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SPECIAL REPORT ~ Involving the community in water planning

Volume 29 No 4 June 2002 Journa l of the Austra li an Water Association

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[ii COMBINING COMMUNITY EXPECTATIONS WITH TECHNICAL SOLUTIONS Community ownership of Barwon Water's strategy J Adam s ki



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OUR COVER: A 52-kilo111etre open. chan.n.el transfers waterfrom th e Otways to Ba,won f.Vater's Wurdee Bolu c R eservoir. Barwon. f1Vater recently released its Water R eso urces Developmen t Pia,,. which drew on extensive community input (see article page 3 1). Photo by R oss Bird Photography, co urtesy of Barivo 11 Water. WATER JUNE 2002





-EVALUATION OF PUBLIC INVOLVEMENT PROGRAMS: MEASURING JUSTICE AND PROCESS CRITERIA G J Syme, B E Nancarrow Abstract This paper describes an evaluation of an eighteen month strategic planning program for w astewater managem ent in Perth, W estern Australia, that encouraged both stakeholder and gen eral public participation. Simple questionnaire-based indi cators of interactive, procedural and distributive justice have been used to indi cate outcomes both for stages in the strategic planning process and for the program as a whole. These indicators have been appli ed to show that, in general , the program proved to be responsive to suggested change and to meet the fundam ental justice criteria. Most importantly, these indicators are cheap to delive r and can pro vide normative comp arisons betwee n programs.

Introduction The Water Authority of W estern Au stralia (WA WA) (now th e Wat er C orporation) initiated the Wastewater 2040 program to develop a long term strategy for the treatment and disposal of wastewater on the coas tal strip from Alkimos, in P erth's northern suburbs, to Dunsborou gh in the South-West of W estern Australia (WAWA, 1995). As such it w as a major regional study w hich was to set strategi c direc tions in a complex and increasingly contro ve rsial area. Most was tewater to this point had ¡ been treated and pump ed to the sea and public discussions about possible effects on coastal w ater quali ty had begun to occur. Th ere we re man y alternati ve modes of manage m ent and disposal w hi ch were gaining attention. from use of treated w astewater for irrigation through to localised neighbourhood treatment plants and re-use . The program consequ ently comprised two major technical investigations and a study on th e w ater qu ality in coastal w aters and its relationship to was tewater disposal. As a part ofWastewater 2040, a public involvem ent program and its evaluation were condu cted in two stages over an eighteen m onth period. In this paper the design and results of the evaluation are summarised. 18


Although there are increasing numbers of public involve m ent programs, there is usually littl e eva lu ati ve data mad e available. D espite early papers such as that of Sewell and Phillips (1979) outlining a possible evaluation process, there is no standard evalu ation model for publi c involvem ent w hich is generally agreed or applied to this point. If strategies such as that for W astew ater 2040 are to reflect the philosophy of participatory planning, it is essential that w e understand how we can , and should, usefully engage the public in the strategic planning process . Both planners and the public need to feel that the public involvement program has been productive in assisting b etter decision making, especially w hen there may be some controve rsy o ve r res ultant planning decisions.. The evalu ation program outlined here is based on three philosophical strands derived primarily from the evaluation of social service programs. 1. Fonnative evaluation - conducted during the program to allow for ongoing modification. 2. Participatory evaluation - obj ectives, process, resources and responsibilities agreed with participants and evaluated at key stages . 3. Developmental approach - a staged appro ac h adapted from pro gram to process evaluation . While the normal evaluatio n w as condu cted to establish w heth er any particular occasion m et its obj ectives within the program , there w as also a need to establish w hether the program met the expectations of the community in terms of fair or adequate process . For this evaluati o n we have adopted Sym e and Sadler's (1994) suggestion that both interactive and procedural justice need to be demonstrated in terms of process. Interactive justice implies that the parti cipants have fo und the pro cess sympatheti c to th eir preferred mode of involvement in that they have been given enough inform ation and that they ha ve found the interactions w ith the pla nners di"gnified and pleasant. Procedural justice


implies that the program is basically unbiased, and that an adequate range of participants had "voice" or the opportunity to be heard by decision makers (e.g. Lind and T yler, 1988; Lawrence, D aniels and Stankey, 1997). For this public involvem ent program , the philosophy was that adequ ate representation required adequate opportunity for all citizens (Kathlene and Martin, 1991 ; Sym e and N a n c arro w , 19 92). In addition , M cCreddin, et al. (1997) suggest that effective decision making needs to include sa tisfa ction w ith the decision itself distributive justice . Finally, we have postulated that there is a global variable, w hich results from perceptions of the adequa cy of p erform ance on these ~imensions: that of commitment. All things consid ered , w ould people participate again on this or related issues and with the agency?

Methodology The public involvement program was envisaged as having tw o stages . The first stage raised salient issues to which the WAWA responded with a Discussion Paper. The second w as a community evaluation of WAWA 's respo nses . The major form of gaining input for both stages we re stru ctured community w orkshops. Attendees received a report of their w orkshop proceedings for comment, and a fin al copy after relevant comments had b ee n in c orpor a t e d. R ecommendations we re made by the Publi c Involvem ent T ea m on w hat WA W A 's response should be to the community input at the end of Stage 1. These recommendations we re sent to participants and publicised in WAW A's widely distributed newsletter "The Flow" . A similar pro cess w as fo llowed in Stage 2 and WAWA's response to the Publi c Involve m ent T eam's reco111J11endations was made evident in the final W astewater 2040 repo rt. Th e ev al uati o n o f th e publi c involvem ent had a number of components. These are shown in T able 1. The m ethods va ri ed from group meetings, do or to door interviews, and m ailed and telephon e qu estionnaires .



Reference Focus Group

11 8 of these ho useholds - an equal Table 1. Summary of Evaluation Methodology number of those refu sing the A R eference Focus Group , invitatio n as th ose agreeing to co mpri sin g nin e indi v idu als STAGE 1: attend the wo rkshop. representing government agencies • Reference Focus Group (other than WAWA), conummity The purpose of this qu estion• Pre-Works hop Attitudin al Measurement (door-knocked) groups and professionals with naire was to establish w hether the - agreed to attend (later noti ng those who did not do so) knowledge of public involvement invitees th ought participating was - refused to attend programs , w as asse mbled. T he wo rth while in terms of: their • Conclusion of Workshops purpose of the Gro up was to having an easy oppo rtunity for provide an external evaluation of - feedback questions (a ll) pro vidin g in.p ut (inte ra c ti ve the obj ectives and condu ct of the • End of Stage 1 Attitudi nal Measurement justice); w hether they tho ught the public involve ment program. It - 50% of t hose who attended a wo rk shop WA WA wo uld listen to their was planned to receive this advice - 60 co ntrol group (random commun ity) comments (procedural justice o r in a tim ely manner so that the STAGE 2: voice); and their view of the publi c involve m ent pro gram quality of decision making w ithin • Reference Fo cus Group could reflect wider views, ra ther WAWA (distributive justice) . At • Survey of participants & interested commun ity (105) than wait until the completion of a more general level, respondents the program w hen mistakes could we re also as ked w hether they not be rectified. Stage 1 Evaluation thought that the community discussion Fo r this reason , the Referen ce Focus Pre-Works hop Interviews groups were enj oyable; w hether they had Group met tw ice - initially befor e Stage As well as ad ve rtising the p ubli c the time to attend; and wl;i.ether the time 1 of the public involvem ent program, and involvem ent program through the printed proposed was appropriate for t h eir again before Stage 2, and invited to m edia to ensure that the "average" routines . comment on the planning and impleWAWA customer had the opportuni ty to m entation. participate in the program , householde rs Conclusion of Workshop Evaluation At the completion of each R efer ence in close proximity to each m etropolitan It was thought important to assess the Focus Gro up m eetin g, a summary of wo rkshop ve nu e we re randomly selected specifi c effectiveness of the workshops. and p ersonally invited to attend. findings and suggestio ns w as prepared and T h e refor e, imm ediately afte r eac h appropriate amendme nts made to the m eeting, all participants we re asked to For evaluation purposes at this point, Program. a short qu esti o nnaire was ad ministered to complete a seven qu es'tio n survey form.

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T his survey addressed: ·• information needs; • opinions offered by the meeting; • the chance to have one's say; • being listened to; • the responsiveness of the WAWA; • likely further participation; • any other general comments. All questions were open-ended. A total of135 responses were received from 180 attendees at the workshops .


oSald No Strongly Disagree

rEJ Said Yes

D Said Yes & Came




3 2 Strongly Agree

End of Stage 1 Evaluation

In this case, there were thre e clear samples of interest. T hese were : • those who were interviewed before they had attended a workshop; • those w ho attended a workshop but weren't interviewed beforehand because they were recruited by other than the door knock method (e.g. via interest groups or throu gh advertisement) and • people who had not attended a works hop . T he last gro up was of signifi cance to act as a control to establish whether actual participation had affected perceptions of fairness and willingness to participate in such activi ties. To gain this information two methods were used. Half the attendees at the community workshops (90) were posted questionnaires. To assess the attitudes of non-attendees, a telephone survey was condu cted. This sample consisted of randomly chosen householders in the same areas, which were door knocked . T hese p eople were asked if they wo uld consider participating in a public discussion meeting if they were invited, and their preferred times and days. The same attitudinal questions in relation to expectations of public involvement were asked as in the initial door knock interviews. A total of 60 interviews from randomly selected non-attendees were obtained. T he sample of those w ho attended were asked to complete the qu estionnaire several weeks after the workshop, so that they had time to reflect generally about the meeting. A total of 64 completed responses by attendees were received (71 %

ATTITUDE • Denotes statistically significant differences between groups using one way analysis of variance (p < 0.01)

Figure 1. Mean re spo nses from Survey 1 on al l attitudinal items .

response rate). Of these, 19 had been interviewed initially in the door knock process . Stage 2 Evaluation

Between two and four weeks after the completion of the Stage 2 workshops, a sample of those people w ho had either, shown an interest in being included on the mailing list for the final Strategy Report, or had attended a works hop in one or both Stages of the Program, were contacted. These people were telephoned and asked questions about the Discussion Paper, (WAW A's response to communiry co ncerns after Stage 1). Seven attitudinal questions were also asked relating to : • the ease of participation; • the sufficie ncy of information; • the opportunity to contribute; • the variery of opinions expressed; • the responsiveness of the WAWA; • the likelihood WAWA would make the best possible decision; • the possibility that the respondent wo uld participate in the future. In total, there were 105 interviews conducted . No one refused to be interviewed.

Results Reference Focus Group

A number of changes to the program were made because of the input of this group. For example, the objectives of both

Stages 1 and 2 processes were modified. All consensus suggestions by the Reference Focus Group were incorporated in the Public Involvement Program. While the R eference Focus Gro up provided much valuable input to the study, one problem did occur. O nly five members were available to attend th e second meeting prior to Stage 2 of the public invo lvement program. Subsequent enquiries revealed that, in the year between the Stage 1 and Stage 2 meetings, several members had changed their positions and were no longer as involved with the issue. The Reference Focus Group was conceived as remaining constant, so that good advice could be gained from people w ho were aware of the history of the project. W ith the benefit of hindsight though , it is clear that for longer studies such as this, the initial R eference Focus Group should have been larger, or the provision made for new members as the program progressed. Stage 1 Evaluation Results Pre-Workshop Questionnaire Analyses

The analysis of these interviews allows us to assess not only people's general attitudes to involvem ent, but also to compare the attitudes of participants and non-participants in the process . Figure 1 shows the mean response to the attitudinal qu estions for three gro ups:

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DPre-Workshop Survey Strong ly DI sag ree


tm Post-Workshop Survey (didn't attend)

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Strongly Agree

Figure 2. Mean responses - two surveys' on all attitudina l items .

• "Said No" those w ho said they did not wish to attend (N = 65); • "Said Yes" those who said they w ould attend the w orkshop but failed to do so (N = 32) and • "Said Yes and carne" those who said they w ould attend and ac tually did so (N=21 ). T here were statistically significant differences betwee n the groups on thre e (denoted .below w ith*) of the six items. Item 1: I don 't get th e chance to have my say at community discussion meetings . Item 2: I have very little time to attend Cornrnunity Discussion Meetings . * Item 3: I think the Water Authority will take notice of what people have to say. Item 4: I enjoy going to Community Discussion Meetings . * Item 5: It's hard f or me to get to Community Discussion Meetings . * Item 6: I think the Wa ter A uthority will make the best possible decision. From Figure 1 it would appear that the major determinants of actually attending a community w orkshop we re more related to aspects of the me thodology or "process" (time, enjoym ent and ease of attending) than to any aspects of outcome or "justice" . This is consistent with earlier findin gs on regional planning (Syme, M acpherson and Seligman, 1990) . While the m ethodology seem ed to be reasonably accepted, there is a need for further effort to establish whether other m ethods might b e offered for those w ho do not find it easy to attend or do not enjoy such occasions. Conclusion of Workshop Evaluation Results

These results are from op en- ended responses to seven questions relating to different aspects of the w orkshops. The op en ended approa ch w as used in this situation as the qualitative dive rsity of the

possible responses seem ed to the Public Involve m ent T eam and the R eference Focus Group to demand something more than semantic differential responses to single rating scales . For the analysis, the responses were divided into three categories : positive , uncertain and negative . The responses to each question were compared between the different w orkshop locations , and there w ere very few differences in the comments received. In summary, the results indicated that th e w orkshop s we re suc ces sful in achieving satisfa ction from the bulk of respondents in terms of information given ; the ability to express an opinion; and the fa ct that the views offered reflected a range of issues and w ere listened to . Most stated that, if invited, they w ould repeat the exp erience . N evertheless, the majority of attendees had adopted a "wait and see" attitude as to w hether they thought the WA WA w ould respond. Results of End of Stage 1 Evaluation The Mail Survey - Repeat Respondents

This group of people we re a small sample (N= 19) w ho had been interviewed before and after the w orkshop. T w o statements were directly comparable befor e and after. These were " I enjoy(ed) attending discussion meetings" and "The Water Authority will make the best possible decision" . If the meetings had been unsuccessful in terms of experi ence , it may be exp ected that the attitudes to these statem ents w ould change for the negative. In fact, the means for " enjoyment" (Pre 2 .26; Post 1.89) and "best decision" (Pre 2 .45 ; Post 2 .00) were slightly, although not statistically significantly, more positive (the lowe r the number, the greater the agree·m ent).

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Oth er results for this group showed stron g agreement that they had the opportunity to say all they wanted. In fact there was substantially more agree ment with this statement than with the ge neral attitude abo ut the opportunity to ha ve "a say" in such meetings before they had attended. Thu s a second imp ortant criterion of procedural justice seems to have been m et. T his limited, but important, " before" and "after" analysis indicates that on three key va riables, the wo rkshops had been procedurall y successful. The Mail Survey - Attendees The people attending the first Stage workshop, (including the 19 individuals who were interviewed prior to attending) were asked the fo llowing 10 qu estions. By this time, these participants had had



Strong ly Disagree

o End of Stage 1

2 Strong ly Agree

ATTITUDE All means are statistica lly significantly below the neutral point of 3, indicating a positive response to all. There were no significant differences between the two times.

Figure 3. Mean response to six indicator attitudes at the end of Stage 1 and Stage 2 public involvement.

time to refl ect on the m eeting and its outcome as recorded by the meeting report sent to th em.

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Ite111 1: I e1,joyed th e con¡1111111tity diswssio11 111eeti11g. Eighty- two pe rce nt of respo nd ents indicated that th ey had enjoyed the meeting. Ite111 2: I liked the 111ay th e meeting 111as n111. Eighty- three percent liked th e way the m eeting was run. Item 3: Ifou 11d it easy to contribute to discussions. Seventy-nine pen.e m of th e sa mple reported that they found it easy to con t ribut e to di sc u ssions. This is co mpatibl e w ith th e co nclu sion of wo rkshop feedback in w hich a ve ry hi gh proportion reported that they had a chance to ha ve " a say" . Item 4: Th e i1iformation provided 111as s1ifficient for th e 111eeting's discussions. Just over half (55%) of the sample agreed that th e informati o n supplied during the discussion m eeting was sufficient for their discussions. Abou t one-quarter disagreed. T his statistic is interesting, given that 83% of a tt e nd ees provid e d favo u rab le co mments w hen completing feedback fo rms immediately after the works hop. The fal l off in apparent satisfactio n ma y refl ect the fac t that th e first qu estio nnaire was open ended, w hereas the second was scaled o n a sin gle dimension . It may also reflect the fa ct that peopl e had time to reflect and po nder on particular issues. Ite111 5: I had the chance to say all I 111a11ted to. Seventy-nine percent of respondents fe lt that th ey had had the chance to say all they wa nted . T his supportive outlook was slightly lower than for tl;ie more general statement in the conclusion of works hop feedbac k. Item 6: Th ere see111ed to be a goo d variety of people a11d interests at the meeting. Eighty-two percent of people agreed with this statement. These we re almost exactly


the percentages obtained in the conclusion of wo rkshop fee dback and indicated that people felt chat m ost of the range of interests had been covered, and the process was therefore reasonably representative. Item 7: The Water Authority listened to what people had to say. While over half the sa mple (56%) agreed with chis statement, there was a significant propo rti on (36%) chat neither agreed no r disagreed. O nly 8% disagreed . T his was a lower percentage of agreem ent than the 90% of respondents w ho said they felt their viewpoints had been listened to when replying in an open-ended fas hi o n at the completion of the workshop. T his m ay have been beca use all parties were included in the " listening" process during the meeting, and only WAW A in the second qu estio nnaire. By the time this qu estio nnaire h ad b ee n ad m i ni st ere d , h oweve r, some time had elapsed since the co mpletion of some m eetings . M any may ha ve b ee n awa i tin g t h e D iscussio n Pape r response, and reserving their judgem ent o n th e "a ttenti ve n ess" of WAWA un til it arrived. !tern 8: The report was an accurate surn1na ry of what the meeting said. Eighty-seven percent tho ught that the workshop feedbac k repo rts we re acc urate. Item 9 : I think the Wate r A uthority will make the best decision. Forty-o n e pe rce nt of the resp ondents agreed w ith this statem ent. A slightly greater p erce nt age (42%) was undecided and the remainder (17%) disagreed at this stage in the involvem ent program . Th ere was n o statisti cally significant difference betwee n the m eans for this group and the pre- wo rkshop interviews . This indicated that there were positive to neutral attitudes t owa rd s th e s u ccess o f WAW A 's decisio n making bo th before and after the wo rkshops. T he m ee tings, in them selves, had no m arked effect. Item 10: I wo uld like to participate in a similar meeting again. App roximately 80% said th ey wo uld like to attend a similar m ee tin g. T hi s, a nd th e


conclusion of wo rkshop feedback, seemed to indicate a high degree of commitment to the progra m . In sum mary, the results of chis survey of attendees were consistent with previous meas urem ents . T hey indicated that there was a very good response to the workshop for mat, and the goals of procedural and interactive justice seemed to be ac hi eved. T he issue of info rmation needs, tho ugh, required mo re detailed investiga tio n in fu ture strategies of chis nature. Th e Telephone Survey - New R espondents T he responses of the sixty people who we re telepho ned were compared with the

door to doo r interviews undertaken before the worksho ps. W hile the respo ndents were selected fro m th e sam e areas, it must be no ted that the nature of the interviews (face to face versus telephone) may have ca used som e changes . R espondents were asked w hether they wo uld attend a discussio n m eeti ng if invited. O n chis occasion 20% of the 60 respo ndents said they wo uld, 35% sa id maybe and the rem aind-er (45%) said they wo uld not. T he 20% figure is close to the nu mber of people in the first study (17%) w ho actually attended. T he attitudes of this sample to the six key attitudinal variables are shown in Figm e 2. T he findin gs ve1y closely replicated those




found for the first interviews, and strongly indicated that process issues, rather than lack of credibility of the WAWA or th e Public Involvem ent Team, were major determinants of attendance. Stage 2 Evaluation Results This evaluation included people from the " interested" list or who had attended a wo rkshop in one or both of the Stages of the Involvem ent Program. The "interes ted " list consisted of people w ho regularly received "The Flow" newsletter as well as the WAWA Disc ussion Pap er. At any time, all in the sample were in a position to provide comment to th e Strategy Team, either by telephone or in written form. All interviews were conducted by telephone of a stratified sample. A total of 207 people were interviewed and no-one refused. For the overall sample, 67% had attended a workshop and the remainder had not. Although all respondents had been sent a copy ofW AWA's Discussion Paper, 92% had remembered receiving it. Appro x imately one-third (36%) reported they had read the Discussion Paper. On the key justice issues of the document being easy to read, and being an adequate response to co mmunity concerns, it scored well with most. Attitudes towards the Public Involvement Program T he six attitudinal statements that were used to assess key aspects of the success of the program at the end of Stage 1 were again used to assess attitudes at the end of the Stage 2. The mean responses are shown in Figure 3. It can be noted that all means were comparable with those of at the end of Stage 1. The most interesting aspect of these figures is that all means are statistically significantly less than 3, the neutral number. This indicated that, on the whole, · the participants' attitudes were positive in terms of the key ·indicators of procedural justice for the public involve ment program. The participants were asked to demonstrate their commitment to ongoing public involve m ent by b eing asked whether they wo uld participate again in a Water Authority Wastewater community involve ment program. Just over threequarters agreed while 10% disagreed, thus indi ca ting a positiv e genera li se cl commitment to the public involvement processes.

Conclusions The purpose of this pap er has been to provide a demonstration that justice considerations can be easily measured in




publi c invo lve m e nt eva lu ation . The m easures ca n be compared between programs if this approach is utilized regularly to provide agency level evalu ations . In regard to the specific o utcom es of community wo rkshops, the evalu ation established that: • the chosen m ethodology of community wo rkshops appeared to be acceptable to the majority of the community; • the limitations to the methodology were primarily centred on practical difficulties, such as time availabili ty o r difficulty in getting to ve nu es; • the m eetings were run in a satisfactory manner for most in terms of the attendees' enjoym ent and ability to have their say; • the door knock mode of recruiting participants was effective in encouraging the average householder to attend. Initially, the credibility of WAWA was not an issue to respond ents in terms of their willingness to participate. There was apparently som e suspension of judgement as to w heth er the WA WA would listen to input immediately after the workshops. The evaluation was ve1y positive at the ends of Stages 1 and 2 in terms of: • ease of participation; • information sufficiency; • ability to have "a say"; • variety of opinions represented; • w hether WA WA listened; • whether WAWA was likely to make the best decision. All of these m easures are central considerations w hen justice judgments are made about the adequacy of public involvem ent programs. They provide much needed accountability for public involvement programs. While the evaluation appeared to be very positive, it indicated that any future conduct of public involvement should investigate: • the role and maintenance of the R efere nc e Fo c us Group to ensure formative evaluation; • th e inves tigation of w idening the methods used to gather information and allow involvement of people at differing levels of interest; • the further development of methods to measure the adequacy of the procedural justice used in this evaluation. A methodological issue for this case study is that this evaluation had a large internal component, which may have co ntributed to a positive outcome. However, none of the survey interviewers used were part of the Public Involvement Team and external viewpoints were

brought by the R eference Focus Group. While much of the response was collected in an anonymous fas hion, it could be wo rthw hile to empirically compare the responses gained by internally and externally condu cted evalu ations. A fina l issue for the development of evaluations of this kind is the inclusion of the viewpoints of the decision m ake rs themselves. For them, was the public involve m ent proce~ a co ntributor to improved decision making? Did public involve m ent provide them with material that was useful? In this regard, to obtain an holistic evaluation, the decision makers themselves should be included w ithin the evaluation . A more detailed manuscript can be obtained from th e authors.

The Authors Geoffrey J. Syme is Director and Blair E. Nancarrow is Operations Manager w ith the Australian R esearch Centre for Water in Society, Priva te Bag 5 W embley WA 6913 Australia ph: 8-9333-6265 fax: 8-9383-7193. The Centre is involved in theoretical and applied aspects of social and community research in wa ter reso urces management in both urban and rural areas . Email: Geoff.Syme@csiro .au

References Kathlene L and Martin JA (1991) "Enhancing citizen participation: panel designs, perspectives and policy formu lation " .Journal of Policy Analysis and Management 10 , 46-63. Lawrence R L, Daniels S E, and Stankey G H (1997) "Procedural justice and public involvement in natural resource decision making". Society and Natural Resources, 10 , 577-589. Lind E A and T yler T R (1988) Th e Social Psychology of Procedural justice, (New York, Plenum). McCreddin J A, Syme G J , Na ncarrow BE and George D R (1997) Developing fa ir and equitable land and water a/location in near urban locations: Principles, processes and decision making. CSIRO, Division of Water Resources (Perth, CSIRO). Consultancy R eport 96-60. Sewell W R D and Phillips S D (1979) "Models for evalu ation of publi c parti cipation pro grammes". Natural Resources Journal, 19, 337-359. Syme G J , Macpherson D K and Seligman C (1990) "Factors motivating community participation in regional water allocation planning" . Environment and Planning A 23 , 1779-1795. Syme G J and Nancarrow BE (1992) "Predicting publi c involvement in urb an wa t e r management and planning" . Environment and Behavior, 24 , 738-758. Syme G J and Sadler B S (1994) "Evalu ation of public in volvement in wa ter reso urces planning: A researcher-practitioner dialogue" . Evaluation R eview, 18 , 523-542. Water Authority of Western Australia (1995) Wastewater 2040 Strategy for the Perth region. (Perth, Water Authority) 2nd edition.




-GIVING CUSTOMERS A VOICE: SYDNEY WATER'S EXPERIENCE N Roseth Abstract The article describes the purp ose and scop e of Sydney Water's C usto m er R esearch Program. The Program has two co mp o n ents: th e annual surveys of residential and bu siness customers and custom ers w ho lodged a complaint abo ut wa ter or sewerage services and o ne- off surveys foc using o n specific p opul ati o ns or special topics . Findings fr o m va rio us research proj ects relating to drinking water quality are presented to illustrate how Sydney Wa ter uses its C ustomer R esearch Program . The article concludes w ith a description of the P eople's Perspectives Program - a new sub- program w ithin the Cooperative R esearch Centre fo r W ater Quality and T rea tment, design ed to add a social/ community dimension to the array of scientific and technical programs that make up the C R C fo r W ater Qu ality and T reatment.

The Sydney Water Customer Research Program Scope and purpose of the Program

In lin e w ith its c ustomer fo cus approac h to service, Sydney W ater has a we ll- es tabli sh e d , ac ti ve C u stom e r R esearch Program w hich ensures that custo m ers' voice has an input into strategy planning, reso urce alloca tion and prio rity setting along with that of engineers, scientists and economists. The Program w as established in 199 3. Its purpose is to: • Trac k performance ove r time • Give a voice to the 'silent maj ority' • M easure trust and understand its drivers • Keep a fin ger on community pulse • Assess community reaction to major events • Facilitate user- fri endly education and communicatio n m aterials • Explore custom er exp ectatio ns and future m arkets The corner stone of the C ustomer R esearch P rogram are the three annu al surveys, all based on the response from a large , randomly selec ted sa mple of customers: 1. The R esidential C ustomer Sur1Jey seeks information fro m the community at

large - all those who use wate r, sewerage and services on a daily basis. T hrough a phon e survey people are give n oppo rtunit y t o jud ge Sy dn ey W a t e r ' s perfo rmance in the delivery of produ cts and services and their trust in the organisa tio n. There is scop e in the survey to expl o re o ther issues such as attitudes to water conserva ti on and the extent to w hich people do no t drin k tap wa ter but turn to alternatives such as bottl ed or filtered wate r. The tenth R esidential Custo m er Survey w ill be conducted during 2002 .

2. Th e Co mmercial/In.dustrial Customer Sur1Jey targets the business sector and samples its respondents on the basis of the magnitude of their wa ter consumptio n. Qu estio ns asked in this survey foc us o n the impac t of Sydney Wa ter services o n runnin g th e bu sin ess . Th e ninth C ommercial/Industrial C Survey w ill be condu cted during 2002 . 3. The Eme, Con.tact C ustomer Su,vey gives custom ers w ho experienced a wa ter or sewera ge problem an opportunity to

rate their satisfaction with the process and outcome of Sydney W ater's hand]jng their problem . The fo urth such survey will be co ndu cted during 2002 . The annual surveys are 'catch all ' exercises . A limited amount of info rmation is obtained abo ut several topics . In addition to these, the C usto m er R esearc h Program co nsists of several other, one- off surveys . These are of three kinds: 1. Specific topic surveys w hich cover designated topics in an in-depth, comprehensive manner. R ecent examples of such surveys include "Community Views on R ecycled W ater", "Conmmnity Views on Drinking W ater Quality", "Community Views on Stormwa ter M anage ment" and " Prac tices and Intent - Water U se in Extrem ely H ot W eath!=!r". 2. Targeted population surveys which seek the views of custom ers who are impac ted by parti cular Sydney W ater initiatives . Exa mples of these include surveys of residents of R o use Hill - an area in W es tern Sydney in w hich a dual reticulation system provides residents with

The CRC for Water Quality and Treatment the People's Perspective Program The CRC (Cooperative R esearch C e ntr e) fo r W a t e r Qu alit y and Treatment w as established in 1995 and provides a national strategic drinking water research capacity for the Australian water industry. It has recently introduced an innova tion w ith the inclusio n of a so cial resea rch pro gram, ' P e opl e's P erspective', investigating custo m er attitudes to drinking water. The program w ill add a social/ community dimensio n to the range of scientific and technical programs of the C R C. It will assist the w ater industry in its leadership role of influ encing people's attitudes, understanding and behaviour. The first proj ect of the People's Perspectives Program is a national survey involving the customers of some twe nty water utilities in urban, regional and rural communities throughout Australia on attitudes to drinking water quality . The

purpose of the survey is to gain an understanding of ho w communiti es across Australia view drinking wa ter quality . Specifically, the study is being designed to: • M easure people's satisfa ctio n w ith and trust in the wa ter they receive • Explore views on aesthetic characteristics of wa ter • Inves tigate w hy people turn to alternatives to tap w ater • Explore views on the management to w ater services In addition , the survey w ill pro vide utilities with a tool to monitor over time their customers' perceptions o f drinking w ater and gau ge their reaction to milestone events (for instance, the introduction of new w ater filtration plants or disinfection m ethods) . At the time of w riting the study is in the planning stage. WATER JUNE 2002




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Diagram 1 . Resident ia l Customer Survey - satisfaction with water qua lity.

po table wa ter to kitc hens and bathrooms and recycled wa ter to toilets and outdoor uses . C ustomer research in this area , conducted on several occasions during th e developm ent and commissioning of the sc h e m e, ass iste d in und e rsta ndin g custo mers co ncerns and in the development of communica tion materials. Another targeted proj ect currentl y in progress explores the views, including perceptions of ri sk, co n ce rns and behaviour of people who live in the proximity of Sydney Water sewage treatment plants. 3. Concept testing and evaluation of advertising and communication materials. T hese are condu cted in order to ensure that materials put to custom ers are userfriend ly and re fl ec t th eir level of understanding and interest. Both qualitati ve and quantitative research m ethodologies are employed . Qualitative research - to unveil the range of issues, test concepts and explore ideas . Quantitative research - to assess the strength of custom ers' views and measure performa nce and change in attitudes over tim e. Quantitative surveys are based on large, ro bust, randomly selected samples . Sydn ey Water commissions market r esea rc h co mp ani es sp ec ialis in g in working on environmental and social topics and acc redited by the M arket R esearch Society of Australia to assist in the deve lopment of resea rch instrum ents, gather and analyse the data. How is the research used - the water quality example

Sydney Water possesses by now a wealth of information about its customers that is used in decision m aking and priority setting fo r service improvement. To illustrate how this researc h is used in 26


prac tice, the remainder of this article will foc us on various pieces of information relating to views on drinking water qu ali ty. Since 1993 customers responding to the annu al R esidential C ustomer Survey are asked to rate their satisfaction with the water th ey receive at h ome. T h e percentage each yea r w ho are ve ry or quite satisfi ed is shown in Diagra m 1: The graph in Diagra m 1 tells the story of Sydney Water in the last decade . It is used to understand the impac t of events, both those that are and that are not of S y dn ey Wat er's doin g, o n th e community. Levels of sa tisfac tion w h e n th e C ustomer Research Program started in 1993 were £1.i rly low. Qualitative research organised in order to understand the reason for the marked improvem ent between 1993 and 1994 suggested that customers appreciated the way Sydney Water responded to the fires, drou ght and wa ter restrictions at that time. Between 1994 and 1997 the va rious wa ter filtration plants we re commissioned


a nd th e diffe re n ce they m ad e to customers' perception of wa ter quali ty is refl ected in higher sa tisfaction ratings . By 1997 and 1998 a peak level of satisfaction at 85% very or quite satisfied w as reac hed. T hat level wo uld probably be hard to improve - in qualitative researc h customers invariably say that that they will never give a 'full score', in case the organisation becomes coq1p lace nt. The 1999 survey was conducted nine months after th e wa ter qu ality in cident (when traces of cryptosporidium and giardia were detected in th e wa ter supply and customers we re advised to boil their drinking wa ter on an on-and-off basis for a period of six weeks). Levels of satisfac tion with the water at that time are still significantly lower than befo re th e incident. In subsequ ent yea rs they are rising and in the last survey condu cted in Ju ne 2001 they have nearly reac hed th e pr e- in c id e nt l eve l , alth oug h th e proportion who judge the wa ter to be ve ry good is still significantly lo we r. The M cClelland Inquiry that followed the water qu ality incident recommended that Sydney Water develop an edu ca ti on campaign on water quality and distribute to its customers, on an quarterly basis, a consumer confid ence report. R esearch condu cted fo llowi ng the publicati on of the inquiry recommenda tions suggested that th e community does not desire a wide rangi ng edu ca tion campaign , and that, in fact, such a campaign co uld erode rather than build up community confidence in the wa ter. C ustomers wa nted an assurance that the water is sa fe and to be able to get in formation if they needed it . Information provided to th e medica l pro fess ion and th e sh aping of th e consumer co nfidence report, " Your W ater", was guided by this research . About one yea r after the development and distribution of the "Your W ater"



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Diagram 2 . Frequency of prob lem occurrence with drinking water.

brochure, the C ustomer R esearch Unit conducted qualitative research to evalu ate th e brochure. W hile the brochure was ge nerally well received, custom ers cam e up w ith so me concrete suggestions for improve ment to both its content and fo rmat . These suggestions were taken on board and a new versio n is no w being sent to customers and posted on Sydney Water's website. In July 200 1, in order to understand customers' views on drinking wa ter quality and the management of wa ter services mo re comprehensively, a large-scale research proj ect was condu cted, devoted solely to the topic. The survey sa mpled from the Sydney Water general customer base, as well as from customers w ho lodged complaints about their wa ter. It explored issues such as satisfaction w ith drinking wa ter, views o n wa ter attributes (eg safety, taste, sm ell, valu e for money), frequency of and perceived reasons of problem occurrence, the extent of and reasons for turning to tap water alternati ves (eg bottled wa ter), confidence in the m anagem ent of wa ter services and information needs. B y way of example, Diagram 2 provides information on the p ercentage of customers who have experienced specifi c problems w ith their wa ter in the 12 months prior to the survey. The wa ter looking blu e/ green o r causing illness are the problem s perceived to occur least fr equ ently. Only a handful perceive them to occ ur often or always . While a majority have not experienced these problems, 4% perceive that the wa ter looks blu e/ green som etimes and 6% perceive that the wa ter causes illness som etimes . Understanding how customers view the ca use of problems with the wa ter can assist in developing communication messages on water quality . For all but 'causes illness', the most commonly perceived reason for wate r problems are dirty or old pipes and chemicals in the wate r. Germs and bacteria in the wa ter are the most commonly perceived reasons for the water ca using illness . The research furth er fo und that the vas t majority of custo mers w ho experience problems with their wa ter do not report the problem, suggestin g that evaluating customers' satisfaction w ith the service on the basis of the number of complaints received, can lead to a misleading and over-optimistic conclusion. The research also found that customers w ho have read the "Yo ur W ater" bro chure are more positive about their wate r and the management of the service than custo mers who ha ve not. The findings of this research are used as basis for system improvement and communi ca tion materials development. They have also been fed into the Sydney Water's Operating Licence review of the cost and benefits of meeting the Aesthetic Drinking Water Guidelines of the National H ealth and M edical R esea rch Council. The research on Community Views on Drinking Water Quality w ill be used in the near future to assess th e impa ct on customers of changing disinfection systems from chlorine to chloramine and to evaluate co mmunica tion campaigns preceding such changes .

The Author Dr Naomi Roseth is a social researcher and is Manager, C ustomer R esea rch, Sydney Water. Tel (02) 9350 5606, Email:




LOCAL WATER MANAGEMENT PLANNING COLLABORATING IN CHANGE K Martin Abstract Across Victoria, fo llowing the maj or wa ter reforms applying to regulated systems, including the MDB C cap and wa ter trading, attentio n is no w being foc ussed on unregulated streams, groundwa ter and off-stream dams. Local management plans are being develop ed for aquifers and unregulated catchments. In most cases, these plans are being accompanied by metering of all significant wa ter users and improved resource monitoring. Not surprisingly, the challenge confronting or awaiting most planning gro ups and local communities is addressing both environmental sustainability and the histo rical w ater usage patters w hich underpin the local economy and community. T his paper explores this challenge, draw ing on Southern Rural W ater's experience in southern Victoria, and reflecting on tw o 'W ater for Grow th' proj ects w hich are investigating opportunities for local fa rm bu sinesses to adapt successfully to improved environmental outcomes.

Introduction In recent years, the wa ter resources managem ent spotlight in Victoria has turned to fo cus on aquifers and unregulated streams. Whilst recent h eadlines have been grabbed by fa rm dams and land.fills w hich might affect gro undw ater, this has masked a more important public policy issue - how to bring abo ut improved environmental o utcomes for catchments and streams with the suppo rt o f the co mmunities dep end ent on them.

The Development of Local Water Management Planning At a policy level, Victoria's support for planning wa ter reso urces at the aquifer or catchment level is long-standing. A managem ent plan for the Koo W eeRup Groundw ater Conservatio n Area has existed since 197 1 and the W ater Act, w hich cam e into effect in 1989, details th e process for preparing plans , in 28


The Challenges Inputs needed: • water usage data • environmental flow m ethodology • stream objecti ves Outcomes desired: • reliability of entitlements • local community support

conjunction w ith stakeholders and local wa ter users, in other gro un dwa ter areas. Howeve r, it was not until the late 1990s that local wa ter manage m ent planning commenced in earnest. There were two triggers. Firstly, the former State Gro undwater C o uncil brought down a repo rt w hich called for more intensive manage ment of groundwa ter, based o n: • defining areas of significant groundwa ter supply or use as Gro und water Managem ent Areas ; • calculating the sustainable yield for each Groundwa ter M anagem ent Area (called the Permissible Annual Volume) , with no more licences issued once it is reached; and • initiating a two-stage planning process, w ith an Initi al M an age m e nt P lan (generally devoted to initiating m etering of extractions and measuring aquifer levels and a later Advanced M anagement Plan (incorporating management arrangem ents to ensure o ngoing sustainability) . With complem entary funding from the Victorian Government this has led to the completion, in SR W 's area , of fi ve Initial Management Plans - with more on the way.

Steps Forward • New Stream Flow M anagement Guidelines • Water for Growth projects • Collaborative mindset

Secondly, the Victo rian Gove rnment provided som e funds to commence Streamflow M anagem ent Plans for high priority streams. In SRW 's area , three Strea mflo w M anage m ent Plans have been completed, and again there are more under development. Guidelines from the Vi ctori an D epartme nt of N atural R esources & Environment ha ve been used - but these were based on producing a complete plan in 'o ne pass', ra ther than the tw o-step approach adopted fo r groundwa ter plans. The remainder of this paper refl ects o n the challenges highlighted by the Strea mflo w M anage m ent Pl annin g process, and the graqual evolution of the process as a consequ ence.

Approaching Streamflow Management Plans Fro m a wa ter resource m anagement p erspecti ve, there are three principal o utputs of a Streamflow M anagem ent Pl an: • the environmental flow s to be provided at vario us points w ithin the system and, ideally, at different times of yea r; • the total volume ofli cences p ermitted to exist in the system, by type of licence; and • th e m aximum volume of wa te r permitted to be extracted from the system in certain specified p eriods. Together these specify the w ater sharing arrangements for the stream , in ve1y similar terms to those used for irrigatio n districts and urban supplies ac ross Victoria. Whilst it is easy to list these desired outcomes, in prac tice the process has been hampered by: • a la ck of data , partic ularly on water usage since ve1y few licences are metered; • ga ps in o ur methodology fo r determining environmental fl pws and as a consequence, the lack of precision in our estimates; and • a lack of strategic guidance as to the desirable environmental outcom es for particular streams. Co ntinued after T,VaterWorks


"Local f,Vater Management Planning Collaborating in Change" continued from page 28. These are listed not to excuse slow progress or to apportion blame, but rather beca use it's important to recognise their consequ ences for th e planning process paucity of information , inco mpl ete m ethodology, and inability of local co mmuniti es dec iding statewid e o r national priorities for stream health. Howeve r, the m ost critical challenge was the ass umption that local communities co uld negotiate new wa ter sharing a{rangements (s upp orted by all users of, and stakeholders in, the river) w hich improved environmental outcomes even though the y diminish the reliability of other wa ter entitlem ents. T his proved particularly probl ematic in systems w hich are fully, or over, committed. As a result, for at least som e participants, the planning process becam e a "win/ lose" game . With poor data and in comp lete m e thodolo gy , it 's not surprising that the focus turned from de velop ing sustainable management strategies to rebutting claimed benefits and


costs and, at times , discrediting the m ethodology used, resulting in impasse . This can be explicit, as in the case of the Avon Ri ver in Gippsland, w here consensus cannot be reached on environm ental flo ws in part of the system, or implicit, as in the case of the M erri Rive r in so uth western Victoria w here the "agreed" environmental flow is subj ect to debate by som e parties (notw ithstanding that th e debate is betwee n 10 M L/d and 12 M L/ d).

Moving Forward There is no doubt that lo cally based water management planning, at an aquifer or stream level, is desirable. It encourages local understanding of system behaviour and resource managem ent issues, and, potentially, broad based support and ow nership of the responses needed to ensure sustainability of the resource. In short, this model demands collaboration and partnership. However, it's suggested that three key points need to b e satisfied in order to achieve this: â&#x20AC;˘ strat egi c g uid ance as to tho se outcomes or constraints w hi ch are required / applied at regional, State or national level;

â&#x20AC;˘ recognition of existing rights, generally granted by the State, and transitional support for those affected by the new water sharing arrangements; and â&#x20AC;˘ recognition of the limits of existing m ethodologies , but also of the w ider co mmunity's desire to take precautionary action. The first point recognises that the wider community has 1-gitimate interests in stream h ealth, and that these interests form a ba ckdrop for local decision making. It is unreas onable for the local community to interpret or determine these requirements; rather its role is to overlay the local community's desires and expectations. For the process to operate effec ti ve ly and transpar entl y, it is important that state and regional requirements are clearly articulated up front - this will both clarify the position for the local community and help avoid unprodu ctive discussion outside these priorities . The question of existing tights, histo1ic practice and transitional arrangements can prove most vexing for local conmmnities. It also is a question that frequ ently arises

mace= The force In flow.


since in the high priority systems (which are generalJy heavily or overcommitted) changes to existing water sharing arrangements are almost always desirable. Local communities need a means of m anaging such changes - the second point establishes principles to provide this. In many areas, the desirability of better environmental outcomes will be agreed broadly across the local community. Howeve r, the same community wilJ also recognise that its social and econorn.ic fabric has grown to rely, at least in part, on existing water sharing and historic practice. Experience would suggest that, irrespective of w hether existing water sha_ring arrangements or historic practice are good or bad , broad based acceptance of change wilJ only occur if these are recognised as a starting point, and their importance to at least some of the participants is acknowledged . Those relying on these will not accept that they co uld be required by the local conmmnity, or owe som e other obligation, to unilaterally redu ce their exercise of existing rights w hich often were issued by the State som e yea rs before. Further , if t h e second point is accepted, it res hapes the whole debate at community level - from testing perceived benefits and losses and their balance between the va rious participants, to a collaborative search for innova tive ways of managing change. Importantly, these n eed not be limited to "obvious" strategies such as buy back oflicences, but co uld embrace on farm wa ter efficiency improvem ents, moving from summer pumping to winter diversion, and substituting other sources of water (eg gro undwater, recycled water, etc) . The third point builds on the second. R ecognising the need to manage change will help remo ve the over detailed scrutiny of the m ethodology . Clearly, in many systems, it' s important that we act, and act quic kly to establish improved water sharing arrangem ents and Str ea m£1ow Managem e nt P l ans . However, in doing so, we must recognise that we will be working with limited data and incomplete methodologies, but also that good resource management demands that we move now rather than later, when our options are likely to be much more limited . So the third point captures so me critical "expectation setting" , w hich again is a critical part of framing the local planning process for the local community. In summary then, it is suggested that collaborative planning will be facilitated by setting three basic understandings for 30

WATER JU NE 2 0 02


Water Smart, the Melbourne Water strategy consultation process, is still in progress, and will be reported in a future issue. Visit .au

local co1ru1m11ities, at the comn1encement of the pro cess: • national, state and regional expectations for stream condition and health ; • requirements for managing change in water sharing; • that planning will occur w ith, and reflect, a la ck of data and incomplete m ethodology.

Seeking Opportunities • Two Projects SRW has been granted funding under the Victorian Water for Growth it"litiative to examine potential strategies for managing changes in wa ter sharing arrangements for the M erri and Avo n Ri ve rs. On the M erri Rive r the Strea mflow M anagement Plan includes an environmental flow of12 ML/d - although some irrigators have continu ed to argue that this was set without good understanding of the consequences for their businesses and that therefore a flow of 1 OMLI d should be adopted to reduce the adve rse impact. T he plan also includes a provision of 500 ML for fut ure winter di ve rsion (the river currently has 4382.9 ML of summer diversion) which irrigators have seen as pro v id i ng an opportunity for a community-owned off-stream storage which would offset the impacts of moving to the 12 ML/ d environmental flo w . T lu s proj ect builds on this proposition, but extends beyond it by proposing to look at not only the off-stream storage option, but also to explore other opportunities su ch as on farm irrigation improvem ents, reuse systems and alternative water supplies . The project, which commenced in the second half of 2001, was undertaken in consultation with local stakeholders in order to build local understanding and ownership of the options available and subsequent decisions. $50,000 is provided for the project. T he second proj ect, for the Avon R iver, is very similar. H ere an impasse has been reached in trying to move from the existing environmental flow of 5ML/d to the desired 15 ML/d, in a

heavily committed system where th e change would significantly reduce the availabi lity of wa ter to irrigators. The proj ect has bee n allotted $30,000 to explore the options, which are sinular to those for the M erri Ri ve r and $260,000 to seed the introd uction of selected options. Again the project will be run in collabo ration with th e local planning committee in order that its conclusions and recommendations can be considered for, and included as appropriate in, the Streamflow M anagem ent Plan . In both cases a key o utcom e is local understanding of the options available and the framing of a costed package of measures, to facilitate movement to wa rds the desired environmental outcomes.

Conclusion Collaboration in local water planning 1s an important policy objective and arguably a necessa ry condition for broa d based community support of water sharing arrangements. H owever, this obj ective w ill only be achieved if the underlying planning pro cess reflects and reinforces it - it is suggested that cap turing regional/;tate/ national objectives for stream health, providing robust processes for managing changes in wa ter sharing, and recognition that we m ust plan under a degree of uncertainty are key underpinnings for this. With collaboration we can look forward to "win/ win" outcomes, without collaboration planning is likely to be impeded by "win/ lose" thinking. The outlook is optimistic since a range of recent initiatives move in this direction - the Water for Growth proj ects outlined above, the Snowy R iver restoration package which is fundin g irrigation improve ments to return water to the River, and work on revising streamflo w management planning guidelines for Victoria. T his gives confidence that local water manage ment plans, w hich fill a strategic gap in V icto ria 's water resource man age m e nt framework , will b e completed in a timely fashion and enjoy broad based support of their local communities .

The Author Dr Kent Martin 1s the C hief Executive of So uthern R ural W ater, covering the w hole of Victoria south of the Dividing Range. H e is based in M affra, Gippsland, Victoria , Tel (03) 5139 3100, email: u




COMBINING COMMUNITY EXPECTATIONS WITH TECHNICAL SOLUTIONS J Adamski Introduction Up to 30 yea rs ago wa ter resources d_evelopment was a matter of supply and demand , o r, m o re correctly, (we) demand and (yo u) supply! As co mmuniti es grew and th e demand fo r wa ter increased, new reso urces were tapped to meet that dem and . Few qu estions w ere asked and the wa ter authorities we re entrusted w ith the tas k of findin g wa ter and getting it to the hom e. T he wa ter industry was drive n by the need to supply wa ter. T hat w as it. R atepayers needed wa ter and the w ater authority supplied it. Simple really! The community expectati on was relatively simple - wa ter was needed for the home and garden and it was the water authority's job to supply it. In many cases this did not cause too m any probl ems, as wa ter resources w ere relatively abundant and close at hand. However, as the population grew and cities expanded the dem and for w ater also grew , and the search for water became wider and started to have a bigger impact. At the same time the community was becoming m o re awa re of the po tential impac t of wa ter harvesting and develo pment on the en vironment. T oday the water industry is driven by fa r m o re than just supplying wa ter. It must also satisfy custo m er needs fo r an adequate and healthy wa ter supply and safe disposal of waste. The customer (collectively the community) expects standards of service including: • I eliability of supply in the long term. • Continui ty of supply on a day-to-day basis. • Supply at the tap w ith adequate press ure and fl ow . • High quality wa ter meeting health and aesthetic standards. • Effective and safe disposal of was te w ater. Barwon W ater also has responsibiliti es under the 1989 W ater Act. In relation to water supply the Act requires Barwon W ater to (i n part) :

• Provide and operate wa ter supply systems, including the collection, storage, trea tment, transfer and distributio n of wa ter. • Identify communi ty needs fo r wa ter suppl y and plan for the future wa ter supply needs of the community. • D evelop and implement programs for th e co nserva ti o n and effi cient use of wa ter. • Edu cate th e public about aspects of wa ter supply. • P erfo rm its fun ctio ns in an enviro nm entally sound way.

And fin ally, but by no m eans last, th e wa ter business must take responsibility for ac hieving so und environmental and social o utcom es in all its activities . W ater supply is now also being driven by sustainable developm ent principl es. T h ese sta nd ards re pr ese nt th e inte1face between the wa ter business and its customers. But in satisfying community needs the water business must also provide fo r grow th, and , as the development of any new wa ter resources can take up to 15 yea rs, it is necessary to plan for grow th well in adva nce of the (proj ected) need.

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Today, the " rules of the gam e" as they were 30 years ago no longer apply - the communi ty expects and dema nds to be consulted on all regional m atters and the develo pment of wa ter reso urces is no exceptio n.


Barwon Water's perform ance to date, was held Block 1: WRDP Overview ea rly in November 2000 . Thirty invited stakeholders Fact Sheet No. 1 "Water Resou rces - Plann ing for Tomorrow " from loca l governmen t, Fact Sheet No. 2 "Th e Value of Wate r" s t a t e gove rnm en t , Block 2: Sources of Supply community gro ups, wa ter Fact Sheet No. 3 " Harvesting Surface Water " authorities and businesses Water Resources Planning Fact Sheet No. 4 "Groundwater - the Invisible Resource " attended the conference. Fact Sheet No . 5 "Sharing Water Resources" Water reso urces planning is T hese focus gro ups and Block 3: Supply Alternatives necessarily broad and compreconfefe nce provided a ve ry hensive . It is no longer simply a Fact Sheet No. 6 " Using Rec laimed Water" u sef ul s n a p s h ot of tec hni cal problem with technical Fact Sheet No. 7 "Tak ing Salt out of Seawater" communi ty attitudes and solutions . Many complex issues Fact Sheet No. 8 " Recycli ng Stormwater" helped to guide the later mu st b e r esol ve d , in cl udin g Block 4 : Conservation aspects of the consultation environmental , economic, heritage program and the commuFact Sheet No. 9 "Conserving Water arou nd the Home " and social issues, and so develnications program. Fact Sheet No. 10 " Managing an Unreliable Re sou rce" opment of water resources can take During this time a stakeBlock 5: Environment many years of planning and consulholder list was compiled Fact Sheet No. 11 "The Environment and Water Qual ity" tatio n. and pho n e, email an d Fact Sheet No. 12 "Water Resou rces and Climate Change" From th e co mmunit y's Internet access mechanisms perspective it is also complex as it Fact Sheet No. 13 "Water fo r the En vironment - a Bal ancing Act " we re implem ented. ca n m ea n different things to A m aj or compo nent of different people. To the wa ter th e co mmuni cat ion s engineer it is about dams, reseraspec ts. T he Barwo n Water Boa rd stra t egy was t h e di stributi on of voirs, gro undwater, major pipelines, considered it essential that the plan Conmrnnity Infonnation Bulletins, some desalina tion, wa ter treatment and wa ter expressed communi ty views and was of which included qualitative surveys . reuse . To the conservationist it is about w idely accepted and owned by the These bulletins provided backgro und ecological sustainability, m aintaining community. informat ion, contact details, invitations habitats and protecting heritage and the Where the technical work was largely to becom e involvea in the process, and environment. To the government it is re-visiting earlier inves tigatio ns, undersurveys on communi ty attitudes . A about ownership of wate r, wate r rights, taken over the last 20-30 years, and "Summer Special " was distributed to wa ter markets and wa ter legislatio n. To introducing new possibilities arising tourist locations during the holiday the economist it is abo ut economic from advances in technology, th e season, also with a survey, to inform efficiency, cost recovery, population consultation program was to explore visitors to the region and ga uge their growth and the cost of wate r. n ew terr i to ry - engaging th e attitu des to water reso urces issues. To the community as a w hole it is communi ty ! This was to involve the all of these! It is about development and T he first survey (see App endix) community in the process, to determine ovenvhelmingly chose these three issues managem ent of a limited reso urce for the attitudes, to seek comment and to listen, benefit of all. as most imp ortant to them: no t simply tell the community w hat was • Educating people to use less water. happening (or w hat had happened). Water Resources Development • Protecting rivers, streams and fores ts Plan Communications and of the Otway R anges . Consultation Strategy In Au gust 2000 Barwon Wa ter • M aking more use of reclaimed wate r. comm enced prepara tion of a Water T he first stage was to assess current T h e survey respondents, the foc us R esources D evelopment Plan to identify valu es and attitudes regarding water gro ups and search conference preferred ·ac tions that might be required over the resources. Attitudes of the "general a future wa ter management scenario next 20 years and beyond to provide for public", not those w ith a particular more freq uent restric tions, involving all existing and new customers. The plan interest in water resources. This involved greater use of reclaimed wa ter and no was required to meet community expectwo focus gro ups , w hich m ainly new dams or gro undwater development tations and to achieve community addressed res trictions and drought in the next 20 years. People were also understanding of the issues and, critically, security issues that were very topical at k een to see demand managem ent ownership of the solutions. Previous the time. T hey were held in October practices introduced and substituting as development plans had been largely 2000 and included 15 people at each. much " new" wate r as possible by technical solutions to m eet water supply Additio nal foc us groups were h eld reclaimed water, domestic grey wa ter needs. with Barwon Water's Environmental and tank wa ter. Consultants GHD Pty Ltd were Consultative Committee and C ustomer Perhaps the mos t interesting findin g appointed to assist w ith the technical Co nsultative Committee to ga uge was the public attitude t© wa ter res tricaspects. Context Pty. Ltd. was appointed cmTent attitudes from environmental and tion s . Bar wo n Water ex p ec t e d to assist with community consultation, customer representative gro ups. resentment afte r nearly 4 yea rs of to ensure that the community was restrictions, but people largely fe lt that A search conference to explore the informed on the development of the restrictions we re justified, did not cause attitudes of key stakeholders on the "big" plan, had opportunities to contribute to too mu ch hardship and were not the issues of wa ter resource managem ent in the pro cess and was able to participate result of poor managem ent by Barwon in informed discussion on the technical the region, and how they viewed 32


Figure 1. Fact Sheets


Water. It was felt that more regular restrictions were required to remind the com.m unity of the scarcity of water, and that the term "wise water practice" should be used as part of changing people's expectations of acceptable uses of water. Two mechanisms were established fo r direct commu ni ty involvement. 1. A Reference Group was established, comp rising u p to 20 key stakeholders drawn from the community and interest groups. This group, set up by no m.ination and invitation, had a very importan t role in th e process. W ith six meetings held at strategic points through the process, the Reference Group was to : • Build comm itment and a sense of partnership in the Plan. • E nsure that key com munity groups and ind ividua ls were kept fu lly info rmed o n progress and on issues. • Provide Barwon Water with in formation and insights fro m the commun.ity. • Provide a fo rum for resolvi ng issu es in a co nstructive and in fo rmed way. • Enable people to learn about other points of view in relation to water resources issues. • Review mate rial and provide feedback prior to release fo r pu blic com ment. • Facilitate the developmen t of an o ngoing posi tive relationship between Barwon Water and the com m u nity i n relation to water resources issues . T he Reference Group is not a decision-maki ng body. Its purpose is to provide a consultative fo ru m and advise Barwon Water on issues associated w ith development of the Plan.


Nominations fo r the R eference Group were invited t h rough t h e first Community Information Bulletin . 2. Regional Community Workshops, aimed to explore key issues across the com m u nity, were held in six locations th ro ughout the region. T he first round of workshops were used co get feed back on resni ctions (acceptable frequency) and to disn1ss key issues and potential so l u tio n s . T h e seco n d round of works h o p s was h el d in August/September 200 1 to d iscuss the proposed optio n s wit h further workshops, comm unity and stakeholder presentations. Nearly 150 people attended the six "Water for the Futu re" workshops in December 2000 and M arch 2001 . Some of the m essages were clear: water conservation and re-use, more care fo r the enviro nment, better manageme nt of water and catchments; but other messages were mixed: new dams and no dams, groundwater an d no groundwater. At all tim es th ro ugh the consul tation process com m unity expectations were fed back to technical staff to ensu re that the technical investigations addressed any issues or that proposed solutio ns wou ld be consistent wi th these expectations, where possi ble. One o f the most diffi cult hurdles to overcome in achi eving co m m u n ity ownership and acceptance was due co the highly complex and technical issues involved in water resou rces and water supply, and not j ust from an engineering point of view. As the final round of workshops approached a series of Fact Sheets were distributed. These provided background informatio n on wate r reso urces issues and were designed to stimulate debate and discussion at the final

round of workshops as well as provide a general awareness in the communi ty of water resources issu es. T hirteen fact sheets (Figu re 1) were distributed i n blocks to stakeholders, p eople on the mailing list and to schools. T opics ranged fro m water resources planning to alternative supplies, water conservation and the environment. Some of the topics were thought provoking, such as on the val ue of water, which was d iscussed in economic, socia l an d environmental terms. T his raised the question of the community's w illingness co pay for water in accordance w ith its true value. A consistent m essage in the fact sheets was the importance of recognising water as part of a li fe support system rather than j ust a reso urce for exp loitation. System Security and Supply Study

Comm encing in late 2000, Melbourne Water and th e M etropoli tan water retai le rs, in associatio n wit h th e Department of N atural Resou rces and E nvironment, undertook a quantitative survey of the community co assess w hat is important in t h e ir usage a n d consumption of water. T his involved a phone survey of over 1,000 households. Barwon Water also participated, w ith 350 households i n urban Geelong incl uded. T he survey has since been extended to another 250 households in the wider Barwon region. This su rvey is p roviding val uable information on commu ni ty atti tudes to restrictions and is being incorporated in the Water R esources Development Plan . T he Draft Plan was released in M arch 2002 and placed on public display w ith community comments invited. The Draft Plan consists of fou r key elem ents in priority order:


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• Water Conservation - This includes a proposal for a perm anent ban on the use of day-time sprinklers and hosing down driveways, foot paths and other impervious surfaces. T hese options received over 75% support in a quantitative phone survey carried out across the region. • Alternative w ater sources - Optio ns involving reclaimed water, grey water and rain water tanks received the n1.ost support from the community during cons ultati on on the o p tions pape r. Actions related to these three areas ha ve been included in the draft Plan . • System enhancement - Another key m essage received during the consultation program was for Barwon Water to make m aximum use of its existing supply syst(:!m. As a result, actio ns such as lining of channels and covering of storages will be investigated as part of the fi nal Plan. • New water resources - In term s of n ew water resources, there was a strong message that the community did not favo ur new dam s. This contributed to dam s not bein g included as new water so urce options in th e draft P lan.


The order of these key areas reflects the priority placed on th em by the community throughout the consultation process. Public comment on th e Draft Pla n closes at the end of May. The Board of Barwon Water will then consider th is further community input and its responsibilities under the Wate r Act before adopting a fi nal Plan later this yea r.

Analysis of the Process One of the major principles behind the development of the plan is that no single pro cess is to b e considered mo re important than any other: • The tec hni cal work is essential clearly necessaiy in something as complex as planning water resources development over a 20-30 year p erio d. • The consultative work is essential equally necessaiy in ensuring comm unity ownership. • The technical component and the cons ultative c o mpon e n t sh o uld b e independe nt so that the co mmunity would not dismiss the consultatio n process as m erely a rubber-stamping process.

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• Both components must work together and learn fro m each other. Professional independence with cross-fertilisation. Has the process worked? H as Barwon Water s uc cess full y engag e d th e commu nity? T he proof of this will lie in acceptance of the final plan, w hich is due th e latte r half of 2002. H owever, the indications to date are that the conununity has welcomed the invitation to become in volved in planning fo r its own future . Some people even fi nd it surprising that Barwon Water has been prepared to be so op en in the process. B a rwo n Water 's experience in pr e p aring i ts Water Re sou r ces D evelopme nt Plan is p erhaps best sum ma rised by the fo llowing question : "Water for the Fu tu re. What do you th ink?"

Conclusion Th e o bj ect ive was to combin e comm u ni ty expectations wit h th e technical realities and , in the end, arrive at acceptabl e tec hni ca l so luti o n s. Combin ing them into a plan that the community accepts as its own is yet to be completed, and there is still a great deal of consu lta ti o n re maining on th e proposed options. However, much has already been achieved: • G reater community aware ness of the issues in volve d in wate r resources planning and develop ment. • Greater Bai-won Water aware ness of co mmunity expectations. • A new standard for community consultation and involvement in water resources issues. A shared understanding of expectations, issues and possibilities is the result. T h e final pl an w ill not please eve ryone, but everyone has had an opportunity to be i nvolved. In the end compromise is always necessaiy but hopefully through the process such compromise will be accepted with understanding and a shared commitmen t to the o ngoing development of the region. So, ultimately, combining community expectations w ith technical soluti ons will produce a Water R esources Developm ent Plan of w hich th e commun ity and Barwon Water can be proud as representative of their collective views.

The Author Joe Adamski is Execu tive M anager, Strategy & T echnology, Barwon R egion Water Authority, 61-67 Ryrie Street, Geelong, Vi ctoria. Tel (03) 5226 2500. Email jadamski@ .au



BUFFER CAPACITY IN WATER TREATMENT: WHAT DOES IT MEAN? P Gebbie Introduction R eference has bee n made to the imp o rtance of buffer capacity in natural wate r suppljes in influencing pH (Johnston and N ad e b a um 200 1 , Turn ey and N ade baum 2001 ). It is, however, a littl e und e rsto od parameter in the lexi con of wate r trea tm ent. Th e purpose of this pape r is to illustra t e its a ppl i ca ti o n and to sh ow quantitati vely the effect bu ffe r capacity can exe rt on calcium carbonate co rrosivity assessm e nt indices, using M elbourn e's M a roo ndah water suppl y as an exa mple. The impact o f varying th e alkalin ity of th e w ater and its fo rm du ring treatment is also exa min ed. Key words: Buffer C apacity, Corrosivity, C CPP, W ater Treatme nt

h y dr oc hl o r i c), whi c h di ssoc iat e comple tely in dilu te solution to yield H + and co rrespo nding salt anio ns. In natural surface waters- including d rinkjng w ate rscarbo n dioxide dissolves to form carbonic acid and on ce in solutio n, exe rts a maj o r influ ence on pH du e to th e above e ffects. T he concept o f buffer capacity was first applied to the abili ty o f a w ater to resist changes in pH resulting from changes in alkalini ty d ue to co rrosion. C hanges in alkalinity m ay be initiated by mjcro-scale co rrosio n and explains w hy local conditi o ns at pipe surfaces, for example, may be qu ite diffe re nt to properties predi c ted in the bulk li q uid phase. Pisigan an d Singley (1987) found the co rrosio n rate of mild steel decreased as the buffer capa city o f a water increased at constant alkalini ty. H owever, the io nic st rength (TD S) was found to have a predo mjnating influen ce over the pro tecti ve action o f buffer capac ity, resultin g in hi gh er rates of corrosio n fo r waters with relatively high TDS and chloride levels. lncreases in pH that occur w ithin a re ticulatio n syste m are principa!Jy due to lime (calcium hydrox ide) leac hing fro m th e li ning of DI C L pipes into a wate r. T his pH increase m ay adversely impact on the effi cacy of disinfec tio n , particularly if addi tio nal hyp ochlo rite chl o rinati o n is carried o ut in situ to boost chl o rine residuals w ithin a large dist ribu tio n netw ork .

From the definitio n of buffer capacity, the slope of a pl o t of alkalinity conce ntration versus pH; th e co mmo n titration c urve. fn other words, P gives the rate o f change o f alkalinity fo r a unit change in pH and is the refore th e first derivati ve of (ALK] with respect to pH. Buffe r ca pacity reac hes a m aximum valu e at two pH valu es that correspond to pK 1 and pK2 , w hi lst th e minimum value of Poccurs at a pH equal to (pK 1+ pKd/2. It is th erefore also influen ced by the tempe rature and TDS o f the wate r. Un fo rtunatel y from a c orros i o n preventio n standpoint, m inimum bu ffer capacity for a water in fa ct Lies in th e range o f most con cern: pH 7.5-9.0.

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A typi cal analysis o f the Ma roo ndah W ate r supply, w hich is o ne o f the maj or sources of water fo r M elbo urne, fo Uowing Whilst wate rs m ay have th e same pH , fluorid a ti o n , di s infec ti o n a n d p H they can be quite di ffe rent in the ir buffer adjustment usin g lim e is give n in T abl e capacity - th e amount o f acid o r base that 1, at 25°C. must be added be fo re an app reciable Th e wate r also typically has a true chan ge in p H occurs. Buffer capacity (or colo ur o f 10-15 Pt/ C o units and a inte n sity) m ay be defi ned as th e number turbidity o f 1.2 NTU ; excelle nt fo r an of mi lli equi valents (meq) of strong base o r untrea ted supply. acid requ ired to ca use a unit change in pH T h e total di sso lved solids (TDS) in lL of solu tio n (S koog and W est 1963). con centration is 45 m g / L and the total Buffer capac ity gives a quantitati ve hardn ess o f the supply is 15.7 mg/L n1eas ure of th e ability of a w ater to resist CaCO 3. It also has a Langelie r Satu ra tio n c ha n ges in pH if small additi o ns o f ac id [ndex (LSI) and C alc ium C arbo nate o r alkali are m ade to the supply as a result P recipi tation Potential (CC PP) of - 1.9 and o f a treatme nt process or e ffects that m ay - 6 .4 mg/ L resp ec ti vely, indi cati ng the occ ur w ithin th e re tic ulation syste m. w ater is mildl y, if at a!J corrosive . T he U sing th e n om encl ature of W eber & W ea k a cids (e . g. c a rbon ic and Aggressiveness Index is 10.0, suggesting the Stumm (1963), bu ffe r capacity ma y be ph osph o ric) and their corresponding salts de fined as : wate r is not aggressive to ceme nt- lined contribute to the buffer capacity pipelines and reinforced concrete of a wa te r since dissociatio n in structures. T he impo rtance of ~ = d[ALK]/dpH = 2.3[f.C0 2 .'P + [H'] + [OH.]] soluti on is inco mple te. In th e these indices in assessing th e case o f carbo nic ac id , tw o where: ~ = buffer capacity, meq/L.pH po te ntial co rrosivity of a water e quilibri a a re es tabli sh e d: [ALK] = water alkalinity, meq/L1 and simplified m eth ods for the ir between th e acid and the bicardetermination has bee n previpH= water pH bo n a te ion , a nd b e t wee n o usly o utlined by Gebbie (2001). 4' = (o}! K1) ([H+ ] + K1K:J[H+] + K2) bi c arbon a te and ca rbon a te In ge neral, the water may be speci es. These equilibrium may a 1 = 1/( 1 + [H+]/K1 + K2/[H+]) c harac terised as being a so ft, be q u antitatively defin ed by the EC02 = total concentration of carbonate species present non- aggressive, lo w alkali n ity fi rst and second dissociatio n 1 supply. =[CO2) + [HC03.) + [C03°), meq/L co nsta nts fo r carboni c acid, resp ecti vely and fo ll o w th e [H•] = hydrogen ion concentration, mol/L laws of m ass actio n. [OH.] = hydroxyl ion concentration, mol/L I. T he concentration of alka linity and T h is p h e nome n on is in carbonate species are often expressed as K1, K2 = first and second dissociation constants con trast to the be havio ur of mg/ L CaC03. To convert from meq/ L respectively for carbonic acid, mol/L basis strong acids (e .g. sulphuri c an d to 111g/ L C aC03 , m ultiply by 50.

Buffer Capacity/Intensity




not affect buffer capacity, i.e. the total Using the above formulas and the Table 1. Ana lysis of Maroondah Water Supply carbonate species co n ce nt ra ti on analysis in Table 1, the buffer capacity (I.CO 2 ) is unaffected. Value Unit (~) for the Maroondah supply may be Parameter Again, it is evident the increase in calculated as 0.043 meq/L.pH. The mg/ L ion 3.0 Calcium total concentration of carbonate buffer capacity in the pH range 7 .5 to 2.0 mg/ Lion Magnesium species (I.CO2), which is directly 8.0 has not been significant. 7.0 mg/ L ion Sodium related to ~ from Equation (1), is Alternative Treatment 0.5 Potassium mg/L ion 0.367 meq/L. Regimes 17.5 Alkali nity (HC03) mg/L CaC0 3 By contrast, the water at Port To further illustrate the concept of 8.5 Fairy, Victoria, w hich bas a pH of7.5, mg/L ion Chloride buffer capacity and how different alkalinity 320 mg/Land TDS of1000 2.0 mg/ Lion Sulphate water treatment and conditioning n1g/L, has a buffer capacity of 0.888 70 µS/cm EC n1eq/L.pH at 25°C, or approxiregimes ca n impact on this parameter 7.6 pH mate ly 20 time s t h a t of t he and subsequently corrosivity chara cMaroondah supply. Consequently it teristics, two further examples are 7 .5 to 8.0, which is of most interest from may be considered to be a well-b1,dfered considered : a disinfection and consumer acceptance water supply. • initial pH adjustm.ent of the Maroondah standpoint. Johnston and Nadebaum (200 1) have supply using soda ash in lieu of lime, For the Maroondah water with initial discussed the occimence of high pH water followed by uptake of lime by contact q uality characteristics as given in Table 1, (>9 .2) within the Melbourne reticulation with DICL pipework and pH adjustment WaterQual predicts a lime dose of 2.3 system and likely ren1ediation measures using carbon dioxide, and mg/L is required to increase the pH from that could be adopted to reduce the pH • lime addition to fi rst stabilise the 7.6 to 9.2 and alkalinity to 20.6 mg/ L. to move acceptable values (7.5- 8.0). water followed by further lime additio n Buffer capacity w ill be 0.061 meq/ L.pH. Addition of carbon dioxide to the water to give a calcium hardness of 50 mg/L, This indicates that only a small uptake of supply was prop osed as one such option ; with pH correc tion using CO 2 to give a lime from D ICL reticulation pipework is its principal advantage from a water required to substantially affect pH . The final pH of 7 .8. chemistry viewpoint is that the pH may water at this point will be relatively stable be de creased without affecting the A typ ical wate r analysis of th e with LSI and CCPP valu es of -0.1 and alkalinity of the water. Maro o ndah supply following fluori1.3 mg/ L. Using the water analysis given in Table dation, disinfection and pH adjustment 1 and WaterQual - a w ater chemistry, A CO 2 dose of5.9 mg/ L will now be using soda ash is given in Table 2, again treatment and quality assessment model required to reduce the pH from 9.2 to at 25°C. develop ed by the author- the effect of 7. 0 an d in the process increasing ~ to A soda ash dose of 7.6 mg/ L will be CO2 dosing on the water's buffer capacity 0. 171 meq/ L.pH and I.CO 2 to 0.502 required and the water will have the can be investigated. 1neq/L. LSI and CCPP values have now following additional characteristics: At 25°C, adding 2.5 mg/L C O 2 to the been decreased to -2.3 and -1 1.4 mg/L, • TDS: 50 mg/L, Maroondah supply will decrease the pH again making the water more corrosive. • total hardness: 12.0 mg/L as CaCO 3, from 7.6 to 7.0 and w ill increase ~ and Figure 1 also plots buffer capacity • CCPP: - 7. 5 mg/L, and I.CO2 to 0.143 meq/ L.pH and 0.424 against pH fo r this scenario , i.e. I.CO2 meq/ L respectively. Although the pH has • LSI: -2. 1. =0.502 meq/ L. It should be noted that decreased and buffer capacity increased, the As a result of using soda ash in lieu of the ~ versus pH curve for water that has LSI and CCPP values have now decreased lime for pH correction, the buffer taken up lime is the same as that for the to - 2.5 and -10.7 mg/ L respectively, now capacity has increased from 0.043 to 0.052 original water, since addition oflime does making the water more aggressive. Assuming a closed system where I.CO 2 remains constant, ~ may be calculated at varying water pH values. 0.7 Figure 1 is a plot of buffer capacity of ~ the Maroondah supply as a function of pH ::c 0.6 Cl,. for cas es whe r e I.CO 2 = 0 .367 0.5 meq/L.pH (original water) and 0.424 E meq/L.pH (following addition of 2.5 >-" 0.4 mg/ L CO 2). At 25°C and a TDS of 45 I:: (.) mg/ L, pK 1 and pK2 are 6.3 and 10.3 0.3 cc re spectively (mol/L basis) . Fro m Cl. cc inspection of Figure 1, it is clea r that ~ (.) 0.2 a: reaches a maximum value at these pH w u.. values and is a minimum at a pH of 8.3 u.. 0. 1 · ::::, (i.e. [pK1+pK2]/2) . CQ The addition of2.5 mg/ L of CO2 has 0.0 increased the buffer capacity of the 11 12 7 8 9 10 4 5 6 2 3 water but only substantially in the range pH pH 6-7. Elsewhere, the effect of carbon dioxide addition on buffer capacity is Figure 1. Buffer ca pacity of Maroondah (Melbourne) water supply with varying total marginal, especially in the pH range of carbonate species concentrations (IC0 2) .





n1.eq/ L.pH and the total concentration of carbonate species (I.CO2 ) from 0.367 to 0.439 meq/L. T he values of CCPP and LSI are slightly less than when lime is used for initial pH adjustment; a direct consequence of no additio nal calcium being added to the water. Note also the h igher alkalini ty of the water: 20.9 v 17 .5 mg/L. Assu m ing co n tact with D ICL pipework again elevates the pH to 9.2, a li me dose equivalent to 2 .6 m g/L would be required . U sing carbon dioxide, a dose of 6.8 m g/L will reduce the pH to 7 .0 w ith ~ increasing co 0.201 meq/ L.pH and I.CO 2 to 0.594 meq/L. The CC PP of the trea ted water w ill be - 13.4 mg/L and LS I -2 .5, yield ing a water w ith similar corrosivity characteristics to the lime example described earl ier. T he m ain difference between these two chemi cal dosing regimes is the slightly higher b uffer capacity achieved w hen using soda ash . For the seco nd example using Em e fo r initial pH adj ustment o f the M aroondah wa ter, an additional lim e dose o f 25 .4 mg/ L will be requ ired to ach ieve a

Table 2. Maroondah Water Supply using Soda Ash Parameter




mg/L ion



mg/L ion

2 .0


mg/ L ion



mg/ L ion


mg/ L CaC03



mg/ L ion



mg/L ion


Alkalinity (HC03 )


µS/ cm




ca l ci um h ar d ness of 50 mg/ L. Corresponding alkalinity and pH va lues wi!J be 5 1.8 mg/Land 10.6, respectively. To now correct the pH of the lime dosed water to 7.8, a CO 2 dose of 30.8 mg/L wi!J be required. T he stabilized water will now have the following quali ty: • T DS: 105 mg/L, • alkalinity: 51.8 mg/L as CaCO 3 , • CCPP: -3 .2 m g/L, • LSI: -0.5, • buffer capacity: 0.089 m eq/L. p H , and • total carbonate species: 1.067 nrn1.ol/L.

T he CCPP and p H values of this water now ensure it is stable and noncorrosive to fe rrous and cemencicious materials. Im portantly, these water quality conditions will also m inimise corros io n of copper and zi n c , co mm only used meta ls in t h e m anufacture of domestic plumbing fixtures, fittings and piping products, th us reducing the possibility of these heavy metals being concentrated to unacceptable levels in biosolids from wastewater treatment facilities. Figure 1 also shows a plot of buffe r capacity at varying pH for I.CO 2 = 1.067 m eq/L. Note chat as I.CO 2 increases the shape of the buffer capacity cu rve beco mes broader, with a m ore pronounced peak than at lower values, and chat increasing I.CO 2 results in higher values of ~Table 3 summarises key data for the vatious scenarios ouilined for the treatment of the Maroonda h water supply.

Conclusions The buffering capacity of a water gives a quantitative measure of its ability co resist change in pH following small additions of

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acid or alkali. H owever, fo r low buffer capacity waters pH adj ustment using carbon dioxide will only give marginal improvements to buffer capacity and the water will still be susceptible to pH variation. Ve1y little change to buffer capacity occurs within the pH range 7.5 to 8.0. The use of spreadsheets to compare and graph buffe r ca pac ity va lu es provides a useful tool in establishing predicted changes to this water quality param eter. Parad oxicall y, adding CO 2 ca n increase the corrosivity of a water since it decreases the Langelier Saturation I nd ex and Calc i um Ca r bonat e Pre¡cipitation Potential. The additio n of alternative combinations of water conditioning chem icals, such as CO 2 together with limeston e should also be investigated if practicable. For example, the addition of 4. 1 mg/L CO 2 and 2.0 m g/L CaCO 3 to the Maroondah water fo llowing contact with lime will give a condition ed water with the following characteristics: p H 7 .5, LSI -1.7 and CCPP -6 .1 mg/L. This is ofa similar quality to the water described in

Table 3 . Sum m ary of Treatment Scen arios CCPP, Buffer Capacity, Total Carbonate Species, meq/ L mg/ L CaC03 meq/ L.pH


Raw water stabilised with lime to pH 7 .6




Raw water stabilised wit h lime t o pH 7 .6 + CO2 addition to pH 7 .0




Raw water stabi lised with lime to pH 7. 6 + lime from DICL pipes to pH 9.2



-1 .3

Raw water stabilised with lime to pH 7 .6 + lime from DICL pipes to pH 9.2 + CO 2 add ition to pH 7 .0




Raw water st abilised with soda ash to pH 7.6


0 .439


Raw water stabi lised with soda ash to pH 7 .6 + lime from DI CL pipes to pH 9.2 + CO 2 addition to pH 7 .0

0 .201

0 .594

-13 .4



-3 .2

Raw water stabilised with lime to pH 7 .6

+ lime to give calcium hardness 50 mg/L + CO2 addition to pH 7 .8

Table 1 with calcium and alkalinity values now increasing to 5. 0 and 22.6 mg/ L, respectively. Increasing the buffer capacity of a water by chemica l conditioning can, strangely enough , result in lower CCPP values, suggesting a higher propensity for

corrosion in pipewo rk and reticulation systems. From a corrosivity standpoint, buffer capacity is a useful water quality parameter but must be examined in co njunction w ith other indices, such as CCP P.


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Gebbie P (2001), "Water Conditioning and Stabi lity Assessment: an Introduction", 11[/arer, Mar, 50-56. J o hn sto n N an d N adebaum P (20 01 ), "Ma11age111e,rr of pH Variatio11s Dri11ki11g Water S11pply Syste111s", 19th AW A Federal C onvention, April, Canberra, Australia . Pisigan Jr R. A and Singley J E (1987), " Influence of Buffer Capacity, Chlorine Residual, and Flow Rate on Corrosio n of Mild Steel and Copper", JA l;J!WA, 79, Feb; 62. Skoog DA and W est D M (1963), "F1111dm11e11tals of A11alyrirnl Che111isrry", Holt, Rinehart and Winston , N ew York, 299-300. Turney R J and Nadebaum P (200 1) , "Stabilisation and Buffering of Water: Some Cautionary Aspects", Water, M ar, 57-59. Weber W J and Smmm W (1963), " Mechanism of H ydrogen Ion Buffe ring in Namral Waters", JAWWA, 55 , D ec; 1553.

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AUSTRALIA'S EARLY WATER WARS: ABORIGINES VERSUS EUROPEAN EXPLORERS I A E Bayly Abstract M ost Australians would say that strong conflict over th e exploitatio n o f wa ter reso urces in th eir country did not o cc ur until late in the twentieth centu1y . In fact, quite seve re co nflic t over th e utili zation of small bo dies of water in o ur desert regions occurred welJ over 100 years ago . Th e horse and ca me l teams o f E uropea n explo rers severely depleted strictly limjted suppli es o f wa ter contain ed in rock- holes and soa kage-wells and placed th e li ves of abo rigines in j eopardy. C lose occupancy of water supplies by th e explorers deprived indige no us people no t o nly o f water but al so of fo od .

Introduction Water "wars" started to erupt in Australia during the last tw o o r three d eca d es of th e tw enti e th ce ntury (FuUe rto n 200 1) . T hese battl es are set to inte n sify during the next fe w decades and beyond; if a true civil war were ever to brea k o ut in Australia, it is likely th at it wo uld be over wate r! Ou r curre nt wate r wars are bein g fo ught o n a variety of levels: farm e r aga in st fa rm er, cotton fa rme rs aga inst graziers, State versus State, and S tates ve rsus Commo nwealth . T hey are relatively large scale wars in w hich th e cont estants argue about no thing less than m ega li tres o r even giga litres. What is less well kn own is that m iniature , lon ely and hidde n w ate r wa rs we re fou ght o ut in th e desert regions o f Australia before th e end of the nin eteenth ce ntury . T h ese wa rs w e re be t wee n indige nous people and the European invaders and o ccurred in th e m ore hostil e parts o f the Australian en vironme nt.

Figure 1 . A gnamma or wat er fi lled rock-hole on Pildappa Rock, a granite inselberg near Minnipa on the upper Eyre Peninsula, South Australia. It was over bodies of water like this that conflict arose between indigenous people and European explorers. Photo : Ian Bayly.

Many of th ese ea rly skirmishes between Blacks and Whites were triggered by comp etition for limited suppli es of wa ter in small receptacles know n as gnamma.s and soa kage-wells, bo th o f w hic h are asso ciated with rocky o utc rops (B ayly, 1999a, 19996) (Figures 1 and 2) . T he purpose of th is account is to explore the nature and extent o f this conflict. It is a discussio n in w hich we may con ve niently use that humble unit o f vo lume, the litre .

Horses and Camels Versus Indigenous People Charles Sturt was a tho ughtful explorer w ho, at least in hjs earlier expeditions (pre1840), carefully avoided exh austing o r p o llutin g Ab o rigina l w ater so urces (McLaren , 1996 p. 250) . H o wever, it

should be recognized th at much o f th e co untry he traversed at that time w as no t the m ost arid in Australia and this may have given him som e freedo m to ad op t this enlighte ned approac h. Th e desert explo rers o f th e 1870's thro ugh to the 1890's were ofte n m ore sorely pressed. M cLaren (1996 p. 250) noted: " D espite the effectiveness of their firearms, Giles, th e Forrest brothers and fj ohn] Stuart we re all attac ked by Aborigin es at different times, largely because the Aborigines and explorers were in evitably forced to compete fo r the same waterholes." O n 19 O cto ber, 1873, Ern est Giles cam e ac ross a rocky o utcrop not to o fa r fr om th e prese nt da y Warburton C ommuni ty and fo und "several small




holes or cups worn into the solid rock" most of which contained water (Giles, 1875 p.108 ). Deciding that this was a suitable camp, he unpacked his horses, and he and Tietk.ins rode off in different directions in a quest for further fresh water. G iles fo und only saline wate r, and Tietkins found a small amount of fresh water to which he and Gibson (who later perished in the desert that now takes his name) took twelve horses for a drink. While he was alone in the camp, the fourth member of the party, Jimmy Andrews, decided to visit one of the nearby gnammas with a billy to make some tea. To Andrews' "horror and am azement" h e found some 30-40 Aborigines surrounding the gnanm1a. The Aborigines yelled and so did Andrews who dropped his billy and ran back to camp. In discussing this incident, Giles said: "These poor creatures were no doubt dreadfully annoyed to find their little reservoirs discovered by such water-swallowing wretches as they doubtless thought white men and there horses are. I could only console my mind with the reflection chat in such a region as this, water n11-1st be taken

Figure 2. A gnamma filled to over flowing on a granite outcrop at Twine Reserve, north of Hyden, Western Australia. Photo: Ian Bayly.

when found at any price; but I dare say, they knew where to get more, and I did not." By Aboriginal standards Giles' horses consumed prodigious quantities of water. A quantitative estimate of water consumption by horses under desert

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conditions is given in Peasley's (1995 p. 137) accou nt of Carnegie's 1896-7 Expedition in Western Australia: "Each (horse) drank about sixteen gallons (70 litres), sating what must have been a considerable thirst, for Carnegie calculated they had consumed six gallons (27 litres) apiece in the preceding fiftythree hours." Camels may consume even more; Thomson (1975 p.135) commented : "Findlayson [a mammologist who trekked with camels at the height of summer] made some interesting observations on the water intake of camels after a long journey without drinking. He recorded that a gelded male, after a hard three and a half day journey in intense heat without water, drank th irty-three gallons (150 litres) by actual measure without stopping, and fifteen minutes later, another ten gallons (45 litres). This sheds important light on the resentment built up among desert Aborigines against early explorers for the exploitation and, by enla rging well entrances and digging out springs, the devastation of their water supplies co satisfy camel teams. Many of the waters known to Aborigines of the dune country have a capacity only sufficient to supply a small group with their daily needs for a brief period." There is no denying the courage and resourcefulness of the Western Australian explorer, David C arnegie, during his epic trip from Coolgardie to H alls C reek and back during the year July 1896 - August 1897. H oweve r , his treatment of Aborigines during this exp edition , to say the least, left much to be desired. P easley (1995) in his account of this trek described at least ten episodes in which Carnegie captured one or two Aborigines and


forced them to locate water for his party. Th e first of these episodes concerned an Aboriginal man who, after being tied up and fed salted beef, led Carnegie to Empress Soak (or Empress "Spring"). In discussing this incident, Peasley (1995 p.54) com me nted: "Carnegie was convinced that the only hope of survival for the expedition was for the native to lead them to water and he had no intention oflecting the man escape until this was accomplished. If they had not captured the Aboriginal man , it is unlikely that they would have located the spring [Empress Soak] and death from thirst would have been the probable outcome." On th e outward journey, Carnegie's party consisted of fo u r men and nine cam els. On the return journey, there were fo u r m en, eight camels and three h orses. From the viewpoint of desert Aborigines, the amou nt of water that this expedition abstracted from soa ks and rock-holes was so prodigious as to be life threatening. The volumes of water mentioned in Carnegie's Expedition Diaty included: 90 gallons [410 litres], 102 gallons [460 litres], 140 gallons [640 litres], and even 300 gallons [1360 litres] . Several of these volumes were secu red by so-called "soak sucki ng" - a

rather colourful way of describing the process of repeatedly digging out and deepening soakage wells and bailing o ut every skerric k of water that seeped inwards. It is little wonder that this pl undering of scarce water resources by Wh ite explorers caused great resentment on the part of the native desert dwellers. Describing the scene at one of the wells visited by Carnegie, P easley (1995 p. 101) commented: "One of the AbmiginaJ men seemed to be attempting to explain to his friends that there would not be sufficient water for all of the people and ani mals and that th e intruders would not be moving on until they had taken all that they required . He indicated that there was little that cou ld be done because the white men had the superior weapons and certainly did not appear likely to retire in their favour. The natives accepted this and soon began to wander away and were not seen again." One can only wonder as to their fate. Peasley (1995 pp. 71-74) also discussed Carnegie's encounter in early September, 1896, with what he called " Patience Well" which was actually a large rock-hole in the bed of a stream w hich had become in filled with sand and gravel. After

working on the well for two days and nights, Carnegie and his party managed to extract 140 gallons [640 litres] of water for his camels and storage casks. While stationed at Patience Well, Carnegie made observation s on some of th e Aborigin es w ho re mained in the general vicinity. In the words of P easley: "Carnegie was interested to see that the Aboriginal people had pulled up roots of a 'pin e-mulga' which they had then broken into short lengths and sucked to obtain water, an indication that they were very thirsty after their two-day hunting trip. During that ti me the only water they had was the little they cou ld carry in the wooden coolamons, for the well co the north of Patience Well was dry. Th ey 11111st hm1e been greatly distressed 111/ren !Irey ret11rned to their camp only to fi11d their access barred by tire party efstr1111ge people wlro 111ere taking their precio11s water." T his recurring source of confl ict was summed up by the noted anthropologist, Ric hard Gou ld , who made a detailed study of desert Aborigines during the l 960's. Gould (1969 p.52) said: "The [nineteenth centu1y] explorers put a strain on the Aborigines' economy without giving anything in return. Imagine the chagrin of a family of Aborigines on

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finding its waterholes dru nk dry by a herd of thirsty camels."

Camping on Top of the Supply: a Shower of Spears T he behaviour of European explorers towards small bodies of desert water was in marked contrast to that of A borigines. It is clear both fro m t he written accounts and illustrations i n the j ournals of several explo rers that they adopted the practice of camping virtually o n top of water-ho les or soakage wells. Perhaps the main reason for this was that they often reached these sites in a som ewhat exhausted state and had either horses or camels to water as well as themselves. Further, they did not rely to any great extent on water-holes fo r their ability to attract animals which were then exploited for food. In contrast, it was traditio nal for indi genous people to see that their campsites were distinctly separated from a water supply. O ne good reason for this was that Aborigin es wanted their watering places left undisturbed so that they would b e visited by animals w hich could be speared and used as food . Tindale (1974 p.106) pointed out that under conditions of water stress, animals are forced to share water with humans and that emus and most kangaroos becom e

vulnerable in this situation because th ey m.ust d rink fairly regularly. Many of the attacks by Aborigines expe1ienced by Euro peans could have been avoided if they had adopted the Aboriginal practice and camped some sm alJ distance from water. C lose occupancy of a scarce source of water by Whites often deprived Aborigines not only of water but also of food . G aston (1984 pp.180-1) describing h is experiences in the Wes tern Australian Goldfields in the 1890's said: "Occasionally [whitel men, either from carelessness or ignorance, took the risk and camped close by the soak or rock-hole, and about daylight next morning the blacks would show their resentment by a shower of spears over the camp. T hen of course there was a hue and cry after the blacks. But what else could be expected? That little supply of water was all the blacks had to depend upon and who could blame them for showing fi ght for what had been theirs for hu ndreds ractually thousands) of years. Anyone keeping clear of the soaks and rock-holes at night had little to fear from th e wild tribes of the eastern goldfields."

The Author Dr Ian Bayly is an H onorary R esearch Associate of t he D epartm.ent of Biological

Sciences, Monash University, and is a fo rmer President of the Australian Society for Limnology. P rivate address : 501 Killiecrankie Road, Flinders Island, T as . 7255 . Email:

References Bayly I A E, 1999a. Review of how indigenous people managed for water in desert regions of Australia.). R oy. Soc. W est. Aust., 82: 1725. Bayly I A E, 19996. R ock of Ages: H1111za11 Use a11d Natural History of Australia11 Granites. Univ. West .Aust. Press, Nedlands. Fullerton T , 2001. Watershed. ABC Books, Sydney. Gaston A, l 984. Coolgardie Gold: Perso11al Record. Hesperian Press, Perch. [Facsimile edition of origina l published 1937 by Sto ckwell , London .] Giles E, 1875. Geographic Trm1els i11 Ce11tral A ustraliaf,-0111 1872 - 1874. M'Carron, Bird: Melbourne. Gould R. A, 1969. Yiwara: Foragers ofrhe A11stmlim1 Desert. Colli ns, London-Sydney . McLaren G, 1996. Beyo11d Leidiardt: B11shcrefr a11d the Explomtio11 qf Australia. Fremancle Arts Centre Press, Fremantle. Peasley W J, 1995 . ill the Ha11ds of Pro11ide11ce. St George 13ooks, Perch. Thomson D F, 1975 . Bi11dibu Co1111t,·y. Thomas Nelson, Melbourne. Tindale NB, 1974. Aborigi11al Tribes of Australia. ANU Press, Canberra.

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May 2002 Release for public comment Draft Guidelines for SewerageSystems • Biosolids Management Public comments are sought on the National Water Quality Management Strategy (NWQMS) draft Guidelines for Smeroge Sysrems - Biosolids Ma11age111et1t. These draft guidelines are one element of the NWQMS which provides a framework to achieve a nationally consistent approach to water quality management while allowing flexibility to respond to different regional and local circumstances and embracing issues across the whole of the water cycle. The draft guidelines for Biosolids are document 13 of the Strategy and have been released for a two-month public comment period. This draft provides national guidelines for managing biosolids and is of relevance to regulators, generators, processors, transferrers and appliers of biosolids. The overall purpose of the draft guidelines is to safeguard the health of the public and the environment while optimising the use of biosolids in the appropriate circumstances. These guidelines contain: • the principles to which these guidelines are based (i.e. providing public and environmental health; • tables on the classification and use of biosolids according to pathogen and chemical contaminant grades; approaches for monitoring and control procedures; • control procedures for transferring and using biosolids; and • information on research into biosolids being undertaken in Australia and overseas. Copies of the draft guidelines may be obtained/downloaded from the Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry - Australia (AFFA) website: ObjectlD=D2C48F86-BAIA· l IA 1-A2200060B0A05629 Or by sending a request by mail or email to: The NWQMS National Coordinator Cl- Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry · Australia Natural Resources Management Business Unit GPO Box 858 CANBERRA ACT 2601 Fax (02) 6271 6448, Email Submissions to the draft should be submitted to one of the addresses above by no later than COB 15 July 2002



CRITICAL FACTORS FOR SLUDGE PYROLYSIS IN AUSTRALIA T Bridle, I Unkovich Abstract Th e W ater Co rporation o f Western Australia (:WC) awarded a co ntract to the ESI -Clough J oint Venture (ECJV) in N ovember l 996 to design, construct , commission and operate a 25tpd sludge pyr o l ys is plan t , b ase d o n th e ENERSLUDGE™ , or Oil- fro m- Sludge (0 FS) tec hnology. This facil ity is the first con1.m ercial-scale app lication of th e techn ology wo rld-wide. Th e fac ility com prises several sludge pro c e ss ing op e r a ti o n s in c lud i ng dewa tering, chemical stabilisation, d1y ing, pyrolysis (conversion to oil), e nergy rec ove ry a nd gas cle aning. Th es e pro cesses are designed to op erate in a casc ade mode and hen ce th e facility was commissioned in phases, from January 1998 to mid 2000. T he E CJV operated th e plant unti l Jun e 2001, w hen it was hand ed o ver to th e W C. E xten sive d es ig n kn owledge and ope rational experi ence has now been accumulated by the ECJV and W C with rega rd to the appli cati on o f pyrolysis technology on Australia n sewage sludges. T his paper hi ghlights critical factors fo r optima l op erati o n of an integrated p y rol ys is p la nt and d esc rib es th e expe rience gained to date from the facility .

Technology Overview T h e integrated ENERSLUDGE™ plant comprises a number of sludge process ing operatio ns (Figure 1). The fa cili ty is ho used in a fully enclosed bu ildi ng (Figure 2). Th is redu ctive non-incin eration thermal plant processes all of the raw prin-ia1y (RPS) and waste activated sludge (TEAS ) g enerated at th e Subiaco WWTP , w hi ch currently amounts to betwee n 15 and 18 dty tpd.

Figure 1. Sludge Processing Operations

The sludge is first dewa tered using so lid bowl centrifuges and then th ermally dried using an inclirect flu e-gas d1yer. The con version process uses a dual reactor system at a relatively l ow temperature of 450°C and low pressure (1 to 5 kPa) to convert the o rganics in the sludge to four fuels; namely oi l, char, non condensed gas (NCG) and reactio n wa ter (R W ). In the first reac tor th e dri ed sludge is heated to th e requ ired temp erature ge n erating char with th e evolutio n of about 60% o f the sludge solids as raw pyrolysis gas. The gas and the char are re-contacted in th e seco nd reactor to facilitate the catalysed va pour phase reactions which refin e the ga ses to produ ce esse ntiall y hydrocarbons. The ca talysts necessary for the conversion (alumina-silicates and heavy m etals) are in herently present in all sludges. T he oil vapours and R W are condensed using a direct-contact spray condenser with cooled R W as th e

condensing medium. Oil and R W are sep arated in an oil - water separator. The th ree low grade fu els (c har, N C G and R W ) are combusted in th e Hot Gas Gen erator (H G G) to provide th e energy needed fo r drying th e sludge. The plant was designed to also operate as an autoge nous drying facility. That is, about 40% o f the dried sludge pelJ ets are combusted in the HGG to provide all o f the thermal energy for dty ing, during periods when the co nversion reactors are n o t op erating. W he n con version is operating, the oil produ ced is expo rted off-site for use by indusny to replace fossil fuels in steam raising boilers.

Factors for Optimal Application of Sludge Pyrolysis Based on the extensive exp erience ga in ed from operation of the Subiaco pyrolysis plant, the WC and ECJV now have accu mulated extensive knowledge

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on the major factors that are critical for the optimum application of such technologies for sludge management. These major critical facto rs are discussed below: Factor 1 - Thorough Understanding of Sludge Characteristics

Traditional sludge processing facilities in Australia (and the rest of the world) comprise only a few well used and understood unit operations suc h as digestion, dewatering and maybe chemical (lime or cement kiln dust) stabilisation . Designe r s and owners/ operators of such facilities thus fully understand the impact of various important sludge characteristics on th e operational performance of these sludg e processing unit operations. By contrast a sludge pyrolysis plant comprises a number of unit operations (e.g. d1ying, energy Figure 2 . Subiaco ENERSLUDGE™ Plant recovery, pyrolysis) that are not equipment suppliers and designers. It is extensively used in the sewage sludge thus of paramount importance that both processing industiy. Thus limited operathe designer and client have a thorough tional experience is available to operators,

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mutual understanding of the nature of the sludges to be processed. The above mentioned matters are important since it is now evident that sludge characteristics have a major impact on at least the four items identified below: • Equipment selection • Equipme nt operability and uptime • Equipment maintainability, and • Plant operating costs. In particular the following sludge properties are of major importance: • Sludge Volatile Solids ( VS) content • RPS/TEAS Ratio Sludge phosphorus content (TP) • Hair and fibre content • Oil and grease content These sludge properties, and their variability, have a major impact on the items identified above. Data from the Subiaco plant have provided a major and unique contribution to the knowledge base, particularly with respect to the effects of the above mentioned sludge parameters on the pe1formance/ operability of sludge dewatering units, d1yer and fluid bed combustor. (Bridle et al; 1999, 2000, 2000a]. Factor 2 - Thorough Understanding of Equipment Suppliers' Experience

The designe r of the plane muse thoroughly understand the relevant experience of the major equipment suppliers, particularly with respect to handling and processing the sludges in question. Experience in WA to date has shown that suppliers of thermal p rocesses have little experience in processing Australian sludges which are significantly different from European or North America sludges. Of most significance are the much higher VS content and hair/ fibre content of Australian sludges. To minimise technical risk, it is essential that equipment suppliers be able to produce operational data on processing sludge of a quality similar to that in question. Pilot plant experience, while very valuable, does not guarantee that full-scale performance will be as predicted as information on operability, maintainability and operational costs cannot be accurately predicted from only pilot plant experience. Factor 3 - The Role and Significance of Risk Sharing when Applying "New" Processes

It is crucial that the designer and client jointly acknowledge that technical and commercial risks exist when applying


"new" processes, particularly for those that have previously only been demonstrated at pilot plant scale and agree to a sharing of those risks. This latter point is essential for the first applications of new processes, so that these projects are not burdened with excessive levels of contingencies so as to deem the process uncompetitive . Obviously it is important to reward the first clients through participation in future applications of the new processes. The fo rm of contract used w hen applying "new" processes should also be carefully considered. An Alliance type of contract is probably the most suitable since such a contract is specifically set up to establish and practise amongst other things, risk-s haring behaviou r an d rela tionships. By contrast the more traditional forms of Design and Construct (D&C) co ntracting are not desirable as they are more likely to lead to tech nical dispu tes, w hi ch will in many instances be difficult to resolve. Finally, if a project is being fast-tracked, it is axiomatic that additional risk will emerge . Factor 4 - Minimising Risk through Design Flexibility

Sludge d oes not d isc riminat e! Operators of WWTPs have limited capability to store sludge and hence any sludge management facility must have the ability to process sludge at all times. Thus sludge management facilities using "new" processes must provide design flexibility with back-up processes to ensure that the sludge can always be processed to an agreed standard, using well proven and reliable processes. For pyrolysis, the following back-up processes could be considered: • Digestion and dewatering • Dewatering and chemical stabilisation • Dewatering and drying using fossil fuels • Dewatering and autogenous drying (combustion of some dried sludge to provide the d1yer thermal energy requirements) Around the world, it is now increasingly recognised that thermal processes such as dty ing require greater downtime for maintenance relative to the more traditional processes such as digestion or lime stabilisation. Thus, unless the economics of the particular project can support the "luxmy" of a standby dryer, pyrolysis plants will always require a back-up management system based on production of a stabilised sludge cake. This then raises the question, should pyrolysis plants be based on the processing of raw or digested sludge? Experience to date clearly indicates there is no definitive answer since many fac tors need to be

taken into account and site specific factors will influence which is the best feedstock for pyrolysis. However, there are some indisputable facts. The first is that from an energy perspective the preferred feedstock is raw sludge . Typically, the energy output from processing raw sludge will be three times that gained when processing digested sludge. The second is that from a capital cost perspective, processing of raw sludge will be less costly. H owever, from a process stability point of view, the digested sludge option wins decisively . Digestion overcomes the hour-to-hour sludge quality variability experienced when processing raw sludge . This significantly improves the operability of all unit operations and thus will increase plant uptimes. Furthermore, digesters provide a significant storage system which allow the new sludge processes to be optimised and maintained without causing major upstream upsets within the WWTP. Factor 5 - Integration of Equipment

As discussed above, to provide the optimal level of process flexibility, a pyrolysis plant requires a number of unit operations, which are designed to operate

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in harmony. Thus, to maxrnuse operational robustness, good process integration of these unit operations is essential. It is thus desirable that suppliers of the major equipment packages have a track record of working together on previous projects. For new process applications this is unlikely. To overcome this limitation it is th erefore essential that the plant designer/ constru ctor has the relevant process integration experience . The process control supplier/implementer must also have sim.ilar expertise. Another advantage of using an Alliance form of contract is that th e major equipment package suppliers can be managed by SubAlliance contracts, th us minimising the potential for process and contractual disputes during integration and comm.issioning of the equipment. Factor 6 - Commissioning, Testing and Plant Operations

It is now recognised that the skills required by operators of sludge drying, incineration and pyrolysis plants are akin to those requ ired by operators in industrial processes such as minerals processing plants, chemical plants or refineries. Additionally, extensive operator and

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unduly onerous to provide the necessary quantity of sludge over the time period required, without significantly altering sludge characteristics (e.g. storage fo r more than 6 hours results in septic sludge) .

supervisor training is required prior to and during conmussioning of the new facility, whil e the contractor is on site. Industrial competency-based train ing systems are required to ensure that operators and supervisors quickly become competent and are fully aware of their du ty-of-care obligations associated with the new processes . Comprehensive operations and maintenance manuals supplied by the contractor will fo rm the basis for training of opera tional and supervisory staff For new processes the client and the contractor shou ld ideally jointly develop appropriate and pragmatic protocols for evaluation and testing, recognising the linutations of what can be tested an d how the tests are to be cond ucted. It is imperative that the fully integrated plant is o perati ng at steady state co nditions during testing periods, with feed to the plant within agreed specified quantity and qua li ty limits. For example, a difficult parameter to test is operation at "design loading" conditions, especially if the WWTP is not operating at its design volumetric capacity whilst processing raw sludge. Under such conditions it becomes

Lessons Learned From Australia's First Sludge Pyrolysis Plant Numerous lessons have been learned from operation of Australia's first sludge pyrolysis plant at the Subiaco WWTP in Perth. The more important and notable are discussed below. The first important lesson learned was the impact of variable sludge properties on the major unit operations of"off-theshelf' or "proven" equ ipment for dewatering, drying and HGG operations. As the interface parameters between WWTP operations and the pyrolysis plant b ecome b etter understood, plant efficiencies and uptime increase proportionately . This interaction between the liquids and solids handling trains is now known and the impacts of various WWT P operational modes on th e

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pyrolysis plant are better understood, eg the variability in prim.ary / secondary sludge mass ratios and whether the WWTP is operating in bio- P removal mode . To maximise pyrolysis plant performance, more stringent con trol of the WWTP with respect to these sludge parameters is required, w hich understandabl y places additional and possibly new constraints on WWTP operations. T he second important lesson learned was the need for operators with industrial experience, who understand the interactions between the various unit operations, to be "comfortable" with thermal processes and be fanuliar with the relatively fast process response times required. All the operators at Subiaco now com e from an industrial operations background, and the entire pyrolysis plant is manned by one operator per sh ift . As operational experience has been gained, plan t uptim.e and effic ie nci es have in creased markedly. Man y lessons em erged from th e unexpectedly below-par performance of "off-the-shelf' or "proven" items of equipm ent. Most of the tech nical issues related to the plant process equipment performan ce have been documented previously [Bridle et al; 1999, 2000, 2000a] and will thus not be repeated here. H owever in summary, performances of the dryer and H GG were disappointing. While dewatering and odour control met expectations du ring the initial performance testing, the longer term results indicate the centrifu ges do not consistently ach ieve the design cake TS valu e of 28% at design throughputs an d the odour control unit can be overloaded when the conversion reactors vent to the system . Process performance of the lime stabilisation plant has exceeded expectations. Th is was particularly pleasing, as in the early days, during the lengthy commissioning period of the dryer and HGG, the plant relied on consistent uptime and performa nc e from th e dewatering and stabilisation operations. Since processing operations commenced in J anuary 1998, all of the sludge generated at the Subiaco WWTP has been processed tO agreed treatmen t levels. T h is confirms the flexibility provided by the plant. Pleasingly, the conversion reactors have performed extremely well. This part of the process has proven to be thermally robust and not as sensiti ve to sludge quality issues as the other thermal unit op erations in the plant. The reactors are not sensitive to changes in operating

parameters. Issues with solids/gas handling systems downstream of the reactors have been resolved satisfactorily, with the only exceptions being emergency venting of reactor gases and fugitive emissions from the char discharge system. These two issues are currently being resolved. The oil produced to date (over 300 tonnes) has been successfully combusted off-site by industrial users, mainly in boilers for steam generation. The Australian Tax Office has ruled that this oil is a renewable energy source and thus does not attract any duties or excise taxes. Maintenance on the plant has proved to be more difficult and costly than expected predominately because the "fast-track" nature of the contract fixed the building size before all the equipment had been selected. Consequently the chosen equipment had to be designed into the available space, with the result that access for maintenance of some components of equipment is limited. In addition some of the equipment finally selected and delivered by suppliers was, in hindsight, not as suitable as it may have been, which has added to maintenance costs. Also the variability of the sludge quality, particu-

larly the intermittent high phosphorus levels, increased maintenance on the I-IGG. The public's expectations with respect to odours from the whole WWTP site has changed dramatically in recent times, for reasons unconnected to the pyrolysis plant. This has placed additional strain on operational staff who have little flexibility to vary WWTP operations strategy so as to ensure the absolute minimum odour release from both the liquid and solids handling trains. An important lesson learned is that it is now recognised that for a pyrolysis plant the Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S) systems, procedures and practices required are more akin to those applicable to the hydrocarbon processing industry. A much greater emphasis on OH&S procedures and practices is required relative to those normally used in conventional sludge management systems, especially in the areas of equipment isolation and purging procedures. Operational experience from the Subiaco pyrolysis plant has clearly demonstrated the energy and environmental benefits offered by the technology. Not

only does the process provide all the thermal energy for sludge drying, but also shows a nett export of 7GJ/t sludge processed. Improved control of heavy metals and extremely low air emissions, particularly dioxins, have also been demonstrated. Details on these benefits are presented elsewhere [Bridle ct al; 2002, 2002a].

Criteria Which Determine the Mode of Operation of the Plant A wealth of operational experience has now been gained in all four modes of plant operations, namely as a lime stabilisation plant, a LPG-fired dryer, an autogenous dryer and as a conversion plant. Consequently a number of criteria have been developed to determine which is the optimal operational mode, based on a number of factors. The bulk density of the pellets is an important factor which is very dependent on the RPS/TEAS Ratio. When the RPS/TEAS ratio is greater then 701;!{i the bulk density of the pellets is ve1y low ( < 300 kg/m 3) which causes major blockages in the d1yer conveying systems. Under these conditions the sludge is processed

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via the lime stabilisation system, but at an increase in operating costs. Similarly if the bulk density of the pellets is below 400 kg/m 3 it becomes difficult to operate the HGG co ntinu o u sly, du e to both conveying and combustion problems. Under these circumstances, the dryer must be fired using LPG. A major finding for pyrolysis operations relates to the implications for the HGG w hen the WWTP is operating in bio-P removal mode. Under these conditions the HGG is likely to experience slaggin g of the furna ce, an d hi gh operating costs are incurred due to the use of LPG to provide the heat source for the dryer. Addressing this issue may necessitate a re-configuration of the WWTP and its operatio nal strategies to eliminate the possibility of operating in bio-P mode; this option could be cost prohibitive. Alternatively, materials such as bentonite or zeolite could be added to the sludge to raise the ash melting point range, allowing maximum HGG operations. This control strategy is currently under review . Other criteria which influence the optimal modes of operation of the plant

predominately relate to the economics with respect to disposal/reuse of the various products which can be produced by the plant. For example, currently in WA there is an environmentally sound market for beneficial reuse of the dried pellets on farmland relatively close to the WWTP, w hich thus makes operation of the plant in autogeno us drying mode the most cost effective mode. Should the dried pellets require a long transport distance, or indeed there be a limited or no market for the pellets, as was the case when the plant was designed, then operation in conversion mode is the more attractive mode. The economics of operation in conversion mode are clearly influenced by the end market and revenue gained for the oil. If the oil is used off-site for industrial purposes, with no revenue, then it is more cost effective to operate the plant as an autogenous dryer, while the present outlet for the pellets is available. However, if the oil is sold for approximately 12¢/L (a reasonable price based on heating value) then it becomes more attractive to operate in conversion mode .

This economic data for pyrolysis plants has indicated the importance of "value adding" through using the oil on-site for power generation. This option results in the oil having a value exceeding 30¢/L, making operation of the plant in this mode very cost effective and the most competitive thermally based sludge treatment process. ES I and the WC are currently investigating this option.

Concluding Remarks Australia's first commercial- scale sewage sludge pyrolysis plant has clearly demonstrated the energy recove1y and environmental benefits offered by the technology. Many engineering design, process, operational and maintenance lessons have been lea rned from this world-first facility and improvements to the faciliry are ongoing. H ard "realworld" econo mic data is now available regarding the installation and operation of this technology in Australia. Future applications of the t echnology , both in Australia and indeed around the world, will benefit immensely fro m th e lessons learned and the experience gained from the Subiaco facility.

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Trevor Bridle is the T echnical Director at Environmental Solutio ns International Ltd, 21 Teddington Rd , Burswood WA 6100 and Ivan Unkovich is the Business M anager, Wastewater Treatment at the Water Corporation of W estern Australia, 629 Newcastle St, Leederville WA 6007. Email

References Bridle TR M,olinari L, Skrypski-Mantele S, Ye D P and Mills J (1999) Commissioning of the ENERSLUDCPM Plant Part 2: Sludge Drying, Energy Recovery and Gas Cleaning, P roceedi n gs 18th AWWA Federal Convention. Bridle T R, Molinari L, Skrypski-Mantele S, Ye DP and Mills J (2000) Start Up of the Subiaco ENER SLUDCPM Plant, Water Science and Technology 41 (8) pp31-36. Bridle T R and Skrypski-Mantele S, (2000a) Assessment ef the ENERSLUDCPM Process for the Managemen t of Bioso/ids in the European Commun ity, Proceedings 5th European Biosolids and Organic Residuals Conference, Wakefield, UK. Bridle T R, Casey T G and Domurad M K (2002) Converting Sewage Sludge to Fuel Oil, Water 29 (2) pp55- 58. Bridle T R Casey T G and Domurad M K (2002a) Environmental Performance of the Subiaco ENERS L UDCE™ Process Proceedings AW A Biosolids Speciall ty Conference.



TEACHING WATER TREATMENT PROCESSES: USING MULTIMEDIA AND SIMULATION H Dharmappa, R M Corderoy, P Hagare Abstract Teaching and learning environm ents w hich use multimedia based resources have the potential to greatly improve the effectiveness and efficie ncy of learning by engaging stu dents at a deeper level than m ay otherwise be possible. Th e prese ntation media an d teaching methods work together to enrich th e experience, providing the students with a greater opportuni ty to explore their own 'mental pictures', develop understanding and rev ise it a necessary. This is particu larly so in situations w here "real world' phenomena and processes are being taught. Using such a multimedia package in teaching pollution control processes is novel. This paper reports on the successful developmen t of a multimedia package dealing w ith several pollutio n control processes and its evaluation. The pollutio n control processes illustrated in the n1.u ltimedia soft ware are physico-chemical processes which are widely used in both water and wastewater treatment. Teaching the design concepts for these processes in

a conventi ona l classroom setting is challenging because students ha ve difficulty in visualising the techn iques and processes involved . T his difficulty is compounded by the fac t that many of the processes occur naturally over longer time periods and so cannot be easily be integrated into normal teac hing environm ents. The software package incorporates several different medi a m odes including text, drawings, photograp hs, animation, and simulation. A pilot evaluation of this package using third year engineering students indi cated that it suppo rted the development of greater insigh t and understanding of the co mpl ex treatment processes being ta ught. On the teaching side, it was possible to adop t 1 hour lectu re and 3 hours tuto rial format against the traditional 2 hours each of lectu re and tutorial.

Introduction T he utilisation of interactive, multimed ia based too ls and de li ve r y mechanisms in teach ing and learning

environments is becoming an im portant aspect of the implementation of a more innovative approach to teaching in all disciplines including engineeri ng. T he valu e o f the delivery mechanism in the learning process has long been u nder debated. W hile many side with Kozma (1994), accepting that the delive1y vehicle is as important as the teac hing methods, there are many who are convinced by C la rk's (1994) argument that media will never influ ence learning. The au thors of this paper however take the view along with R eiser (1994) and others, that the two must work together and that in fact, it is the delivery vehicle whic h in many cases facilitates the use of particular methods. The potential for applying such multimedia tools towards this goal has been very well recognised. One of the key ele ments o f a multimedia learning environm ent is its ability to provide the learner with control, which is the essential feature of a "democratic environment" for learning.

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C urr e n t int era c ti ve multime di a technologies can represent ideas in almost any mediated fo rm, and provided we can generate a comprehensible metaphor for organising o ur fu nctional options and the un derlying knowledge stru ctures, the student can roam through the resources, creating their own mean ings and understand in gs of t he phenome n a they encounter. .. (Co rderoy et al., 1996). It is suggested by Jonassen (1988) that learning environm.ents which utilise interactive multimedia have a numbe r of attributes w hich are essential to effi cie ncy and effectiveness. In particular, interactive m ultimedia provides opportuniti es for higher levels of engagemen t, improves representatio n of information so that there is a 'closer fit' w ith the formats th e current generation of learners are fa miliar and comfortable w i th, and facil itates contextualised feedback. Such highly interactive environments allow the lea rn e r to learn at his/her own pace at a tim e and place w hich is m ost convenient and 'supportive', and to be 'selecti ve' in th e overall experience he/she has w hile navigating the learn in g environme nt. R ecent research into learning processes Qonasse n & R eeves, 1995) fo cuses on the

students and the 'cognitive tools' they have at their disposa l as 'intellectual partners' in the learning process. T his relationship implies a two way interaction between the partn ers. Without th is, the learner is not fully engaged in the task and the learni ng potential provided by the task is no t fu lly realised. It is the task of the designer to e nsure that t he learning e nvi ronment provid es both th e necessary unde rl ying informatio n structu res and a m eans of investigating and testing hypotheses and understa ndin g . It is the purpose o f this paper to o utlin e the process of design and developm ent of an intera c tiv e mul tim edia learning environ m.ent based o n the constru ctivist paradigm.. R eeves (1993), J o nassen (l 99 1) and Winn (1993) present som e early results fro m the evaluations carried o ut. Through th e use of graph ics hyperli nks and a number of simulations, the student is provided w ith a richer learning experience environment. This experie nce comes about by virtue of it being more situated in a ' rea l world ' context than may normally be provided in a m o re 'traditional' lecture style teac hing and lea rning environment.

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Simulating "Real World" Processes The p rocesses described in this multim edia software package de m and som e imagination to understand the principl es and the continuous and often ex tended natu re o f their op eration. Also, there are severa l co rn.pone nts of th e processes w hich are diffi c ult to explain or de m onstrate withou t the aid of ' real world' experience o r a substituted labo ratory simulation. Many of the processes necessitate exposure to da ngerous situations when they are observed first hand. The functions and processes of these components can be easily d emonstrated using pictu res, hyperli nked text, and simulation and modellin g techni ques to provide risk free enviro nments in wh ich the user may 'experim e nt at leisure' to come to terms w ith the difficult concepts involved and thus gain a deeper understanding of th e system s at work. For example, the effect of particle size and density on the process of settling can be b etter illustrated usi ng simple but e ffe ctive simul ati o n . In general, simulations ...greatly enrich the 'q uality' of the problem solving process for the user by providing unhindered access to act and become im m ersed in a ' real' situated process, manipulating the various causal parameters an d testin g hypotheses without a ' real' conseq uence or risk and in a time frame which is convenient and manageable for them and enabling the lea rner to ground their cognitive understanding in their actio n in a situation. (Laurillard, 1996) . At the sam e time, well structured simulations w hich are based in open ended m odels provide users wi th mu ch riche r learning experiences by "allowing the m onitoring of all parameters while the simulation is runni ng, w ith the ai m o f exploring the relatio nship s be tw ee n them ." (Corderoy et al, 1993)

Multimedia Software In Engineering A multimedia approach can be a very useful tool for teaching fu ndamental concepts in Engineering. Ini tially the lecture r can introdu ce the concept and then the students can u se a multimedia software package such as the one on which thi s pap er focu ses to rein forc e t he concepts. For example, in th e case of sedimentation process, the process depends on th e settlement of particl es under gravity. U nder discrete settling conditio ns, th e settling of particles is given by Stokes' equatio n (M etcalf & Eddy Inc., 1991):


h (J)

w h e re v, = verti cal se ttli ng velocity of the parti cles g = gravitati o nal acceleration due to g rav ity d p = particle size p p = density o f particles p = density o f water p = dy nam ic viscosity of wa ter Equation (1 ) gi ves th e vertical velocity o f the parti cle. H oweve r, in a co ntinuo usl y o perati ng sedim en tation tan k , the particles are also transported in th e h o rizo ntal dire c tion as we ll. T h e hori zontal velocity of the particle can be g ive n by : Q

v, = '



w here

Q = inflo w

rate in to th e tank

w = w idth of th e tank perpe ndic u lar to flow

= d epth

of th e tank

Th e particle removal d epends o n the mag nitude of vertical and horizontal velociti es. M e r e e x pla na tion of th e a b ove relatio nships in the classroo m m ay not ensure the understanding o f the concep t b y the students. In orde r to understand the influ ence of ve rtica l settl in g an d horizontal veloc iti es, it is necessary to v isualise the par ticles se ttling in a contin uously operating sedim entation tank. This can be simulated within a multimedia pac kage . The simulatio n prog ram shows the settl ing o f particles under the infl uence o f bo th vertical and ho rizontal velocities. T he user ca n c hange differe nt va riabl es such as particle size and d e nsity, tank d epth , inflo w , etc . to test hypoth eses abo ut th e processes involved in the settling o f th e particl es. M any more questions can be generated based o n th e sim ulation . Th ese qu estions help students to en gage in and thi nk more deep ly about t he practical asp ects of o peration and pe rforman ce of sedimentati o n tanks. The tutorial problems help

reinforce the unde rstanding of fund am ental con cepts by th e stude nts. Such a sim ulation cou ld be furth er used to d evelop interacti ve tutorial sessio ns. O ne of many possible tutorial examples w hi ch can be ge nerated is described below: Tutorial example:

D eterm ine th e effi c iency of a particle o f size 5 0 ~1111 and d ensity 1.1 g/ cm 3, settling in a horizo ntal sed im entation tan k o f de pth 2 m , leng th 10 111 and len g th to w idth ratio o f 3: 1. The flo w into th e sedim entation tank is 2 000 111 3 / d. a) Explain th e answer o btain ed through simulation using vertical and ho rizontal velocity con cept. b) W hat w ill happen co the removal e ffici e ncy, ifch e flo w is increased b y cwo ti m es' Ex plai n th e differe nce . c) hat w ill hap pen co t he result, if th e d epth of t he sedime ntatio n tank 1s redu ce d by halt? Explain the results.

Design Considerations Th e so ftware package w h ich is the foc us of this paper is d esign ed co g ive the studen ts some idea of the actual op eratio n

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and design of various water pollution control processes. It also explains the operating principle and performance of the processes, wh ile providing them with the opportunity to engage and interact with the learning environment whilst constru cting their knowledge. This package is expected to supplement several print based resources (e.g., Metcalf & Eddy Inc., 1991; Kawamura, 1991), w hich can be used to further enhance the understanding of the above processes. The process of design and development of multimedia learning environments is complex and requires careful consideration of a number of basic elements. As part of the development of a multimedia tool, it is necessary to: • Establish the need for the multimedia tool; • Establish an overall goal; • Establish a set of specific learning objectives; • D evelop content using a subject m atter expert (SME); • Cany out an instructional design phase; • Identify the instru ctional con1.ponents (text, voice, m ovie, etc. );

• Establish navigational parameters; • Complete to prototype stage; • Carry out a field evaluation; and • Produce the final package complete with associated instructional materials and help. M ore details about the design considerations can be found in Dharmappa et al. (2000) .

Case Study on Software Use A pre liminary pilot stu dy was conducted to evaluate the implementation strategies and useability of Computer Assisted Learning (CAL) package. For this, a class o f25 students fro m third-year BE (Civil & E nvironmental E ngineering) course at Un iversity of Wollongong, Australia was selected. T he subj ect evalu ated is Environ mental Engineering Design 1. Implementation Strategies:

Typically this class has 4 hou rs/week of contact time. T raditio nally , 2 hours are used for lecturing and 2 hours fo r tuto rial. In th is pil ot study the lectu ring was redu ced to 1 hour and the tutorial

was extended to 3 hours. In the first hour an introduction to the topic being covered w as given, which included the basic concepts and operating principles of the process. Following this the stu den ts were asked to move in to a computer lab, equipped with Pentium III co mputers, for a tutorial sessio n w hi ch lasted fo r 3 hours. Each student w as given a copy of the multimedia CD alo ng w ith a book which included technical information on the topic. The students were also given a handout w hich included a set of tutorial questions. The tutorial questions were developed in such a way that the students browse through all the tec hnical conten t included in the software. At the end of 3 hours of tutorial, the students were asked to subm it the ir tutorial solu ti ons for marking. The tutorial solutions were mainly checked for completeness and accuracies. It was fou nd that most of the students manage to complete the tutorial questions and thei r answers were fairly accurate . The ave rage m arks in the tutorial (varied from 67% to 79%) were significa ntly higher tha n those from exa ms (53 and 60%). Other strategies followed in the implementation of this software are:



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• Students were asked to work in groups of t wo, so t h ey can di scuss the phenomenon or th e concept they have observed in the software. • Students were issued the software package (and the technical documentation) at the beginning of the session and these were collec ted back at the end of the session. • Students were asked to study two modules per week. Software Evaluation

A questionnaire consisting of two parts was prepared and it was administered to all the students. The questions along with the stud ents' feedback are presented below: At the same time anecdotal evidence was collected via conversation and observati on regarding the students own perceptions of how the package assisted them in their learning and development of an understanding of the complex pro cesses involved. At the time of writing, a new questionnaire is being develop ed to m ore full y explore this aspect of the package. A. The CAL program

The following questions relate to the presentation, navigation and general rating of th e C AL software. Presentation


refers co the look and feel of the CAL program, whereas navigation refers to how easy it was to go about in the CAL program. The answers to these questions will help us to improve not only how the program looks but how ic operates. Presentation

1. Did you find the presentation of material: Interesting 1 2 3 4 5 Boring St11dc11ts rati11g: 1 - 2 2. Was the use of graphics Very 1 2 3 4 5

Very appealing unappealing Studrnts rati11,g: 1 - 2 3. There is often too much information on the screen. Strongly 2 3 4 5 Strongly agree disagree St11dc11ts ratii1g: 4 - 5 4. Was the use of colour Very 2 3 4 5 Very effective ineffective

St11dc11ts ratill~i!.: 1 - 2



1. Did you find the CAL program

1. The instructions in the CAL program were very clear. Strongly 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly agree disagree St11de11ts rating: 1 - 3 2. In your opinion would you say the CAL program is: Well I 2 3 4 5 Poorly designed designed St11de11ts mti11g: 1 - 2 3. Is the help provided 111 the CAL program Completely 1 2 3 4 5 Completely adequate inadequate St11de11ts rati11g: 3 - 4 4. Was the variety of activities in each module: Appropriate l 2 3 4 5 Inappropiiate St11dmts mti11.r;: 2 - 3

Easy to use 1

2 3

4 5

Difficult to use

Swdc11ts rating: 2 - 3 2. Did you ever feel lost in the CAL program? Never 2 3 4 5 Always Stude11ts rari11g: I - 2 3. Did the program behave in an unexpected manner? Never 2 3 4 5 Always Swde,us rati11g: 1 - 2 4. Did you find the visual clues in the program difHcult to follow? Never I 2 3 4 5 Always St11de11ts rati11,R: 2 - 3 5. Did you find the written instructions in the program difficult to follow? Never 1 2 3 4 5 Always St11de11rs rati11g: 1 - 2 6. Was the structure of the CAL program? Very clear 1 2 3 4 5 Unclear Studrnts rati11g: 1 - 3

B. Impact of CAL The following questions relate to your perception of the impact of the CAL units on your learning in the tutorial afterwards. ! . How many of the modules did you complete?

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2 3 4 5 6 7 None 1 Students rating : 7 2. Information provided by the C AL u nit for the tutorial(s) w as U seful 1 2 3 4 5 of little use Studw ts rating: 2 - 4 3. Th e CAL un its contained sufficient inforn1ation for the tutorial. 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Strongly disagree agree Students rating: 1 - 3 4. Did you contribute more to the tutorial discussion as a result of having completed the C AL material? D efinitely 1 2 3 4 5 Definitely 110 yes Students rating: 2 - 3

General Findings Although the sample was sm all , this simple formative survey provides valuable starting po ints in terms of design and educational considera tions where multimedia so ftware for tea ching wate r treatme n t pro ces ses to Civil & Environmental En gineering students is concern ed. Through their comments, the students indicated that the animations and simulations included in the package were very useful to them in testing their 'mental models' and developing understanding. The students particularly liked the level of interactivity included in the simulations of pro cesses which they would not otherw ise have the o ppo rtunity to observe. In terms of general design issues, while many felt that too much information was included on many screens, navigation through the package was relatively easy and the instructions for using it were clear and accurate. In terms of the student's perception of its impact on their lea rning experience, it provided them with useful information and comments made by a number of students indicated that its main impact was that the simulatio ns and a nimations let th em 'explo r e' th e processes, providing them with a "better understanding of w hat makes the p rocess work". The simulations in particular allowed them to re-evaluate their understanding of the complex processes they had read about in notes. There was also a perception that they were better able to contribute to tutorials having used the package. The students also identified the need fo r an improved " H elp" system, perhaps in th e form of context sensitive help. An extensive progran1 of evaluation using a larger cohort is scheduled duri ng the later stages of using this package 111



the classroom teaching and the sam e will be reported on late in 2002.

Availability of Software Th e software is available for use for any education or trainin g o rganizatio ns for a nominal cost. It is expected that the Uni versities/ Co mpani es buy multiple copies o f this software and loan th em to the students fo r th eir use during their study. Typically it could be loaned to the students for a particular sessio n in which th e relevant topic is been covered.

Conclusion The software package that is th e foc us o f this paper is designed to give students some idea of the actual operation and design of various water pollution control pro cesses. It also explains and consolidates their understanding o f th e operating principles and performance of the processes, by providing them with the opportunity to engage and interact within a r i c h, stud e nt- ce ntred l earning environment whilst constructing their knowledge. A limited pilot study using third-year undergraduate engineering students indicated that the multimedia software is a useful tool to support learning for students in Civil & Environmental Engineering and has provided to further develop this resource. Th e pilot study also indicated that, by adopting this software, effective learning of the engineering process can be achieved through a format o f 1 hour of lecture and 3 hours of tutorial against the traditional 2 hours each of lecture and tutorial.

References Clark R E (1994). Media w ill never influe nce learning. Jo11mal ,if Ed11catio11al Teclt11ology Research n11d Oe,;e/opmell!. 42 (2) , pp 21 -29. Corderoy R M , H arper B M & Hedberg J G (1993) Simulating Algal Bloom in a Lake: An interac tive m u ltim edia implementation . A ,;stralia11 j o11mal Of Ed11cario11al Tecl,110/ogy, 9(2). Summer: pp.115- 129. C orderoy R M , W right R J , Harper B M. & H edberg J G (1 996) Exploring the Nardoo : Simulating & R eporting o n Ecological Processes. Co,ifere11ce of tl,e Australia,, Scie11ce Teacl,ers' Associatio11. C ON A STA 45.,July 712. Canberra . Dharmappa H B, Corderoy R M. and Hagare P (2000). Developing an interactive multime di a so ftw ar e pac kage t o e nha n ce understanding of and learning outcom es in wate r treatment processes. j o11ma/ of Clea,,er Prod11ction, 8, pp 407-411 . J o nassen D H 199 1) O bj ectivism ve rsus C on stru ctivism : D o we need a N ew Philosophical Paradigm' Ed11cario11a/ Tec/1110/ogy Researclt a/Id De11elop111e11r, 39(3).

Jonassen DH (1988) I,,structional desig11Sjor 111icroco111p11ter co11rse111are. Hillsdale,N J ,. Law rence Erlbaum. Jon assen D H , Reeves T C (1995) Learning wir/1 T echnology: Using Co m puters as Cognitive Tools. Han dbook of R esearclt 011 Ed11catio11a/ Co1111111111icarim1s m1rl Tec/1110/ogy. edit., Jo nassen D H. New Y ork Scholastic Press in collaboration w ith the Association fo r E ducational Communications and Technology. C hapter 25 . Kawam ura S (1991) Integrated design of water treatment fa cilities. J ohn W iley & Sons, Inc., New York. Kozma R B (1994). A R e ply: Media and M ethods. j 01mia/ of Ed11cario11a/ Tec/1110/ogy Researcl, a11d De11elop111e11t . 42 (3), pp 11-14. Laurillard D (1966) The C hanging University. Paper # 13 .lTFORU M h ttp: //www. rum.html. University of Georgia . Mayer R (1989) Systematic thinking fostered by illustrations in scientific text. j o11ma/ of Ed11catio11al Psychology, 81 (2), pp 240-246. Metcalf & E ddy Inc. (1991), W astewater Engineering. McGraw Hill Inc., N ew Y ork. R eeves T (1993) Interactive learning systems as mind too ls. Ed11cari011a/ Co111p11ti11g Associatio11 ef f,Vestem A ustralia A 11111wl Co1ifere11ce, 2. ed., Newhouse P. Mandurah: EC AWA. Reiser R A (1994) C lark's Invitation to the Dance: An lnsn1.1ctional D esigner's R esponse. Jo11ma/ ef Ed11catio1,a/ Tec/1110/ogy Researclt a11d De11e/op111e11r. 42 (2), pp 45-48. Rieber L (1990) Using computer animated graphics in science instructio n with children. Jo11m al of Ed11catio11al Psycltology, 82 (1), pp 135- 140. Winn W (1993) A constructivist critique o f the assumptions of instructio nal design. Des1gni11g E1111iro11111e11ts Jo ,- Co11str11ctivist Lear11i11g. ed. , Duffy T, Lowyck j. & Jonassen DH pp. 163187. Berli n H eidelbe rg: Springer-Verlag.

The Authors Dr Hagare Dharmappa is a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Engineering at University of Wollongong. His areas of expertise include water and wastewater treatment, on-site waste managem ent, industrial w as te m anage m e nt and technology based learning in engineering. Email: dharma@ Robert Corderoy is a Lecturer in Educational D evelopment at CEDIR , University of Wollongong. His areas of expertise include interactive learning, instructional design and learning evaluation. Email: b o b _co rd e r oy@ u ow . e d u . a u. Dr Prasanthi Hagare is a Senior Lecturer in E n vironm e nt al Engin ee rin g at University of T echnology, Sydney. H er areas of expertise include water and wastewater treatment, on-site waste trea tment & di sposal and solid & hazardous waste management. Email: p.hagare@uts. edu .au.

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Water Journal June 2002  

Water Journal June 2002