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Canberra: Statement of Changes in Water Assets and Water Liabilities

for the year ended 30 June 2020

  • The volume of water in the region's storages decreased during 2019–20 for the fourth consecutive year.
  • This decrease represents the change in water volume in the region's surface water storages.

Schematic representation of the Canberra region. Total water inflows during 2019–20 was 443 GL. Total water outflows was 408 GL. Water storage at 30 June 2020 was 4 GL lower than the previous year.

The Statement of Changes in Water Assets and Water Liabilities is provided in the table below. The statement presents the actual water flows associated with the region's water stores, as well as the changes in water assets and water liabilities that occurred during the year.



Select comparative year


 2020 ML2019 ML2018 ML2017 ML2016 ML2015 ML
Water inflows
Surface water inflows 278,756227,243473,6291,005,4091,029,074890,916
Inter-region inflow47,36845,205116,647**262,309**409,510**350,969
Flood return004622,190**1,603**1,760
Discharge: wastewater*34,29934,21433,581**36,971**34,047**33,031
Groundwater inflows 70,04747,639167,0214,0794,4542,920
Inter-region inflow
Recharge: landscape
Recharge: surface water*66,74544,701162,545
Leakage: urban*3,3022,9384,4764,0794,4542,920
Urban water system inflows94,59390,41388,89990,77989,04984,400
Wastewater collected39,21037,45236,70140,82138,64637,285
Allocated diversion: surface water*55,38352,96152,19849,95850,40347,115
Total water inflows443,396365,295729,549**1,100,267**1,122,577**978,236
Water outflows
Surface water outflows 315,934245,947505,258956,073897,248737,960
Recharge: groundwater*66,74544,701162,545
Overbank flow006,96353,617**37,517**41,823
Diversion: statutory rights495297297
Allocated diversion: individual users2,7842,890**2,805**2,807**3,421**2,620
Allocated diversion: urban system*55,38352,96152,19849,95850,40347,115
Groundwater outflows 1,4991,1981,2651,2541,2761,061
Inter-region outflow
Discharge: landscape
Extraction: statutory rights435435435435435435
Allocated extraction: individual users1,064763830**819**841**626
Urban water system outflows90,09187,44786,95787,73185,55880,178
Leakage: groundwater*3,3022,9384,4764,0794,4542,920
Supply system delivery: urban users51,30949,19747,18745,24445,24142,694
Discharge: landscape343330
Wastewater discharge: surface water*34,29934,21433,581**36,971**34,047**33,031
Other supply system decreases1,1061,0411,6139491,1871,405
Recycled water delivery: urban users725371133246128
Other wastewater and recycled water system decreases00263943800
Total water outflows407,524334,592**593,480**1,045,058**984,082**819,199
Unaccounted-for difference(40,151)(65,232)**(178,432)**(56,918)**(125,292)**(155,522)
Change in water storage      
Change in surface water storage(4,279)(34,529)**(42,363)**(1,709)**13,203**3,449
Change in groundwater storage000000
Change in urban water storage000000
Total change in water storage(4,279)(34,529)**(42,363)**(1,709)**13,203**3,449
Closing water storage198,797203,076**237,605**279,968**281,677**268,474
Change in water liability
Surface water liability000000
Allocation remaining: individual users000000
Allocation remaining: urban system*000000
Groundwater liability000000
Allocation remaining: individual users000000
Total change in water liability000000
Net change in water assets(4,279)(34,529)**(42,363)**(1,709)**13,203**3,449


* between-store flows

** different to published volume in historical accounts (see Governance for more information)

Note: quantification approaches used to derive each item volume are provided in the Methods