Regional Demand Management Plan

In the Water Industry, the term used for water efficiency is demand management. This term refers to not wasting water and, where possible, saving it or reducing its use to lessen the demand on our limited water supply.

Wherever possible, it is important that we reduce demand on our water supply because the water that comes through our taps, services our homes, and supports our businesses is sourced from our local environment.

Water is a limited natural resource, and, in our region, we are currently almost entirely reliant on rainfall. We need to be mindful of how we use water, where we waste it, and how we can conserve it.

Regional Demand Management Plan 

Our Regional Demand Management Plan (2023-2026) focuses on various water efficiency actions for the next four years. It describes the demand management initiatives to be implemented across the Rous water supply footprint in the local government areas of Ballina, Byron, Lismore and Richmond Valley.

Click the links below to view or download the Plan and its supporting document:

The aim of the RDMP is to implement economically, socially and environmentally sound measures to achieve defined outcomes in water efficiency and conservation and water loss minimisation over the long term.

The overall goals for demand management in the region are:

  • Responsible and efficient water use.
  • Overall reduction in demand.
  • Investment in new sources is minimised / deferred as much as possible.
  • Maximum value is leveraged from past demand management initiatives.
  • Innovative measures to achieve water efficiency are implemented, and
  • Effective mechanisms are in place to monitor, report and evaluate the success of the demand management initiatives and water demand trends.

What actions are we focusing on?

The actions of the Regional Demand Management Plan represent activities that will have greatest value and benefit for our community.

The Plan is centred around you, our community, telling us what you need, to be mindful of your water use and what information and support (and in what forms) will be most helpful to make meaningful change in your homes and workplaces.

We will achieve this through several core actions, including:

For households:

  • A behaviour change pilot program that will inform what and how we deliver support to our community – what is of most value to you.
  • Continued rainwater tank rebates. The value of these rebates will be determined through the behaviour change pilot program. We want to know if this is the best way to support our community or are there better options out there?

For businesses:

  • The expansion of our Sustainable Water Partner Program beyond the large water-using businesses we work with, to small-medium businesses as well. Ongoing support and significant rebates to assist our local business community will be a focus.

For community:

  • We are enhancing education opportunities with local school students, community groups and local events. A new Regional Education Officer role will focus on engaging our community around water use, wastewater and catchment health themes.

These actions will be supported by the efforts of our partner councils that are independently leading Water Loss Management Programs and smart metering investigations, trials and implementation. 

We are also placing focus on improving monitoring and evaluation so we can continue to make improvements over time.      

Get involved

For residents or businesses of the Northern Rivers who wish to find out more about our demand management initiatives and ways you can get involved, contact our Water Sustainability Officer on (02) 6623 3800.