Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts logo
Go to the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts home page


Minister for the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts 2001-2004

The Hon Dr David Kemp, MP



Much of the material listed on these archived web pages has been superseded, or served a particular purpose at a particular time. It may contain references to activities or policies that have no current application. Many archived documents may link to web pages that have moved or no longer exist, or may refer to other documents that are no longer available.

Media Release
Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Dr David Kemp

12 March 2004

Water efficiency labelling

The Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Dr David Kemp, today called for public comment on the operation of Australia's proposed water efficiency labelling scheme.

“Our proposed national water efficiency labelling is the first of its kind in the world,” Dr Kemp said.

“The scheme will slash water consumption by improving the water efficiency of many household appliances. By choosing these efficient appliances, the community could save more than $600 million through reduced water and electricity bills by 2021.

“By that time, water efficiency labelling is projected to cut domestic water use by five per cent or 87,200 megalitres per year. A total of 610,000 megalitres – more water than in Sydney Harbour – will be conserved. Nearly half the water savings will come from washing machines, about 25 per cent from showers and 22 per cent from toilets.

“The mandatory national Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards scheme will be phased in from later this year. By mid 2005, four appliances must carry water efficiency labels: washing machines, dishwashers, toilets, and showerheads.

“This scheme will help consumers make informed decisions about what appliance to purchase and the water savings that are possible. Consumers want this information, and industry needs this information as it too relies on a high quality and quantity of water.

“I am today releasing a Regulation Impact Statement that gives people a chance to comment on proposed operation of the water efficiency labelling scheme.

“Water is one of the most critical environmental issues facing Australia and we all have a role to play in helping reduce water consumption.

“In this the Year of the Built Environment , everyone has a role to play in creating sustainable cities with reduced water use. I encourage all interested parties to comment on this important initiative.”

The scheme is funded under Measures for a Better Environment , an Australian Government initiative developed in collaboration with the Australian Democrats.

The closing date for written submissions is COB Friday 16 April 2004.

The Regulation Impact Statement is available at

Commonwealth of Australia