Darwin students investigate solutions to water issues

The Darwin Water Challenge - Students investigate solutions to water issues

For the second year running, Living Water Smart is running a program in schools designed to create generational change and broad community awareness around the issue of water consumption in the Darwin region. The Darwin Water Challenge invites local Year 7 students to work and learn alongside industry professionals from Power and Water, the Bureau of Meteorology and Charles Darwin University to learn about this important community issue and empower students to take an active role in being water smart.

The students take part in a four week mini-unit that explores the importance of water and the challenges facing Darwin’s water supply across multiple curriculum areas, including science, geography and art. They will have the opportunity to get hands on and investigate this real-world STEM challenge before launching their own social action projects in the community.

The program was launched in 2018 with Mackillop Catholic College and has been expanded in 2019 to include both Mackillop Catholic College and Dripstone Middle School.

Some of the topics the students put under the microscope include: 

  • In Darwin we experience the extremes of Mother Nature; from 6-7 months without rain in the dry season, to monsoonal rains and climate variability from year to year. 
  • We are currently using more water than can be captured and supplied in the long term and many Darwin residents still believe we have an unlimited water supply. But this is a myth.
  • There is plenty of water around when it rains in the wet season, but only a small portion of this actually makes its way into our dam catchment and water supply and we never know how much rain we are going to get each wet season. 
  • We also use almost twice the water per person than places with similar climates like Cairns, and much of this water is wasted either by leaks or by over-watering gardens. 
  • We all need to do more to save water in Darwin.  Living Water Smart is part of Darwin’s future and the younger generation plays a big role in this.




Many people think that Darwin has an endless supply of water, but this is a myth. We are currently using more water than can be captured and supplied in the long term.