Sydney: Key findings

For the water account period 1 July 2019–30 June 2020

  • Dry conditions resulted in very low streamflows throughout most of the year.
  • High streamflow occurred in February 2020 due to heavy rainfall associated with a coastal trough.
  • The high rainfall in February 2020 contributed to an annual increase in storage of 51% at 30 June 2020.

Climate and water


Rainfall icon

797 mm

below the average of 885 mm


Streamflow icon

below average

for most of the year


Storage icon

79% full


51% more than last year

Water use

Water sourced

Graph showing breakdown of water sources used in the Sydney region. A total of 599 GL of water was used in the region in 2019–20. Surface water made up 85% of total water sourced. Desalinated water made up 12% and groundwater 3% of the water sourced.

Water supplied

Graph showing breakdown of water users in the Sydney region. A total of 599 GL of water was supplied to users in 2019–20. 90% of total water supply was for the urban system and 10% was for individual users.

Water status


1,284 GL

total surface water and groundwater allocations

Water assets

2,195 GL

water assets at 30 June 2020

746 GL more than last year



in storage expected during the 2020–21 year