Water Smart Package hits 100% registrations

Date published: 5 November 2019

Townsville has blasted the Water Smart Package out of the water with the package registration hitting its 100% target this week.

The $10 million Townsville City Council campaign was funded by the State Government and created 100 direct and indirect jobs.

The Water Smart Package allows renters, homeowners and body corporates to secure vouchers or rebates for water-saving products such as more efficient watering systems and water-saving devices for the home and garden.

Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill said the community take up of the package had been phenomenal.

“We launched the Water Smart Package in July this year and the response from the community has been nothing short of incredible,” Cr Hill said.

“This is a grass roots community campaign and has supported 100 jobs for locals and thanks to this thousands of water saving devices and services have been provided to households across the city.

“We do ask that registered residents are patient; we know that there is a massive backlog of orders that have the suppliers run off their feet thanks to the phenomenal community response to the package.

“The next stage for Council is to roll out our education and awareness campaign that will focus on working with residents to encourage water-efficient behaviour and reduce residential usage by 20%.”

Member for Townsville Scott Stewart said the take-up of the package shows Townsville and the Queensland Government is serious about water security.

“The $10 million Water Smart Package is one part of a three-point water security solution being rolled out by Townsville City Council with Queensland Government funding,” Mr Stewart said.

“The support from the community has been outstanding and it’s important that this work continues to ensure Townsville has water security for the decades to come.”

Townsville Water and Waste Committee Chair Cr Russ Cook said he is looking forward to the next stage of the program being rolled out to the community.

“It’s great that we had such an enthusiastic take-up of these water-saving devices and it’s important we get the next stage of this program right, so the Townsville community knows how to be water smart all year round,” Cr Cook said.

“We know that majority of Townsville’s water usage is outdoors, so it’s important that our education campaign focuses on how to get the best out of the devices provided by the Water Smart Package.

“We are coming into the time of the year where our water consumption is at its highest level, so it’s important the community is on board with our water saving target.

“Ideally, that goal is to reduce Townsville’s water usage by 20%, which can be done with something as simple as changing your irrigation from three days a week to two days a week.

“We are coming up to the wet season, and it’s important to remember to water twice in the dry and only for between 4 to 6 hours a week and never in the wet.

“Council’s focus is delivering water security for Townsville and education is going to play a major role in this in the coming years.”

The $10 million Water Smart Package is part of Council’s three-point water security solution which includes:

  1. The new 1.8m-diameter pipeline
  2. A Recycled Water Reuse Scheme for public open spaces and industrial use
  3. Water Smart Package

Stats and Figures:

  • Over 22,000 properties have registered far exceeding Council’s target of 19,942
  • The website has had more than 825,000 views since it went live
  • There are over 164,000 products and services that have been ordered. Top products: 90,000 native water wise plants, 16,600 tap timers, more than 21,000 low flow sprinklers, and over 28,500 cubic metres of mulch to be delivered to more than 9,500 households. That’s the equivalent of more than 11 Olympic sized swimming pools full of mulch.
  • Importantly we couldn’t achieve this without the 10 local businesses that we have partnered with to deliver this package and are receiving more than $8 million from this package.
  • Dozens of other businesses are also benefiting by providing products and services to our suppliers. We have estimated that the package has created 100 direct and indirect jobs.
  • We have had an amazing uptake from the community entitled to social support services with just under 6,000 households registered. Our original target for this component was 5,500, which has been exceeded.
  • The suburbs with the highest uptake of the package have been Kirwan, Kelso and Condon
  • On track to achieve our target of 20% reduction in household usage for those households that take up the package