Recognition scheme

The Waterwise Council recognition scheme was introduced in 2016, to acknowledge councils that are demonstrating leadership in sustainable water management.

In 2017 we expanded the Waterwise Council Recognition Scheme criteria to align with the Water Sensitive Cities Index to celebrate councils’ efforts in driving liveability outcomes across the water cycle and their valuable contributions to creating water sensitive cities and communities. 

While supporting councils to be more water efficient will always be a key focus for the program, the expanded criteria will allow us to highlight the great work councils deliver to help create resilient, sustainable, productive and liveable communities therefore contributing to a more balanced water cycle.

For those unfamiliar with the Water Sensitive Cities Index, it is an assessment tool developed by the Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities (CRCWSC) to benchmark performance against seven urban water goal areas that characterise a water sensitive city, to help councils set targets and identify strategic priorities.

The 7 goal areas are:

  1. Ensure Good Water Sensitive Governance.
  2. Increase Community Capital.
  3. Improve Productivity and Resource Efficiency.
  4. Improve Ecological Health.
  5. Ensure Quality Urban Space.
  6. Achieve Equity of Essential Services.
  7. Promote Adaptive Infrastructure.

To be eligible for Gold Waterwise Council Status, in addition to the existing (re)endorsement requirements, councils need to:

  1. complete the 5 mandatory actions
  2. demonstrate 10 actions/initiatives across the 7 Water Sensitive Cities goal areas, which must include at least 1 action in each of the following goal areas:
    • Ensure quality urban space
    • Improve ecological health
    • Increase community capital
  3. actions/initiatives must have either been completed in the past 12 months or demonstrate significant progress towards completion.
  4. submit their application by 31 October 2017.

Platinum Waterwise Council Status (Council of the Year) will be announced annually at the Waterwise Business Recognition event. This will be awarded to a Council demonstrating innovation and achievements across all of the 7 urban water indicators.

To be eligible for Platinum Waterwise Council Status, councils are required to:

  1. meet the Gold Recognition criteria
  2. summarise, in 500 words or less, how your actions are contributing creating water sensitive cities and communities and why you should be the Council of the Year
  3. demonstrate actions/initiatives over and above the gold requirements, across any of the 7 goal areas.

Councils awarded as part of the recognition scheme were acknowledged at the 2017 Waterwise Business Recognition event, co-hosted by Water Corporation and the Department of Water on 9 May 2017.

Read Water Minister's statement recognising Waterwise Councils

The scheme provides 2 levels of recognition:

Platinum Waterwise Council – Council of the Year

Awarded to councils demonstrating innovation and leadership in sustainable water management of its facilities and public open space, as well as community education and behaviour change. We were thrilled to award 2 councils in this category, based on 2015–16 performance:

City of Mandurah

The City’s waterwise approach is evident in projects such as the move towards wastewater reuse to irrigate public open space, redevelopment works at the Mandurah Aquatic and Recreation Centre to facilitate its 2016 Waterwise Aquatic Centre endorsement and ongoing water audits at City facilities. These and many other projects demonstrate the City’s commitment to reducing water use their community, facilities and recreational spaces.

City of Vincent

Among their many waterwise programs, the City runs a successful Adopt a Verge Program and provides environmental and water sustainability community grants. In their operations, the City has undertaken eco-zoning of public open space and comprehensive retrofitting at the Beatty Park Aquatic Centre, which is also a Waterwise Aquatic Centre, to name just a few initiatives leading to this award.

Platinum recognition criteria

Platinum Waterwise Council (Waterwise Council of the Year) is awarded to a council demonstrating innovation and best practice techniques to improve water efficiency in facilities and in public open space. 

In order to be eligible for this award a council must be an endorsed as (or eligible for) a Gold Waterwise Council and address the following as part of the annual re-endorsement process:

  • How their council has contributed towards the efficient and sustainable use of water, focussing on the past year.
  • An estimate of the total volume of water their council was responsible for saving each year (from baseline year).
  • Evidence of work undertaken in the community or in council operations to reduce water use over the last year.
  • Evidence of work undertaken that could be employed by other councils to reduce water use. 

Gold Waterwise Council

Awarded to councils demonstrating significant progress towards best practice sustainable water management, community education and behaviour change. The following councils have achieved gold recognition based on 2015–16 performance.

  • City of Bayswater
  • City of Cockburn
  • City of Joondalup
  • City of Kwinana
  • Shire of Mundaring
  • City of Perth
  • City of Subiaco
  • Town of Victoria Park.

Apply for recognition

Annual Report and Recognition Scheme template

Newly Endorsed Council Recognition Scheme Application Form

Recognition Scheme quick reference sheet

 More information

To get involved in the Waterwise Council Program or for more information please email or call (08) 9420 2572.