What is WaterVal?

Australia is recognised internationally for its water quality management guidelines that identify treatment technology validation as integral to effective water management.

The Australian water sector is united in its call for a more streamlined approach to technology validation, enhancing innovation and efficiency by minimising duplication and inconsistency. WaterVal is a collaborative effort between researchers, water utilities, regulators and the private sector, that delivers more consistent and cost-effective water treatment solutions.

The validation framework is underpinned by validation protocols, which are independently developed and agreed methodologies to assess pathogen removal using treatment technologies.  The framework and protocols are applicable to a broad range of water sources, and complement the objectives of the Australian Guidelines for Water Recycling (2006) and (2008), and the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines (2011 – updated 2016).

In 2011 Australia’s water sector, facilitated by the Australian Water Recycling Centre of Excellence identified a nationally consistent approach to technology validation as a priority for the industry. Since then, the water sector has strongly endorsed the framework and actively participated in the applied research. It is now guiding the development and review of the protocols.

Adding value to Australia’s water industry

An independent cost benefit analysis of the value of implementing a nationally consistent approach to validation in Australia found the framework has application to a wide range of technologies that could also accommodate technologies used to treat water from surface storages, aquifers, recycled water and stormwater. The analysis identified future savings of up to $80 million for the water recycling sector alone when implemented nationally.  For more see:


In response to a need for a consistent approach to validation, the water sector has collaborated to develop a governance structure and invest in targeted research projects that deliver a streamlined solution.

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WaterVal benefits are delivered through an integrated management framework, including technology validation protocols, expert technical assessment, certification and data/information management functions.

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The 9 Elements

Based on national and international best practice, and backed by rigorous scientific research, each WaterVal protocol includes nine elements of validation, ensuring consistency and uniformity for users.

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Why WaterVal?

Current treatment technology validation arrangements across Australia are often duplicative. Higher costs, inconsistencies and longer times to achieve validation can inhibit innovation and efficiency, while potentially increasing the risks to water management outcomes.

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