Water - What You Can Do

Action plan

This framework has been placed with Energy to form the action plan for Utilities.

Initiatives

What you can do

  • Take a look at these short film resources [doc 17kb]
  • Limit the length of your shower and use a timer
  • Make your garden water wise (e.g. through mulching, selecting drought-tolerant plants, and using subsurface irrigation for your lawn or putting a timer on your sprinkler)
  • Install flow restrictors, AAA water saving showerheads and dual flush cisterns if you don't already have these.

Fill up at a hydration station

Hydration

By not purchasing disposable bottled water and instead filling up your reusable bottle at one of our hydration stations, you’re helping to:

  • reduce energy associated with production, packaging and transport of bottled water
  • reduce waste produced by disposable bottles
  • maintain our sustainability achievements – small actions have a big impact.

Find the Hydration stations on your campus at FMCentral. Go to Map Enquiry’ and activate the ‘Sustainability’ folder for your chosen campus. This is found within the ‘Features’ folder.

What we are doing

Charles Sturt University is implementing a range of water conservation practices including:

  • introducing rainwater harvesting in most new capital projects, where captured water is used to offset potable water for toilet flushing and irrigation
  • installed flow-control devices in showers and taps (part of Charles Sturt University’s Energy Performance Contract)
  • Albury-Wodonga Campus uses a grey-water treatment system to capture water from certain showers and basins on campus. The water is treated with a reed system and used for irrigation on the campus
  • Orange Campus converted stock drinking water to a system that sources dam water in place of potable water.

Water conservation signage and education campaign

A water conservation signage and education campaign was implemented during the 2018/19 summers in response to extreme ongoing drought conditions.  This particularly targeted our northern campuses of Dubbo, Orange and Bathurst.

This campaign extended to water conservation signage placed around campuses in high foot traffic areas. Billboards and A frames were positioned around UniLife (student) zones and at the canteen entrances visible to all.  Image below shows signage outside the cafe at Charles Sturt Orange.

Water conservation sign outside cafe at Orange. A signage campaign encouraging all campus users to reduce water consumption was installed in bathroom amenities across all campuses.  See below image:

Water conservation signs in bathroom

Water conservation through irrigation

Wagga campus - Beres Ellwood rugby union oval

Division of Facilities Management installed a new irrigation system in 2019.  It is an above ground system which is highly adjustable to only water the playing surface.   We installed a weather station which automatically controls irrigation according to conditions.  Watering stops for wind, temperature and waters specific to the conditions.  You can set specific triggers so it waters less and it automatically switches off if it rains.

Wagga Campus - irrigation controller upgrade and metering

We installed 32 Hydrowise sites (out of 80 still going in) across Wagga Wagga campus.

All areas are metered so any inefficiencies can be detected.  The system senses changes and alerts managers by email.  This is a highly water efficient system that can be turned off and on automatically.

Dubbo Campus - conversion to a drip irrigation system

In line with local water restrictions and in an effort to reduce consumption on our major garden beds, we converted large rotary sprinklers approximately 12lt per minute to drip line.

Benefits include:

  • reduced evaporation due to drip lines installed underneath mulch
  • reduced weed growth by not watering areas that don’t require it
  • eliminates wind drift issues entirely
  • avoids run off, thanks to slow emission (water cannot pool and run off)
  • more efficient when irrigating slopes
  • entirely eliminates overspray
  • reduces water consumption when designed correctly
  • delivers water directly to the roots of the plant where it is most needed
  • reduced opportunities for vandalism.