Melbourne is located in the South Eastern state of Victoria, Australia- the driest continent on earth. This region has a mainly temperate, yet dry climate and is located on coastal land that for approximately 40,000 years was occupied by Aboriginal tribes of the Kulin nation.
In the early 19th century, Melbourne was established as part of the British colony of Australia, and after the Victorian gold rush of the late 19th century, became a wealthy international trading port. Today, Melbourne is a multi-cultural global city of just over 4 million people. Its fresh water is supplied from a catchment system of reservoirs in the surrounding rural forested area of the Yarra ranges and the River Yarra which flows through the city into the estuary of Port Phillip Bay, to the Bass Straight and Pacific Ocean.
In recent years, South Eastern Australia has experienced some extreme weather conditions, and during 2006 -2009 the region experienced one of the worst droughts on record, accompanied by extreme summer temperatures and bushfires. During this period the Victorian Government introduced stringent water restrictions.
In 2010-2011, the region was subject to severe flooding. Cycles of drought, followed by cooler and wetter periods are natural to the region, but in recent years these events have become much more extreme, and Australian scientists have argued that global climate change contributes to these more extreme conditions. See here for more details: http://www.csiro.au/files/files/pkmh.pdf