will remain in place on a permanent and ongoing basis, even when water restrictions are not required.

Contact us

Please email westport@westernportwater.com.au or call 1300 720 711 if you would like more information about the project.