Canberra’s dams reach full capacity

March 22, 2021

Canberra’s dams have today reached a milestone 100% total storage capacity for only the second time since completion of the enlargement of the Cotter Dam in 2013.

Following extreme temperatures in early 2020, and two of Australia’s driest years on record, water storage levels across the ACT dropped below 45% (123.6GL) in February of last year. 

A wetter than average 2020 and the commencement of a La Nina event has meant that storages have recovered significantly with all four of the ACT’s dams now full and holding 277.83GL.

Icon Water Managing Director Ray Hezkial said “We’ve been pleased to see a considerable increase in rainfall over the last twelve months, compared to recent years, and this has meant Canberra’s water storages are in a much healthier place than this time last year”.

While the current rainfall has filled up storage levels, Icon Water are always planning for future droughts and are considering all options to protect Canberra’s long-term water security.

“While it may not seem the case at present, Australia is the second driest continent on Earth, and we cannot rule out significant drought again in our future. We’re considering a number of viable options to ensure Canberrans have a secure water supply for now and the future and of course, we’ll be engaging with the community to hear their thoughts in this space as well” said Mr Hezkial. 

While Icon Water are considering options for long-term water security, they were quick to remind Canberrans that we all have a part to play in safeguarding this finite resource.

“We really want to encourage Canberrans to continue to maintain their water wise habits and follow the Permanent Water Conservation Measures which remain in place permanently in the ACT”.

“The Permanent Water Conservation Measures are a set of common-sense rules, such as only using a sprinkler in the cooler parts of the day between the hours of 6pm and 9am. However, we’d encourage Canberrans to go one step further and while we have these rain events, turn the automatic sprinklers off and let Mother Nature do the work” said Mr Hezkial.

For more information on the Permanent Water Conservation Measures as well as helpful tips to reduce water use for households and businesses, visit