Perth water - at a glance

Location map of the major reservoirs within the Perth region

Location map of the major reservoirs within the Perth region

The Perth region report of the National Water Account 2010 includes information about the region, its water resources, land use and water-related infrastructure.

The Perth region is home to waterways and wetlands of environmental and cultural significance, such as the Swan–Canning River and Harvey Estuary systems. There are also important groundwater resources within the region, such as the Gnangara Mound, that support numerous wetland ecosystems and are a vital source of public water supply.

Water for metropolitan Perth comes from three primary sources – reservoirs, aquifers and desalinated water. According to the National Water Account 2010, the statement of physical water flow shows that during 2009–10, a total of 310 GL of water was supplied to Perth's urban water system – 141 GL from reservoirs, 121 GL from aquifers and 48 GL from the Perth Seawater Desalination Plant. Most of this water was for residential use.

In addition, a further 76 GL of groundwater was extracted from domestic bores. There are about 170,000 residential bores in the Perth metropolitan area.

There is limited scope for more water to be taken from reservoirs and aquifers for urban water supply. During 2009–10, rainfall over the Perth region was well below average, reducing the amount of runoff into the public water supply reservoirs. These reservoirs are now only about 25% capacity.

Alternative water resources, such as seawater desalination and water recycling, are increasingly being used. During 2009–10, approximately 6 GL of treated wastewater was re-used for irrigation and local industry, and a further 1.5 GL was pumped back into the aquifers.