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<< Back to: Member News: ICLEI e-News | issue 8, June - July 2007

Mitcham saving water in innovative ways

May 23, 2007

Mitcham (Australia) has made some innovative changes to its watering regimes in response to a detailed open space review.

A key water saving component of this involves ‘browning-off’ in strategically identified low-use open spaces. In high-use areas and sporting fields, the city of Mitcham is watering for longer periods and less frequently to promote deep root growth and reduce water requirements.

The city is also saving water by replacing inefficient hose and sprinkler systems with automatic irrigation systems, undertaking night watering and trailing soil additives to increase water retention. Drought-tolerant native vegetation is being planted on city land, and wood chips from city operations and tree trimming is being used to mulch gardens.

And on one main avenue, a partnership has resulted in stormwater diversion devices being installed for street tree watering.

As a result of ‘browning-off’ and reduced watering, Mitcham estimates an annual saving of 29,900 kL of water.

The ICLEI Water Campaign is an international freshwater management program that aims to build the capacity of local governments to reduce water consumption and improve local water quality. For more information on ICLEI’s Water Campaign, please visit www.iclei.org/water.


Mitcham is one of 95 local governments in Australia that are currently Members of ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability. For more information on ICLEI and its activities in the Oceania Region, please visit www.iclei.org/anz.

Source: “Brown-Off to go Green”, Water Campaign Actions Profile, ICLEI Oceania Region, May 2007.

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