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Canberra water levels

Four dams across two water catchments service Canberra and Queanbeyan.

The ACT region uses about 50 Gigalitres (GL) of water each year. Every household and business can help to save water by making small changes, such as shorter showers, choosing water efficient appliances and fixing leaks.

Canberra and Queanbeyan have had Permanent Water Conservation Measures in place since 2010. These are common-sense rules that are similar to Level 1 restrictions in other areas. We all have a responsibility to follow the Measures.

There are more great tips here.

ACT and Queanbeyan Dam Storage Levels
22 November 2023



GL=Gigalitres. The Murrumbidgee to Googong transfer supplements Googong dam levels.

Historical storage levels




Introducing the enlarged Cotter Dam into our total dam storage capacity means that our total volume has increased from 207GL to 278GL. Previous total storage capacity was around 65% of our new maximum level. For consistency our calculation method is now aligned to that used by the Bureau of Meteorology which counts the volume above the minimum intake level. The enlarged Cotter Dam gives us 76.2GL of usable volume, however in extreme situations it is possible to access the remaining 3.2GL of storage when necessary. Icon Water's other dams have revised total capacities of: 
Corin 70.8GL 
Bendora 11.4GL and 
Googong 119.4GL 

Restriction LevelStart DateEnd Date
Stage 1Dec 2002Apr 2003
Stage 2Apr 2003Sep 2003
Stage 3Oct 2003Feb 2004
Stage 2Mar 2004Aug 2004
Stage 3Sep 2004Feb 2005
Stage 2Mar 2005Oct 2005
PWCMNov 2005Oct 2006
Stage 2Nov 2006Dec 2006
Stage 3Dec 2006Aug 2010
Stage 2Sep 2010Oct 2010
Enhanced PWCMNov 2010Current


* Previous capacity refers to total combined storage levels before the completion of the new Cotter Dam. The new Dam was built downstream of the old and increased the total water storage capacity by approximately 35%.

For a detailed breakdown of our Water Storage Levels, including historical data, rainfall and consumption, please visit our Water Storage Levels page.