Page 1

~SSN 0310-0367

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Official Journal of the

'141-i i =flM i =I ;f4-i-i•1eJ Mi t•)~ 1

I

Vol. 10, No. 4, December 1983-$2.50

Registered by Australia Post -

publication no. VBP 1394

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Important gas discovery made. Oxygen solves Environmental problem . The problem of odour control in waste water has been solved in the Perth suburb of Munster by dissolving oxygen in waste water. The process involves cascading waste water in an oxygen atmosphere to create conditions unsuitable for anaerobic bacteria . Some of the culprits of foul odour. The Metropolitan Water Authority and CIG combined to design and build one of the largest oxygen dissolvers of its type in the world. Installed at the Munster Pumping Station, it is the first of a series of innovative monsters at Munster. The beauty of oxygenation is that it is cheaper than alternative control measures. And the dissolvers have also the capacity to handle increased flow as population increases. There's every chance we can help your business make a gas discovery, too. We've got the goods. And we've got the ideas. If you'd like ~ to know more, we'd like to tell you. For further information call your nearest CIG office and ask for the Environmental Processes Representative. Sydney (02) 6690411, Melbourne (03) 440211, Hobart (002) 309400, Adelaide (08) 352 2522, Perth (09) 381 0444, Darwin (089) 843811, Townsville (07-7) 752255, Brisbane (07) 2750111 . CGG25/83


FEDERAL PRESIDENT F. Bishop, Scott & Furphy, 390 St. Kilda Rd ., Albert Park, 3004

-

Officia l Journal of the -,A-,-u=s=rn ;c:-A ;-:-L-,-IA:-::N-:-WATER AND

WASTE WATER ASSOC IATION

FEDERAL SECRETARY F. J. Carter, Bo x A232 P.O. Sydney South, 2001.

Vol . 10, No. 4 December 1983

FEDERAL TREASURER J. H. Greer, C/- M.M .B.W. 625 Lt. Collins St. , Melbourne, 3000.

CONTENTS

BRANCH SECRETARIES Canberra, A.C.T. J.E. Dymke, 4 Story St. , Curtin, 2605. Office 062 (54 1222)

New South Wales D. Russell , Camp Scott & Furphy, 781 Pacific Highway , Chatswood 2067. (02 412 2688)

Victoria J. Park, S.R.W.S.C. Operator Training Centre, P.O. Box 409, Werribee, 3030. (741 5844)

Queensland D. Mackay, P.O. Box 412, West End 4101, Rocklea 4106. (07 44 3766)

South Australia

7

Viewpoint . . ...... . ..... . .... ... . . . . . .. . . ... . . ... ... . Association News, Views and Comment . . . .. . ..... . .... .

8

IA WPRC News . . .. .. . . ..... . . . .... . .......... . . . .... .

12

Ranger Uranium Mines-Water

Management System -Ranger Uranium Mines P/L Specialists Conference Darwin-:1983 . .. .... .... . ... . .. . Darwin Conference-Photos . .. . .... .. . . .............. . Darwin Conference- Technical Summary and List of Papers . ... .. ....... .. .. . ...... . . . .. . . . Water and Wastewater Treatment in Victoria-An Operational Review -R. L. Povey . ................... . .............. . Calendar and Book Reviews ...... . .. . . . ... . .. . ..... . . . Technical Interests .... . ... . ............... . . .. ..... . . Plant and Equipment ...................... . . . . .... .. .

13 19

24 26 28 31

32 33

A. Glatz, State Water Laboratories, E. & W.S. Private Mail Bag, Salisbury, 5108. (259 0319)

Western Australia R. Loo, 455 Beach Rd ., Carine, 6020. (09 447 6550)

Tasmania G. Nolan, 21 Browne St., W. Hobart, 7000. (002 28 0234)

Northern Territory G. Sleeman, P.O. Box 37283 Winnellie, N.T. 5789. (089 81 5772)

EDITORIAL & SUBSCRIPTION CORRESPONDENCE G. R. Goffin, 7 Mossman Dr., Eaglemont 3084 03 459 4346

COVER

f

The Ranger Uranium Mine at Jabiru, 250 km east of Darwin in the Northern Territory is Australia's largest producing uranium mine. The lease of 78.6 km 2 was, until recently, bounded on three sides by Kakadu National Park. After the recent declaration of Stage II of the park the lease area is now completely surrounded by national park. In the planning, operation and control of this uranium mining project, efficient water management is essential. The system has been designed to provide sufficient water for mining and milling operations while at the same time operating within the strict constraints of the Uranium Mining En vironmental Legislation. A seasona l and highly variable annual rainfall necessitates sufficient. water storage capacity to contain a widely varying water balance. While the system was designed to periodically release excess water it is currently operating as a 'no release' system. Flexibility in the release of uncontaminated water and the ability to import water only as required from a groundwater resource is essential to the continued operation of the system. The feature paper in this issue discusses the design and operation of the Ranger water management system. (Cover donated by Ranger Uranium Mines Pty. Ltd.)

ADVERTISING Miss Ann Sykes, Appita, 191 Royal Parade, Parkville 3052. 03 347 2377

The statements made or opinions expressed in ' Water' do not necessarily reflect the views of the Australian Water and Wastewater Association, its Council or committees. WATER December, 1983

I


The Australian Knife Gate Valve Designed to international standards, and manufactured in Australia since 1971, DeZURIK Knife Gate Valves have proven themselves in tens of thousands of applications.

From liquids and hot dusty gases to the heaviest slurries and dry solids, in virtually every process industry it is an established performer in the most diverse applications including corrosive and abrasive services. In fact , you name it - it has probably handled it!

DeZURIK offers a broad range of knife gate valve constructions in sizes 2"-72 " . Exceptionally strong cast or fabricated construction; bodies in cast carbon steel, cast iron or ductile iron; metal or resilient seated; uni - or bi -directional; standard or high pressure; high temperature capability. All wetted parts as standard in 304, 31 6 or 31 7 stainless steel with other options available including tool steel or tufftrided . Heavy duty bevelled edge gate. Stellited, ni-hard or urethane deflection cones . Replaceable vee-orifice for throttlin g control , optional scraper blade . Raised face flanges drilled to all compatible standards including AS2129 "D" & "E", ANSI 125/ 150, DIN 10 and DIN 16. Choice of manual , pneumatic, hydraulic or electric actuators, plus full range of accessories. Rectangular and squareport designs available.

For the complete story on the DeZURIK Knife Gate Valve contact your nearest accredited representative or : DeZURIK OF AUSTRALIA PTY. LTD. P.O. Box 204, Vineyard Road Sunbury, Victoria 3429 , Telephone : (03) 744-2244 Telex: AA3373 2

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WATER December, 1983

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32

Australian Groundwater Consultants Pty. Limited Water Resources Engineers and Hydrogeologists D Exploration, Evaluation, Development, Management D Rehabilitation, Water Quality Control, Pollution, Leachate Studies D Hydrogeological and Solute Transport Modelling D Mine Waste Rock and Tailing Dumps Design NSW.

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WA.

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0 WATER December, 1983

3


Network90 gives you more control at your fingertips Network 90 is already one of the most advanced Distributed Control Systems ever conceived. It's a System totally dedicated to the needs of the user. Yet each year brings more options and more enhancements. Now, • Network 90 has 500 Trend capability • the Operator Interface Unit accommodates 1400 tags • there's a new Controller Module with expanded configuration capacity and additional algorithms • unitised console furniture matches

practically any need • Data Logging is available • so is a Computer Interface Unit • and dynamic, custom- built, 8-colour Graphics. There's more flexibility. So Network 90 offers greater control, not only to major users - but to smaller users as well. And there's more to come : As your needs change, t so will your Network 90 making sure you always have more control at your fingertips . Send for details today - or call any of the Bailey offices listed below.

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W A T ER December, 1983

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5


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When everything is considered we have: The widest range of flow primary devices including : magnetic flowmeters , Dall and Venturi tubes, variable area meters, mechanical water and oil meters , Pitot tubes, turb'ine meters , irrigation meters , steam meters , orifice plates and open channe l flow meters. The best support from an Australia wide organisation supplying and servicing precision equipment much of which is manufactured locally . The depth of our commitment to you is demonstrated by th.e maintenance of a NAT A registered flowmeter calibration laboratory at our Caringbah plant . And the most knowhow - having been leaders in the flow measurement business for over 1 00 years our applicat ions expertise is second to none. So when you want a solution to your flow measurement problems come to Kent.

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EDITORIAL

VIEWPOINT

Chairman, E. A. Swinton F. R. Bishop B. P. Maguire Dr. Wayne Drew W. Rees J. H. Greer 8. Robbins R. McGrath J.E. Dymke C. Weeks G. Nolan After many years of repeated comment by educators and politicians G.Jackson A.Vass Dr Barb. Bowles D. Simpson (especially near election time) that Australia is a dry continent, and water is Editor: Publisher: our most precious resource, there are some indications that the nation, or at G. R. Goff in A.W.W.A. least some people in high places, are starting to take the message seriously.

GETTING THE MESSAGE ACROSS

BRANCH CORRESPONDENTS

CANBERRA A.C.T. J. E. Dymke 4 Story St., Curtin 2605 Office 062 54 1222 NEW SOUTH WALES ¡ W. H. Rees Inv. Eng., Advance Planning M.W.S.&D.Bd. P.O. Box A53 Sydney South 2001 02 269 6595

The creation of a new Division of Water Resources in CSIRO to undertake catchment and groundwater research is some evidence of this . In fact the CSIRO executive has ranked water research, microelectronics and biotechnology as its top priority areas. The States and the Commonwealth have recently enacted or updated legislation dealing with the impact of development proposals on the environment. A series of Environmental Impact Statements on uranium prospects in a wide variety of geographical and geological situations has identified water use and disposal in mines as the key management issue . In December 1983 the Supervising Scientist for the Alligator Rivers Region tabled a report in Federal Parliament indicating that the operation of the Ranger mine has not proved detrimental to the environment including the adjacent Kakadu National Park . This is in sharp contrast to the earlier experience at Rum Jungle. It vindicates the design, ¡installation and management and monitoring of the water regime in the Ranger project and shows that the best available technology can work successfully in sensitive areas.

VICTORIA R. Vass, M.M.B.W., P.O. Box 4342, Melbourne 3001. 03 615 4362

There are many challenges, both major and minor, to be faced. The problems of the River Murray system in the east, and soil salinity in the west are causes of current and future concern. Research will help, but is the technology which is already available being adequately used for the community beneift?

QUEENSLAND D. A. Simpson Munro, Johnson & Ass. PIL 67 St. Pauls Terrace Brisbane 4000 07 221 6616

Consider a small example close to home; Alice Springs is a rapidly growing inland centre of 20,000 people. Its domestic water supply of medium quality, is pumped from the Mereenie bores located about 20 km south of the town which is facing growing salinity problems. Natural stands of red gums on the Todd River are dying, and it is difficult to establish amenity plantings in parts of the Alice. ,

SOUTH AUSTRALIA B. P. Maguire I. & T. P. Branch E. & W. S. Dept. Victoria Sq. Adelaide 5000. 08 227 3966 WESTERN AUSTRALIA B. Robbins, Camp Scott & Furphy 47 Ord St., W. Perth 6005 09 321 4582 TASMANIA G. Nolan, 21 Browne St ., W. Hobart 7000. 002 28 0234 NORTHERN TERRITORY R. Marks, P.O. Box 37283 Winnellie 5789, 089 22 4211.

Sporting ovals and many home gardens are still watered by sprinklers and hand hoses. There is no comprehensive plan covering the benefits of trickle irrigation, the use of rainwater and the management of the town basins. A similar situation can be seen in many inland communities . In my keynote address to the A WW A at the Specialists Conference in Darwin in September, I referred to the communication gap between the professional expert and the public. As an outsider, it is my impression that the water people maintain a low public profile compared with other industry organisations, for example, in the mining and primary industries. In Australia today there is no shortage of pressure groups, lobbyists and neadline hunters. Without wishing to add to this trend, I feel that the time may be ripe for professional associations and individua1 members, who share knowledge and interest in water technology, to take a more positive approach to communicating their message to the consumer. Progress in communications and the variety of media available now make it possible to reach all Australians. The A WWA could take advantage of the new interest and momentum in our water resources policy to assist materially in the extension of knowledge in this field , in the national interest.

DR. G.LETTS Ex-Chairman Conservation Commission, N.T. WATER December, 1983

7


ASSOC/A TION NEWS VIEWS AND COMMENTS PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE DARWIN INTERNATIONAL SPECIALISTS CONFERENCE

The Darwin Conference was a resounding success thanks to the wholehearted effort of a very small but energetic Committee comprising Chairman John Paul with great support from Ron Freyling and John Kenworthy. I'm sure all who attended were most impressed by the technical content and almost overcome by the social program. The Conference, in a way, becomes a trend-setter for A WW A as it ranged from the pragmatic practicality of mining to the laboratory pilot studies which ultimately lead to engineered practical solutions. It also marked an innovation in the Association with a Branch taking the initiative and organising a conference with a specialised theme which attracted significant international interest. Considerable and welcome support was given by the Territory Departments of Mines and Energy and Works and Housing and the mining companies and industries operating in the 'Top End' I'm pleased to relate that despite all the problems that had to be overcome, the Conference will break-even, perhaps even slightly better. SENATE STANDING COMMITTEE The Association made a brief submission to the Senate Standing Committee on Science and Technology and the Environment . The submission related to Land Use Policy and the brief submission covered the Association's view that the Land Use Policy has a significant effect on water resources and multi-objective planning of water resources and that these aspects cannot be dissociated from 'land use' . PROPOSED INSTITUTE OF FRESHWATER STUDIES The Association has responded to the request for submissions by the Interim Council of the Institute of Freshwater Studies located with the Department of Resources and Energy, Canberra, and has given a viewpoint on the proposed Institute of Freshwater Studies. This Association made several points: first, in Australi a, national expenditure on water research is pitifully small compared with other developed countries; second, while we supported the principle of an Institute of Freshwater Studies in Australia, we believed that existing organizations, including the CSIRO, Water Authorities, Universities and other establishments which undertake water 8 WATER December, 1983

and related research, have developed skills which in some instances are in world class; finally with shortage of money for research, resources should be husbanded and the best use made of existing faci li ties as this will not only be effective in the area of capital expenditure but also in specialised human resources . MANAGEMENT OF WATER RESOURCES

Federal Council has agreed to proceed with a national Seminar on Management of Water is Resources in Australia and current thinking in that there will be advantages in pursuing this as a joint project with I.E. Aust., the possible venue being Adelaide.

FRANK BISHOP Federal President

M.W.S. & D. BOARD REORGANISATION The Metropolitan Water, Sewerage and Drainage Board, Sydney is now under new management as a result of re-organisation by the State Government. Membership of the re-structured Board is as follows: Chairperson-Dr. Rhonda Mciver General Manager-Dr . Peter Crawford Deputy General ManagerMr. Bob Wilson Members-Mr. John Morris, M.L.C., Mr. Gilles Kryger, Aid. Mick Ibbett, Mr. Evasio Costanzo, Mr. John Palmer. The previous positions of President, Mr. Eric Warrell and Vice-President, Mr. Nick Klamur were abolished in the re-structuring. The association of Mr. Warrell and Mr. Klamur with the Boar,d terminated in October after many years of distinguished service to the Authority and the community.

NEW MEMBER FOR N.T. FRED FINCH M.L.A. In the recent election for the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory, Fred Finch, a Member of A WW A was successful in winning the seat of Wagaman for the Country Liberal party. Congratulations Fred - pleasing to find a Civil Engineer and a member A WW A in the Legislature.

H. E. BARNES 1928-1983 With regret we report the sudden and tragic death of Bert Barnes of Kambalda, well known and greatly respectep in the West. Bert was a senior engineer with the Western Mining Company and was a dedicated worker in the water and wastewater field. He was at the forefront of practical water reuse and water management in dry and arid zones of the interior. His passing is a great loss to the profession.

1984 SUMMER SCHOOL CANBERRA -

FEB. 6-10

The theme of the coming Summer School is 'Methods of Water Management - 1984 and Beyond' and an impressive staff and list of speakers has been assembled for the School. The topics covered will embrace areas of operative and financial' management including: 'The Assimilative Capacity of Lakes and Streams for Effluents' 'Monitoring and' Modelling of Urban Water Ways' 'Unit Processes for Water and Wastewater Treatment' 'Finance and Management for the Water Industry' 'Corporate Management Strategies for the Water Industry' 'Financial Management of Water Authorities' 'Measuring Performanc.e ' 'Programming Budgeting' 'Programme Evaluation or Performance Monitoring' 'Pricing Policies' 'Further Changes in Water Management' The main staff at the School will be David Barnes, Un. of N.S.W.; Peter Cullen, Canberra CAE; Barry Hart, Chisholm Inst. of Technology; Bill James, McMaster University Canada; Richard Norris, Canberra CAE; Ian Smalls, Sydney Water Board. Speakers in the area of finance and management will include Mr. A. McLoughlin, Water Resource Commission, N.S.W.; Dr. J. Patterson, Hunter Board; Dr. Kevin Foley, Vic.; Mr. Bill Robertson, Melbourne Board.


st

ASSOC/A TION The venue is the Canberra College of Advanced Education which has research facilities and participants will be ab le to involve themselves in laboratory and monitoring approaches. Field trips will be arranged. The cost of the School for A WW A members will be $440 in residence or $330 non-residential, for non-A WW A members an additional $10. Further information is available from Peter Cullen, School of Applied Science, Canberra College of Advanced Education, P.O. Box 1, Belconnen, A.C .T. 2616. Phone 52 2525.

DARWIN CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS Copies of the Proceedings of the International Specialists Conference are now available from the Conference Secretariat, P .O. Box 37283, Winellie, Northern Territory 5789. Bound copies are $60 internal and $70 overseas and unbound $40, mailed surface mail.

QUEENSLAND BRANCH ACTIVITIES

Since the last report in Water two Branch meetings have been programmed with the United Services Club as venue and an early starting time which provides an opportunity for a dinner gathering after the meeting. On October 26th, Bill Lolly and Geoff Sparks of the Brisbane City Council gave a paper with the title 'Willawong Revisited'. The presentation described the listing of the Willawong Liquid Waste Disposal Facility and the recent modifications made on site to prevent groundwater seepage to the adjacent Blunder Creek, to upgrade the faci lities and to amend the operating procedures by using a docket system for liquid waste generators and transporters. The meeting set for November 16th was postponed to November 30th, as we go to press. The speaker, Mr. Joseph Weinberg of Israel Desalination Engineering Ltd. will be talking on 'Advanced Methods of Treatment of Waste and Wastewater' and a report will be given in the next Branch News. For the record and in the interest of members, the following comments traverse past and current activities not previously mentioned: • Support for the training of plant operators continued through the Department of Education's Technical Correspondence School and certificates were awarded to over 100 graduates of the operators courses . Two reviews of education programmes were undertaken. One . dealt with operator competence and recommended that in the long term

NEWS

VIEWS

various levels of certification be recognised. The second review concerned courses in the water and wastewater fields run by various teaching institutes in Queensland . • A survey of membership services was conducted. • Binders for Water and Water Talk were produced and distributed to members . • The Don King Scott Memorial Prize was awarded to Mike Lever of Brisbane City Council. The Technical Correspondence School expresses its appreciation to all members and associated companies who contributed to the successful completion of the 1983 Practical Course. Over 60 operators attended. The 10 companies exhibiting their products are especially thanked: AJP Engineering, CIG, Forrers Pumps, FSE Scientific, Hisafe, IC!, Mono Pumps, Protector Safety, Selbys Scientific and Watermain Fittings. In the second review the sub-committee on Education and Training recommended that: • a market survey of industry needs be carried out by questionnaire. • all institutions be requested to consider offering appropriate subjects/ courses by external studies/ correspondence. • QIT be approached with request to set up an Associate Diploma in Water and Wastewater Plant Control - initially by internal part-time study but with a view to offering it statewide by external study. • all provincial institutes be approached to provide upgraded continuing education programmes at all levels within their catchment areas . • all institutes be advised of A WW A's interest and concern for education and training in the water area, and that the expertise of A WW A members in designing, monitoring and lecturing to courses in the water area be brought to the Institute's attention. • detailed consideration be given to the provision of a structured career path in the industry, i.e. Operator Course, Bridging Course, Associate Diploma Course. The Queensland Branch is endeavouring to enlist additional sustaining members by sending a letter outlining the advantages of joining A WW A. The letter is aimed at organisations receiving complimentary copies of Water, together with other potential members. The formation of a separate scientific subgroup within the Association in Queensland has been proposed . The sub-group would be aimed at scientific members of AWWA and wou ld be for the purpose of discussing and exchanging information on technical matters.

VICTORIA BRANCH ACTIVITIES

This State report begins with a 'we were wrong' admission. The August AGM meeting, reported in the September issue of Water, indicated that Ian Lowther, Chief

COMMENT

Chemist of the Geelong Water Trust spoke on the future of chlorination whereas his subject was chloramination. Ian reported good results with the end use of chloramination and he forecast a bright future for this disinfection technique. Every year the Association holds a dinner meeting in conjunction with the Annual Water Engineers and Operations Conference. At this year's September Conference, over 100 people heard Mr John Shepherd speak on the future directions for VictQria's Water Industry. John, who wrote for Viewpoint in the September issue of Water, is the new Director of Water Resources and Supply for Victoria. This was the first time that we had had the opportunity to meet with him. He reported that Government had decided that management of the Water Industry will be through four new organisations or divisions - a central management unit to provide Government with advice and assist in policy and decision making; a Metropolitan Authority to provide water services to Melbourne; an organisation to provide services including irrigation to rural Victoria and Local and Regional Authorities. The major activity occurring at the moment is preparation of a State Water Plan. Members joined with the Institution of Engineers Civil Branch on Oct. 12th for a meeting on the subject 'Liquid Waste Disposal'. Ross Curie, Deputy City Engineer for Berwick was the speaker. He reported on the findings of his recent trip to the US and UK where he inspected severpl liquid waste disposal sites. It was of interest to learn that 'TIP' or 'DUMP' are 'out' and properly managed disposal sites are now 'ENGINEERED LANDFILL' sites. The Branch's own'weekend regional conference was held on Oct. 14-16th at Eildon Reservoir township. The theme of the weekend 'Spring breakout' was 'Drought'. A wide range of papers were presented. The usual mixture of good food, pleasant venue and good company produced a successful meeting. A new venture for the Branch is the creation of a Victorian Regional members subgroup. Most members in country Victoria are not well served by the Association especially with regard to meetings. The Branch has decided to form a Regional sub-group to organise one-day meetings at country centres throughout the State. These will also be open to non-members Engineers and Technicians engaged in the water and sewerage areas in country areas . The first will be held on November 25th at Ballarat as we go to press. The fina l meeting on Nov. 22nd heard Mr. S. Y. Ip (CSIRO) and Prof. Nancy Millis (Melb. University) on the subject 'Modification of the Conventional Activated Sludge Process for Low Sludge Production, High Nutrient Removal and Low Aeration Energy Requirement'. The presentation, short titled 'Turn the Blower Off' created considerable interest from a good attendance and was followed by vigorous questioning. WATER December, 1983

9


ASSOC/A TION During November a number of members had the opportunity to hear and meet with Professor D. P. (Pete) Loucks of Cornell University on his travels through Australia. Prof. Loucks is directly involved with U.S. water authorities in the application of interactive graphics to the presentation and manipulation of water resources information. He presented information on computer software which has only recently been applied to water systems analysis. With high capacity and power micro-computers becoming more available at the engineer's work station , the techniques of graphing and analysis will become common place. The 1983/ 84 Committee was elected at the August AGM . Members are: President, Alan Howard; Vice-President, Wayne Drew; Secretary, John Park; Minute Secretary, Rob McLean; Treasurer, Warren Wealands; and Committee Members Frank Bishop, Bill Dulfer, John Graham, Frank Lawson, Peter Nadebaum, John Parker, Ian Pittaway, Robin Povey, Sam Rogerson, Alan Strom, Bob Swinton, Ian Lowther and Roger Vass. A good mix of Public Authority versus consultants; academic versus practice; and of disciplines and experience .

NORTHERN TERRITORY BRANCH ACTIVITIES

The Specialist Conference, held during the week of the 4th to 9th September 1983 was most successful with some 80 full-time delegates and as many again part-time. The Conference is reported elsewhere in this issue, here the Conference Committee would like to express our sincere appreciation to all who contributed to make it a success. We must recognise the work of two members in particular, Ron Freyling, our Treasurer and John Kenworthy, Conference Secretary. Ron and John carried out the bulk of the actual organising and without their effort, the conference could not have succeeded. John is leaving for Canberra shortly and we wish him well and will miss him. The Conference covered a wide range of selected subjects and was a blending of research work and application through both the sciences and engineering. Other problems were approached from different aspects. The Conference brought together people from . various disciplines working together for a solution of a common problem - the impact of water on the mining industry. In the subject coverage, waste handling and rehabilitation was a major consideration and the problems of 'acidic' wastes and of rehabilitation of mine areas received considerable attention. During the Conference, several social functions provided opportunities for the delegates and local members to meet and share information and some members who were unable to attend the conference proper were able to 'catch-up' with delegates elsewhere. The Conference preparation and conduct took quite a lot of time and energy with a cor10

WATER December, 1983

NEWS .

VIEWS

responding impact on Branch affairs . We are now getting back into normal operation with a meeting planned for early December. STATE NEWS

There is still continuing interest in the 'Northlakes' Golf Course development, previously reported. The golf course was redeveloped, including some housing, a new club house and an improved layout. The greens and fairways are being watered by the effluent of the Darwin sewerage lagoons . This reuse of water was subject to the requirements of the Director of Water Division, Department of Transport and Works and Assistant Secretary, Environmental Health, N.T. Health Department. The Developer, Northlake Country Club Estate Pty. Ltd ., constructed all the facilities with the Darwin City Council taking over and operating the pumping and chlorination. The golf club operates the on-course storage and irrigation system. This scheme has now been operating, under controlled conditions for approximately 12 months. Approximately 100 ha of the golf course is irrigated . A project will be undertaken on upgrading sewerage lines and water supply in and around the Central Business District of Darwin to meet changing requirements. Several multistorey buildings have been erected in recent years and many of the single residential type blocks have been redeveloped to multiple occupancy with consequent increases in demands. The works are expected to cost $1 million this financial year . This will be an ongoing project as further expansion occurs. A further step will be a series of small contracts to be let in future years at the rate of approximately $500 000 per year to rehabilitate old sewer lines now showing deteriorated seals and excessive 'wet' season infiltration. This work is planned to commence shortly.

TASMANIA BRANCH ACTIVITIES

The success of the Branch Annual Seminar in May last has led to the suggestion of a repetition, this time in the north of the state. Tentatively 'The Environment and Water Quality' is being considered as a theme and the Branch would appreciate the views of its members on the suitability of the topic. Members or others interested in presenting a paper on this topic are requested to contact the Branch Secretary. The Branch ' s A .G.M. was held on Thursday 1st August 1983 and the Branch had the benefit of being addressed by the Federal President Mr. F. Bishop. A total of 25 members and guests listened as Mr. Bishop spoke of the history and development of the A WW A and the need for its memberss to be involved in helping to chart the direction that the water industry must take in the near future.

COMMENT

The Federal President presented a certificate of Honorary Life Membership to Mr. H. McFie, a founding member of the Tasmanian Branch. The following office bearers were elected for I 983 / 84: President, P. Spratt; VicePresident, J. Lawrence; Imm. Past Pres., D . Walters; Hon. Secretary/ Br.Corr., G. Nolan; Treasurer, A. Young; Committee, B. Healey, H. McFie, J . Stephen, W. McEwen, J . Hraskey; Northern Representative, J. Bowen . As this ·issue goes to press the Branch will be having the benefit of an address by Mr. J. Weinberg of Israel Desalination Limited on the treatment/ desalination of brackish water. The year's actitivies will end with a Christmas luncheon.

NEW SOUTH WALES BRANCH ACTIVITIES

For the last three months the N .S.W. Branch has been very busy with a series of lectures on a wide range of technical subjects, but, first of all came the·popular annual dinner dance. Dinner Dance: At Sebel Town House on 23rd September over 100 members, wives and friends enjoyed a pleasant evening of dining and dancing. During the evening the Sydney Water Board Gold Medal for Public Health Engineering was presented to John Hood, a student of the University of N.S.W. After dinner, Ted Bryden-Brown, the Public Affairs Director of Sydney's Taronga Park Zoo, in a very witty and entertaining talk provided many sidelights to the work of the zoo both in fropt of and behind the scenes and also spoke of the establishment of the Western Plains Zoo at Dubbo. As a gesture of appreciation, the Branch is now the '_sponsor' of a Black Duck (Anos the one with the raised superciliosa) eyebrow and haughty expression? Lecture Evening: On the 19th October, Committeeman Ian Law, Senior Associate of Camp Scott Furphy Pty. Ltd., spoke on 'Effluent Treatment at a Large Synthetic Rubber Factory in South Africa'. Ian was, until February I 983, a director of the consulting engineering firm Meiring and Partners Inc ., in Pretoria, South Africa and was responsible for the design and commissioning of the effluent treatment facilities. The production of synthetic rubber at the works at Newcastle, South Africa, involves the catalytic solution polymerisation of the monomers butadiene and styrene according to well proven American technology and the production of polyisoprene from acetylene and acetone. The project is in a water sensitive area and the quality of the effluent discharged to a nearby creek must comply with the Department of Environmental Affairs General Standards for Discharge. The talk was illustrated by excellent slides and the audience of about 30 participated in a


ASSOC/A TION lively discussion period at the end of the lecture . Lecture Evening: To take advantage of a brief stopover in Sydney by Dr . Jurgen Clasen, lim nologist with the Wahnbachtalsperrenverband, Seiburg, West Germany a meeting was hastily convened at the Sydney Water Board on the 25th October . A good attendance heard Dr. Clasen provide an excellent address on his experience of water qua lity managment. His organisation is the bulk supply authority for the West German capital, Bonn and surrounding regions. It has deveped one of Germany' s first reservoirs with multi -usage of the catchment including agriculture and settlements. Although preli minary studi es in the l 950' s indicated satisfactory water quality for storage, based on microbial and sapro· b ien testin g , impoundment re vea led eutrophication of the 40,000 ML reservoir. The standard coagulation sedimentation filtrat ion plant required pre-chlorinat ion and permanganate dosing besides experiencing summer filter runs of less than 15 hours due to a lgal blockage . High loading of phosphorous became a problem and it was decided to treat water from the pre-reservoir through a phosphorous elimination plant. The plant commissioned in 1977 treated some 90 per cent of inflow volume to the main storage. Benefits included longer fil ter ru ns at the ma in water treatment works, lower THM precursors, no requirements for pre-chlorination, less requirement for hypoliminion aeration, a disappearance of blue green algae and lower bacterial aftergrowths in the distribution system. A limited number of copies of publications relating to the Wahnback work are available from N .S. W . Branch President, Lance Bowen , Principal Chemist, Sydney Water Board. Lecture Evening: On 23rd November a lecture was presented at the Sydney Water Board by Joseph Weinberg, Marketing Manager of Israel Desalination Engineering Ltd . who spoke on vacuum freezing and vapour compression techniques for the desali nation of salt and brackish waters and described plants up to 20 000 m3 day capacity. The Company has diversified into the field s of cooling and air conditioning and developed membrane processes for desalination and advanced waste treatment.

Sydney Water Board Reorganisation

On Wed nesday, 12t h October the Minister for Water Reso urces and Forests, Mr. Paul Whelan announced the membership of the restructured Sydney Water Board and the appointments to two new ly-created chief executive positions. This followed the passage of legislation which abolished the previous Board and the positions of President and Vice-President replacing them with a Board with a part-t ime Chairperson and a General Manager and Deputy General Manager.

NEWS

VIEWS

The main appointments announced were: Board Chairperson - Dr. Rhonda Mciver, a management consultant and a member of the previous Board . General Manager - Dr. Peter Crawford, former ly Director of the State Pollution Control Commiss ion . Deputy Genera l Manager Mr. Bob Wilson, formerly the Board' s Deputy Secretary (Commercial) . New Members: The following have been admitted to membership of the A WW A since the last report: Ms . E. Gawith, Dr. R. Wheeler and Messrs. J. Coffey, A. Graham, C. Heath, E. lnglewrits, J. Long, R. McDonald and D. Mills-Nicholson. Forthcoming Events

1st February - Dr . Daryl Lacey to speak on his work wit h the Meteorology and Environmental Protection Administration in Saudi Arabia . 9-11 th March - Regional Conference in Newcastle. NEWCASTLE GROUP

The 16th annual general meeting of the Newcastle Sub-branch was held at the Newcastle Tattersalls Club on Friday 16th September. During the evening the Hunter District Water Board Gold Medallion for outstanding record by an undergraduate student in Hydrauli cs and Water Resources at the Univers ity of Newcastle was presented to Gregory James Wright by Dr . Paterson, President of the Hunter District Board . The new Committee for 1983/ 84 is: Chairman, L. Black; Sen . Vice-Chairman, B. Clulow; Jun . Vice-Chairman, J . Roberts; Secretary, K. Young; Treasurer, R. M. Mccotter; Committee - A. Pepper, J , Robert s, D. Wilkins, T . Pinzone, P. Haegens. A very entertaining after-dinner speech on 'Reminiscences of a Hydrau lic Career ' was presented by Professor Henderson , past head of Civil Engineering at the University of Newcastle. The meeting's thanks were expressed by Lance Bowen, special guest from the New South Wales Branch. The 67th general meeting of the Newcastle Sub-branch was held at the Hunter District Water Board on Monday 17t h October, 1983. Mr. R. Cadden of the Metropolitan Water Sewerage and Drainage Board spoke on the topic 'Insitu Lining of Sewers'. T he speaker covered past projects undertaken by the Board and summarised current experimental projects underway throughout Australia. The 68th general meeting of the Subbranch took the form of an excursion to the 3rd coa l loader wh ich is cur rently 80 per cent complete . Members and friends took the advantage of climbing one of the largest coal stacker reclaimers in the world. Other features included, wharf facilities, surge bins and a conveyor system of 3.2 m maximum width, conveying coal a t a maximum of IO 000 tonnes per hour . Fired by the success of this event a follow -up visit is being arranged when the site is in full production .

'

.

COMMENT

WESTERN AUSTRALIA BRANCH ACTIVITIES

To mark the end of yet another year our Christmas Dinner Functio n will be held at the Bouzoukia Restaurant on the 18th November as we go to press and the usual resounding success is anticipated. As this restaurant has adopted Greek cui sine and habits, your correspondent, writing in advance expects that many of the guests will be suffering the gentle aftermath of Ouzo and scratches resulting from the smashi ng of plates thrown in appreciation of their efforts on the dance floor . Two recent papers given in close succession , were well attended by 40-50 members. The first , on 'A Flexible Approach to Design and Co nstruction of Sewers' was given by Mr. A. Longstaff - Director of Gutteridge Haskins & Davey Pty. Ltd. on 6th October, and the second, 'Septic Tank Systems in the Perth Metropolitan Region' given by Dr. G . Seward of Caldwell Connell Engineers Pty. Ltd. on the 1st November. Both speakers provided interesting sessions, the subjects covered a considerable range - from the collecting system to the domestic scene and the question sessions were evocative and of considerable value. Yo ur programming sub -commi ttee is work ing on an interesting programme for 1984. At the present time, it is proposed that another mini-symposium will be held on an aftern oon in Ju ly when the top ic will be basically associated with Water Management and Treatment in contrast tq our successful symposium earlier this year which dealt mainly with wastewater . Other papers contemplated are on nutrient removal from wastewater and under consideration are possible field visits !elated to the Sirotherm process and the red mud disposal prob lems at Alcoa (Kwinana). Further details wi ll be advised when the programme is finalised .

SOUTH AUSTRALIA BRANCH ACTIVITY

At the Ann ual General Meeting on 23rd September Peter Norman was elected President for 1983/ 84, replacing Bob Clisby, who has lead the Branch very success fully over the past two years. Vice-President is David Pearce; Secretary, Tony Glatz; Treasurer, Mary Drikas. T he Committee has a record membership of 11 - Scott Cameron, Wil f Emmett , Arthu r Greenhough, Bob Jones, Dou g Lane, Trevor Le hm ann, Brian Maguire, Moss Sanders, Kevin Trevarton, Ralph Wood. Following the electio n the meeting was addressed by two speakers from the State Water Laboratories of the Engineering and Water Supply Department on 'Chloramination of Water - A South Australian Trial'. T hi s most topical subj ect relates to a current field trial using chloramination in place of chorination to disinfect the Tailem BendKeith water supply system. The main objecWATER December, 1983

11


[

ASSOC/A TION

tive of this trial is to evaluate the effectiveness of monochloramines on controlling the microbiological quality of this water supply, with special emphasis upon Naegleria .fowleri, the amoeba causing amoebic meningitis. In the first part of the talk Peter Christy, a microbiologist, outlined the history of N. fowleri isolation in South Austra lian water supplies, with particular reference to the Tailem Bend-Keith pipeline system, and he described the microbiology of the free living and cyst forms of the N. fowleri amoeba and its comparative resistance to disinfection by both chlorine and monochloramines. In the Tailem Bend-Keith pipeline system, tank sediments and in the extremities of the distribution system chlorination has proved inadequate. As an alternative chloramination commenced in March 1983 and has been in · continuous operation since that time. The study has been hampered by low water temperatures resulting in relatively low densities of N. fowleri and the trial will now continue over the coming summer period with its higher water temperatures. Monitoring is occurring at Coonalpyn, Keith, Tintinara and Meningie. The chloramination trial is sti ll incomplete but results to date are most encouraging in the control of N. fowleri and indicate a general improvement in the microbiological quality of the supply. For the second part of the evening's address _Moss Sanders outlined the history of both chlorination and chloramination and their chemical aspects. Both processes were first used for disinfection of public water supplies about the same time (circa 1913), although ch lorination is now far more common. Brisbane City Council is probably the only major water authority in Australia currently using chloramination on a large scale. The chem istry of chlorine in water and its reaction with nitrogen compounds to form chloramines is complex and still not fully understood. Ch loramination provides a longterm stable disinfecting residual (monoch loramine) which can be produced by adding chlorine and ammonia to water in the ratio of about 4 to I, the ammonia in either a gaseous or aqueous form. In the Tailem Bend-Keith trial gaseous ammonia is dosed approximately 15 secs. after the ch lorine has been added and the chlorine to ammonia ratio at the dosing point has proved difficult to control. Preferably the ammonia should be dosed before the chlorine using the aqueous form. In concl uding, Mr Sanders outlined the respective advantages of both chlorination and c hlor aminat ion. C hlor aminat ion achieves rapid disinfection, its chemistry is reasonably well known and it is simpler to control. Chloramination has the advantages that the monochloramine residuals persist longer and are less reactive, the process produces no known carcinogenic byproducts, is not pH sensitive, and does not produce odours in the water to the same extent as chlorine. · 12

WATER December, 1983

NEWS

VIEWS

At the first new Committee meeting on October I 3, Brian Magurie was re-appointed Journal Correspondent and Messrs Lane and Norman were elected as Federal Councillors . Ending the year was the annual Guest Night on November 11 at the Australian Mineral Foundation in Glenside where the -guest speaker Dr. Frank Sear, Senior Lecturer in Classics at the University of Adelaide gave a fascinating talk on 'Ancient Roman Water Supply Systems'. Dr. Sear is an enthusiast, he has made a number of visits to the 'Eternal City' and his presentation and il: lustration did full justice to this early and most impressive example of water supply engineering. STATE NEWS The metropolitan storages are now in a very healthy state as summer approaches and with one exception, a ll reservo irs are full and millions of dollars shou ld be saved in the cost of pumping water from the River Murray. In September, the Minister of Water Resources, Mr. Jack Slater announced approval to pre-construction work for the Woolpunda Groundwater Interception Scheme. The total sc heme is expected to cost about $16 million and when completed will intercept 90 per cent of the 250 tonnes of salt that enters the River every day via this source, net reduction in the River's salinity shou ld be about 13 per cent or 78 EC units. The Woolpunda Scheme is designed to reduce salinity by pumping sa line water from 58 bores along banks of the river to an evaporation basin 15 kilometres away. Once in the basin, the borewater wi ll be concentrated to brine in evaporative ponds and then disposed of into a deep aquifer beneath the site. A $5.8 million contract has been let to A. W. Baulderstone Pty. Ltd., for construction of civil works at the Morgan Water Filtration Plant covering the flocculation and sedimentation tanks, filters and associated galleries, a sludge thickener, a wash water holding tank and extensive pipework and is expected to be completed by April 1985, prior to commissioning of the plant at the end of 1986. Work started on Morgan W.F.P. in February with a $1 million civil contract for the building of C12 ML filtered water storage tank. This is now nearing completion. On November 2, trial chloramination of Yorke Peninsula's water supply to help control Naegleria fowleri was introduced. This trial follows upon the Tailem Bend-Keith pipeline system trial mentioned earlier. These trials and all other S.A. water supplies will be closely monitored in 1983/84 to help combat the spread of N. fowleri. Sampling will be at 151 locations, tanks will be cleaned more often and chlorination levels increased in a number of country water supplies. A publicity campaign will aim to increase community awareness of the dangers of amoebic meningitis, especially those related to swimming in dirty water. The campaign will be conducted through the press, by the distribution of information sheets and through television.

COMMENT

12TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE Amsterdam 17-20th Sept. '84 SPEAKER SUPPORT The Australian National Committee of IA WPRC advises that assistance in the form of fares and accommodation will be considered for the author of a paper to be presented at Amsterdam. This support may be given subject to the following conditions: • The author's employer is not prepared to sponsor him or wi ll sponsor in part only. • Following acceptance by IA WPRC, the paper is to be submitted to the Executive of the Australian National Committee of IA WPRC for consideration of suitabi lity and merit. Authors interested should contact the National Secretary, IAWPRC, P.O. Box A232, Sydney South, N.S.W . 2000.

*

*

*

AWWA MEMBERSHIP • Member - Qualifications suitable for membership of l.E .(Aust) or equivalent professional organisations. Fees $25 p.a. • Associate - Experience in the water and/or wastewater industry without formal qualifications. Fees $25 p.a. • Student -

Fees $5 p.a.

• Sustaining Member - An organisation or firm involved in the water and/or wastewater industry wishing to support the Associafion. Fees $100 p.a. min.

Fees are plus state levies where applicable.


RANGER URANIUM MINE WATER · MANAGEMENT SYSTEM Ranger Uranium Mines Proprietary Limited SUMMARY

This paper describes the design and operation of the Ranger water management system. The system was designed to manage the waters within the Ranger Project area so that supplies of water for the mining and milling operations would always be available and so that the environmental impact of the project on the surrounding environment is controlled within agreed limits . The system demonstrates how the environmental impact of a mining project can be reduced in a region characterised by seasonal high precipitation resulting from its monsoon climate, and in a region of unspoiled national park values. The objectives of the system are reasonably easily defined ; these being: • To provide a continuous supply of water for the mining and milling operations at the Ranger site. ·e To comply with the agreed authorisations drawn up to protect the environment. These two objectives are ranked equally. I. INTRODUCTION Of fundamental importance, in the understanding of the sys tem , are the implications of the Code of Practice on the Management of Waste from the Mining and Milling of Radioactive Ores which defines the area over which the water management system must operate for the mine as a restricted release zone. The restricted release zone is defined as: "an approved zone about and below a mine and/ or mill from which release of radioactive material shall be minimised in accordance with the requirements of the 'appropriate authority'." The concept of restricted release zone is fundamental to the development of a water management plan for a uranium mining and milling operation operating in conformity with the Code. Restricted release zones refer to a geographic area the limits of which may be redefined from time to time throughout the Project by agreement between the mining company and the appropriate authority. The restricted release zone usually refers to the surface and subsurface of a site but may also refer to the space above the site. 'Specified material' as defined in the Code refers to material which contains more than 0.02 per cent of uranium or 0.05 per cent of thorium by weight or other radioactive material designated by the appropriate authority. In operating a restricted release zone, such .specified material shall normally not be taken outside the limits of the , restricted release zone nor shall it be excavated from outside of the restricted release zone. The restricted release zone represents a zone from which release of water is not permitted, with the exception of seepage which should be minimised by the use of Best Practicable Technology. Normally a restricted release zone is defined at the start of a project before mining of 'specified material' commences. A zone, defined as a restricted release zone, remains a restricted release zone irrespective of whether releases are made from the zone or not. The conditions of release of waters from the restricted release zone are normally subject to the approval of the appropriate authority and relate to site specific aspects of the stream into which releases are made including flow rate, characteristics of hydrograph and mixing, quality of water, period of release and approved rate of release. For the Ranger Mine, the components of the operation which are included within the restricted release zone are:

This paper formed part of Paper No 34 presented by Ranger Uranium Mines Proprietary Limited to the International Specialist Conference on 'Water Regime in Relation to Milling, Mining and Waste Treatment including Rehabilitation, with Emphasis on Uranium Mining'. The Conference, organised by the Northern Territory Branch of the Association, was held in Darwin, Sept. 4-9th, 1983.

• The mine pit and its immediate surrounds. • The haul road to, and the areas of, the ore stockpiles and waste dump. • The primary crusher area and ore storage areas. • The mill site. • The tailings dam. • The tailings dam seepage collector sump. • The tailings pipeline corridor and pipeline corridor sump. • All ponds to which the above areas drain (retention ponds, runoff ponds, evaporation ponds and tailings pond) Figure I illustrates the extent of the Ranger project area and the extent of the restricted release zone within the project area. The Code of Practice on the Management of Waste from the Mining and Milling of Radioactive Ores requires that there be a water management plan to handle waters arising from such mining and milling operations. Extensive guidelines to explain the concept of the water management plan have been developed to accompany the Code of Practice. The simplest way to understand the Ranger water management system is that it is a system in which the catchment areas and pond areas are sized so that sufficient water may be collected in the system during the wet season to allow the continued operation of the mining and milling during the dry season. It is important however, that such collection of waters be carried out so that there is no uncontrolled release from the restricted release zone to the environment even under extreme conditions, such as to cause unacceptable and unauthorised impact on the evironment. 2. WATER REQUIREMENTS AND SOURCES

To operate the Ranger Water Management System, the water is drawn from a number of sources, ranging from such uncontrolled inputs as direct rainfall into the ponds and mine pit seepage through to deliberate importations of water to the restricted release zone via pumping from the bore fields surrounding the project area when required and when authorised so to do, from the gumping of water from 1 Magela Creek under stringent conditions. The water requirements for the operation may be considered under the headings of milling, mining and engineering. Water for use in the sysem is derived from the following sources: • Direct precipitation or direct rainfall into ponds and runoff from catchments within the restricted release zone. • Direct precipitation into ponds and runoff from catchments outside of the restricted release zone (such as Retention Pond No 1, Retention Pond No 4). • Pumping from water bores . • Pumping from Magela Creek. • Seepage into the mine pit. The quality and quantity of waters drawn from each of the above sources varies throughout the year and is highly dependent upon the total wet season rainfall and resulting runoff. The size of the catchments and the storage capacities of the ponds within the system were set to intercept and retain sufficient water during the wet season without the need to release water except under specific conditions spelled out in the environmental requirements contained within the Agreement. The system was sized on the basis of a specific c·o mbination of rainfall , anticipated runoff and specific release conditions. These aspects are considered further under design parameters. 3. CONTAMINANT GENERATION AND WATER QUALITY REQUIREMENTS

Water drawn from the various catchments and sources varies in quality. Tables I, 2 and 3 summarise the quality of water available WATER December, 1983

13


TABLE 1. ANION CONCENTRATIONS IN ARTIFICIAL WATER BODIES (mg/ I) FOR PERIOD 1ST OCTOBER 1982 TO 31ST MARCH 1983 Maximum Concentration

c,- pm-

Site Retention Pond Retention Pond Retention Pond Retention Pond Tailings Dam

1 2 3 4

7.9 7.8 7.4 7. 3 34

0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1

soi-

No, 0.3 12

59 7.1 120

Minimum Concentration

Total • Anions

1.8 0.59 520 11 340 8.6 13 1.5 9100 190

c,-

POJ-

No,

1.8 2.5 1.5 2.4 12

0.1 0.1 0.1 0. 1 0.1

0. 1 0. 1 0.1 0.6

soi-

Mean Concentration

c,- pm-

Tota/• Anions

5.5

0.1 0.20 110 3.8 130 4.4 12 0.61 7600 160

59

0. 1 0.1 0.1 0. 1 0 .1

5.2 4.4 4.9 24

No, 0.2

5.0 14 3.9 83

soi-

Tota/• Anions

N

0.6 0.46 8.0 330 5.9 200 13 1. 1 8400 180

8 7 6 2 6

N = Number of samples (not including those for pH and conducti vity onl y}. The number of results fo r individual parameters may be less. • meq/ 1.

TABLE 2. TRACE METAL CONCENTRATIONS IN ARTIFICIAL WATER BODIES (µg/ 1) FOR PERIOD 1ST OCTOBER 1982 TO 31ST MARCH 1983 Minimum Concentration

Maximum Concentration Cu

Site Retention Pond Retention Pond Retention Pond Retention Pond Tailings Dam

1 2 3 4

6 22 7 7 74

Pb

Mn

3

5 <2 6 110

Zn

130 5900 2100 68 260t

7 270 26 13 25

u 9.7

560 710 60 41

Ra•

Cu

0.12 < 6.4 < 2.5 0.57 14 45

I I 1 1

N = Number of samples . The number of results for individual parameters may be less.

Pb

Mn

Zn

II 180 170 54 85t

<2 <2 <2 <2 32

• = Bq/ 1.

I 3

5 3 3

u

Mean Concentration Ra•

Cu

Pb

0.4 < 0.018 2 100 1.4 6 0.34 240 3 7.8 0.047 4 13 33 40

2 3 <2 4 62

Mn 48 2300 610 61 140t

Zn 3 79 13 8 11

u

Ra•

3.2 0.044 280 3.6 450 1.5 34 0.31 37 33

N 8 6 6 2 6

t= mg/I.

TABLE 3. PHYSICAL PARAMETERS AND ALKALINITY IN ARTIFICIAL WATER BODIES FOR PERIOD 1ST OCTOBER 1982 TO 31ST MARCH 1983

Site Retention Pond Retention Pond Retention Pond Retention Pond Tailing Dam

1 2 3 4

Cond uS/ cm

Turb NTU

pH

70 1500 770 130 1200

140 49 22 620 10

7.8 IO 9.9 7.8 8.0

· Mean Level

Minimum Level

Maximum Level Tot. Alk. Cond mg/ I uS/ cm 18 63 97 52 9.7

22 320 350 63 7100

Turb NTU

pH

3 1 2 26 2

6.4 3.6 7.0 6.5 4.8

Tot. Alk. Cond mg/ I uS/ cm 5.1 1. 7 40 8.3

1.3

46 660

550 92 9200

Turb NTU

pH

49 11 9 320 6

6.9 7.3 8.4 7.3 6.6

Tot. Alk. mg/I 14 22 69 30

.

5.4

N. 8 7 6 2 6

N = Number of samples (not including those for pH and conductivi ty only). The number of results for pH and conduct ivit y ma y be greater; th e number for oth er parameters may be less .

within each of the ponds which act as sources of water for the operations. The water from Retention Pond No I , which lies outside the restricted release zone, is suitable for a wide variety of uses within the ore treatment plant and where contamination could be prejudicial to ·the operations. The water from the ore stockpiles and direct runoff from the plant site is collected into Retention Pond No 2. This water has a higher degree of dissolved and suspended contaminants than the water from the Retention Pond No 1 water but is also acceptable for most uses within the mill circuit. Water from the mine pit and runoff from the primary crushing plant are transferred directly into Retention Pond No 3 which provides a preferential source of water supply to the milling operations. Retention Pond No 4 or the 'waste rock dump settling pond' constitutes a further water body from which water may be drawn into th'e restricted release zone. The pond however, is outside of the restricted release zone and water quality standards have been set which the water must meet before it can be released from the system . The water contained within the tailings dam constitutes the most ·highly contaminated body of water at the site . The tailings dam is designed so that this water cannot be discharged to the environment. The pondage serves as a reserve water body for milling operations . 4. CLIMATE

The climate of the Ranger site is tropical monsoonal with two main seasons : • A dry season from May to September, and • A wet season from November to March . April and October tend to be transitional periods. The average annual rainfall and evaporation figures are in the order of 1600 mm and 2500 mm respectively . Not only is the annual rainfall highly variable 14

WATER December, 1983

but also the monthly rainfalls during the wet season cannot be predicted with any certainty . Runoff depends on rainfall intensity. Rai~fall which falls as a series of regular light showers throughout the wet season, produces little or no runoff from the catchment. Rainfall having exactly the same total amount but falling in a series of widely spaced intense storms, rapidly saturates the ground and can lead to 100 per cent runoff into the ponds. Under these circumstances, the total contribution of the water management system reserves may be quite different depending on the intensity and duration of rainfall . It is the element of unpredictabi lity of average annual rainfall and the unpredictability of runoff coefficients which introduce the di fficu lties in arriving at the optimal solution for management of the water. 5. DESIGN OF SYSTEM

The design of the water management system was developed in 1972 fo llowing a period of site investigations in 1971 and 1972. The basic design of the system has not changed since that time. However, following the completion of the design which was described in the Environmental Impact Statement for the Ranger Project, a number of constraints were imposed on its operation by the Ranger Uranium Environmental Inquiry (RUEi) . This section of the paper deals with the parameters used in developing the system , the design of the system and the constraints imposed on its operations by RUEi. 5.1 Design Parameters

The key parameters in the design of the system relate to: • Rainfall . • Evaporation.


• • • •

Water requirements for the mill and mining operations. Anticipated mill production. The density of the tailings . Catchment runoff. At the time when the system was designed, the only available long term record for the rainfall in the region was that from the Oenpelli Meteorologica l Station. This indicated a long term rainfall average in the order of 1380 mm / year. Evaporation from the same station was indicated at 2500 mm / year. Since the time of the design, the monitoring of rainfall in the A lligator Rivers Region has consistently shown the rainfall average above 1380 mm / year. Recent monitoring has shown that rain fa ll intensity is extremely variable and in particular the short duration storms tend to be of higher intensity than was indicated in the published information. The average rainfall taken over 12 years of record is 1564 mm. (This compares favourably with the Oenpelli average over the same period of 1594 mm.)

Successful operation of the water management system depends upon the excess of evaporation over rainfall. The system components were designed to provide sufficient storage to hold a succession of wet years (average annual rainfall above long term average) and sufficient capacity to contain runoff from extreme storms. The design catered for sequences of dry years with pumping from borefields. Measurements of evaporation are made by Standard A class evaporimeters with an appropriate pan factor being applied. The appropriate lake to pan coefficient has been the subject of considerable discussion throughout the entire period of design and operation of the water management system and still remains a figure of conjecture. Studies of available literature and methods of measurement of the pan factor and back calculation of the water management balance suggest that a figure in the order of 0.85 is appropriate in this region. The figure itself has considerable bearing on the maintenance of balance within the system. A pan factor in the order of 0. 75 would indicate insufficient evaporative loss and the need to construct evaporation ponds to augment the evaporation. A pan factor in the vicinity of I indicates a greater evaporative loss of water from the system and the probable need to import water into the water management system from external sources. The water requirements of the system depend on the production rate from the milling and treatment plant. The system is currently designed to process approximately I. I m tonnes of ore each year. The residue of the ore after treatment, or tailings, is neutralised and transported to the tailings dam in a slurry with a pulp density of approx imately 35 per cent solids by weight. The tailings are transported by pipeline to the tailings dam where they are deposited beneath a water cover and excess water can be recirculated back to the mill to provide a source of water for continued operations. The tailings dam is a ring dyke structure 4000 m long reaching RL 36 for Stage I and RL 51 for Stage VI. The dam will be raised in stages with barren clays and rock from the open cut. The water losses in the system relate mainly to: • Evaporation from the retention ponds which provide water to the mill. • The water which remains entrapped in the tailings in the tailings dam . • The evaporative losses from the water covering the tailings in the approximately 100 ha tailings pond. • Other evaporative losses such as road watering operations. • Cooling water losses from the power station. • Seepage losses from stored water . 'Make up' water to balance these water losses and to provide clean water for use in certain parts of the process is derived from such sources as rainfall, water bores and seepage into the mine pit. Of fundamental importance to the maintenance of balance in the system and the stagin g of construction of the tailings dam is the tailings density. The design of the dam was based on laboratory studies which indicated that a tailings dry density of more than 1.4 t/ m3 would be achievable. The system has not in fact at this stage been able to achieve such a density. The design of this system at the stage of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is shown in Figure I. This figure illustrates the various pumping connections and catchments within the system. The sensitivity of the system to variations over wide ranges of the main inputs and outputs was assessed by computer simulation.

5.2 Design of System in E.I.S. With respect to the constraints imposed on the system, these fall into two categories, being firstly the actual system constraints, i.e. those imposed by the capacity of the pumps and the levels from which the pumps draw, the interconnections through water lines and ponds, and secondly the regulatory requirements, notably governing those ponds which may release to the environment and water cover required in the tailings pond. The design of the Ranger water management system can be considered in three parts, these being: • The configuration of the storages, drains and catchments. • The interconnection and pumping arrangements between each of the main components . • The operational constraints imposed both by the system and by the Environmental Controls. With respect to the configuration of the system, the layout of the major storages, drains and catchments has changed li;ttle between the time of the E.l.S. and the actual current period of operation. The major components include: • The collecting catchment areas of the ore treatment plant. • The ore stockpiles. e The No I Mine Pit. The ponds which receive runoff and transfer of water from the Restricted Release Zone include the Tailings Dam, No 2 Retention Pond, No 3 Retention Pond and permitted flooding of the northernmost section of the No I Mine Pit. With respect to the pumping configurations and interconnections of ponds, there have been a number of significant changes from that put forward in the EIS. Most of the new pumping arrangments relate to the provision of an increased supply of fresh water to make up the level within Retention Pond No 2. For this purpose, a pipeline joining Retention Pond No I to Retention Pond No 2 has been constructed. This water supply line provides water only in one direction and water cannot be transferred from RP2 back to RP I. Similarly, an additional water supply line has been installed for pumping fresh water from the Magela Creek under stringent regulations imposed by the Water Division of the Northern Territory Department of Transport and Works. T he purpose of this supply line is to provide additional volumes of fresh water to Retention Pond No 2. Finally, bore fields have been connected for provision of water during extended dry periods from the Gulungul bore field directly into the tailings dam to maintain the cover of water over the tailings during the dry season . Other borefields are capable of supplying direct to the potable system or to the treatment plant. 5.3 Constraints Imposed by R.U.E.I. The Ranger Uranium Environmental Inquiry (RUE!) imposed certain operational constraints on the system, with respect to releases of water to the environment from Retention Pond No 2. Releases of water from Retention Pond No 2, which formed an integral part of the design of the system, were recommended against by the Inquiry, particularly in the absence of applicable water quality standards. This restriction has had a severe effect on the operation of Retention Pond No 2 which now has conflicting requirements with respect to containment of water in the latter part of the wet season. Under a release criteria operation, Retention Pond No 2 could be fill ed close to capacity during the wet season with provision for pumping water to the Magela so as to provide at all times sufficient capacity for wet season storms of a given frequency . Under a no-release system however, much greater free capacity must now be provided in the pond to allow for containment of storms. It is therefore not able to ensure adequate water supplies for the dry season. A further constraint imposed by the RUE! related to the definition of material. 'Material' under the Code of Practice as defined earlier in this paper, is material having a uranium content greater than 0.02 per cent . This constraint governs the rate at which barren soil and rock can be obtained from the open cut for use in the staged construction of the Tailings Dam. The taili ngs dam was designed to be raised in a series of six stages, each of which would raise the level of the embankment by approximately three metres giving an additional three million m' capacity with each raise. This was timed to coincide with the production rates WATER December, 1983

15


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of tailings from the treatment plant at approximately I. I million tonnes/year together with the estimated quantity of accumulated water. The construction materials to allow for such raising of th e tailings dam were intended to be derived from waste rock and clay with in the open cut within the mine pit which would be produ ced at a11 appropriate rate for raising the dam. During the investigation and design stage of the dam, it was considered that material containing less than 0.05 per cent uranium was waste and therefore suitable for use in the dam . However, with the further constraint imposed by the RUEi that greater than 0.02 per cent uranium bearing material should not be used outside of the restricted release zone, there has Been a significant redu ction in the available supply of waste material with wh ich to build the dam, particu larly since the dam is a zoned earth and rockfill dam with stringent material property requirements. The relationship between the water management sys tem and the supply of material for the dam in view of the constraints imposed over the use of 'material ' is that without the ability to release water to the environment as proposed and with the additional constraint of only using 0.02 per cent uranium or lower material within the dam embankment, there is a tendency for each success ive stage to be required earli er and for this to occur before the corresponding amount of waste material is produced from the mine pit. An additional constra int to the water management system relating to the mining and treatment operations is the requirement to dispose ·of tailings in a neutralised state below the water level in the pond. The disposa l of tailin gs in this condition virtually guarantees that the minimum settled den sity will be attained and unless settlement occurs rapidly, the capacity of the tailings dam between stages is reduced. With the neutrali sed tai lings being discharged under water, the tail in gs density of 1.4 t/ m 3 is not being achieved, the density being closer to 1.0 tonnes/ m' or less . This tends to require advancement of the stages of the tailings dam, again putting pressure on the supply of suitable waste material from the mine pit. An additional constraint imposed by the RUEI relates to the ultimate destination of the tailings . The tailings disposal method was designed to retain the tailings indefinitely above the ground surface . The RUEI left open the question of the ultimate location for disposal of the tailings and thu s the opt ion still remains to put the tailings back into the mine pit or to leave them on the ground surface contained within a stabilised tailings dam . The resolution of the question of ultimate destination of the tailings is some years off. In the meantime the tailings must be deposited in such a manner which does not rule out either option. The choice between options will be decided jointly by concensus between the Office of the Supervising Scientist, the Northern Land Counci l and Ranger Uranium Mines Pty. Ltd . and will be made according to the solution which has the least environmental impact. If it could be known now what the ultimate fate of the tailings wi ll be, then there could be variat ions to the design of th e system to tak e this ultimate destination into account. Such variations may include use of ' material ' within the dam embankment, flattening of th e slopes of the dam embankment , increasing the settled density of the tailings and other solutions which would not necessarily be the most desirable if th e tailings are to be relocated at a later date .

6. CURRENT OPERATION OF THE SYSTEM 6.1 Current Configuration of the System

The current configuration of the water management system is shown on Figure 2. The configuration of the sys tem is best understood by considering it in four parts, related to the four separable degrees of co ntamination , these are, (from leas t contam inated to most contaminated).

• Th e Sediment Control Zones (Retention Pond No I and Retention Pond 4. These zo nes contain on ly waste rock and undisturbed catchment and do not contain 'material'. Releases of water from these ponds has been regulated by the RUEI and by subsequent regu lations to ensure that sediment is settled before the water is discharged to the environment and that water which is considered contaminated by the Superv ising Authority is contained. • Water from Plant Runoff and Ore Stockpiles. Runoff from th e plant and from the ore stockpiles constitutes one of th e major sources of supply of relat ively clean water wh ich mu st be contained within the rest ricted release zone. T hese waters are

(A) (B) (C) (D)

Mill Sire Primary Crusher Low Grade Ore Stockpile Mine Pit

(E) Waste Rock Dump (F) Retention Ponds 2 and 3 (G) Tailings Dam (H) Retention Pond No I

Figure 2. The mine configuration.

contained within Retention Pond No 2 with provision for surplus waters to be pumped to the tailings dam to maintain acceptable levels within Retention Pond No 2.

Water from the Mine Pit. The mine pit constitutes a significant catchment within the scheme of the restricted release zone. All water contain ed therein must be contained and not discharged to the environment. The waters which collect in the floor of the mine pit are pumped to Retention Pond No 3 and are used preferentially in the treatment plant operations. In add ition , waters from the primary' crusher are are also fed in to thi s system. The purpose of this part of the system was to contain water wh ich had been in contact with high grade ore to be handled separately, preferentially used in the treatment plant and di scharged to the tailings dam . ,

• Th e Tailings Dam Circuit. The tailings dam constitutes the principal containment stru cture for milling and treatment plant wastes. The dam is located at the head waters of Coonj imb a Creek and a tributary of Gulungul Creek. There is no external catchment to the dam and all water must be either transferred to it by pumping or fa ll directl y into the ponded water by rainfall. The pond is provided with 2.5 m of freeboard for containment of extreme rainfall events. All water lost from the tailings dam is by evaporation and seepage. Th e dam constitutes one of the major water storages for supply of water to the water management system. Water is recirculated from th e tailings dam back to the treatment plant and suppli es some 50 per cent of treatment plant requirements. . Th e configuration of the sys tem· changes from year to year depending on rainfall and the stage of developm ent of the system. The sys tem is dynamic with ca tchments changing in area. As a result of th e dynamic nature of th e system , the configuration for at least the piping and water transfer aspects vary from year to year. 6.2 Administration of System

All operating departments of the Company have requirem ents which have to be sat isfied by th e Water Management System. Eac h department mu st be ab le to draw from or contribute to the water storages in ways and at times di ctated by its operations, be it mining, milling or engineering. At the same tim e, th e whole system mu st be administered so that it meets the environmental objective of co ntrolling the entry of co ntaminants into the surrounding environment. WATER December, 1983

17


Each department (i.e. mine, mill or engineering) therefore operates their pumping or drainage faciliti es in accordance with medium term plans iss ued by General Manager - Operations. These directi ves aim to satisfy the day to day requi rements of the water users and at the same time maintain position in th e annual cycle by: • Maintaining levels sufficien tl y low during th e wet seasons to provide capacity to retain run-off from possibly very severe storm s and hence prevent releases from the Restricted Release Zone (RRZ), and • Ensure that sufficient water is retained each wet season to enable mining and milling operations to continue without interruption throughout the dry season with the minimum importation of water into the RRZ. Over th e medium term , 3-5 years, losses and in come must reasonably balance, with annual variations being absorbed by storage capacity. Origin ally the sys tem was des igned around th e long term (69 years) average rainfall recorded at Oenpelli , which was 13 80 mm. In the 12 years recorded at Jabiru , the average has been 1564 mm compared with th e Oenpelli average, for th e sa me period o f 1594. Implicit in the design was the ability to allow Retention Pond No I (RPI) with its catchment ou tsid e the restricted release zones, to overflow and fo r Retention Pond No 2 (RP 2) to be filled as early as · possible in the wet season, with the abi lit y to discharge surplu s to Magela Cree k in a controlled manner in accordance with a number of restrictions set to protect th e receiving water qu ali ty. Also implicit in the design was the intention to supplement supplies in excess ively dry periods by pumping from groundwater bores . A drilling programme was conducted in th e early I 970's to locate water resources in the imI)1 ediate vicinity. It was concluded when res ources capable of supplying 9000 ml/ day had been tested. Only sufficient of th ese bores were developed and equipped for provision of the more immediate potable water needs of constru ction and plant operation . The Ranger Uranium Environmental Inquiry (RUEi) of 1975-77 saw controlled release from RP2 as undesirable but appreciated its proba ble necessity. It imposed furth er restrictions on releases but ruled th at the system should operate in the initial years as a no-release system, if poss ible. Cont rolled release ver sus no release, was th e subject of much discussion , investigation and reporting over succeeding years, and culminated in the issue, in I 98 I , two years after construction started , of the authori sation , under the Uranium Mining Environment Contro l Act (UMEC), allowing Ranger to operate a water managment system on a no release of contaminants basis. This allowed overflow from RPI provided the quality was satisfa ctory, but no release under any circumsta nces from RP2. Provision was made to pump surpluses to the tailings dam . · Before the 1982/ 83 wet season , a fur ther restriction was imposed which required that at all times during the wet seas on the level of RP2 should be maint ained low enough to permit the containment o f runoff from the ' maximum probable storm'. As it is not possible to predict with reliability the end of the wet season , it is not possible to guarantee commencing the dry season with sufficient water stored in RP2. One could almost guarantee that we would commence the dry season with RP2 less than half full. With restrictions being added to restrictions during the construction period and first yea rs o f operation, it is ha rdly surpri sing that the above average rai nfa lls of 1980/ 81 and 1981/82 caused use to be made for water storage of a discreet section of the open cut from which barren rock has been mined fo r tailings dam construction . Conversely, the below average wet season of 1982/83 caused a very c.onsiderable import of water, both from underground bores and from Magela Creek. The fin al total rainfa ll at 1195 mm or 75 per cent of average does not give a real indication of the problems caused . They are better in dicated by the monthl y breakdown below. The water still sto red at the beginning of October 1982 was sufficient to carry on operations, given a reasonably normal start to th e wet season. It could not cope however , with the total lack of rain to November and the meagre fa lls of November to Febru ary. By that time, rain fa ll was 34 per cent o f norma l, with corresponding high evaporation rates. The Hydrometeorologist is responsible inter alia for ensuring that up-to-date pond levels, measurements of water movement losses by evaporation and water inventories are maintained in the Water Accounting Programme in the Co mpan y's computer sys tem so that up18

WATER December, 1983

Month September October November December January February March April May June July August

I I Year A verage

1982/ 83

1982/ 83 % of Average (Cumulative)

4.9 50.0 167.6 245 .2 372 .2 357 .8 335.0 49.9 8.8 3.6 0.4 2.4

Nil Nil 69.4 148.1 188.4 131.0 468.6 174.8 14.2 0.4 0 0

0 0 4.3 13 .6 25 .4 33.6 62.9 73.8 74. 7 74. 8 0 0

1597.8

to-date statements of the water balance may be obtained on demand. The programme is arranged so that not only the present state of the system is displayed , but so that trend s may be readi ly discernible. Forecasts of pond water levels can be made, via the programme, using either hi storical information with any desired modifications and projecting it forward or by' creating an entirely synthetic model. Input consists of monthly rainfall, evaporation, commencing levels, level/volume/ area curves for each pond, seepage rates, runoff factors, evaporation factors, pumping regimes and tailings water den sity. Projections are then calcu lated using a basic tim e step of one day. 6.3 Maintenance of a Water Balance

To date , the above average rains of 1980/ 81, 1981/82 have been used to bui ld up the initial system inventory, mainly in the tailings dam. During the dry period of the 1982/83 wet season , some 750,000 ml of water was imported from bores and I, 180,000 m' from Magela Creek after it started flowin g in early February 1983. It should be noted that the ability to pump from Magela Creek at high rates from its immediate post wet season flow is the on ly way we have of filling RP2 at the beginning of the dry season, having maintained it less than half fu ll during the wet season• for emergency capacity. Over the medium term 3-5 years, losses must balance income. The system was designed to ensure that minimum water from the RRZ was released to the water environment to obviate i buildup of water within the RRZ. Too rapid a buildup would necessitate raising the tailings dam ahead of schedule . Conversely, excessive losses or insufficient retention would allow tailings to penetrate the water surface and contravene th e authorisation to operate. The system was designed to maintain such a balance over a range of rainfall and evaporation patterns which were known to occur in a climate such as this. The ratio of total catchment to mean effective evaporative surface was arranged so that the system could tolerate three successive dry years or three success ive wet years without contravening the authorisation or changing the schedule for raising the tailings dam. The mean effective evaporative area varies from year to year depending on th e rainfall pattern and is one of the parameters which is not yet well defined . Having been gi ven a certain amount of water to last for a dry season , a considerable degree of control is exercised by : • Regulating the volume of process water recirculated from the tailings dam . • Controll ing th e evaporative surface by transferring to one pond or conversely leaving the water spread out in its several ponds. • Uti li zing storage outside of the RR Z in dry seasons and releasin g fr om those storages when necessary. • Import of water from external sources. So far , the history of the system is two years of rainfall above the design average of 1380 and one year below the average. The pattern in one of the average years was such as to provide a large mean evaporative area. The balance has been maintained by the import of some 750,000 m' from bores and I, 180,000 ml from Magela Creek.

Continued on page 30

.)


â&#x20AC;˘ â&#x20AC;˘ .SPECIALISTS THE EVENT To give the Conference its fu ll and descriptive title (once only), 'The International Specialists Conference on Water Regime in Relatio n to Milling, Mining and Waste Treatment includ ing Rehabilitation with Emphasis on Uranium Mining', was held in Darwin over the period 4-9t h September and const ituted an innovation in Association activities in several ways. The Conference purpose was markedly specialised, much of the technical content was a cons iderab le departure from the day to day activities of a broad sect ion of the Association membership and the proposal for the event was generated in the N .T. Branch and that Branch carried the fu ll responsibility for a Conference with a significant international content and a wide spread of atten¡dance from other States. Full credit to the hard core of the Branch Committee who carried the full weight with extraordinary competence, energy and stamina , John Paul, Ron Frey ling and John Kenworthy who with their spouses, Merle, Keran and Jenny performed mightily in the interests of the Branch and of the Association . Contradicting the prophets of doom, attendance mustered 67 fu ll time registrant, over 100 part time attenders and some 13 'accompanying persons' - no mean effort in view of th e specialist nat ure of the activities and the long (and costly) hike to Darwin . It' s understood that the Committee may achieve a 'break-even' financial resu lt - even more to their credit. The venu e, Mindi! Beach Hotel/Cas ino just recently completed has the appea l of catering to those with an incurable gambling itch and providing entertainment in the process. T he Conference facil ities handled this event reasonably but any significant increase in numbers could have caused problems . The programme was a friendly one. Registration opened on the Sunday with an even ing cocktail party to estab li sh the right approach to the com ing week and permit renewal of old acquaintances. President Frank Bishop presided at the Opening on the Monday with the Minister for Work s and Transport, the Hon. Roger Steel providing the official opening and Dr. G. A. Letts, the Keynote address - a summary is given later in these comments. The Manufacturers Exhibitio n was also' availab le at the Opening and the remainder of the week and was greatly appreciated as the task of mounting and manning a display so far from the main base (in many cases) is heavy, financially and in manpower demands. The technical sessions , 32 two in all plus four 'mini-seminars' provided a demanding programme. Prints of all papers were availab le on registration and the Cabaret Room served as a slightly exotic lecture hall. Papers were impress ive in their technical , and primarily specialised content. A 'summary' and detailed listing of the papers follow s later in this commentary .

CONFERENCE-DARWIN ...

As in ot her Conferences, the presentation of so me papers was marred by unsuitable slide projection and by unjustifiable confidence in the legibility of 'overhead' projection. An author talking to tabu lations or diagrams which cannot be read by hi s audience has a prob lem - usuall y unreali sed by the speaker . Guidelines a nd standards are most necessary as part of the requirements for submission of papers. T he technica l programme includ ed site visits to the Rum Jungle and the Ranger Uranium mines - the past and the present approach to this most important and controversial aspect of resource development. Further comme nt fo llows later in thi s report. Socially Darwin li ved up to its free and easy and hospitable reputation and the Branch and the active Committee members co llectively and individually made visitors feel at home a nd kept them well occupied . Wednesday night prov ided a BBQ at Peewee Camp beside the Bay and in the balmy atmosphere of Darwin 's dusk. A loca l theatre group provided enterta inment on Thursday night with a hi ghly professional live show, much enjoyed . Friday night, the grand finale to the Conference - cabaret dinner at the Mindi! with a visit to the casin o to fo llow. Long legged danci ng girls (very nice too), a hard working compere whose piano playing was impressive, a most impressive illusionist (magician if you prefer) and an enthusiastic band with db' s well beyond acceptab le industrial limits. Reports as to success or failure at the tables of the Casino are not available. Certainly a good time was had by a ll and a great deal of enjoyment, no news of bankruptcies has reached yo ur Editor nor has there been advice of early and affluent retirements - so pres umably - all was well . Congratulations to Darwin and the N.T. Branch.

is not equalled by availability of water, the characteristic of our continent being variab le and low rainfa lls accompanied by low runoffs. He conti nued by stressing the attendance at the Conference of specialists from overseas and Aust rali a-w ide and the value of the resulting contribution to discussion of all aspects of the water regime. President Frank pointed out how fitting it was that the Conference should be opened by Mr. Steele - a Territorian, vitally concerned with the subject matter of the Conference . First elevated to the Legislative Assembly in 1974, he became Min ister for Transport with self government of the Territory in 1978. Mr. Steele is now Minister for Transport and Works and is also respons ible for Industrial Development.

THE HON. ROGER STEELE Commencing with acknowledgement of the value of the Conference and of the initiative of the A WW A Darwin Branch in its arrangement and with a tribute to the keynote speaker, Dr. Letts, the Min ister traversed the ear li er aspects of uranium mining, with its many complexities and repercussions, the Fox Commission a nd its outcome.

OPENING

.THAL/AN

WATER/

In introducing the Hon. Roger Steele, Federal President Frank Bishop emphasized that Australia's richness in mineral resources

Mr. Steel then touched on the complex aspects of generating and developing a policy for the mining of uranium, the physica l environmental requirements and the ro le of the aborigines - the traditional owners. His comments included the vital role of the water systems, the fine eco logical balance existing and th e low natural levels of contamination normall y ex isting and the controls and monitori ng essential as a result. In the Territory, Rum Jungle provides a '3 0 year after' picture and an example of remedial measures necessary as a result of defi ciencies in initial approaches. Today the situ at ion is vastly different with the Ranger and Marbarlek mines producing an nually, 3000 and 2000 tonnes under close and proper controls - a tribute to the companies: the aborigin al traditional owners and the Commonwealth a nd Territory agencies involved. WATER December, 1983

19


... SPECIALISTS CONFERENCE-DARWIN ... The Minister emphasized that the N.T. Government supports mining generally and tbe utilization of mineral resources with proper controls and recognition of a ll the factors involved , economic and environmental. Mr. Steele concluded with t he . comment that the Conference, while not limited to uranium mining, wo uld hea r much of the Alligator Ri ver Region and its projects wh ich provides an example, a mod el case, unique in the world scene and he wished the C onference and its delegates. every success.

TECHNICAL SESSIONS

tRALIA,41 !/ATER

KEYNOTE ADDRESSS DR. GOFF LETTS The Guest Speaker Dr. A. G. Letts, C.B .E ., C ha irman and Director of t he Nor. them Territory Environment Commission was introduced by Presid ent Bishop with a tribute to his scientifi c skills and hi s appreciation of the needs of the indigenous people and of t he comm unity, the environ ment, a nd of compatibility with the mining development. Dr. Letts was taken ill prior to th e Conference and with ga lla ntry emerged from hospital to give the keynote address. Dr. Letts paraphrased the oft repeated Harold McMillan quotation of ' The Winds of Change' wit h the title of his address, wh ich is summarised below.

THE WATERS OF CHANGE The technica l revolutions of the past decade have markedly affected t he means of production and di stribution and raised m a ny challenges to traditional patterns of thought and of behaviour. Of the resulting cha nges in society, the growth of public interest in enviro nm enta l matters a nd of development of natural resources is amongst the most noticeable. One of these resources is water , th e major componen t of a ll living things. The most valua ble mineral is not gold or silver or uranium , it is water, a resource taken for gra nted and frequently rece iving sca nt regard. In 1974 the Whitlam Government introduced th e E nviro nment Protection (Impact of Proposa ls) Act with special implications for ura nium mining , for which com panion legislation now exists at most State levels. In 1975 the Ranger Uranium Environmenta l (or 'Fox') Inquiry was set up , a la ndm ark investigation wit h wid escale public involvement. Tak ing some two years, the inquiry was criticised in some quarters for the delay caused to developments an d fo r introducing Commonwealth poli cies co nflicting with selfgovernment initiatives in the Territory but it represented th e most comprehensive independent a nalys is of a controversial development scheme ever condu cted in A ustralia. A significant portion of the final report (Chapters 5 to 7), was directly devoted to questions of water qu a lity and co mprehensive 20

WATER December, /983

recommendations relating to the water regime were incl uded. In th e first report in 1976 t he Fox C ommi ssion recommended estab li shme nt of a 'Ura nium Advisory C ouncil' a perma nent body with provi sion for access by the public and with some memb ershi p " ... not expert in nuclear science or technology". The Env ironment Committee of the Advisory Co un cil has visited known uranium deposits in A ustralia, the A lli gator River leases and Rum Jungle in the Territory; Roxby Downs, Honeymoon and Beverley in So uth A ustralia; Yeel irrie and Lake Way in Western Australia; deposits varying from localised shallow sediments to deep seated ore bodies and ca llin g for a correspo nding variety of mining approaches. Water management plans fo rm a major feature of a ll mining a nd waste disposal proposals a nd sa ti sfactory plans are a n essential requirement to Governmental approval. In so me cases approval has been with held , not because of th e hardened opponents to uranium mining nor the non -peaceful uranium usage question but beca use the man in the street had doubts as to th e possible effects of the mining on hi s water supply or upon the environm ent. A major lesson emerging from experience on th e Uranium Ad visory Counci l is the problem of achi ev ing a fair a ppreciatio n by poli ticians a nd p ublic of the complex a nd controversial iss ues involved. There has been failure to provide objective and convinci ng information sati sfactor y to the public mind on certain projects, the responsibility for such being with the proponents of mining development , government agencies, professional groups and the media. It is not to be expec ted that this Co nference of specia li sts for specialists will achi eve this result but the delegates will leave better informed and with re fl ection on the fact of ever increasing public scrutiny in this area delegates may be seized with the necess ity to translate their vitally importa nt knowledge into fo rms wh ich the p ublic can understand. In today's battle for the mind of man, t he weapons of commu nication are th e heavy a rtillery a nd cann ot be ignored.

Some comment on the main technica l sessions has alread y been given and a summary of the technical papers and a full listing is given elsewhere. Of the initial li stings of 34 papers two where withdrawn and the A uthors of papers Nos. 15 and 33 could not be present at the Conference. Sue Meek and John Paul nobl y stepped into t he breach and gave the presentatio ns - a difficul~ tas k at short noti ce . The 32 main papers pre ented covered a wide range of the aspects embraced by the speciali zed nature a nd purpose of the Conference as will be apparent from the listing of titles a nd the summary by President Frank Bishop. Attendance at the papers was well maintained over the whole period of the Co nference and comment a nd questions was indicative of the susta ined interest. In addition to t he main papers, five ' miniseminars' were condu cted on th e follo wing topics: • Hydrologic Relationships in Tropical Areas - J . Brown, S.M.H.E.A. • The Application of Metering Pumps D . Steumpel, Prominent a nd Fluid Controls. • Co mputer Based Telem etry Systems - F. Sacks, Kent Instruments. Graham • C hlorination Prin cipl es Douglas, Wallace and Tiernan. • Hydrogen Peroxide in the Control of Corrosion and Odours in Sewers - Interox Chemical. T hese short sessions were wi::11 attended a nd were rewarding.

,• TECHNICAL TOURS Part of the technical programme consisted of visits to the Ranger and to the Rum Jungle uranium mines, the first a full day journey, th e second a wc;II occupied half day. Two well filled buses met the transport requirements and the compani es and organisations visited were most genero us in t he provi sion of staff to advi se a nd inform and of hospitality en route. The 25 0 km run to the Ra nger was broken by a welcome stop at the traditional Bark Hut (both com ing and go in g) a nd at the mine site t he to ur visited the excavation works, va riou s retention pond s, had a d rive about t he plant which was not operating at the tim e and recei ved instruct ive comment o n variou s aspects of th e activities from a number of Ranger staff, too numerous to mention here, whose ass istance was very much appreciated . After luncheon a t the j ob dining centre , the party made a quick visit to the O.S.S. - office of the Supervising Sc ienti st a nd called in at the Headqu arters of Kakadu National Park before setting off for Darwin a nd a not un welcome free evening after a full day.

C

"·I

.l


... SPECIALISTS CONFERENCE-DARWIN ... The Rum Jungle visit was of considerable interest in first hand contact with the measures now considered necessary to rectify past fai lings in the approach to mining. A box lunch en route permitted vis its to a number of points about the mine area. A call at Batchelor on the way home yielded a few contacts with the locals and a generous afternoon tea . Again, sincere appreciation to the Departments involved and the staff who provided guidance and information.

SPONSORS Grateful acknowledgement to sponsors and of support from: Ansett Airlines Dept. of Mines & Energy Dept of Transport & Works Gutteridge Haskins & Davey Hardie Iplex Plastics Interox Chem icals Kent Instruments Mining & Process Eng. Services N.T. Development Corp. N.T. Govt. Tourist Bureau Ranger Uranium Mines Ross Dunkley & Associates Sleeman & Partners Snowy Mountains Eng. Corp. Specialised Eng. Services B.H.P. Co. Ltd. Federal Hotels Ltd. I. E. Aust. - N.T. Division Tubemakers of Aust.

Ultraviolet Technology of Aust. Vinidex Tubemakers Wallace & T iernan Wormald Machinery Va lve Group

For the ladies there was a luncheon or two, museum visits (most interesting), City tours and a pool side barbecue for all delegates, an activity well suited to the Top End climate.

SOCIAL ACTIVITIES

THE CLOSURE

With this commentary are a few photographs which will convey the general spirit of the social side of this Conference better than any writing by your Editor. The Cocktail Party on the first evening of Registration provided those initial contacts and renewal of old acquaintances which are always a pleasant feature of these gatherings. The Tuesday night BBQ at the Peewee Camp of Dave and Billie West li ved up to expectations - a pleasa nt location at the East Point Reserve, food traditiona l a nd in plenty and no thirst unslaked. The play 'The Bed of Roses' at Brown's Mart theatre on the Thursday night was a light hearted romp acted with enthusiasm and this with the finale to the Conference, the Cabaret Dinner, has received comment earlier in these notes. A social tour down 'The Track' to Adelaide River provided a pleasant break for some of the 'accompanying persons' (and others) calling at spots of interest en route including Berry Spri ngs, the Darwin River Dam (a pleasant lunch), the Aborigine Education Centre at Batchelor and not forgetting the Bushrangers Pub before returning just in time to make the BBQ.

The final stage of the Conference proper provided the opportunity for acknowledgement and apprec iation of the services rendered by so many and the good work contributed and for a most effective summary of the technical aspects by President Frank Bishop which is cove red elsewhere. John Paul, Convenor of the Conference expressed the appreciat ion of his Committee to the many sponsors and the numerous helpers in numerous areas . Bob Lloyd, Federal Vice-President added hi s comments for the Federal Counci l and expressed particular appreciation to the hard working six - the Pauls, the Freylings, and the Kenworthys for their sterling efforts - with a suitable presentation. To mark the occasion and provide more tangible and permanent expressions of appreciation, certificates and A WWA plaques were presented to Session Chairmen, Speake rs and Sponsors and other helpers and finally, a special presentation was made to Mr. Tony Ward as representing the Authors of Paper No. 32 - Rehabi litation of the Mary Kathleen Mine Site after Closure in recognition of the significance of this paper in the context of the Conference.

Ansett - official carriers.!or the 1983 A WWA Specialists Conference, Darwin. Ansett have more flights to more places than any other airline in Australia. We've added so many new flights to every corner of the country, that now you can fly when it suits you, and not just when it suits the airline. And, isn't that what an airline should be about?

Ansett. WATER December, /983

21


SPECIALISTS CONFERENCE

--·--~ --../,

John Kenworthy, Doug. Hammerton, Peter Cloke , Mepi Yanape.

Graheme Dooley , Hugh McGinley , Don Walters .

Peter Loveday , Lyn Loveday, Bob Lloyd, Don and Beryl Darben.

Beryl Darben , Keran Freyling , Marla Wijenayake, Ron Freyling.

Pres . and V . Pres. survey the scene . Frank Bishop and Bob Lloyd.

Sue Meek , Chuck Wahtola, Jim Rouse.

PRE-CONFERENCE COCKTAILS AT THE MINDIL BEACH HOTEL-CASINO

Josephine Lyons , Barry Lyons, Merle Paul.

Lorraine Crawley , Frank Bishop , Grace Dureau.

En-route: A tall ant-hill or small people? John Cowdroy (left) with a solid overseas contingent , Chuck Wahtola and Cady Johnson. 22

WATER December, 1983

The 'Executives' - Frank Bishop , John Carter.

SITE VISIT -RANGER MINE


DARWIN 1983

BBQ AT DAVE & BILLIE WEST'S PEEWEE CAMP EAST POINT RESERVE (No names-no pack-drill)

Lining up for departure from the Mindi! Beach.

Viewing rehabilitation.

r

SITE VISIT - TO RUM JUNGLE

Tea and scones at Batchelor.

WATER December, 1983

23


SPECIALISTS CONFERENCE DARWJN

DISPLAY AND EXHIBITION

I

24

WATER December, 1983


SPECIALISTS CONFERENCE DARWIN

DISPLAY AND EXHIBITION

At the opening: J o hn Pa ul , Dr. Letts, Fra nk Bishop , Ron Freyling.

DEPT. OF MINES & ENERGY' DEPT-. TRANSPORT & WORKS' FLYGHT AUSTRALIA LTD.' GATIC (AUSTRALIA) PTY . LTD.' HARDIE IPLEX PLASTICS HUMES LTD. INTEROX CHEMICALS PTY. LTD . JAMES HARDIE & COY PTY. LIMITED JOHN MORRIS SCIENTIFIC KENT INSTRUMENTS (AUST.) PTY. LTD. PERKINS-ELMER INSTRUMENTS'

THE

EXHIBITORS

(' Sorry, no photos - ca mera proble ms!)

PROMINENT & FLUID CONTROLS PTY. LTD. RANGER URANIUM MINES PTY. LTD . SPECIALISED ENGINEERING SERVICES PTY. LTD . TUBEMAKERS OF AUSTRALIA LIMITED ULTRAVIOLET TECHNOLOGY OF AUSTRALASIA VARIAN WALLACE & TIERNAN WORMALD MACHINERY PUMP GROUP

Prese ntation by V . Pres. Bob Lloyd to the hardworking six - Ron and Ke ran Fre yling , John Kenworthy , Me rle Paul - John Paul and Jenny Ke nworth y are missing .

THE WIND-DOWN DINNER AND CABARET AT THE MINDIL BEACH CASINO

WATER December, 1983

25


DARWIN CONFERENCE At the closure of the Conference, President Frank Bishop provided a summary of the technical papers which, in conjunction with the accompanying tabulation of papers presented below is of considerable value to those with interests in this sphere. The summary follows virtually as delivered f rom the rostrum. (Ed.) The papers presented at this Conference, (the paper numbers are shown in brackets) reflect the complexity of economically mining and milling uranium and other metals while preserving the environment. The crux of the problem is in the water management strategy using the best practical technology (B.P .T.) - accepting that some practical deficiencies occur. The papers and the Conference provided an opportunity to learn from existing operating systems and ear lier mining operations, here and overseas , that have had varying degrees of impact on the environment. Following the Fox Report, a high degree of regulation of Uranium Mining has been int roduced: • The complexities are discussed by E. Hespe (Paper I): Phase I The Project Development - EIS (environmental impact statement) and Phase 2 - Operational Phase - Assurance of Compliance. Furthermore, there is the need for the uranium industry to comply with: Environment Protection (Nuclear Codes Act 1978) Code of Practice on Management of Radio Active Wastes (1982) Code of Practice on Radiation Protection (1980) Code of Practice for Safe Transport of Radio Active Substances ( I 982) These requirements, while necessary , are effective but cumbersome. • The U.S. Effluent Guidelines for the Mining Industry - W. Telliard, H. Kohlmann and V. Lickers(33) give specific effluent standards which may or may not be appropriate - possibly a cumbersome machine with 12 Agencies and 31 subdivisions of Federal Government. • Thus to get to Phase I - the Project Development Phase, it is necessary to assess the existing cond itions and have baseline monitoring (M. Richards and C. Wahtola Paper 12) in order that in the Planning Phase and Development, EIS is properly documented and due cognisance is taken in the Operational Phase. P. Manning(13) examines the concentration of heavy metals in Fish and Invertebrates. P. Airy et al(l 8) examines the leaching of ore samples from Ranger No. I orebody into the gro undwater. J. Rouse and M. Williams(27) point up the danger that acid leaching of uranium ore has on grou ndwater resources. A factor recognised is the Best Practicable Technology (B.P.T) is essentially a practical engineering approach and does suffer from various deficiencies - the 'no release' water management plan can encounter seepage from the tailings dam, breaching of wall, human error. Several papers address this in discussing the need for monitoring: • J. Grounds( 16) covers a monitoring programme at Narbarlek while Airey(l8) examines Nucleides into Groundwater Movement in vicinity of Ranger No. I Orebody. • D. Jones et al(9) exam ines computer models to simulate metal movement in sur face waters. A pragmatic approach to B.P .T. is introduced in a number of papers:

TECHNICAL SUMMARY •

P . Burgess(2) where he aimed for a Water Balance Model for a no release operation. • Ranger Uranium(34) set out their dual objectives: -to provide a continuous supply of water for mining and milling -comply with agreed authorizations to protect the environment. • T. Daniell(28) discussed the issues of Water Tailings Management for zero release systems: -Sat urated Tailings Management; -Semi-Dry Tailings Management. • A. Crawley(31) discusses the B.P.T. for waste management. • J. Canterford and G. Sparrow(30) look at the dewatering characteristics of tailings. A number of papers recognise the possibility of release of heavy metals and uranium and the effect on the environment: • P. Airey et al(8) discuss the transport of Zinc -and Manganese tracers across the Magella Creek System - in which Zn and Mn isotopes were removed in bottom sediments as well as on vegetation in the flood plain. Recognition of the utilization of natural processes has been examined : • D. Lowson and J. Evans(?) Adsorption of Heavy Metals on Oxides and Clays. • Janet Dunbabin(l4) Use of Aquatic Plants to Remove Heavy Metals. • M. Tsezos(l5) Treatment of Uranium Mining and Milling Wastes by Biological Adsorption. • Related is T. Beer and C. Marlow's paper(20) on dispersion in Jabiluka Billabong. A series of papers look at fundamental chem istry: • R. Lowson(21) Aqueous chemistry of Acid Mind Drainage followed up by G. Davis and A. Ritchie(22) presenting a Model of Pyritic Oxidation in Waste Rock Dumps and later by another, J. Daniel et al(24) on Quality and Quantity of Runoff and Groundwater from Overburden Dumps undergoing Pyritic Oxidation (a full scale pilot study). • M. Acland(25) presents Process Engineering Considerations for the Rum Jungle Wastewater Treatment by a physical chemical plant. S. Miller et al(23) looked at neutra lizatio n of Acid Waste by limestone and lime/ sod ium hydroxide . Finally on rehabilitation, T. A. Ward et al(3 2) discuss Mary Kathleen and A . Craw ley(3 1) writes on B.P .T. for waste management and rehabilitation. To attempt to summarise in a short tim e a Conference of this nature is not only difficult, it is impossible. There is'however, one clear conclusion emerging from the wealth of information put forward and the variety of opinions expressed. It is a far cry from Rum Jungle and 20 odd years ago to 1983 and the mining of today and it is a long journey from those early days when the main concern of mining compa nies was extraction of the resources with little regard for the environment, to today when the companies, in the process of mining, must pick their way through a minefield, not of resources but of legislati ve and other controls. This is a situation which may be rationalised and streamlined with further experience, but it will not change in its requirements or at least, will not ease. A contrib uti on to this problem apparent through the Conference is that the research by scientists, in the laboratory and in the field is, being applied by engineers to attain cost-effective solutions without environmental damage.

Technical Papers Paper No. and Author(s) E. D. Hespe

2

26

P. Burgess

WATER December, 1983

Title

Paper No. and A uthor(s}

Regulation of Uranium Mining in the Alligator Rivers Region.

4

Water Balance Modelling for a No-release Mining Operation in the Northern Territory.

5

Title

B. F. Afghan, T. Bridge, Recent Developments in Identification, Assessment and Control of Industrial Pollutants.

K. Conn

B. N. Noller, N . A . Curry

Environmental Significance of Copper, Lead, Manganese, Uranium and Zinc Speciation in the Event of Contaminated Waters Release from the Ranger Uranium Mining Complex.


Technical Papers (Cont'd) Paper No. and Author(s)

Title

Paper No. and Author(s)

Title

6

D. E . Garman

Effects of Coal Mining on Water Quality in the Hunter River Basin.

21

R. T. Lowson

The Aqueous Chemistry of Acid Mining Drainage.

7

R. T . Lowson, J. V. Evans

Adsorption and Desorption of Low Concentrations Heavy Metal Ions on Oxides and Clays.

22

G. B. Davis, A. I. M. Ritchie

A Model of Pyritic Oxidation in Waste Rock Dumps.

8

P. L. Airey, G. E. Calf, The Transport of Zinc and Manganese Tracers A. Davison, J . F. Easey, Across the Magela Creek System, Northern P. Lucas, A. Morley Territory.

23

S. Miller, I. Irvine, P. Redann, P. Bell

Acid Mine Drainage Control and Treatment - Investigation Strategy, Case Studies and New Technology.

9

D. R. Jones, B. M. Chapman, R. F. Jung

The Roles of Precipitation and Uptake by Sediments in the Removal of Heavy Metals from Streams Affected by Mine Drainage.

24

J. A. Daniel J. R. Harries, A. I. M. Ritchie

The Quality and Quantity of Runoff and Groundwater in Two Overburden Dumps Undergoing Pyritic Oxidation.

11

B. K. Afghan

Recent Advances in Quantitative Pollutants in Aquatic Environment.

25

M. C. Ackland

Process Engineering Considerations in the Design of the Water Treatment Plant for the Rum Jungle Rehabilitation Project.

12

M. C . Richards, C.H. Wahtola

Background Radioactivity in Plants, Animals, Soils and Air in the Vicinity of Proposed Insitu Uranium Mines.

26

J. A. H. Brown

The Collection and Analysis of Hydrologic Data for the OK Tedi Project, Papua New Guinea.

P . F. Manning

The Use of Tissue Heavy Metal Concentrations of Fish and Invertebrates as Indicators of Environmental Contamination with Reference to the OK Tedi Copper/ Gold Mine, Papua New Guinea.

27

J. V. Rouse, M. P . A. Williams

Geochemical Interactions Between Acidic Seepage Plumes and Natural Rock Materials .

28

T. M. Daniell

Water and Tailings Management - is Saturated Tailings Management 'Best Practicable Technology'?

29

G. F. Birchard, D. H . Alexander

Natural Analogues - A Way to Increase Confidence in Predictions of Long-term Performance of Radioactive Waste Disposal.

30

J . H. Canterford, G. J . Sparrow

The Use of Measured Dewatering Characteristics in the Desig'1 of Uranium Tailings Management Systems.

31

A. H . Crawley

Rehabilitation of Uranium Tailings Impoundments .

32

T. Ward, J . Flannagan, R. W. Hubery

Rehabilitation of the Mary Kathleen Uranium Mine Site After Closure.

33

W. A. Telliard, H. J. Ko hlmann, V. A . Lickers

Preparation of Effluent Guidelines for the Mining Industry .

34

Ranger Uranium Mines Pty . Ltd.

Operation of the Ranger Uranium Mine Water Management System .

13

14

J. S. Dunbabin

The Potential of Aquatic Plants to Remove Heavy Metals from Mining Waste Water Effluents.

15

M. Tsezos

Treatment of Uranium Mining and Milling Wastewater Using Biological Adsorbents .

16

J. A. Grounds

Groundwater Monitoring Procedures and Evaluation at Nabarlek, N .T.

17

A. V. Arakel

Hydrogeological Assessment of Inland Calcrete Drainage Systems in Relation to Groundwater Requirements for Uranium Mining Operations.

18

P. L. Airey, C. Golian, T . Nightingale, D. Roman, S. Short

Groundwater Induced Migration of Uranium and its Daughter Products in the Vicinity and its Ranger No. I Ore Body.

19

B. J. Lyons, G. P. Skerry

Influence of Beach Sands Mining on Groundwater Conditions.

20

T. Beer, C. Marlow

Dispersion in Jabiluka Billabong, N.T.

DARWIN CONFERENCE

CHANGING YOUR ADDRESS?

Complete volume of the 32 papers presented is now available

CONFIDE IN US!

Apply: Conference Secretariat, PO Box 37283, Winnel li e, N.T. 5789, Price : $60 internal, $70 overseas

A.W.W.A.

ELEVENTH FEDERAL CONVENTION MELBOURNE, AUST.

Advise your Branch Secretary or Editor

April 28-May 5, 1985

WATER December, 1983

27


Water and Wastewater Treatment in Victoria An Operational Review R. L. Povey INTRODUCTION

Since the establishment of the Operator Training Centre at Werribee it has been possible to inspect and assess, in a relatively comprehensive manner, Victoria's water and wastewater treatment facil ities. The Centre's Level I Courses (both for Wastewater and Water treatment plant operations) provide for the trainees to be inspected and assessed at their own plants. This on-site evaluation is then taken into consideration, in conjuction with performance at the course, when determining whether or not a Level I certificate is to be awarded. This assessment has enabled not only many technical aspects to be identified , but has also highlighted some more general factors, including engineering/ management considerations. Five topics identified as worthy of discussion are presented as follows: · 1. Safety 2. Staffing Levels 3. Process Control and Assessment 4. General Operator's Facilities 5. Management Responsibilities and Attitudes. The comments made are directed primarily at Victoria's plants, but many of the points raised are also known to be relevant in other Australian states. 1. SAFETY

Throughout the western world the water and particularly the wastewater treatment industry is generally considered to be one of the most hazardous industries in which to work . In many countries, concern as to safety has been such as to warrant the conduct of comprehensive surveys which have revealed the industry' s poor safety record. In Australia there is an apparent lack of any comprehensive state or nationwide survey of the safety record of the water industry . This may well be indicative of what is considered to be a total lack of concern exhibited by the industry for even reasonable safety measures. The attitude appears to be - ' let's not look too closely, we might not like what we see' - or perhaps even closer to the bone - 'we might not be prepared to afford to do anything about it anyway!' Some of the most common and potentially lethal safety problems (not in order of priority), include: • insufficient staffing of hazardous areas; • safety harnesses either not provided or their use not enforced; • gas detection equipment usually not provided; • breathing apparatus usually not available or rarely checked for serviceability, poorly suited for application or the user not given adequate initial or on-going training in its use; • safety railing is either nor provided or inadequate or in poor repair; • stairs not provided or are difficult to use; • poor personal hygiene facilities (see further comment under General Operator's Facilities); • chlorine handling facilities and techniques below reasonable stan dards; • reasonable lifting equipment for pump/ valve removal either not available or inadequate. 2. STAFFING LEVELS Many plants and water and wastewater operations generally, are inadequately staffed both in regard to numbers and the abilities and knowledge of the employee. The well known adage that the treatment plant is the retirement patch for ageing and redundant grader drivers , night so il men and

Robin Povey is Manager Water Operations and Training Centre, Ministry of Water Resources and Water Supply, Victoria. This paper was presented to the Victorian Branch upon retirement of Robin as Branch President in September 1982. 28

WATER December, 1983

other workmen of low ability and/ or job motivation is a reality in far too many water and sewerage authorities. In many plants, all that has been traditionally required of operators is that the plants be kept neat and tidy and, as a bonus, be kept relatively odour free. Hopefully the plants will meet discharge requirements on the few occasions they are checked . In other words personnel are employed as maintenance men - not as operators requiring substantial sk ills in a multitude of discip lines. It is very obvious that a number of plants, particularly the smaller installations require more staff to ensure that not only is the maintenance dealt with but also the process and plant operation receives the required attention . With regard to the operator's abilities, where process control and plant efficiency is a key consideration, it is essential that better educated staff be employed and that the staff be given additional specialized training in the particular skills required. A particularly successful approach to ensure adequate staffing of facilities, has been adopted by the Wyong Shire in New South Wales where an operator's apprenticeship scheme has been established with encouraging results. The apprentices receive substantial theoretical instruction together with practical training in both water and wastewater treatment, distribution and collection operations . This system has attracted to the industry young people with a high degree of motivation. As long as suitable career paths can be established and maintained, it would seem that this approach promises significant benefits for both employees and employers.

3. PROCESS CONTROL AND ASSESSMENT It is amazing how frequen tly during plant inspections assurances are received as to how well everything is working, when it is strikingly evident that a series of disasters are occuring in the pro~ess itself. Quite often, however, these disasters are alleviated by some good fortune usually in the form of lagoons. It is very evident from these experiences that too few staff know what to expect from each process unit. While the theoretical process may be understood, little expertise is demonstrated in ensuring the process is operating as designed. There is little doubt that one of the major causes of this deficiency on-site process control knowledge and application is the lack of adequate process monitoring equipment at the plant. The eye-ometer, ear-ometer and sniff-ometer provide valuable information but treatment plants these days should be managed in a somewhat more scientific manner making full use of the accuracy and reliability of modern laboratory equipment. Such equipment provides operators with the level of information essential for general control and also for fine tuning of complex processes. It is stressed that 'processes' includes the biological, chemical and physical reactions occuring in a treatment plant . In many instances it seems that the traditional approach - particularly by civil engineers - has been to monitor mainly the physical aspects giving little attention to the biological and chemical. This is just as unacceptable as monitoring using only the body's senses! For the activated sludge process and for trickling filter plants, as examples, the United States Environment Protection Authority recommendation for minimum equipment for monitoring these processes is shown below.

Observations would indicate that very few plants in Australia would have even one or two of these items, however, it is pleasing to note that this situation is changing. Some of the operators trained at the Operator Training Centre have been able to persuade their authorities to provide the equipment which their training has equipped them to use. In addition to the obvious need to train operators, it is very apparent that supervising engineers require similar attention . While


RECOMMENDED PROCESS MONITORING EQUIPMENT U.S.A. - E.P.A. Item

A.S.

Trickling Filter

Analytical Balance Clinical Centrifuge Biochemical Oxygen Demand (B.O.D.) Incubator Drying Oven Oxygen Analyzer or Titration Equipment Microscope

• • • •

• • • •

engineers may be able to design plants figuratively to five decimal places, the reality of making plants operate to design performance parameters seems to elude many. In making this statement, it is accepted that in many cases the designer is not responsible for the operation. There are few engineering courses which include the practical aspects of plant operation. A number of plants experienced process problems which are the responsibility of the engineers and not of the operator . The reasons for these problems are usually a combination of factors including simple Jack of knowledge, and perhaps of equal or greater concern - a . lack of interest. In some cases the problems can be traced to poor con.struction techniques. COMMON PROBLEMS SEEN IN WASTEWATER AND WATER TREATEMENT PLANTS Poor Trade Waste Policies Grit Channels Poor flow control Extremes in pump rates Insufficient inorganic removal Excess organic removal Bar Screen Overflow problems Poor by-pass design Inadequate cleaning Primary Sedimentation Tanks Current problems from: no inlet baffles weirs not level insufficient detention time

Rising sludge and odours from: infrequent sludge withdrawal no wall scraping inadequate scum removal Digesters Poor digestion Poor mixing, feeding and temperature control excessive scum, grit accumulation Activated Sludge No solids management e.g. no measurement F:M No raw activated sludge and waste activated sludge measurement · No dissolved oxygen measurement and adjustments No sludge age monitoring and adjustments No S. V.I. monitoring and adjustments Filters Poor construction Feed and recycle rates not monitored or adjusted No oxygen measurement Lagoons No dissolved oxygen measurement No pH measurement Insufficient attention to mixing and loading characteristics Poor loading diversions between lagoons

Chlorine No pH measurement or adjustment facilities No detention time for residual measurement Chlorinating into open basins Poor maintenance of equipment No breathing apparatus (poorly placed - refer above) Poor location of equipment relative to mechanical and electrical equipment Chlorination of dirty water Poor records Water Treatment No jar tests for optimum coagulation dosage No head loss meters for filters No turbidity meters - types No pH monitoring or control No flow monitoring or control •

4. GENERAL OPERATOR'S FACILITIES

A prime management principle to achieve the best from workers is to provide a substantial degree of worker motivation, a principle rarely encountered in this industry. Certainly this is the predominant impression gained when examining the general facilities provided for operating staff. How does the working environment of the supervisory personnel compare with that of the operator? The working surroundings of the majority of operators illustrate perfectly the poor attitude of their employers to the importance of the treatment plant and its working efficiency. Given the low standard of general facilities provided for operators, it is little wonder that an equivalent working performance results and is usually reflected around the plant. Among the more common shortcomings existing are the lack of: • hot water • protective clothing • showers • appropriate areas set aside for meals and tea breaks • electrical power • 'outside' means of communication e.g. phone. It may be argued that in many situations the operator either does not particularly want these facilities or would not use the facilities if provided. Such an argument suggests that either the wrong person has been appointed, or that the operator has not been adequately trained in the importance of personal hygiene and good housekeeping perhaps here the chicken and the egg argullj.ent could apply. In the majority of cases, most operators will be significantly motivated to perform better if given the feeling that their employer thinks enough of them to provide reasonable personal hygiene facilities and a satisfactory environment. Quoting the Wyong plant again, washing machines are provided onsite in which all operator's working clothes must be washed - to avoid contamination of family clothes at the operator's home - the working clothes are not allowed off-site. In addition, time is provided during which all operators must shower and change clothes before leaving the plant. This must assist to establish in the operators a sense of personal hygiene and pride and promote a better public image of operators and treatment plants generally. The plants where these operators work do reflect this general attention to cleanliness in both the process performance and plant surroundings. Surely similar attitidues are needed and should be encouraged in Victoria and elsewhere. This attitude needs enthusiastic support and real committment by both operators and employers. Given such, the benefits will be fully realized.

5. MANAGEMENT RESPONSIBILITIES AND ATTITUDES

By now the picture painted by this paper is such that the reader is probably wondering who is responsible and how things can be improved. It may be understandable if an immediate clearly defined answer does not spring to mind but to consider, now, a few of the contributory factors . • The operators have not had sufficient knowledge. • The authorities sometimes do not know that a problem exists so they don't seek solutions. This could well arise from the general WATER December, 1983

29


lack of interest in plant performance and/ or pre-occupation with keeping rates down as a measure of authority performance rather than the measurement of the quality of service achieved - the quality of the water delivered or discharged. • Engineers not paying ·sufficient attention to plant performance. There seems to be too ready an acceptance of poor plant performance resulting in requests for new facilities or upgrading of existing units, rather than trying to extract the maximum performance from existing plants - for example, digesters given little or no attention often filling with grit and scum, mixing facilities then break-down, heating equipment becomes inoperative and then, the too ready solution - 'build a new one - we can raise a cheap loan for a million or three!' • Visits to treatment plants seem to be infrequent, by management in any form - secretary/ managers or engineers. This conveys to operators a lack of interest by management and causes corresponding disillusionment with the value of their position . A system of regular review of plant (and operator) performance should be established. This would not only motivate operators to perform better but would ensure management is regularly made aware of plant performance and any shortcomings can be rectified immediately. • In a number of instances, the mutual failure of either authorities and engineers to monitor plant performance is a result of inadequate agreements for 'terms of engagement of an engineer' . This

RANGER URANIUM MINES Prop. Limited Continued from page 18 6.4 Water Quality in Ponds and Collectors

The monitoring and supervision of the system provides for regular samplings and analysis of water quality in the ponds within the system . The results of this testing are forwarded to the Supervising Authorities at regular intervals. 6.5 Monitoring

The monitoring of the operation of the water management system comes under the Hydrometeorologist in concert with the environmental laboratory of the company. The following monitoring is carried out:

Hydrological Measurements Daily rainfall is recorded within the Ranger Project area at four sites. At the Jabiru airstrip, rainfall records are made on a Lambrecht 1509-20 Pluviograph which can run continuously on one chart per month and records rainfall intensities. There is also a Dines daily read Pluviograph and a standard collector at this site. Another Lambrecht 1509-20 is located at the back of the low grade ore stockpile. A further two collectors are located on the southern wall of the Tailings Dam and on a small hill adjacent to the Waste Rock Dump . Daily evaporation is recorded by a standard Australian Class A evaporation pan at the airstrip station. Monitoring of the Magela Creek is carried out at Gauging Station 821028 upstream of the Project. This station has a telemetric link installed by the company which can provide warning information on flood peaks and flow variations upstream of the mine complex. A second gauging station (Gauging Station 821009) is located 4 km downstream from the Ranger plant. Both stations are equipped with Stevens A71 continuous water level recorders installed by the Water Division of the Department of Transport and Works. Disturbed Catchments Monitoring The surface runoff from disturbed catchment areas is restrained by diversion drains and restricted release zones. Water from these zones is collected in ponds designed in the water management system for sediment control and storage purposes. The quantities of water transferred between ponds in the water management scheme are measured by mechanical flow meters installed in pipelines or are derived from changes in pond volumes. Outflow from Retention Pond No I is measured by a continuous water level recorder and calculation using a rating curve established from flow measurements. 30

WATER December, 1983

may often relate to an unwillingness on behalf. of authorities to meet the real and necessary costs of adequate engineering services. The need to monitor _plant performance has been emphasised, but the latter points raised highlight equal or greater necessity for monitoring authority performance, particularly in regard to plant and general operational efficiency. This aspect has been addressed by the Victorian Government's Public Bodies Review Committee in the Touche Ross report on Performance Reporting. The performance of authorities (and hence their engineers) in terms of other than purely financial, should be evaluated . Evaluation of performance in wider terms including operating efficiency, would provide a more equitable basis for determining capital funding priorities. Consider say, loan fund applications from two authorities for capital improvements to their treatment plants. The first authority operates a very efficient and well maintained plant, while the second has a plant which has been poorly maintained and is also performing poorly. It would be desirable (all other aspects being similar) that the efficient authority should have funding priority . For this approach to be implemented, performance evaluation criteria would need to be established. In conclusion, it seems desirable that a central water agency should be responsible for establishing and administering performance evaluation criteria. This would exert a greater influence on authorities to increase their operating efficiency and encourage higher standards of technical performance.

Water Quality Sampling Water quality samples are collected at a large number of boreholes and all ponds within the area (including seepage collector sumps at the downstream toe of the dams). The analyses are of two kinds: • General parameters • Trace metals. For the general parameters, the following measurements are made: conductivity, pH, turbidity, cations (sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium) alkalinity (carbonate, bicarbonate, and total) and anions (chloride, phosphate, nitrate, sulphate). The trace metal analyses include the following: copper, lead, manganese, zinc, uranium and radium 226. The results of all analyses are compiled on a monthly basis for the Supervising Authorities, and six monthly basis for incorporation into reports to the Supervising Authorities and to the Periodic Surveillance Committee. 6.6 Maintenance of Structures.

Water retaining structures are the subject of an inspection by Department of Mines and Energy Officers each six months. Their report is considered by the Periodic Surveillance Committee. Most of the dam walls carry a roadway on the top. This is maintained in the normal fashion by grading where necessary. Care has to be taken when carrying out this operation not to leave a windrow of spoil along the edges. If such a windrow, however, small, is left, it will concentrate the flow of runoff water and will lead to guttering in the protective rip rap surface on the walls. Should this occur, the gutters are repaired by dumping waste rock from the mine into the affected area. Downstream slopes on the two main retention ponds are protected by vegetation which is irrigated in the dry, both as a means of maintaining the grass cover and preventing the spread of bushfires onto the slopes . The vegetation established on the walls is periodically checked and any tree species the roots of which could penetrate the walls and lead to weakness are eliminated. Shallow rooted shrubs are permitted to thrive except in the vicinity of the seepage collector drains where all vegetation except grasses and legumes is eliminated. In addition to maintaining the integrity of water retaining structures, the maintenance of drains, sediment traps and bunds designed to direct the flow of stormwater is an essential feature . During the long dry season, such features can be neglected and their function forgotten by people who are not directly involved with water management. A pre wet season campaign of maintenance and repair is an essential to ensure that the system is prepared for the wet season and does not overflow in some small but significant area.

'

.I


CALENDAR 1984-1985 January 19-20, London, U.K. Tunnelling in Soft Ground

June 10-12, Quebec, Canada Symposium-Watershed Chemistry.

February 6-10, Canberra, A.C.T. 5th A WW A Summer School.

June 18-22, Vermont, U.S.A. 5th International Conference on Finite Elements in Water Resources .

February 9-10, London, U.K. Embankment Dams. March 5-9, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia Second Water Technology Exhibition. March 25-29, Bet Dagan, Israel Soil Salinity Under Irrigation Processes and Management . March 27-29, London, U.K. 4th Int. Environment and Safety Conference. ,.\pril 2-6, Brisbane, Australia Annual Engineering Conference, I.E. Aust. April 3-5, Innsbruck, Austria Fluid Sealing. April 9-13, Sydney, Australia 38th Annual Conference of Appita. April 9-13, Nairobi, Kenya Second African Water Technology Conference. April 10-12, E. Kilbride, Scotland Flow Measurement in the Water Industry. April 11-13, Uni. of Southampton, U.K. Int. Conference on Hydraulic Design in Water Resource Engineering. April 16-18, Adelaide, Sth. Australia 5th Int. Conference on Expansive Soils. April 24-25, Antwerp, Belgium Electrical Magnetic Separation of Filtration Technology.

June 24, Denver, U.S.A . Int. Symposium on Impermeable Barriers for Soil and Rock. July 15-20, Cambridge, U.K. Int. Conference on Ion Exchange. August 26-31, San Diego, U.S.A. Future of Water Re-use. August 27-30, Glasgow, Scotland Int. Assoc. for Hydraulic Research-1984 Symposium . September 3-7, Junkoping, Sweden Elmia Air and Water Conference. September 5-7, Queensland, Australia Sixth Australian Biotechnology Conference. September 10-14, Stockholm, Sweden Int. Symposium on Balances of Chemical Substances in Water. September 12-14, Copenhagen, Denmark Degradation, Retention and Disposal of Pollutants . September 15-16, Cardiff, Wales Biological Monitoring in Groundwater. September 17-20, Amsterdam, Netherlands 12th International Conference on Water Pollution Research and Control, IA WPRC. September 17-20, Amsterdam, Netherlands AQUATECH '83-International Water Technology Exhibition.

May ? , Canberra, Australia 54th ANZAAS Congress.

September 24-25, Antwerp, Belgium Advanced Treatment Technologies for Removal and Disposal of Micropollutants.

May 12-November 11, Louisiana, U.S.A. The World of Rivers, Fresh Water as a Source of Life-Exposition .

September 24-25, Paris, France Enhanced Biological Phosphorus Removal from Wastewater.

May 14, Ohio, U.S.A. Miscible and Immiscible Transport and Groundwater.

September 30-Oct. 5, New Orleans, U.S.A. WPCF Conference.

May 22-26, Munich, W. Germany European Sewage and Refuse Symposium (EAS) . May 28-June 2, Colorado, USA 12th. Int. Congress on Irrigation and Drainage. June 4-8, Gothenburg, Sweden 3rd Int. Conference on Urban Storm Drainage. June 6-9, Villach, Austria Co-ordination in Flood Control.

October 22-23, Sydney, Australia Tunnelling Conference I.E. Aust. October 29-November 2, Tunisia Monastir Congress October 30-31, London, U.K . Reuse of Sewage Effluent

1985 April 28-May 5th, Melbourne, Australia I Ith Federal Convention A WWA.

BOOK REVIEW CHEMISTRY AND UNIT OPERATIONS IN WATER TREATMENTD. Barnes and F. Wilson Applied Science Publishers, London and New York, 1983, 325 pages .

This text is based on experience gained by the authors in giving post-graduate courses on water treatment unit operations in Australia and New Zealand and is a useful introduction to the basic chemical principles involved and is essential for engineers involved in the design, commissioning and operation of water treatment plants. In attempting to use the 'Chem¡ al Engineer's' unit process/ operations approach the authors failed to introduce each topic as a unit operation and to link with the other operations into unit processes. The 'Water Quality and Criteria' and 'Analysis of Waters' are useful only as introductions to these topics. Notwithstanding the above comments, the book is good value as a concise reference for the practising engineer with a sound knowledge of designing and operating water treatment plants but he will need additional information to reinforce his understanding of the underlying principles of the controlling physico-chemical processes. W. M. DREW APPLICATION OF ON-LINE ANALYTICAL INSTRUMENTATION TO PROCESS CONTROLEdited by Robert M. Arthur Arthur Technology and Ann Arbor Science, 1982. $39, 222 pages.

This book contains the Proceedings of the First Anhual Conference on Activated Sludge Process Control (Chicago 1981). The Editor stresses the need for critical assessment of measuring devices and equipment but the information offered f1iils to meet this need. The papers dealing with specific issues do provide useful information. The topics covered include ORP (Redox potential) as a tool for process control, micro-organism viability, on-line measurement of sludge settling and concentration, real-time monitoring of biomass respiration and prediction of plant operation with on-line instrumentation. The general papers are less valuable, covering personnel views on process control, advances in instrumentation, and means of monitoring biological and physical parameters, the significance of sensors is not addressed and direct digital control and programmable systems are not mentioned. The 20 per cent of the book devoted to conference round table is not warranted. D. W. LYNCH

A.W.W.A.

ELEVENTH FEDERAL CONVENTION MELBOURNE, AUST. April 28-May 5, 1985 WATER December, /983

31


TECHNICAL INTERESTS STUDIES IN BIOCHEMICAL ENGINEERING

CORROSION MITIGATION NATIONAL REGISTER

SWINBURNE INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY Commencing Feb. 1984

As a preliminary to the possible establishment of a National Centre for Corrosion Prevention and Control, the Commonwealth Dept. of Science and Technology has commissioned Monash University to prepare a register of expertise of corros ion mitigat ion services and research facilities in Australia.

The course leads to a Graduate Diploma in Biochemical Engineering . Students , preferably graduates in Chemical Engineering , Civil Engineering or Biochemistry select , according to their specialisation , from a range of subjects which cover: • Heat Transfer • Mass Transfer • Chemical Engineering of Thickeners and Filters • Behaviour of Pulps and Slurries • Biochemistry • Biochemical Engineering Details from George Ross, Sen . Lecturer, Dept. of Manufacturing Engineering , Swinbourne Inst. of Technology, John St. , Hawthorn 3122.

FEASIBILITY STUDY

All organisations and individuals offering advisory , consulting , educational or research facilities and suppliers of materials and equipment in this field are invited to send details of their involvement in corrosion control to: Dr. V. Ashworth, Australian National Corrosion Centre, Monash University, Clayton, 3168.

INSTITUTE OF WATER POLLUTION CONTROL 1984 PROGRAMME

Newcastle-upon-Tyne, 1-14th April 1984

Advances in Sewage and Industrial Effluent Treatment Technology. One day symposium and exhibition , Dunblane Hydro Hotel , May 14th.

Speakers are of international repute. Topics will include: nature and effects of wastes, legislative control, surveys, pretreatment treatment and disposal , low cost methods and package plants , research and development specific in dustrial wastes .

Annual Conference and Exhibition , Glasgow, September 10-13th. Further information : Howard Evans , IWPC, 53 London Rd ., Maidstone, Kent , U.K.

UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS

PROCEEDINGS 25th PUBLIC WATER SUPPLY ENGINEERS CONFERENCE Sponsors for last April's Conference included the University's Dept. of Civil Engineering, the Am .W.W.A., the Environment Protection Agency (Ill.). Proceedings of 104 pages contain 11 papers including the topics : extending life of concrete structures, upgrading existing plants, effective use of water storage, fund ing for the future . Enquiries to Engineering Publications Office , Un. of Illinois, 1308 W. Green St. , Urbana, Illinois 61801. Payment US$15 with order. 32

WATER December, 1983

ELECTION President for 1983/84 is Mr. Roy Oakley, C.B .E., Senior Partner, Watson Hawksley. Senior Vice-President is Mr. John O'Neill and Junior Vice-President Mr. John Holding.

AWWA

SUMMER SCHOOL '84 Canberra Feb. 6-10 Venue for the School is the Canberra College of Advanced Education . Theme is Methods for Water Management - 1984 and Beyond.

A distinguished array of staff and speakers will conduct the School.

THE BRITISH COUNCIL TREATMENT AND DISPOSAL OF INDUSTRIAL WASTEWATERS

Development in Sewage Treatment Operations. One day symposium, Gravesend , Kent May 24th .

INSTITUTE OF WATER POLLUTION CONTROL

The venue is the University of Newcastle -upon -Tyne . Fees £565 residential , £330 non-residential. Applications to the Brit ish Council, P.O. Box 88, Edgecliffe, N.S,W. 2027, closing March 1st.

INTERNATIONAL SPECIALIST CONFERENCE-DARWIN

PROCEEDINGS The Water Regime in Relation to Mining, Milling, Waste Treatment and Rehabilitation with Emphasis on Uranium Mining Copies of papers presented at this successful AWWA Conference in September are now available. Bound volume $60 internal , $70 overseas or $40 for unbound copies - in Australian dollars - surface mailed . Apply: Conference Secretariat , P.O. Bo x 37283, Winnellie, N.T. 5789, Aust.

Cost to AWWA members will be $440 residential and $330 non-residential, non-memers an additional $10. Details are given in AWWA News, ;,age 8 this issue .

IFAT '84 7th INTERNATIONAL TRADE FAIR AND WASTE DISPOSAL yONGRESS Munich, May 22·26

Large scale exhibition of machinery, plant and equipment for sewerage, sewage treatmenr, waste recycling and city services. Symposia on sludge treatment and disposal and other aspects of waste treatment and disposal will be held in conjunction with th e Exhibition. Details from German-Australian Chamber of Industry and Commerce, P.O. Box 4247, Sydney, 2001.

BILATERAL SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY AGREEMENTS-1985 Proposals are sought for international scientific and technical collaboration . Agreements are between Australia and Japan , USA, Mexico, India, China, W. Germany . Closing dates (1984) are April 1st for activities starting Jan. 1st to June 30th and Oct. 1st for activities starting July 1st to Dec . 31st. Details from : Director International Activities , (Bilateral Science and Technology Agreements) , Dept . of Science & Technology, PO Box 65, Belconnan, ACT 2616.


PLANT AND EQUIPMENT POLYMER SOLUTION FEEDING

INSTRUMENTS AND TRANSDUCERS

LINBROOK INTERNATIONAL ELECTRODE OFFER

Stantrol Pty. Ltd. announce the Polyblend system developed in U.S .A. for preparation and delivery of stock polymer solutions from liquid concentrations. The system combines a metering pump , water flow regulator and high energy/low shear blending chamber occupying only 0.2 m2 floor space. Six model range handles from 38 L/hr of neat polymer to 2000 L/hr stock polymer solution.

Digital pressure indicators and alarms compatible with strain gauge transducers manufactured by Digitron Instrumentation Ltd are announced by Mastatek P/L.

ISE ELECTRODE/METER For a limited period , the Orion Research Model 901 Microprocessor lonalyzer will be provided with a Hand book of Electrode Technology and an ion selective electrode free of charge from the following list : ammonia, bromide, calcium , chloride, cyanide, iodide, lead, nitrate, potassium, silver/sulphide, water hardness . Full applications support will still be included from the local Agent.

Providing readings of parameters including pressure, force, displacement, load , liquid level and strain, the instruments are available in 3½ and 4½ digit formulas with ranges from 1999 and 19999 counts respectively. Fully pro grammable decimal point position , analogue output is a standard feature , parallel latched BCD output cards can be used with the 4 ½ digit model.

Information from Stantrol P/L, PO Box 1207, Crows Nest, NSW 2665.

Further details: Mastatek P/L, 49 Edgeworth David Ave. , Waitara, 2077. Vic. Agents, Multisource P/L.

BDH CHEMICALS TEST KITS ALLIED COLLOIDS NEW OFFICES Speciality chemical supplier Allied Colloids (Australia) Pty . Ltd. has opened an office in Victoria to-provide field service and product sales throughout the state. Sales Manager is Phil Kenyon aided by Technical Representative Bill Snodgrass. The Company supplies a wide range of polymers for the dewatering of sewage and industrial sludges on centrifuges, vacuum filters and band presses . Also available are polymers for use in water treatment plants for the removal of col loidal and particulate impurities. The new office address is 476 Dorest Road , Croydon South, telephone (03) 725 2311. Allied Collids also has offices in New South Wales, West ern Australia and Queensland.

AMMONIA ELECTRODE TRADE-IN For a limited period , Orion Research are offering a $50 trade -in on ANY ammonia gas-sensing electrode against the purchase of the new model 95-12 ammonia electrode. The new design of the 95-12 offers better reliability, easier assembly, low-c ost replacement membranes , greater sensitivity at lower levels , smaller sample required, and fits the average test tube. Additionally , the model 95-12 is provided with a two year warranty, and an ex tensive range of applications bulletins is available. Further information: Linbrook International P/L, PO Box 172, Caulfield South , 3162.

'ULTRA CLEAN' MUTRATORS Mono Pumps (Aust.) P/L have supplied special plant to meet the exacting re quirements of the extensive National Animal Health Laboratory approaching completion at Geelong , Victoria. Rigid contamination controls required sophisticated pumps and macerators, completely leakproof and meeting strict specifications.

MERCKOQUANT TEST STRIPS: For rapid exploratory tests from 1 mg/L onwards. Total hardness and sulphate tests and a wide variety of chemicals. AQUAMERCK TEST KITS: Range con tains both titrimetric and calorimetric tests. Simplest titration tests use 'drop' colour changes , more sensitive determinations are by 'Aquamerk' titrating pipette. AQUAQUANT TEST KIT: For rapid water analysis, short-tube and long -tube kits for lower and higher sensitivity . AQUAMERCK COMPACT LABORATORY: For following water analysis; ammonium/nitrate , carbonate hardness (ABC), pH (with testing vessel) oxygen.

Illustrated , macerator in foreground, Mono copolymer pump for gland flushing , at rear Mono L Range pump with Sensaflo attached .

Further details : M. Carter, Reagents Marketing Manager, BDH Chemicals , Sydney , Melbourne , Pt. Fairy .

Further Information: Mr E. Bird , Industrial Pumps, Mono Pumps (Aust.) P/L, PO Box 123, Mordialloc, 3195. WATER December, 1983

33


SEWAGE ODOUR CONTROL with ACTIVATED CARBON SIMPLE

RELIABLE

ECONOMICAL

The AQUA-WRIGHT SOC units are specially designed for sewage odour control. Utilising GRANULAR ACTIVATED CARBON they have proven completely effective in eliminating citizen odour complaints . Consultants and Authorities recognise AQUA-WRIGHT Sewage Odour Control Units as the most effective means to remove sewage odours . Already more than 30 of these units are in operation throughout Australia, giving simple , reliable, economical service. Hydrogen Sulphide and odour causing organics are removed by passing the odorous airstream through a bed of activated carbon . Purified air is vented to the atmosphere. AQUA-WRIGHT SOC units are effective for high , low or varying concentrations of odorants , in large or small airflows . Our systems are based on improved activated carbon technology to give you a more efficient and economic approach to sewage treatment plant odour control. Complete packaged adsorption units are available in flows from 25 to 3000 litres/second. The units are built with corrosion resistant materials and are engineered so that noise and maintenance are minimised. The only moving part is the blower/motor assembly. For SIMPLICITY, RELIABILITY & ECONOMY in sewage odour control, write or telephone us today .

AQUA-WRIGHT A division of Wright and Company Pty. Ltd. Head Office: 32-40 Maddox St., Alexandria, NSW 2015, Tel. 51 3371, Telex 24237 Branches in Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth 34 WATER December, 19lf3


Precise measuring, versatile data recording LCD readouts of level and flow with totalizer display of total flow. You can reliably monitor open channel flow or level with ISCO's new microprocessor-based Model 2300 Flow Meter. The Model 2300 's revolu tionary Level Sensor precisely measures liquid depth using a submerged pressure transducer, and the meter computes flow in any stream configuration with a known level-to-flow relationship , wheth er or not a primary measuring device is used . The Level Sensor is a non -obstructive probe containing a differential , integrated circuit pressure transducer. Versatile data recording on site or to a remote processing unit. Flow-proportional control of water sampler. Low maintenance operation with virtually no moving parts. Operable on either 230V or 12V DC battery for permanent or temporary installation.

Stansen Scientific

BRISBANE (07) 52 5141 SYON EY (02) 772 4055

ISCO

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MELBOURNE (03) 419 4399 ADELAIDE (08) 212 5700

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ENVIROSHIELD , Laboratory (Queensland) For Independent Analysis of Water and Wastewater

For further information: C.I.G. Enviroshield, 1688 Ipswich Road, Rocklea, Brisbane 4106 Phone: (07) 275 0196 Telex: CIGAS AA40498 WATER December, 1983

35


Pen synchronisation and noise elimination

Nephelometer Made in Australia This new Nephelometer was designed in conjunction with the CSIRO and is used for the measurement of the turbidity of fluids . It has an extremely wide range and most samples can be measured directly without being diluted . A feature of the instrument is that it can be adapted to measure refractive index by using a separate probe assembly which is available as an accessory . D Three ranges: 0-2000 NTU; 10-20 000 NTU ; 100-100 000 NTU D Compact size for easy field use D Digital liquid crystal display D Push button operation D Probe can be connected directly to control unit or attached using extension lead .

The Servogor 460 Series YT and XY/T 1 to 6 channel vertical recorders from Kent Instruments (Australia) are now available with pen synchronisation and , noise elimination features.

KENT INSTRUMENTS (AUST.) PTY. LTD. Sydney • Melbourne • Adelaide • Brisbane • Perth • Darwin

44 Koornang Road Scoresby 3179 Telephone 763 8988 BOBY ANALYTICAL LABORATORY SERVICES

Ideal for use by: D Factories who need to monitor effluent discharge D Water Authorities D Rivers and Water Supply Commissions D Sewerage Farms D Power Generating Plants D Pollution Control Authorities.

SELBY SCIENTIFIC VIC 544 4844

36 WATER December, 1983

TAS 28 4691

SA 51 4651

Indu str ia l was te wa ter. sewage and process wa ter analy sis. Was te di sposa l in ves t igati ons to M.M.B.W . and E.P.A. requirement s.

RIVER SANDS PTY. LTD. High Quality

FILTER MEDIA

FOR FURTHER DETAILS CONTACT :

OLD NSW 371 1566 888 7155

WA 451 2577

Manufacturers at REDLAND BAY ROAD CARBROOK, QUEENSLAND 4130 Telephone: (07) 209 8344

A.\&"~· ...,.

Exc hange Press Pt y. Ltd ., Melbou rn e


There is ONE source for evaporation, dewatering & pollution control technology Evaporation

/

Envirotech designs, builds and installs evaporators for the paper, chemical, fertiliser, pharmaceutical, food and mineral industries . As Australian licensee for GOSLIN (USA), Envirotech provides the world's foremost evaporation technology.

Dewatering ¡

Fabric Filter System

Envirotech designs, builds and installs an extremely wide range of EIMCO and GOSLIN dewatering equipment - allowing the best technology to be used for virtually every application in the paper, water & wastewater treatment and general processing industries.

Air Pollution Control Envirotech offers the internationally respected technology of , G.E.E.S.I./BUELL for the design, construction and installation of cyclones, multicyclones, electrostatic precipitators and ,fabric filters .

Goslin Black Liquor Evaporators

'Pulp Washer' Filter

Envlrotecti Australia Pty. Ltd. Sydney (02) 449 4222 T elex: AA21775 Perth (09) 32 1 4541 ÂŽ

Reactor-Clarifier for wate r and wastewater treatment


When specifying pressure pipelines, are you comparing apples with apples?

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If you are currently using other products make sure you know the facts about the benefits of the world's premier water and sewage pressure pipeline material.

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ver 9 million Australians currently have the safety and reliability of ductile iron pipelines in their water supply systems. Even at lower pressures ductile iro n pipe can be cost justified against other products because of its: I . Larger internal diameters. 2. Lower testing costs. 3. Longer life. 4. Lower construction costs. 5. Lower maintenance costs. 6. Strength and reliability. GM + ASSOC/ T S/ 83

Contact T ubemakers at Sydney (02) 922 1200, Melbourne (03) 309 4888 or Brisbane (07) 229 0611 for technical advice and literature.

Ductile Iron Pipelines by Tubemakers 80 Alfred Street, Milsons Point, NSW 206 1.

Profile for australianwater

Water Journal December 1983  

Water Journal December 1983