The community feels strongly about the importance of their role in securing greater Sydney’s water supply. Community consultation has also shown that a large proportion of Sydney residents think that education about sustainable water management is essential. This means that local government, non-government organisations, the NSW Government and the community together have the opportunity to work toward a sustainable water future.
The Metropolitan Water Directorate’s community engagement, social research and education program (Water for Life) is an integrated part of water planning for Sydney. It supports, engages and encourages the greater Sydney community to play their part.
The Water for Life program provides social inputs into the review and implementation of the Metropolitan Water Plan by:
- developing an understanding of community values, attitudes and behaviours in relation to water use over time
- increasing awareness and facilitating debate around water supply measures and strategies
- building the capacity of the people of greater Sydney to play a more informed and active role in working towards a sustainable water future
- using social marketing through the Water for Life website to encourage people to increase their understanding of water planning.
The key elements of community consultation for the Metropolitan Water Plan include community and stakeholder workshops, online engagement, choice modelling and sentiment monitoring.
The Water for Life program also includes a coordinated education program providing professional learning opportunities, resources and tools.