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Published 10/02/2020

Unsustainable water use warning

Wellington Water is calling on the residents of Wellington, Porirua and the Hutt Valley to cut back on their water use, and make sure they observe garden watering restrictions.

A prolonged dry spell, with more to come according to forecasters, has seen water use soar. Over the past four days, consumption in the four cities has peaked at 183 million litres per day (MLD), with average consumption between 172 and 180 MLD – the target maximum demand is 160 MLD.

Chief Advisor, Potable Water, Laurence Edwards says that as we enter the peak of Summer we are seeing warm, dry weather with no significant forecast for rain, and demand is increasing to unsustainable levels. “We are in a situation where demand is close to exceeding supply capacity. If we continue at this rate, we will need to implement a sprinkler ban within the next few days.”

As river supplies dry up, the aquifer and storage lakes are what keep the Wellington metropolitan water supply going.

“There will be enough water to go round if everyone does their bit,” said Laurence.

“This includes following garden watering restrictions, and water saving tips like using buckets to wash the car, or a broom to sweep the path, rather than the hose.”

Restrictions are based on the odds and evens system, which allows residents to use one unattended watering system (sprinkler, irrigation system, soaker hose), from 6-8am and 7-9pm, according to their street address and the date:

  • Residents of odd numbered houses (e.g. 1, 13, 57) can water on odd numbered dates (e.g. 1st, 15th, 23rd) of the month, between 6-8am and 7-9pm only.
  • Residents of even numbered houses (e.g. 2, 4, 12) can water on even numbered dates (e.g. 2nd, 6th and 24th) of the month, between 6-8am and 7-9pm only.

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