Water resources

Managing water use, protecting our waterways and promoting water sustainability.

What's our goal for Gnangara groundwater?

Our goal is to rebalance the Gnangara groundwater system by 2032 to secure our lowest-cost and most accessible water source for Perth and to support a healthy environment.

Algal blooms

Algal blooms are a public health concern and an ecological problem in some wetlands, waterways (rivers and estuaries) and oceans of Western Australia.

Apply for a Community Stewardship Grant

Community Stewardship Grants are available annually to support community-based projects that serve to protect and restore the local environment, enabling local community groups to undertake stewardship of natural resources in their local area.

Aquatic habitat

Aquatic habitats have a major influence on the health of waterways.

Assessing estuary health

Our Healthy Estuaries WA program uses a range of indicators to assess the health of estuaries.

Barriers to aquatic connectivity

A waterway’s connections upstream, downstream and with its floodplain influence the movement of sediments, nutrients and aquatic animals.

Cockburn groundwater allocation plan

The 2021 Cockburn groundwater allocation plan guides our management of groundwater resources to support both water users and the ecosystems that depend on groundwater.

Cowaramup groundwater investigation

As part of our State Groundwater Investigation Program, we investigated the groundwater resources in the Cowaramup area to improve our understanding and help revise the volume of water available for sustainable, future use.

Dampier Peninsula groundwater investigation

This groundwater investigation aimed to improve our understanding of the Dampier Peninsula’s groundwater resources and how they support groundwater-dependent ecosystems north and east of Broome.

Dinner Hill subarea allocation statement

The Dinner Hill allocation statement guides how we manage groundwater in Dinner Hill subarea of the Jurien groundwater area, part of the Northern Perth Basin.

Drainage for Liveability

Finding ways to work collaboratively and better use green spaces around drains and drainage infrastructure.

Drinking water matters

Safe drinking water is essential for life. Drinking water for cities and towns in Western Australia comes from natural sources, seawater desalination and recycled water.

East Midlands groundwater investigation

The East Midlands investigation will help us support agricultural water supply while balancing the environmental and social values that depend on groundwater.


Ecotoxicology is the study of toxic effects caused by natural or man-made substances on living organisms.

Erosion and sedimentation

Information about the impacts and management of erosion and sedimentation in Western Australian waterways.

Esperance groundwater allocation plan

We are developing a new allocation plan to provide a framework to manage groundwater use in the Esperance area for the benefit of all water users and the community.

Estuary sediment quality

Estuary sediment quality is one of the indicators we use to assess the health of our estuaries.

Estuary water quality assessment

The Department of Water and Environmental Regulation coordinates water quality monitoring programs in estuaries throughout the state.

Fish and crayfish

A significant amount of the value we place on our rivers, streams and estuaries centres on their iconic fish and crayfish.

Fish kill events

A fish kill event involves the death of a large number of fish or other aquatic animals (such as crabs or prawns) over a short period of time and often within a defined area.

Fitzroy groundwater investigation

The Fitzroy River and surrounding catchment is an important part of the Kimberley with nationally recognised cultural, environmental and economic values.

Foreshore condition assessment

Foreshore condition assessments describe the state of a waterway’s foreshore area at a given time. They are useful for planning river restoration.

Gingin Brook and groundwater interaction

Part of our State Groundwater Investigation Program, this project significantly improved our understanding of how the Gingin Brook interacts with the groundwater system.

Gingin groundwater allocation plan

The Gingin groundwater allocation plan sets out how we will allocate and manage the groundwater resources in the Gingin area. The Gingin groundwater and surface water allocation plans: 2024 evaluation statement updates some of these management arrangements.

Gingin surface water allocation plan

The Gingin surface water allocation plan sets out our approach for managing the Gingin surface water resources and provides allocation limits. The Gingin groundwater and surface water allocation plans: 2024 evaluation statement updates some of these management arrangements.

Gnangara groundwater allocation plan

The 2022 Gnangara groundwater allocation plan sets out how we will manage the Gnangara groundwater system – Perth’s largest natural water resource – to continue adapting to climate change.

Groundwater investigations

Western Australia relies on groundwater for drinking water supplies, irrigated agriculture, industry, mining, economic development and liveable communities more than any other state in the country. Groundwater is also essential for the natural environment to flourish.

Healthy Estuaries WA

A State Government program improving the health of seven estuaries across south-west WA.

Interactive water science maps

You can discover, interrogate and request information on Western Australia's water resources using our interactive mapping tools.

Jurien groundwater allocation plan

The Jurien groundwater allocation plan and Dinner Hill allocation statement guide how we manage groundwater in the Northern Perth Basin around Jurien, Cervantes and Moora townships.

Lower Gascoyne water allocation plan

The Lower Gascoyne water allocation plan guides how we manage groundwater and surface water around Carnarvon to provide water for use while protecting water quality and water-dependent values.


Macroalgae (or seaweeds) are aquatic plants that form underwater gardens and can be seen by the naked eye.

Managing our groundwater resources

Groundwater is a critically important resource in Western Australia and we rely on it to prosper and grow. In some areas of the state it is the sole supply to many towns.

Murchison palaeochannels groundwater investigation

The Murchison palaeochannels groundwater investigation, funded through Royalties for Regions Regional Water Availability program, has pieced together the information we need as a first step to understand these hidden water resources.

Murray groundwater allocation plan

The 2012 Murray groundwater allocation plan and the 2022 Murray groundwater area allocation statement set out how we manage the Murray groundwater resources.

Ord River surface water allocation plan

This plan is used to manage competing demands for water between hydroelectricity generation and the expanding irrigation industry, while maintaining sufficient flow into the lower Ord River to protect the riverine environment.

Our role in waterway management

The Department of Water and Environmental Regulation coordinates cross-government efforts to protect and manage waterways in Western Australia.

Perth groundwater map

The Perth Groundwater Map helps members of the public identify watertable information for the Perth metropolitan area


Phytoplankton are microscopic algae that occur naturally in our waterways.

Pilbara groundwater allocation plan

The Pilbara groundwater allocation plan guides how we manage groundwater resources and licensing across the Pilbara region, including Millstream and the West Canning Basin.

Proclaimed area maps

Certain areas of Western Australia are proclaimed to protect, manage and regulate water under the Rights in Water and Irrigation Act 1914.

Recharge Estimation Collaboration project

The department partnered with Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), The University of Western Australia (UWA) and a range of groundwater experts to undertake investigations with the purpose of better understanding and forecasting groundwater recharge

Restoring our rivers

We provide guidance and technical expertise about river restoration and management.

River level monitoring

We operate an extensive network of river monitoring stations and activities across Western Australia.

Seagrasses in Western Australia

The seagrasses found in Western Australia are the most diverse of any region in the world, with 26 species across 11 genera.

Spatial data provision

Find out how to access spatial data produced by the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation.

Surface water

Surface water plays a very important role in water supply across Western Australia.

Water allocation planning

Planning is essential to make sure that our water supplies are secure for future generations and the needs of the community and the environment are protected.

Water efficiency

Improving the efficiency of water use is the most cost-effective and immediate way to conserve water.

Water for Pilbara Cities groundwater investigation

As part of the $25 million Royalties for Regions program, we completed extensive groundwater investigations from the Great Southern to the Kimberley, including the $12.5 million Water for Pilbara Cities investigation.

Water information reporting

Data on Western Australia's water resources collected by the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation.

Water legislation

Water resources management and water services legislation administered by the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation

Water planning in the Fitzroy

We recognise the need to both protect the river and its dependent values and support pathways for people to pursue economic development opportunities across the Fitzroy River Catchment.

Water quality guidance

Information and examples about how to protect water quality for your project, development or activity.

Water recycling

Water recycling helps us meet the growing demand of this valuable resource.

Water Register

The Water Register is a web-based application allows you to search, view and print information about water availability and licences, mostly free of charge.

Water resources

Managing water use, protecting our waterways and promoting water sustainability