Water Accounting Standards

Water-filled limestone cave

Water accounting is the systematic process of identifying, recognising, quantifying, reporting, assuring and publishing information about water.

General purpose water accounting reports instil public and investor confidence in the amount of water being traded, extracted for use, and recovered and managed for environmental and other public benefit outcomes.

The Australian Water Accounting Standards prescribe how general purpose water accounting reports should be prepared, presented and assured.

The National Water Account is prepared with guidance from the Australian Water Accounting Standard 1.

Australian Water Accounting Standards

Australian Water Accounting Standards provide guidance and explanatory material to assist in preparing, presenting and assuring general purpose water accounting reports.


Resources are available to help you adopt the Water Accounting Standards. They include background materials, effects analysis, model reports and fact sheets.


The standards development process was comprehensive and inclusive. It involved the accounting profession, water industry, academia, the general public, and expert advice from the Water Accounting Standards Board (which formally issued the standards).

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