WaterSmart is a Victorian government-funded program, assisting businesses, councils and other organisations to become more water efficient.
Westernport Water is delivering WaterSmart Program and will target high water using non-residential organisations that provide important and essential services or opportunities to the community and which have the potential to make significant efficiency savings, including hospitals, councils, aged care facilities and some industrial sites.
About the program
The program assists eligible organisations in monitoring and understanding their water use through data loggers or digital water meters which are monitored through the Vic Facilities dashboard. Digital monitoring allows organisations to better understand how they use water and identify leaks or other forms of water waste at their sites.
For those already monitoring their water use, a detailed water efficiency audit may be provided to identify how best to improve water efficiency. Water efficiency audits can identify opportunities to save water through, for example, upgrading fixtures or equipment or changing water use behaviours.
What is WaterSmart?
WaterSmart aims to help eligible organisations:
- understand and monitor site water use
- identify opportunities to either minimise or substitute potable water use
- take action to use water more efficiently
- reduce water and energy costs.
WaterSmart is providing funding for eligible organisations to:
- install a digital water meter/monitoring device to monitor site water use and help identify leaks (Stream 1) OR
- get a detailed water efficiency audit (subject to monitoring being in place) to identify opportunities to save water across their site and water-using operations (Stream 2).
Who funds the WaterSmart Program?
WaterSmart is funded by the Victorian Government and delivered in partnership with Westernport Water. WaterSmart is aligned with/supporting our commitments to support organisations and businesses that provide important and services to the community and industries that have the potential to make significant water savings.
What is Vic Facilities?
VicFacilities is a Victorian government initiative supporting businesses, councils and non-residential organisations to monitor water use.
Monitoring 69 sites to date, VicFacilities has helped save over 130 million litres. This equates to $374,000 in avoided water costs.
Is my organisation eligible?
WaterSmart is targeted at [high/medium] water users and industry sectors, including councils, hospitals, aged care facilities and industrial sites with potentially large water-saving potential.
Westernport Water will invite selected non-residential customers to participate in either Stream 1 or 2.
Stream 1 - What is being funded and what are the benefits?
Digital metering will be offered to identified non-residential customers with no existing digital metering or monitoring in place.
Westernport Water will arrange:
- one or more [digital meter / monitoring devices] to be installed at your site
- online access to the Vic Facilities portal to visualise water use at X intervals.
- high water usage alerts to be sent by text? to your designated facility manager(s)
For more information, please visit VicFacilities
Water monitoring can benefit your organisation by:
- allowing you to see how much water your organisation is using day to day, to help you identify ways to save water (and thereby reduce water bills and energy bills where hot water is reduced)
- detect any abnormal water usage almost immediately (i.e., sudden high water usage during non-operational hours) to help identify leaks or malfunctioning equipment
- save money and reduce water wastage by allowing you to fix leaks and equipment quickly
Stream 2: Water efficiency audit What is being funded and what are the benefits?
Water efficiency audits will only be offered to [high/medium] water non-residential customers who have existing digital meter or monitoring in place.
Identified non-residential customers who already have digital metering or monitoring in place may be eligible for a detailed water audit by a professional auditor.
Water efficiency audits will help your organisation to identify ways to be more water efficient and potential cost savings. A water audit typically involves an assessment of your past and current water usage through water bills, site water monitoring data and on-site walk-through. The audit will identify all areas where water is being used and identify opportunities for more efficient usage.
Water efficiency audits provide your organisation with the potential to:
- reduce operational costs
- improve operational efficiencies by reducing water wastage
- avoid potential equipment damage or repair costs by identifying leaks
- reduce unnecessary potable water use and support sustainable consumption of local water resources.
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What does digital metering involve?
VicFacilities installs data loggers and monitors water use at identified sites.
Installation is quick and easy with data loggers fitted in just minutes, there’s no need for the water to be turned off, so installation can happen at any time.
A data logger is a device that continuously records the data from a water meter. Once a data logger is attached to the site’s water meter via a probe called a read switch, it records the pulses of the water meter and transmits the data so it can be viewed on a dedicated VicFacilities website.
How does the Vic Facilities website work?
The VicFacilities website www.vicfacilities.com.au was developed to assist facility and property managers to interpret the information collected by the site’s data logger in a clear and engaging way.
When logging in to the website, users are able to access their water use information via a dashboard. [insert image of dashboard]
The site provides access to graphs and raw data showing the water consumption. This information can be used to assess water use trends over time and check for possible leakage or other forms of waste.
How do the high water usage alerts work?
VicFacilities sites are monitored for possible leaks and high usage on a daily basis. If high water use is detected, an email alert is sent to the site’s contacts. The notices contain details of the amount of usage, usually at midnight when flows should be zero or near zero.
High water use alerts help your business to identify potential leaks or faulty equipment.
How do I sign up?
Step 1: Your water corporation invites you to join VicFacilities.
Step 2: You sign up to VicFacilities through an online form provided by your water corporation.
Step 3: A VicFacilities service provider comes on-site and installs a data logger to your water meter(s).
Step 4: You will be sent login details to the VicFacilities web portal where you can see your water use. High water usage alerts will be sent via email.
If you are interested in participating in the program, get in touch with our team at firstname.lastname@example.org
The program is currently funded to end June 2024.