Mackay residents could fill 42 Olympic-sized swimming pools with the amount of excess water they guzzled compared to last year.
Mackay residents could fill 42 Olympic-sized swimming pools with the amount of excess water they guzzled compared to last year. John McCutcheon

Astounding spike in Mackay's water use

MACKAY residents could fill 42 Olympic-sized swimming pools with the amount of extra water they've consumed in the past 12 months.

In the 2017-18 billing year, Mackay Regional Council recorded 4276 megalitres of water used. That represented a spike of 106 megalitres , compared to the previous year's 4169 megalitres of water.

The council said residents used a total of 1700 Olympic-sized swimming pools of water this billing year.

The council said the dry season from September to February was partially responsible for the increased water use.

Cr Martin Bella said the biggest factor behind the increased consumption was residents watering their lawns and gardens to compensate for the dry conditions.

Even though recent rainfall had been great for the region, Cr Bella said residents shouldn't become complacent.

"This is a considerable amount of water despite the rainfall we have had. We should all be looking for ways to save water as another dry season is just around the corner.”

Cr Bella said leaking taps were increasing residents' utility rates, drop by drop. By ensuring any leaking taps were fixed quickly, residents would not only save water, but money as well.

Cr Bella said simple changes, like using a tap timer when watering the lawn, fixing leaking taps and installing water efficient shower heads could make a big difference.

This month the council will release three water saving social media videos, covering how to water your lawn and garden efficiently, how to fix a leaking tap and how to save water in your bathroom.

Cr Bella said the best way residents could track their water usage was to sign up to council's free myh2o website.

"The myh2o website shows you how much water you're using each day, how much it's costing you and how you can put plans in place to save,” he said.