Who can hold a water licence

To hold a water licence in Queensland, as defined in section 104 of the Water Act 2000, you need to be either:

  • an owner of land
  • a prescribed entity.

If you are considering applying for a water licence or participating in an unallocated water release process, you need to be eligible to hold a water licence.

Prescribed entities

A prescribed entity can apply for a water licence as long as they don't own the land attached to the licence, as defined in section 104 of the Act.

To become a prescribed entity, under the regulation, you need to make a request in writing to the Chief Executive of the Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing and Water. Contact 13 QGOV or email WIH@rdmw.qld.gov.au for more information regarding this process.

Your request should include the following information:

  • why a water licence is required
  • the location(s) where a water licence may be required
  • short-term and future requirements for obtaining a water licence
  • project and/or development information to support the requirement for a water licence
  • evidence of legal status (i.e. if you are a company, you must provide evidence of registration of a company under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cwlth)).

Your request to become a prescribed entity will initially be considered by the Chief Executive. You will be contacted if further information is required to make a decision.

In order for a successful request to be finalised, the entity must be prescribed by being listed in Schedule 4 of the Water Regulation 2016. This process requires Governor in Council approval and timeframes may vary. Once listed you may apply for a water licence as a prescribed entity.


General enquiries: 13 QGOV (13 74 68)