Water

The Water section of BASIX aims to reduce the potable water consumption of all new residential developments. The benchmark is 90,340 litres of water per person per year (or 247 litres per person per day), which was the average potable water consumption of a pre-BASIX home.

The water reduction target ranges from 40% to 0% depending on the climatic zone. The 40% reduction target applies to 90% of new residential development and 98% of high-growth areas. The BASIX targets are determined from data provided by state and federal energy and water utilities, as well as long-term climate data from the Bureau of Meteorology.

Water consumption and savings will be assessed based on:

• landscaping;

• fittings and fixtures;

• alternative water sources and how they are used;

• pools and outdoor spas;

• other energy uses; and

• central systems and common areas.

Reducing the demand for hot water by installing efficient showerheads and taps will also reduce the energy required for water heating and improve your score in the Energy section..

Measuring low water use area

Areas of low-water-use landscaping includes:

  • area of indigenous plant species that are existing or to be established
  • area of low-water-use plant species that are existing or to be established
  • area underneath large existing trees

water wateruseplants_300x200How to measure area of indigenous/low water use plant species

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Do not include any areas that contain a mix of low water use plants and higher water use species. For any areas of low-water-use plant species nominated, a landscape plan must be submitted with the development application and this must list the specific plant species to be planted on the site.

The area directly underneath large existing trees of any species can only be included if the diameter of the tree trunk is greater than 300 mm measured at 1000 mm above ground level. A maximum of 4 m² per tree can be claimed.


water largetree_300x200Large existing tree requirements

Landscape

BASIX assesses the site landscaping based on:

When completing your BASIX assessment, you MUST enter the total area of garden and lawn included in your development. You will also need to indicate any areas of low water use species that you intend to include as part of your water saving commitments. Multi-dwelling developments need to enter the areas of common area lawn and garden for the development as well as the details of any private landscape areas for individual dwellings, such as private courtyards.

For any areas of low-water-use plant species nominated, a landscape plan must be submitted with the development application and this must list the specific plant species to be planted on the site.

Note: Remember, all BASIX commitments, including landscaping commitments,
form part of your consent.

BASIX does not require your garden and lawn to be established before you may occupy your home, however, you have an obligation under your development consent to ensure that landscaping commitments are fulfilled. The consent authority may carry out post-occupation inspections to ensure that your development complies with the conditions of your development consent.

Pools and spas

BASIX assesses pools and spas based on:

  • the location of the pool– indoors or outdoors;
  • the size (volume) of the pool or spa in kilolitres;
  • whether the pool or spa has a cover
  • whether the pool or spa is shaded
  • if you will be using a tap connected to a rainwater tank for pool or spa top-up (selection found on the Alternative Water Details page)

Note: If you have a combined pool and spa, enter the pool and spa capacity separately, as if the pool and spa were built separately.

See also Pools and Spas (Energy Usage)

Design principles

BASIX encourages you to reduce your consumption of potable water through the following strategies:

  • Landscape - choosing low water-use and indigenous species, and using alternative water sources for garden irrigation
  • Fixtures - choosing water-efficient showerheads, taps, toilets and appliances
  • Alternative water - including rainwater, stormwater, greywater, private dams
  • Pools and spas  reducing evaporation through covers and shading, and topping-up from rainwater
  • Central systems though cooling tower management and operation, on-site water recycling, and fire sprinkler testing.

Water targets

In order to obtain a BASIX Certificate confirming compliance with the NSW Government's sustainability requirements, a residential development proposal is required to use up to 40% less potable water than the average home 'pre-BASIX' home benchmark of 90,340 litres of water per person per year or 247 litres per person per day.

The water target varies for different climatic zones in NSW. It ranges from 40 to 0 across depending on the location of the house or unit. See Water target zones

Key facts

  • No new home built in NSW will use more water than the current state average.
  • The 40% water target covers 90% of new residential development, which represents 98% of NSW population growth.
  • Developments in areas covered by the 0% target still need to reduce water consumption in order to meet the state average water use benchmark.
  • The BASIX targets are determined from data provided by state and federal energy and water utilities, as well as long-term climate data from the Bureau of Meteorology.

General tips for reaching water targets

  • Select the highest WELS rated fittings and fixtures available for your development, including efficient showerheads, dual flush toilets, and flow regulators in your taps.
  • Install an alternative water supply, such as a rainwater tank and connect it for internal use (toilets and/or laundry).
  • Install an alternative water supply for garden use and include low water use species as part of your landscaping plan.
  • Include shading and a permanent cover for any pool or outdoor spa.
  • There are a number of additional options available to multi-unit developments.


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