Data delivery overview

When does my organisation give water information?

The Water Regulations came into effect on 30 June 2008. From that time, organisations specified in the Regulations were required to begin giving specified water information to the Bureau in a staged process.

We are working with organisations named in the Regulations to ensure they are fully aware of their potential requirements and to assist them in complying with the Regulations.

Your organisation

Named organisations are encouraged to become familiar with their requirements under the Regulations. You can use our Water Regulations online tool to generate a customised report listing your organisation's requirements, including when you first need to provide water information to the Bureau.

How does my organisation give water information?

The Bureau only requires data that is currently available in electronic format. This does not include scanned documents.

Data format and transfer

The regulations specify required formats in which water information must be given to the Bureau. Lead water agencies (Category A persons) are required to use Water Data Transfer Format (WDTF) for specified water information. Other organisations are encouraged to use WDTF where applicable. Over time, the regulations will require more Person Categories to provide their water information in WDTF.

WDTF is an XML data transfer format designed to support the water industry to share and deliver water data to the Bureau as required under the Water Regulations 2008.

Formatted information can be transferred to the Bureau using File Transfer Protocol (FTP). More details on this and other methods of data transfer are listed below.

File Transfer Protocol (FTP) or web services

File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is the preferred method for all ongoing water information delivery. FTP is required for the delivery of new water information, except for information about water allocation announcements (subcategory 6d) and information about water restrictions (category 8).

All incoming data files, whether time series, metadata or other, must be contained in zip files for FTP transfer. Zip files should be named using only alphanumeric text, hyphens and underscores in the filename. The names should not contain spaces or metacharacters.

The use of Web Services should be discussed with the Bureau.

See also File Transfer Protocol (FTP) details and data file content and naming conventions.

CD, DVD or external hard drive

These media may be used to transfer historical water information.


Email may be used to send information about water allocation announcements (subcategory 6d) only. Email:

Water restrictions information

Water restrictions information (subcategory 8a) must be given to the Bureau using the Water Restrictions Tool located at:

Urban Water information

Information about urban water management (Category 7) must be given by way of the internet using a database application. The Bureau will directly liaise with named persons to determine how each organisation can best deliver data. For support submitting urban water management data please contact

Creative Commons By Attribution logo
Unless otherwise noted, all material on this page is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution Australia Licence