WA councils are being offered a fully subsidised irrigation training program to upskill local government staff in efficient water use.
The initiative comes as groundwater resources in the Perth and Peel regions, which provide the primary source of irrigation for public parks and open space, come under increasing pressure as a result of climate change and growing demand.
“Improving the water efficiency of irrigation systems is a smart and cost-effective way that local governments can use groundwater more sustainably and increase their resilience to a drying climate,” water minister Dave Kelly said.
“This training program will help councils respond to the impact that climate change is having on our precious groundwater resources, by ensuring their staff are equipped with the skills and knowledge they need to install water efficient irrigation systems.”
Incentivising efficient water use
The training program is being delivered in partnership with the Water Corporation and Irrigation Australia WA and is an initiative of the Water Wise Councils program.
Sixty-four councils across WA are taking part in Water Wise Councils schem, which encourages local government to use water efficiently to set an example for their communities and ensure functional parks, open spaces and sports grounds.
Councils endorsed by the program are recognised for their achievements and can elevate their waterwise status from ‘endorsed’ to ‘gold’ and ‘platinum’.
Councils must be endorsed or working towards Gold status in the Waterwise program to be eligible for the free irrigation training.
Participation in the Waterwise Councils program is free and requires members to create an action plan and complete basic waterwise training.
Councils can then apply for a recognition award for doing their bit to create waterwise communities.
The Waterwise Perth Action plan aims to recognise all councils as Gold by 2030. Twenty-five currently hold gold status.
The irrigation training program will run each year for the next three years.
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