Water Journal November 2005

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Volume 32 No 7 November 2005 Journal of the Australian Water Association

Editorial Board P R Bishop, Chair

B N Anderson, C Diaper, G Finke, G Finlayson, A Gibson, A Holder, B Labza, M Muntisov, D Power, F Roddick, G Ryan


·, Wnm is a refereed journal. This symbol

indicates char a paper has been refereed.


Progress on Track; Building Understanding; Water Markets - Let the Water Begin to Flow, R Young

Submissions Instructions for authors can be found on page 4 of chis journal. Submissions accepted ar: www.awa.asn.au/publicacions/

Managing Editor


AWA Annual Report; National Golf Day; Young Water Professionals


Peter Stirling

IWA Australia; WaterAid Australia Update; Nominations Invited for Prince Sultan Prize


Technical Editor


Details of courses, classes and other upcoming water events

EA (Bob) Swinton 23 Blaxland Road, Wentworth Falls, NSW 2782 T el +GI 2 4757 1565 Email: bswinron@bigpond.ner.au


Industry news

News Editor


Kate Bennett Tel +6 I 2 94 I 3 1288 Fax: +6 I 2 94 I 3 I 047 Email: kbennen@awa.asn.au


Water Production



Water Advertising National Sales Manager: Brian Rault Tel +GI 3 8534 5014 Fax +GI 3 9530 891 I Mobile 04 11 354 050 Email: braulr@halledir.com.au




Darryl Day


Chief Executive Officer


Chris Davis



Australian Water Association (AWA) assumes no responsibility for opinions or statements of fucts expressed by contributors or advertisers. Editorials do nor necessarily represent official AWA policy. Advertisements are included as an information service to readers and are reviewed before publication to ensure relevance to the water environment and objectives of AWA. All material in Water is copyright and should not be reproduced wholly or in part without written permission.


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NSW METROPOLITAN WATER PRICE REVIEW 2005 Setting prices for agencies confronting water supply constraints R Warner, M Naidu


·, HOUSEHOLD WHOLE-OF-WASTE MANAGEMENT A study of vermi-composting for wastewater as well as organic solids AK Panikkar, S A Okalebo, P A Hackney, S P Shrestha, SJ Ri ley





OVERVIEW OF THE VICTORIAN URBAN WATER PRICE REVIEW The first price review by the Essential Services Commission S Harding



·, CRYPTOSPORIDIUM RISK MANAGEMENT USING UV A review of the pros and cons: Three case studies N Johnston, M Muncisov, M Laginesrra

Australian Water Association PO Box 388, Artarmon, NSW 1570 Tel +GI 2 9413 1288 Fax +GI 2 9413 1047 Email: info@awa.asn.au ABN 78 096 035 773

GIS AND WATER NETWORK MANAGEMENT Opportunities for innovations and network data usage that were almost unthinkable ... L Weber

Water (ISSN 0310 - 0367) is published eight rimes a year in the months of February, March, May, June, August, September, November and December.

·, GIS IN GROUNDWATER AND SOIL SALINITY MODELLING Approaches to estimating and predicting salinity risk. P Lambie, D Fraser

Hallmark Editions PO Box 84, Hampton, Vic 3188 99 Bay Street, Brighton, Vic 3 I 86 Tel +GI 3 8534 5000 Fax +61 3 9530 891 I Email: hallmark@halledit.com.au Graphic design: Mitzi Mann

A Way into the Future: On-site '05; Riversymposium 2005


SPECIAL FEATURE: PUMPS OUR COVER: Ultra-violet disinfection of both water and recycled water has been used, successfully, for years. ft was gi,ven an extra boost when it was discovered that Cryptosporidium oocysts, which are resistant to chlorine, could be inactivated by an adequate dose of UV. However; designing a plant to deliver that 'adequate' dose at an economic cost is not easy. The paper on page 39 outlines some ofthe challenges, and our cover shows the lamp array at Summit Storage in South Awtralia.

PROGRESS ON TRACK AWA's Board and Queensland I was pleased to chair our lase Board meeting, in Brisbane, where the Directors were able co have dinner with the Queensland Branch Committee the day before the meeting. It was good for the two groups co have some informal time together. Distance is the enemy of good relations across our vasr island, so meetings like chis are invaluable. At the Board meeting, a decision was taken to engage a part-time policy officer, co be based in Brisbane, bur serving as a national policy resource for the association. That outcome was rhe direct result of imaginative ideas from Queensland and the AWA' s strategy co be more proactive in water policy and advocacy. At the time of writing, we were advertising for the policy position, which will report co Chris Davis, as pare of rhe AWA team. This move is going co strengthen AWA's ability co keep across water policy in the jurisdictions and co advise members and rhe community on policy, as well as advocating directly to Commonwealth, state and territory governments.

Darryl Doy Australian co serve as President, when he cakes over from Laszlo Somlyody (Hungary) at the Beijing World Water Congress in September 2006, for a twoyear term . David will serve in rhe role unril the Vienna World Water Congress in September 2008 . David's election reflects the high regard for his work on rhe Executive Committee as Sen ior Vice President since March 2003, and his leadership of the 2002 Melbourne World Water Congress organising committee. I also attended a Utility Leaders Forum on 5 October and the IWA Strategic Council meeting on 6 October, as one

As the water workforce adapts to changing demands and more sophisticated technology, it has also got to plug a critical age gap that was created by poor policies twenty years ago. IWA President to be an Australian I attended the International Water Association (IWA) Governing Board meeting in Oaxaca, Mexico, on 7 October at which Dr David Garman (Director of the Environmental Biotechnology CRC) was voted in as Pres ident Elect of !WA. David will be rhe first 2 NOVEMBER 2005


of five utility sector representatives on the 36member Council, elected earlier in 2005. In recognition of the need fo r IWA co better serve the utility sector, a number of iniriarives were developed at rhe Utility Leaders Forum, and included in the 2006 - 2010 Business Plan development by rhe Strategic Council.

IWA Utilities will be launched at a Utility Leaders Forum at WasserBerlin in April 2006, followed by a Utility Leaders Forum in Singapore in May 2006 (co be co-hosted by PUB and WSAA) advocacy and a Utility Leaders Forum at Beijing in September 2006. The three Forums will have linked programs, focused both on high level strategic issues and advocacy. This is an exciting development, building on rhe new Specialist Groups, Governance & Regulation, Strategic Asset Management (headed by Andrew Foley) and Climate Change and Utilities; and a focus in Beijing on workshops, papers and presentations for urilicies, and regulation. IWA is committed co broadening support co urility and corporate members, wh ich will be strongly supported by Tom Mollenkopf (Depury Director - another Australian working for IWA) in rhe London office".

Training on Track A very pleasing development is the unrolling of rhe Phase II Review of rhe National Water Training Package which is finally under way, after a gap of rwo frustrating years. As rhe water workforce adapts co changing demands and more sophisticated technology, ir has also gor co plug a critical age gap char was created by poor policies twenty years ago. Thar puts a double onus on narional training efforrs, so rhe underpinning of sensible competency standards, now finally being reviewed and revised, is crucial. I know char many people in rhe water industry find rhe arcane, jargon-riddled world of train ing policy a challenge; bur effective vocational training is going ro be a key plank in efforts co groom enough skilled people for rhe future in water operations; so we all have co support the Training Package, and the Review.

A complementary development is rhe creation of a national Training Forum, which industry stakeholders have agree ro support. AWA and WSAA hosted a Water Education Network initiative in May this year, attended by most of the key water training stakeholders - rhe group strongly su pporced the idea of creating a Training Forum which will really represent the water industry's interests, and broker desired projects. This will ace as an effective, integrating organisation, co provide coherent water industry inputs to the review and co any other industry education and training issues. High on rhe list of priorities is a water training supermarket char will enable anyone across Australia co identify suitable courses for any water topic. AWA's Board has agreed co provide funds for rwo years, co underwrite the Train ing Forum and co ensure it gees off to a flying scare - I look forward co it becoming a productive and positive force. Secretariat supporr for the Forum will be provided by ALGT, rhrough Carla Scomazzon, so people in terested in the initiative can log their interest wirh Carla on carla@algr.com .au


water FUTURE MAJOR FEATURES DECEMBER - Liquid Waste Treatment, Project Delivery, Activated Sludge Dynam ics FEBRUARY - Onsite Systems, Algal Toxins, E¡water CRC Research Program

MARCH - Online Monitoring, Odour Management, Membrane Technology, Young Professionals

conferences contaminated region of rhe exclusion zone is the Krasnesky floodlands on rhe left bank of the Pripyar River, rhe main transport waterway for radioactive substances of Chernobyl origin.

Environmental flows for rivers and estuaries Mr Shivash ish Bose presented a derailed case study showing the confl ict between pro-development and environmental causes in the Bay of Bengal in India. "We have to change the human behaviours so we don 't create the prob lems in the fi rst place," he said The Su ndarbans Delta, fed by rh e Ganges River, flows into the Bay of Bengal. l e houses mangroves chat provide protectio n to the Royal Bengal T iger. Al though rhe tiger has a high profile internationally and parts of che area have had protected biosphere srarus and world he ritage listing since the ea rly 1990s, the Sundarbans Development Board remains pro-deve lopment. This is rhe cause of a very interesting co nflict b etween high profile eco logical co nservation and the need for development - and so the story continues.

Twinning Partnerships The T winning partnerships program, iniriared by the Inrernarional Riverfoundarion, encourages Inrernacional and National Thiess Riverprize winners to share their best practice experience and tech nical knowledge wirh another catchment experiencing similar problems. The symposium provided an opportunity fo r the Minister of Agriculrure and the Direcror General from Burkina Faso ro share some of rhe benefits experienced through their twinning partn ersh ip with che Alexander River in Israel. Lake Barn , a natural lake and part of a river system in the Burkina Faso, West Africa is bel ieved to be drying up . The I00,000 peo ple living in the area depend upon the survival of che lake for drin king water, agricu lture, stock and fis hing. The Tweed River Shire Co uncil has also reamed up with Kenyan officials in a Tw inning partnership to improve li fe in commun ities around Nairobi. The project will focus on reducing po llution and boost san itation through improved trade waste measures. The

Twinning Partnership links communities in the Tweed River, NSW and Kenya (from left) Kenyan community development officer Olita Ogonjo, Tweed Shire Council's Director of Engineering and Operations, Mike Rayner, International Riverfoundation Chairman Martin Albrecht and IRF Executive Manager Vikki Uhlmann.

Tweed Shire Council and Tweed River Comm ittee are one of che four fi nal ists in the National Riverprize in 2005. These success of these projects are an encouragement to ochers to look at form ing such partnerships.

2005 National Thiess Riverprize - Bulimba Creek $AUD50,000 Brisbane's Bul imba Creek Catchment Association caught the eye of judges to win the prestigious 2005 National Th iess Riverprize. This once degraded urban waterway, being restored by an active group of volunteers, was recognised as a role model for successful rehab ilitation and commu nity participation. Ir is rhe first Queensland group to ever win rhe national prize, now in its fifth year. 2005 International Thiess Riverprize - Drome River, France - SAUD 150000 The Drome River Valley in southern France won rhe prestigious Internacional T hiess Riverprize for irs restoration and management efforts. The Drome river, once too poll uted for swimming and sucked dry by agricultural irrigation, has see n sign ificant improvement in irs water quality, wetland biology and flood risks. 'The restoration of the Drome River Valley is an excellent exa mple of a collaborative partnership between local governments and local stakeholders working through the Communaure de Communes du Val de Drome (CCVD) to prod uce a model for European river management," said Professor Paul Greenfield, chair of rhe international judging panel. Record number of assisted delegates attending the 2005 River symposium The Riversymposium recognises rhe importance of assisting develop ing countries to better manage thei r water resources and through the assisted delegates program encourages development of

strong networking and world's best practice. Generous support was received from the In cernarional Riverfoundacion who contributed $AUD150000 to fund 4 1 delegates to attend Riversymposium. Highlights included: Juliet Abuiin from the Institu te of Environmenr and Natural Resou rce at Makerere Uni versity in Uganda described the range of international conventions, laws and regulations chat improve che cost-efficiency of dams, protect the environment, and assist developers to remain with in the law. Rabin Bastola from che Friends of the Bagmari in Nepal sha red her experiences of the role played by women's groups, and the prospects of these groups in reversing the degradation of the Bagmari River. Maturo Paniani from the International Waters Project in Samoa discussed activities occu rring in 14 Pacific Island countri es to address rhe root causes of environmental concerns. Activities described included protecting freshwater resou rces, managi ng waste, and using coastal resou rces in a sustai nable way. The World W ide Fund for Nature generously supported 6 delegates from China to attend and presented a special session on the Yangtze River. One delegate basically su mmed up the whole program when he said "The Riversymposium 2005 was an unforgettable even t - differen t from most ocher co nferences." So don't miss next years ... 9th International Riversymposium 2006 Next year's confere nce is already advanced in planning. Key daces for your diary are September 5-8, 2006. "Managing Rivers in a Changing World - Coping with Climate Change and Expand ing Populations".


NOVEMBER 2005 31

GIS IN GROUNDWATER AND SOIL SALINITY MODELLING P Lambie, D Fraser can be combined into one layer (Goodchild I 993). This One of rhe major adverse is demonstra ted in Figure 2. outco mes of irrigation in Raster Australia has been the onset GIS in Groundwater of land salinisarion, Modelling resul ting in substantial A GIS can be of assistance environmental degradation, in groundwater modell ing at as well as significant losses a nu mber of different stages in agricul tural production of rim process (Goodchild Vector and damage to 1993; Gupta et al., 1996; infrastructu re. Faced with Singh and Fiorentino 1996; an expensive and insidious Wetland : Clark 2000) problem char is difficult to 1) Preprocessing of data into map and predict, researchers a fo rm suitab le for analysis; and practi rioners have 2) Dara analysis; developed a diverse range of approaches to estimating 3) Model calibration, Physical and pred icting salinity risk. th rough rhe adjustment of T hese include grou ndwater key va riables; World modelling, rule-based 4) Pred iction of outcomes; classifiers usi ng expert and Figure l . Roster and vector representations of the physical world in a knowledge, the use of 5) Pose processing through G IS (a dopted from [ESRI 200 1]). surrogate variables and reformatting, rabularion, datasets such as satelli te mapping and generating imagery, spatial data analysis properties of objects (Singh and Fiorentino reports. combined with expert knowledge, and 1996) . T hese objects may be points (e.g. In all of rhese stages, a GIS contributes Geographic Information Systems (GIS). houses, bores), lines (e.g. roads, irrigation th rough rhe solid treatment of spatial T his paper provides an introd uction to channels), or areas, also called polygons, variation (Maidmenr 1993). Withi n a GIS, Geograph ic Information Systems and (e.g. National Parks) (Goodchild 1993; inpu t variables can be described as outlines how this technology ca n be applied Singh and Fiorentino 1996) . Dara in a GIS conti nuous surfaces, enablin g areas rhac are ro modelling groundwater and soil sali nity. can be displayed and stored in one of fi ve differen t fro m the average ro be identified for ms, namely lines, points, polygons (Berry 1993). Furthermore, within the GIS Introduction (collectively termed vectors) and regular environment spatially dependent operarors T his paper discusses how Geographic arrays of grid cells in either a grid or an (e.g. withi n a ser distance) can be appl ied ro Info rmation Systems (G IS) have been used variables and datasets (ibid) . In co model groundwater and salinity risk. T he groundwater modelling studies, che There is a wide diversity discussion begins with a focus on what a combining or coupling of a G IS with a G IS is and how data are displayed with in ir. in approaches to groundwater model can occur "loosely" or T he focus rhen moves to consider how "closely" (Goodchild 1993). A groundwater GlSs have been used in groundwater estimating and model and GIS are loosely coupled when modelling and rhe advantages and che groundwater model and GIS operate ¡ predicting salinity risk. limitatio ns that a GIS provides. Finally, independen rly bu c use che files generated by some studies of where GIS has been used to che orher (via a conversion p rocess), with model salinity risk are considered in more image fo rmat (collectively termed rasters) che sim ulation and predictio n being carried derai l. (Si ngh and Fiorentino 1996). Vector our by rhe groundwater model (Clark representation can be converted to raster 2000). The GIS and groundwater model What is a Geographic Information representation and vice versa. A diagram are closely coupled when they share rhe System? showing the difference between raster and same daca structure and interact with the Coller et al (I 996) described a GIS as "a vector represenrarions is shown in Figure I. same database (Clark 2000). computerised system designed ro process Spatial variation in a single variable (e.g. Gupta ( 1996) advocates a loosely coupled information with a spatial dimension." rain fall) ca n be represented as a layer with in arrangement to use che superior qualities of Dara within a GIS will have geometric a GIS (Goodchild 1993). Different objects GIS for processing spatial data, preparation information, namely co-ordinates, as well as can also be displayed in di ffere nt layers (e.g. of in put fi les, making maps of inputs and attribute information, describing rhe rivers, roads, houses) or rhe layers of objects model results, then usi ng rhe more


32 NOVEMBER 2005


refereed paper


g1s overall salini ty hazard index value advanced mathematical and (Searle and Baillie 1998) . T o cesc rhe modelling capabilities of che model, index values assigned by the groundwater model for simulations. SOIL TYPE model were compared co salinity In support, Shaw (1997) argues char readings recorded from surface waters a GIS is an unsuitable shell for LAND USE (Searle and Baillie 1998). Best results hydrological models. T his co nclusion were obtained when landform and arises from rhe limited amount of GEOLOGY geological layers were given a high marhemacical functionality in a GIS weight, with climate and soils having environment and the inability of GIS HYDROLOGY a slightly lower weight (Searle and co deal wich rime variability. Bai llie 1998). However, ocher authors (Berry 1993; TOPOGRAPHY The third srudy was undertaken in Maidmenc 1993; Nyerges 1993) catchments in Western Australia and HYDROGEOLOGY argue char a GIS can support N ew South Wales (Robens et al. , hydrological and land surface1997). Fuzzy sec analys is was used co subsurface modelling applications PHYSICAL WORLD combine variables derived from a ch rough i cs layered structure, digital elevation model (DEM) in provided dynami c analys is is not Figure 2. Layers of a GIS representing different order co determine sali nity risk used. Dynamic analysis is where aspects of the physical world. (Roberrs et al., 1997) . These variables variables (e.g. channel seepage) are described fearu res such as elevation, always changing in response co local low points, plan curvaru re (fo r environmental conditions, whilst in concavity), and the area of landscape static analysis rhe values of variables uph ill from each point (or contributing area). Each of the derived are taken as a snapshot in an instant of rime (Khan et al., 200 I). variab les was scaled co give a value between O and 1 for che fuzzy Dynamic analysis cannot be undertaken in a GIS because a GIS analysis co proceed. T he GIS was used co derive variables from rhe has no explicit representati on of rime in irs data structures DEM and co undertake raster-based analysis. (Maidm e nr 1993) . However, static analysis can be used with in a GIS. For example, spreadsheet cype models can be implemented Al l of these srudies use alternatives co physical or process models with regr ession equations used co work our loadings for different because of rhe heavy computational and data requirements of rhe layers in rhe G!S (Maidmenr 1993). T he lim ited amou nt of physical models. mathematical functionality withi n a GI S res tricts the models char can be constructed in th is environment (Berry I993; Maidmenr 1993; Sh aw 1997).

GIS and Salinity Risk

l\camtek "(,chuoloio- fly

GIS has been used in borh dryland and irrigated areas co estimate salinity risk. Studies in dryland areas are discussed prior co a discuss ion of studies in irrigated areas.

GIS and salinity risk · dryland studies Three studies are of particular interest. Th e first was undertaken in rhe Burdekin River Bas in in No rthern Queensland (Bui 1997) . Event tree analysis (a hazard identificati on technique) was used co rranslare rhe event of tree clearing into different possible outcomes depending on rh e responses of environmental variables, for example recharge, groundwater and salt scores (Bui 1997) . Decision rules were then used co predict areas at risk from salinity in rhe event of land clearing. A GIS provided rhe framework fo r analysis with digital elevation data, soil surveys and hydrological dara inco rporated into che database (Bui 1997). The risk of salinity was relat:ed co rhe resulrs obtained from rhe availab le darasers, namely 5alinicy of che soil and groundwater, depth co groundwater and whe ther or nor a recharge area was present (Bui 1997). Another srudy was also cond ucted in Queensland, ch is rime in rhe Gympie and Ipswich J :250,000 map sheer areas, in rhe sourheasr of rhe srace (Searle and Baillie 1998). Th irteen data secs spanni n g geology, narural vegetation, climate and topography were used co construct a model for predicting salini ty hazard. The model arcempced co capru re expert knowledge of the landscape processes causing salinity, in the fo rm o f rules applied co the data secs (Sea rle and Baillie 1998). Using the rules, salinity hazard racings chat were scaled between zero (lowest salinity hazard) and one (hig hest salini ty hazard) were applied co each cell within each layer (S earle and Baillie 1998). Weigh rings were then app lied co each lay er based upon che perceived importance of che landscape process represenred in che layer. The layers were added co give an

refereed paper

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NOVEMBER 2005 33


91s Salinity predictions using a Geographic Information System - Deller-Smith (1997) In this study, a GIS-based salt balance model was created to predict soil salinity within the Murray Valley Irrigation Region. The salt balance model derived was: Salt,= Salt,. 1 + (salt added through capillary flu x + salt added through irrigation - salt lost through runoff/drainage) (where t = time) (Deller-Smith 1997) Key datasets were initial soil salinity, run off or drainage volume and salinity, irrigation intensity, depth to watercable, groundwater salinity and soil type. Over the modelling period irrigation intensity, salinity of irrigation water, volume of drainage or run-off and net capillary flux were assumed to be constant. Coefficients for surface run-off and net capillary rise were used to calibrate the model against historical measurements. The model predicted the average soil salinity for cells with a watertable of less than 2 metres. Maps were also produced as part of the model output. A key strength of the model is its spatial nature, a result of modelli ng being undertaken in a GIS environment. This model focuses on rhe salt movement and accumulation aspects of salinity risk, co ntrasting with the groundwater and watertable movement focus of groundwater modelling. The salt balance model's estimate of average soil salinity in the cell gives a reflection of salinity risk in areas with shallow watercables (depth less than two metres). However, sali ni ty risk in areas with deeper waterrables is not co nsidered. The predictive capabili ty of the model is limited through the process of calibration, but also because it does not take into account changes in the watertable, which will affect risk estimates. GlS and Groundwater Modelling for Implementing Land and Water Management Plans in Irrigation Areas Khan ef al. (200 l) The Land and Water Management Plans for irrigation areas of southern New South Wales were the focus for the study by Khan etal. (200 1). Different plan options were analysed to assess their ability to reduce waterrables and the potential for salinisation. A GIS enabled analysis to be undertaken on a spatially distributed basis for both short and long term ti meframes. Agro-climatic data (rainfall, evaporation and crop data) as well as hydrogeological data (piezometer records, bore logs, aquifer properties, river, channel and drainage layouts) were in many different forms and formats. These were co nverted to a single GIS format.

34 NOVEMBER 2005


Table l. Variables used in GIS based models. Variable

Bui (1997) (Dryland)

Searle & Baille (1998) (Dryland)

Roberts et al. (1997) (Dryland)

DEM or Height

Soil Types & Properties

Depth to groundwater Groundwater salinity

• •

Deller-Smith (1 997) (Salt balance)

• •

Geological features


• •


Hydrogeology !aquifer properties) Land Use or Cover

Khan et al. (2001) (Groundwater model)

• •

Channels, creeks and drains Run-off or drainage volume

Groundwater models (MODFLOW and MOD3) were then used to dynamically model interactions between surface and groundwater. Outp uts from the models were exported as an ASCH grid, which could then be imported into a GIS called ArcView for display and analysis. An example is the production of maps showing water, where water moves from the Murrumbidgee River to the shallow aquifer and vice versa. Similar maps could also be produced ro show locations of chann el seepage. The Khan et al. (2001) study is an example of a loosely coupled arrangement with a GIS for modell ing, where the critical modelling is done in another program. Further comments The GIS studies can be divided into two groups. On the one hand, a GIS is coupled with a groundwater model to combine the spacial strengths of a GIS with the modelli ng strengths of groundwater models. The Khan et al. (2001 ) study is a good example of chis. On the other hand, GIS scud ies have adopted a more general approach co modelling salinity risk. Expert knowledge has been used co determine the factors chat are important influences on salinity risk, and the GIS enviro nment used co identify areas where these risk factors are highest. Salt transport and groundwater models have been used co support the risk model in the GIS environment. With such diversity in the models being employed in a GIS environment, a number of different datasets were used in the studies. Table I gives a summary of the variables considered in the different studies.

• • Given chat th ree of the studies focus on dryland catch ments compared co irrigated catchments fo r the other two, it is unlikely that all studies wi ll use the same datasets or variables. The dryland stud ies all require a DEM co assess landscape form, whilst landscape form has not been considered in the irrigated areas. Dryland areas have significant elevation variation, whereas irrigated areas are flat, with very little terrain undulation. Hence, in irrigation areas, groundwater depth has been the primary focus, resulting in salini ty studies in these areas caking a groun dwatermodelling-based approach to salinity risk. However, a number of authors have identified that low lying areas within the irrigation districts are the first areas affected by salinisacion (ACIL Australia Pty Ltd et al., 1983; BLWMPWG 1995). Therefore, in a model of salinity risk in irrigation districts, a DEM is important co identify rhe areas that will be among the earl iest co be affected by salinisation. Key variables across the different models incl ude land use or land cover, rainfall, depth co groundwater and soil types. The groundwater model based approach required unique data sets focussed on hydrogeology, evaporation, and surface water featu res. T he salt balance model also had unique requirements including groundwater salinity, and ruo-off or drainage volume. The focus of the dryland studies in particular has been hazard identification, identifying areas at risk of salinisation. T he comp lete risk analysis has no t been conducted as severity or consequences of

refereed paper


91s che salinity outbreak have noc been cons idered, and no rime frame has been indicared. This argument could also be used againsr the sale balance model and rhe Khan et al. (200 I) srudy where rhe focus has been concerned mainly wirh hazard idenci ficarion and hazard predicrion.

Concluding Comments From rhe reviewed srudies relating salinity risk and groundwarer modelling and GIS, there is a wide diversiry in approaches co estimating and predicting salinity risk. These include derailed groundwater modelling studies, rule-based classifiers usi ng expert knowledge, surrogate variables and datasets obtained from satellite imagery, and GIS and spacial data analys is co mbined wi th expert knowledge co identify areas at risk. The studies reviewed show chat the environmental facro rs chat affecr rhe risk of sali nisarion include landscape fo rm, depth co groundwarer, rhe change in groundwater, and rhe groundwater salin iry. Furrhermore, an imporranr consideration in rhe assessment of salinity risk is rhe location of na rural and human assets chat co uld be degraded or destroyed by a salinity outbreak. The GIS provides rhe environment for modell ing ro be carried our. Pred icting salinity risk also requires rhe modelli ng of groundwater depth and/or groundwater salinity. T he studies reviewed, particularly rhe grou ndwater modelling srudies, demonstrate the importance of modelling both surface and grou ndwater movement and rhe interactio ns between chem. Thus, variables such as land use o r land cover, rai nfall, evaporation, soil types, channel seepage, aquifer properries, piezo metric heads, groundwater pumping and surface drainage and run-off need co be considered. For modelling groundwater salinity, the movement of salt (via water movemem) is the primary consideration. T here is a variety of modelling approaches chat can be used ro model both groundwater behaviour and sale movement, ranging from simple functional models ro complex physical models. Thus, different modellir1g approaches can be used wi thi n

the same risk framework. This gives great flexibility, which allows ir ro be adjusted according ro rhe level of derail required or the data available.

The Authors

Dr Paul Lambie completed his PhD at RMIT in 2002 and worked as a research co nsultant for the Victorian Government Opposition environment spokesman, Phil Honeywood, until moving ro NSW in 2005 ro further his career, paul_lamble@ghd.com . Dr David Fraser is a Senior Lecrurer in che School of Marhemacical and Geospacial Sciences, RMIT University. His main research interest is che application of che geospacial sciences ro agriculrure, primarily fo r water managemen r, david .frase r@rmic.edu.au References ACI L Australia Pry Ltd, Australian Groundwater Consultants Pry Ltd, Gurreridge Haskins & Davey Pry Ltd and Melbourne Universiry School of Agriculture & Forestry 1983, Cnmes, Extent t111d Effects ofSalinity in Victorin, Saliniry Comm irree of the Victorian Parliament, Melbourne. Berry, J. K. 1993, 'Cartographic modeling: The analytical capabilities of G IS', In ÂŁ11viro11mentnl Modeling with GIS, Eds. M. F. Goodchild, B. 0. Parks and L. T. Sceyaerc. Oxford University Press, New York, pp. 58-74 . BLWMPWG 1995, Berriq11i11: Berriquin Community's Ln11d nnd Water Mn11ngement !'Inn, Berriquin Land and Water Management Plan Working Group, Deniliquin. Bui, E. 1997, Assmi11g the regio11nl risk ofsnlinizntion (sic) over the Dalrymple Shire, 26/97, CSIRO Land and Water, Canberra. Clark, M. J. 2000, ' Putting water in ics place: a perspective on G IS in hydrology and water management', In Hydrologicnl Applicntiom of GIS, Eds. A. M. Gurnell and D. R. Montgomery. John Wiley & Sons Led, Chichester, England. Coller, C., Consuegra, D. and Joerin, F. 1996, 'GIS needs and GIS software', In Geographic !nformatio11 Systems in Hydrology, Eds. V. P. Singh and M. Fiorencino. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, The Netherlands, pp. 115- 174. Deller-S mith, J. 1997, 'Salinity predictions using a geographic information system', In Role of Computer Modelling i11 the

Development nnd lmpkmentt1tio11 ofLnnd nnd Water Mnnngement Plans for Irrigated Cntchmellts. Drninnge Progrnm Technical Report No 5, Murray Darling Basin Commission, Canberra, pp. 152- I 56. ESR1 2000, 'Modelling basics', In ArcView Mode/Builder, Environmencal Systems Research lnscicuce, Redlands, California. Goodchild, M. F. 1993, T he scare of GIS for environmencal problem-solving', In Environmental Modeling with GIS, Eds. M. F. Goodchild, B. 0. Parks and L. T. Steyaerc. Oxford University Press, New York, pp. 8- 15. Gupta, S., Woodside, G. , Raykhman , N. and Connolly, J. 1996, 'GIS in groundwater hydrology', In Geogrnphicnl Informntion Systems in Hydrology, Eds. V. P. Singh and M. Fiorentino. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrechc, T he Netherlands, pp. 303-322. Khan, S. , Best, L. , King, N. and Wang, B. 200 I, 'G IS and Groundwater Modelling for lmplemencing Land and Water Management Plans in Irrigation Areas'. AURISA 2001 Creating the links, Melbou rne, 19-23 November, AURlSA. Maidmenr, D. R. 1993, 'G IS and hydrologic modelling', In ÂŁ11viromne11111/ Modelling with GIS, Eds. M. F. Goodchild, 8. 0. Parks and L. T. Sccyaerc. Oxford University Press, New York, pp. 147- 167. Nycrges, T. L. 1993, 'Undemanding the scope of GIS: Its relationsh ip co environmental modeling', In Environmentnl Modelling with GIS, Eds. M. F. Goodchild, B. 0. Parks and L. T. Stcyacrc. Oxford Universiry Press, New York, pp. 75-93. Robcrcs, D. W., Dowling, T. I. and Walker, J. 1997, FLAG: A Fuzzy Lnndscnpe Analysis G/S Method for Dry/and Salinity Assessment, Technical Report No 8/97, CSIRO Land and Water, Canberra. Searle, R. and Baillie, J. 1998, Prediction of lnndscnpe Salinity Hnznrtl 11si11g a Geographic !nfarmntion System, Department of Nacural Resources, Queensland. Shaw, R. 1997, 'The Role of Models in Decision Making for Natural Resource Use and Management', In Role of Computer Modelling in the Development t111d lmplemelllntion of Lnnd n11tl Water Mn11ngeme11t Plansfor Irrigated Catchments. Drninnge Progrnm Tee/mien/ Report No 5, Murray Darling Basin Commission, Canberra, pp. 13-49. Singh, V. P. and Fiorentino, M. 1996, ' Hydrologic modeling wich GIS', In Geogrnphicnl Information Systems in Hydrology, Eds. V. P. Singh and M. Fiorencino. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrechc, The Netherlands, pp. 1- 13.

Does your Liquid Trade Waste Policy comply? Wastelink database and tracking software is the easy to use, versatile monitoring and management solution that was designe d specifically for the Australian liquid waste industry - to e nsure you comply with EPA or DEUS best practice management guidelines ............. .

refereed paper

To find out more, contact: F 14, I Barr Stree t , Bal main NSW 2041 p 0298102700 ( 0298102755 www.wastelink.com.au


NOVEMBER 2005 35



An effective GIS (Geographic Information System) is an important tool for water utilities as it can readily help manage supply co homes and businesses by producing information to enable improved network management decisions. Water utilities are increasing their use of GIS technology to integrate information and applications with a geographic component into one manageable system. The advantage of such integration is that it facilitates the organisation, management, analysis and dissemination of network information sourced from various databases, whi le maintaining data integri ty and supporting increased focus on customer service. T his paper describes the GIS used by ActewAGL.


Ma l



Business Solution Overview In early 200 I , Ecowise Environmental, as a lead ing ÂŁSRI (Environmental Systems Research Institute, Redlands, California USA ) Business Partner, project managed the implementation of a corporate ESR! GIS solution for AccewAGL, comprising of ESRJ's ArcIMS, ArcSDE and the ArcGJS product SL1 ite. They have since undertaken many integration, customisation and data improvement projects for AccewAGL GIS user community of over 500 staff. Ir has also assisted in eliminating data redundancy and dupl ication across related but disparate databases, increased data integration opportunities and usage efficiency. This

36 NOVEMBER 2005


Cartographer Produce Attachments

Store Attachments

Return attachment lilt and error l• t

Spooler ReceN e Job

Solect Outpul Device (email, rax , printer}

ActewAGL AccewAGL formed in October 2000 when the Australian Gas Light Company (AGL), a majo r private sector group, and ACT EW Corporation, a governmentowned enterprise, entered into Australia's first utility joint venture. Ownership of AcrewAGL is shared equally between AGL and ACTEW Corporation. AcrewAGL is Australia's first multi-util ity co offer electricity, nacural gas, water, wastewater, telecommunications and internet services under one roof. O utside the ACT, ActewAGL sells electricity, natural gas and internet services in south-east NSW (Capital Region), incl uding Queanbeyan, Young, Nowra, Goulburn and Vass.

PostOffice- ---..


Output and Notify

Courier- - -Format & spool Job


Output Type

AIRS WebPortal~--~ ~ ~ Adminilter System ~~

Figure 1. Pseudo-schematic overview of AIRS for DBYD solution. then enabled the automation of common analysis processes and gives staff access to cu rrent netwo rk information in the field and office. The implementation project was undertaken in I year and involved rhe translation of CAD based data to GTS format within highly structured data models for Water, Sewer, Effl uent Reuse and Electricity networks. Around 12 months ago AcrewAGL Gas networks was also added to chis lisr.

Innovations and network data usage at ACTEW. The ActewAGL GIS (AC MS) is integrated with AutoCAD, the corporate Drawing Management System, Works and Asset Management System and network modelling applications. This has provided them with a stare of the arr, open and extensible GIS that serves two main functions; the provision of dara for analysis and netwo rk interpretation, and production of a wide range of high quali ty information products for managers and staff. Staff have

access to the GIS data through a variety of applications SL1ch as web mapping, embedded maps in other applications, field mapping in trucks and full blown GIS for high level analysis and thematic mapp ing. The ACMS represents a considerable business asset for AcrewAGL. The ACMS is emp loyed to accurately record che location and associated attribute information for all network assets such as asset type, age, manufacture r, diameter, ere. The use of GIS has allowed AccewAGL co util ise available human resources more efficiently better information allows better plann ing, leading co related efficiency flow-ons, and ulcimacely, red uced operating coses. Jc has also assisted in elim inating data redundancy and duplication across related but disparate databases, increased data integration oppo rtunities and usage efficiency, enabled the automation of common analysis processes and enabled staff co access current network information in che field and office.

Dial Before You Dig Response The system, designed and developed by Ecowise ro automate the processing of


91s DBYD requests fo r ActewAGL, has been in production for over 3 years and has provided signi ficant cost savi ngs co AccewAGL in servicing their DBYD requests. T he supply of network maps co underpin AccewAGL's DBYD Service response is facilitated by the ACMS. This service is founded on the requirement chat ACT utility asset location information is provided within 48 hours of a customer req uesc bei ng placed co the service. Due co the number of requests being received and che need co provide maps for all networks owned/ managed by AccewAGL, resources to provide che mapping service manually were often screeched. le was also onerous co keep accurate records of responses fo r reporting a nd legal purposes. ' Dial Before You Dig' (DBYD) is a no nprofit co mmunity service chat handles enquiries from the general public and local government bodies on the location of utility serv ices, such as pipes or cables, where there may be a need to undertake excavation works. Although it is the respo nsib il ity of the individuals co confirm che presen ce of utility services prior to excavation commencing, utility companies have a ves ted interest in protecti ng their assets by s ubscribing to the DBYD service. AIRS (Automated In for mation Response System) for DBYD is a full lifecycle, management and response system for the processing of DBYD map requests. AIRS provides full y automated responses fo r DBYD re quests wi th compiece address info rmation, as well as semi-auto mated cools for dealing with incomplete, erroneous or invalid requests. Its primary design goals are ro decrease the manual workload on clearance officers, ro provide a cost bene fit co the business through automated respo nses and to help businesses meet chei r KP Is related to D BYD req uests. T he sy.scem automates the processing of requests, production of associated maps and distribution of plans back co the originator with che base system able co wo rk through more than 10,000 requests a month with scalable options co handle greater chroughpuc as required. T he system designed and developed by Ecowise to automate che processing of DBYD requests for ActewAGL has been in production for over 3 years and has provided sign ificanc cost savings co ActewAGL in servicing their DBYD requests. The mre A1RS produce (Figure I) is co mprised of 6 co nfigurable and customisable components: • Mailinan -This component is responsible fo r receiving email requests fo r maps from the DBYD Service and getting chem safely into the system.


-~ Elo


· tl"~ O

Sce6e • I 117'i

Figure 2. Fmaps is a cut down version of the ACMS able to be run on low-end laptops by field staff.

• Pose Office - This component is responsible fo r farmi ng out jobs to other wo rker co mponents based on criteria such as state or age and managing their responses. • Cartograp her - Which is a cusromisable component for prod ucing maps and includes nati ve support for ESRl ArcG IS and is easily integrated with other G IS via message queues. • Web Portal- Provides officers with cools ro administer, view, edi t, output and report DBYD job related information. • Courier - Hand les delivery of jobs ro the original requescor and natively supporcs email, fax and printer based delivery. • Spooler - Handles the cask of outputting co phys ical media without requiring human intervention and includes a customisable rules engine for specifying output location based on criteria such as page size, printer type, etc. AlRS is built upon Windows infrastructure, but through its messageoriented endpoint design can easily integrate with both legacy and nonMicrosoft components (such as J2EE and

MQ). Some of the business benefits seen after implementing Ecowise's AlRS for DBYD incl ude the following: • Im proved cusromer service, with I 00% of DBYD notification requests being processed on a 24/7 basis and turnaround fo r most map requests being satisfied within 4 hou rs; • Significant savings in resources required ro service th e DBYD notification requests; • Improved quality in the production and distribution of map requests;

• Improved auditing and archival capabilities, with all DBYD notification requests being logged and tracked; • Im proved management reporting, with cools to easily display and report on the starus of individual job req uests or total throughput of the system; and • Increased protection of assets by improving on information provided co the public where potential excavations works are being co nsidered.

Data Dependencies The ACMS provides AccewAG L with many business benefits, however these benefits had previously bee n limited by the inaccuracy and inco mpleteness of the legacy geospatial data translated into rhe sys tem from a variety of sources such as historical work as executed drawings, field notes and various projects. The data provided to other appli cations and the DBYD service is hugely affected by data quality and the quality of the service provided is only as good as the data available. le has taken significant effort and investment co imp rove the quality of legacy data translated co GIS format from the previous system since che ACMS implementation in 200 I. AccewAGL network data had previously been caprured purely for mapping purposes and was in so me cases schematic rather than geographically accurate in nature - however, the investment in upgrading legacy data has paid real dividends for AccewAGL particularly in rhe provision of accurate asset location in formatio n to the DBYD service.


NOVEMBER 2005 37


g1s With che GIS data disseminated to more staff via various integrated applications, the opportun ity to address data inaccuracies increased. For example Fmaps (Figure 2) is a mobile mappi ng application available to field staff and eMaps (Figure 3) is available to all office staff via in tranet sites fo r each network for simple queries and analysis. Business processes were pu t in place to facilitate co rrection of the info rma tion being passed to GIS data management staff and from the GIS to ocher applications; it rhen is passed co the works and asset management system via a synchronisation process and made available to ocher integrated applications. T his in effect closes rhe data loop from field to office and results in data gradually becoming a more accurate and complete representation of rhe network. A rhree-year major data im provement program is significantly enhancing data quality, and has been underway fo r rhe lase 18 months. Pilot projects con fi rmed that amalgamating the disparate data sources and correcting and im proving rhe quality of the existi ng data, realises a range of benefits. T he process of imp roving chis data incorporates the capcu re and correction of asser infor mation from historical 'work as executed' d rawings, external databases and field survey data. Using DGPS and real rime kinematic survey technology, all manholes, valves and hyd rants are being surveyed and the network info rmation held in che ACMS corrected to sub metre accuracy. As part of this data improvement project, AcrewAGL Water D ivision asset informatio n relared business processes were also reviewed. By identi fyi ng ongoing data maintenance requiremen ts, developing supporting business processes and identi fying particular shortfalls in data quality requi ring immediate co rrection based on the needs of individual business units a for m of data 'rriage' was undertaken. Focusing dara improvement on where the 'best bang fo r a buck' was co be achieved allowed ACTEW Corporation to leverage off its investment in the technology and ensured rhe fascesr rernrn on this investment possible. T he methodology used to develop the data improvement project was to firs t assess rhe data held on each asscr type along with the attributes held in the ACMS and assess the extent to which this information had been populated in the GIS, the usefulness to data stakeholders, affect on integrated applications and rhen to prioritise rhe improvements by raring each by value to rhe busi ness and place tasks in order of urgency. T he data improvement program

38 NOVEMBER 2005 water




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Figure 3. eMaps internet based mapping service available to staff for all networks and remote clients via C itrix.

prioritised the identified data shortfalls by rhe impact on rhe business, che cosr and time to correct rhe shortfalls and rhe logistics of integrating rhe data in the production GIS wirhour affecting in tegrated applications. T he project involved physical collection of field dara in a precise manner, rhe creation of a systematic process to perform quality assurance of the new data and to update the ACMS wirhour disru pting existing operations. T he field survey phase of rhe project proved to be an excellent way to verify ex isting data and also collect missi ng data. T he field verification process follows seeps such as extracting the source data for verifica tion, collaring the necessary digital and hard copy maps fo r reference, field survey and verifi cation of chis data against sou rce data, QA of field wo rk, integration of field work, QA of office data capture, integration of missing and corrected data to rhe ACMS. T he data improvement program also aims to remove rhe need fo r staff to go to multiple data sources for asset information. A database lin k or a hyperl ink is mai ntained to so me other info rma tion sources from within the ACMS. For example, all W AE drawings are referenced borh as an attribu te of an asset and hyperl inked to a drawing excenr polygon. When an area requires invesrigacion, one click in rhar area delivers a list of all images relating co chat area and res iding in rhe corporate drawing management system in date order, enabli ng che cracking of development over time. All lin ked inform ation can be opened from within rhe ACMS. Photographs and ocher documents

are also hyperlinked to an asset. Engineers have previously spent many hours each week looking for drawings and associated in formation for a particular job and on average a d rawing can be pri nted our over 10 rimes in irs lifecycle. Accessing d rawings via rhe ACMS saves many sraff hours per week and probably as many trees as ir removes the need fo r all maps to be printed. While rhe development o f ACMS was a reaction to advances in technology an d changing business practices, it has also created opporru niries for innovations and network data usage rhac were almost unthinkable and certainly unachievable in the previo us ActewAGL business framework. One clear lea rni ng has been that poo r quality asset information seriously limits system in tegration potential and reduces the value of any investment in Gl S made by a utility. By focusing on imp roving asset information data held in the ACMS, ACTEW Corporation and AcrewAG L have opened up the possibility of fu rther reducing operating costs and increased the opporru niry to leverage off their previous inves tment in GIS techno logy. Additiona lly, the undeniable business benefits garnered fro m the ACMS research and development exercise has created a cul ture of exp loration and in novation rhac will only be or more va lue co che organ isacion and customers such as the DBYD service in th e fut ure.

The Author Leanne Weber is the GIS Program Manager for Ecowise, email: lweber@ecowise.com.au

CRYPTOSPORIDIUM RISK MANAGEMENT USING UV N Johnston, M Muntisov, M Laginestra UV Unit Comparison - Low or Medium Pressure Lamps


This paper reviews rhe emergence Table I , amended from USEPA of ulcraviolec radiation (UV) as a UV Guidance Manual, indicates so me cost-effective method for reduction of the pertinent parameters associated of che risk of Crypcosporidium with commonly ava ilable UV lamp (crypto) infect ion. UV fills systems. technology gaps fo r crypto inacrivarion/removal, particularly for UV Technical Selection Issues rhe fo llowing siruarions: The key issues for sizing of UV • Municipal filcrarion planes using Figure 1. Cutaway view of a UV reactor (Courtesy: systems include: chlori ne especially chose whose fil ters Wedeco). • Design dosage related to cannot reliably provide low rurbidity inactivation requirements. (<0.3 NTU) filtered water. • Design flow race. • Filters operating with high-risk che outer layers of water as che UV waves agricul tural catchment sources needing • Water quality. travel through it. The lower the enhanced crypco in activation/removal. Design Dosage transmittance che more UV light is required • Municipal water supplies with low UV technology has been accepted by che to achieve che same dose. curbidiry, low colour water which is nor USEPA as an approved method for pressure UV un it is shown in A typical filtered. Cryptosporidium inactivation and doses have Figure 1. Ir shows a cutaway view of a • It is also being applied for disinfection of been proposed for various levels of reactor vessel with inl et and outlet flanges tertiary created wastewater prior co re-use inactivation. (Table 2) enclosing a sec of UV lamps each of wh ich The paper cites three case studies. is encased within a quartz sleeve. The water The extra dosage for medium pressure

Validation is essential to gaining regulatory approval.

being treated flows into the reactor, past che UV lamps and then out. There is a wide va riety of syste ms availab le based on different lam p types, sleeve material and reactor configurations.

lamps is due co rhe broader wavelength spectrum of the radiation emitted compared co low pressure lamps. T he USEPA has also specified a classification syste m fo r source water quali ty using a "Bin" system, wh ich categorises the

What Is UV Treatment? Ultraviolet (UV) radiation refers to the wavelength of rhe light spectrum between 100 nm and 400 nm. UV radi ation is known to be able co inactivate various microorganisms. le achieves chis by damaging che DNA of the organism, wh ich renders it unable co replicate or infect. In che 1990s it was discovered char UV at practical doses could prevent Cryptosporidium from infecti ng its potential hoses. The effectiveness or 'dose' of UV is determined by the combination of UV in tensity and time of exposure. Radiation intensity is measured in uni ts of W/cm2 . This is analogous co disinfectant concentration 'C' and contact rime 'T ' in chemical disinfection. The unics of UV dose are thus Ws/cm2 or milliJoules/cm2 . A key facto r in rhe radiation intensity received by the water is che UV transmittance of the water. This is a measure of how much UV is absorbed by

refereed paper

Table 1. Comparison of common lamp types.

Dose required for 2 log crypto inoctivotion (mJ/cm 2) Electrical to Germicidal UV conversion efficiency % (Note 1) Relative Number of Lomps (Note 2) Lamp Life (hours) (Note 3) Lamp Operating Temperature (0 C) (Note 4) Cold Startup to Full Power (mins) Restart Time (m ins) (Note 5)

Low Pressure(LP)

Low Pressure High Output (LPHO)

Medium Pressure (MP)



Higher 24

High 35-38 High 1000 8000- 10000

High 30-40 Intermediate 100

Lower 10-20 Low 15

8600- 12000

4000 · 8000

40 6-7 4-7

130- 200 6-7 4-7

600 - 900 5 10

Note 1. LP and LPHO are more likely to be energy efficient than MP for poorer water, i.e. with low transmittance. Note 2. Relative lamp numbers are indicative only and depend on the lamp and the reactor configuration. More lamps mean that the fa ilure of o single lamp has lower impact. On the other hand the smaller number of MP lamps requires a much smaller plant footprint. Note 3. MP has fewer lamps to change per year. Note 4. The higher temperature MP accelerates lamp sleeve fouling and therefore more cleaning is required. On plant startup, recirculation or cooling water is required to prevent overheating. Note 5. MP lamps are slower to restart as they need to cool down prior to restarting.


NOVEMBER 2005 39

Table 2. Dosage requirements.

Table 3. UV requirement for contaminated waters (modified from USEPA).

Reduction Equivolent Dose (RED) Target (mJ/cm2) as per USEPA UV Guidance Manual

Bin No.

Crypto Inactivation Credit (log)

l 2


Source Water Crypto Range (oocyst/L)

Required Inactivation/ Removal (log) of Crypto

Potential UV Needs for Conventional Filtration Plants (log)'

< 0.075


0.075- l

4 .0


l -3

5 .0









11 21 36

12 24 42

* Note: Assumes conventional treatment achieves 3 log crypto removal credit.

Note: I log = 90%, 2 log = 99% inactivation, etc. likely degree of contamination of the source. For each Bin, a crypto removal/ inactivation removal is specified . For more severely contaminated sources, filtration alone is insu fficien t for risk reductions and additional treatment is required by UV, ozone or chlorine dioxide. Table 3 illustrates the USEPA approach proposed in its Long Term surface water rule.

Flow Rate and Water Quality The UV transmittance (UVT) of the water is the key water quality parameter for UV design. It is the percen tage of UV ligh t char passes through a water sample over a specified distance. The water q uality, although being good as judged by traditional parameters such as colour and turbid ity, may sti ll be poor for UV due to, eg. a high organic co ntent an d associated low UV transmittance. UV transmi ttance is related to the level of absorbance according to the followi ng fo rmula: % UVT = 100 x 10-A BS wh ere ABS is the measured UV absorbance over a 1cm path length. In drinking water applications a UVT of above 90% is desirable to minimise capital and operating costs. In Australia, plants have had to be designed for UVTs as low as 70% to be able to deal with seasonal water quality behaviour. The importance of obtaining data for seasonal flow and water q uality cannot be over-emphasised as it affects both initial capital costs and has a major impact on the efficiency of operation and ongoing operating costs. Parameters that need to be established are:

• T urbidity, which can shield organisms and reduce UV effectiveness. • I ron, which reduces UVT and can cause sleeve fou ling. • Hardness which can cause sleeve fo uling especially in MP installations. A fu ll chemical analysis o f the water is desirable as chemical precipitation at the elevated temperatures of che UV lamps can cause fo uling of the sleeves surrounding the lamps and reduce effective lamp output. Operating coses are a signi ficant part of whole of life coses of UV and therefore net present value or cost (NPV o r NPC) calculat ions are essential for selectio n. The predominant capital costs are: • UV system • Build ing works • Pipework and electrics T he major operating costs include: • Power costs • Sleeve replacement • Cleaning • Monitoring Power costs vary with: • Type of lamp selected, i.e. amou nt of inpu t power that is available at the optimum UV frequency. -+-- Predicted dose -.ir- Measuted dose


Other water quality parameters which have an impact on UV design and operation include:

40 NOVEMBER 2005 water

Val idation is essential to gaining regulatory approval and legally proving that reasonable steps have been taken to achieve the identifi ed risk reductio n.

• Independently run and witnessed tests at a controlled test site.




Importance of Validation Testing

Validation testing is similar to p ump testing where there needs to be:

NE 100 ..\! -, E 80

• Seaso nal UV transmittance

Monitoring costs, e.g. UV sensor replacement, and calibration checking can also be significant for small installations if co mplex controls are adopted.

Validation typically involves bioassay testing of UV systems under standard co nditions.



Add irionally changes of flow race need to be known as UV startup and valve operation have d elay times.



• Seasonal maximum flows

• Type of lamp selected , as low and mediu m pressure lamps have different guaranteed life in terms of hours of operation.

Cleani ng of sleeves can be a highly variable cost and needs to be understood for each system under consideration.

• Lamp replacement


Lamp life (replacement costs) are affected by:

• Number of on/off cycles. This factor can impact on power efficiency as u nits cannot be turned on/off frequently to chase changing flows, due to the impact on lamp li fe.

• Power supply


• T urndown efficiency, i.e. adjusting lamp UV output to match fl ow rate or UVT. This can be varied by varying the power supply to the lamp through a controlling device called a ballast. Lam p turndown is usually limited to arou nd 50% and dependent on the type of ballast used. The ballast also uses power, say 10%, and results in non linear turndown of UV ou tput to power supply, which is no r dissimilar co a variable speed motor, only less efficien t.

• After validation and certificatio n of the initial units, identical units can be installed within the validated performance range without further testing.

0 3




Flow, Us

Figure 2. Comparison of predicted and actual dose during va lidation.

• For extra surety or for large, customised installations, field tests may be required. Field tests are expensive due to the need for seeding with organisms and disposal of the contaminated waste stream.

refereed paper

Validation usually needs to take into account the method of control of the UV unit in operation. Fail ure to do the correct test can lead to expensive power cosrs due to rhe need to operate within a narrow validated band leading to continuous overdosing. UV suppliers for many years used a theoretical "sum mation of point sources" approach to estimate UV dose. T his approach has been shown to overestima te rh e actual delivered dose. Figu re 2 shows rhe differe nce betwee n rhe estima ted rheorer ica l dose and the dose demo nstrated by bioassay validation resting in an acrual case srudy. Adoption of theoretica l UV dose approaches should be avo id ed in cri ti ca l appl icat ions.

UV Installation Siting Issues Apart from space, the domi nant issue when adding UV to an existing pl ant is rhe hydraulics. The headloss through rhe UV unit varies between: • open channel systems (from around 150 mm); and • enclosed reactor pipe uni ts (which can be up to 1.5 m).

Table 4. Methods of varying dosage. Control Parameters

Simple Set Power UV Intensity


Operates at full lamp lamp output is varied output corresponding to according changes in design UVT and flow measured UVT or flow

Variable Set Power UVT & UV Intensity or Flow & UV Intensity

Calculated UVT, UV Intensity and Flow lamp output is varied toking into account the measured UVT, flow and UV intensity


Simple operation

Increased energy efficiency

High energy efficiency


Poor energy efficiency

More com plexity for operation

High cost of validation and complex controls

T herefore, in many retrofi t instan ces, the selection of the type of UV unit can be domi nated by hydraulic headloss considerations.

More Complexity of Controls Increase Efficiency T here are three principal methods of co ntrol and those are compared in Table 4.

Case Studies: Enhanced Drinking Water Treatment Two exam ples of retrofitting UV to existing water treatm ent plants ill ustrate some of the issues of en hanced crypro inactivation .

Riverland Water Plants, South Australia, Australia Six water trearmenr plants varying in capacity from 90 ML/d to 4 ML/d use the Murray River as source water. These plants use enhanced coagulation, sed imentation and fil tration and chlorine-based disinfection. They achieve fil tered water turbidity of less than 0.3 NTU, bur due to a desire for an additional disin fection barrier, UV was chosen as the most cost effective techn ology. The key issues in the UV system selection were: • Very limi ted headloss as grav ity hyd raulics from the filters to clear water

fiF§J* Ultraviolet Technology o f Australasia a n


Affi ti ater re c hn o l ogy Partn e r

Advantages of using the UVTA UV units for all disinfection applications • • • • • • •

UV lamps are not encased by frag ile, easily fouled quartz sleeves Air cooling systems maintain the optimum UV lamp skin temperature Units are robust No short circuiting with true plug flow No wipers or scraping devices required No electrical contact with water Ease of installation

Have a good look at our new WEB site www.uvta.com .au AFTERWARDS Email us on:uvta@uvta.com.au or phone +61 8 8337 0079 DESIGNER AND MANUFACTURER OF WATER DISINFECTION AND TREATMENT SYSTEMS ENVIRONMENTALLY SAFE - A PROUD AUSTRALIAN PRODUCER

refereed paper

1-ri] ·-°"""'


1. ,_


:h. V Wa.tN Industry AUl1ncc



storage had been op timised during the original des ign . • Low transmittance due to the nature of rhe raw water, even after enhanced coagulation . A design UVT o f 70% was adopted based o n historic measurements due to very high DOC levels. T he configuration chosen to min imise whole of life costs was: • Low pressure h igh output lamps in roofed channels. • T wo parallel channels each with two banks of UV lamps in series. • Complex control algorithms to optimise both power usage and lamp life to minimise operating costs. Figure 3 ill ustrates rhe layout of a typical plant The configuration provides the benefits of: • Extremely low headloss of the channel compared to pipe enclosed units. • Low energy usage associated with low pressure lamps in low transmittance water. • E nergy efficiency by 8 to I turndown of energy input to cater for varying water transm ittance and highly seasonal demands. • Previously independently validated reactors in the sizes and channel configurat ion avoiding validation costs and project implementation d elays .

Hamilton, NZ The existing 80 ML/d H amilton WTP needed both capacity upgrade and enhanced treatment to meet demand growth in Hamilton and new water quality guidelines. The existing plant d raws water from the Waikato River and u ses coagulation, sedimentation, filtration and chlorine d isinfection. UV was chosen for the upgrade as it: • Provided the extra crypro inactivation reliability required by rhe NZ standards for rhe source nver.

Figure 3. The 85 ML/d UV system at Summit Storage, Riverland. enhanced coagulation and the p rovision of granular activated carbon (GAC) fil ters.

Case Study: Recycled Water Applications

• Three uni ts in parallel with provision for a future fourth.

UV is commonly used for "disinfection" on the outlet from seco ndary wastewater treatment plants as it has the advan tage over chlorine of nor forming rrihalom echanes with organic compo unds and no chlorine residual in sensitive receiving waters. Fo r this traditional wastewater application, the typical aim is reduction of risk to say 200 org/ 100 ml of C oliforms. Some shielding of rhe organisms from UV irradiation by suspended solids is therefore acceptable.

• Downstream weirs to maintain submergence of the UV units. • Recycle system fo r cooling during startup. M P lamps operate at high temperature and care is required nor to cause overhearing as rhe lamps warm up ro full output in a stagnant water stream. Figure 4 illustrates this plant. The advantages of this con fig uration were: • Low headloss allowing gravity from the GAC fi lters to the existing below-ground clear water storage and minimising repum ping. • Small footprint leading ro red uced civil costs. • Marching seasonal flows and quality by providing 6 ro I turndown.

C lass A effluent is required for re use of effluent for irrigatio n of marker gardens at Western Treatment Plant for Melbourne Water Corporation . T he plant produces high quality seco ndary effluent and employs 20 days detention prior ro UV fo llowed by chlorination.

The UV configuration chosen was :


dose needs to be certain. For this application, rhe effluen t q uality needs to be h igh as shielding of organism s

Water Recycling at Western Treatment Plant, Melbourne

T he alternative ap proach fo r increased control reliability was the use of ozone or membrane filtration which would involve coses m ore than 4 rim es higher than the UV option.

42 NOVEMBER 2005

standards based on more resistant pathogens. This places a different emphasis o n rhe UV selection as actual UV delivered

can be cri rical.

• Allowi ng avo idance of augmenting rhe exist ing fil ters fo r increased p lant capacity, i.e. n o extra fi lters and no n eed for fil rer-ro-wasre retrofit.

• Medium pressure lamps in pipeline as rhe transmittance of the water was high due to

For reuse of effluent for higher levels of beneficial use, guidelines may set rougher

Figure 4. The 106 ML/d UV system at Hamilto n.

A 60 ML/d UV system aiming fo r 2 log protozoa reduction was the technology selected by MWC to meet rhe Victorian guidelines of less than 1 protozoa per 50 L.

refereed paper

As the suspended solids level is usually low, protozoa risk reduction is based on UV alone as a cost effective approach. The adopted UV configuration was: • Low pressure high output UV units in open channels. • Two UV banks in 2 channels for initially 60 ML/d. • T he cha nnels allow for a third UV bank for future flows of 90 ML/d. • A th ird channel is provided for standby. • A recycle loop is used during startup to provide time for chan nel outlet control weirs to adjust to flow changes. To guard agai nst suspended solids shielding of orga nisms, turbidity monitoring is used with shu tdown on high turbidity effluent. Extensive coll imated beam and on-site validation rests using an MS-2 bacteriophage surrogate were co nducted. T hese tests indicated no observable impact of UV on the reduction of MS-2 up to turbidi ty levels approach ing 10 NTU. T o the authors' knowledge this is the firs t and largest UV disinfection plant for drinking water or wastewater in Australia to be validated on sire using MS-2 bacteriophage and USEPA protocols.

Opportunities may also exist for use of UV fo r: • Avoidance of expensive retrofit of fil terto-waste systems to meet modern low filte red water turbidity targets. • Reduction of backwash recycle risk.

Acknowledgments We gratefull y acknowledge permission from the fo llowing organisations which GHD assisted in the case studies: United Uriliries Australia - Riverland WTP, Hamilron City Council , NZ - Ham ilton WTS, Melbourne Water Corporation Western Treatment Plant Reuse.

The Authors

Nigel Johnston is Manager Water Strategy at GHD Melbourne. Email nigel_johnston@ghd.com.au. Mike Muntisov is Business Group Manager (Water) at GHD Melbourne. Mitch Laginestra is Principal Process Engineer ar GHD Adelaide. References USEPA, June 2003, Ultraviolet Disinfection

Guidance Manrlfll Draft. June 2003a, Long term 2 Enhanced S111:foce Water

Treatment Rate, Toolbox Guidance Manual, Draft.

Precautions UV is nor a complete substitute for chlorine disinfect ion as ir: • Does nor provide a residual. • Is not effective against all viruses unless very high (u neconomic) UV dosages are used. Also, where ozone/GAC is needed for organics or algal toxin removal or taste and odour reduction, UV is unlikely robe needed unless the ozone dose is too low for the desired crypto reduction.

The Future UV offers exciting opportunities of enhanced crypto risk reduction over the total water cycle of applications incl uding: • Filtered municipal water supplies. • Unfiltered good quality municipal water supply or on the outlet from open treated water storages. • Recycled wastewater effluent.

refereed paper


NOVEMBER 2005 43

. . water prIc1ng

OVERVIEW OF THE VICTORIAN URBAN WATER PRICE REVIEW S Harding The new framework for independent economic regulation of the Victorian water industry came into fu ll effect on I July 2005 with the beginning of the first regulatory pricing period. For the next th ree years, the maxim um p rices chat 17 of Victoria's metropolitan and regional urban business can charge fo r water, sewerage and ocher related services have been determ ined by rhe Essential Services Commission. This fo llows an in tensive 18-monrh exercise to establish the framework by which the prices would be determined and rhe detailed assessment of pricing proposals pu t forward by businesses, culminating in the Com mission's fi rst water price determinatio n in Ju ne 2005. This article discusses the Commission 's expanded role in regulating the Victorian water industry and che Stace's first independent water p rice review.

Background The Essential Services Commissio n is the primary economic regulator of essential services in Victoria. It is responsible fo r regulating services in the electricity, gas, pores, rail, expo rt grain handli ng, i~urance, transport, and water and sewerage fectors. T he Commission is an independent agency chat commenced operations in 20 02, subsuming the role o f the Office of th e Regulator-General which was established in 1994. Its primary objective is to p rotect the long term interests of Victorian consumers with regards to p rice, quality and reliability of essen cial services.

Consistent with the process used for other regulated industries. The Commission's regulatory role in rhe Victorian water ind ustry was p reviously confined to performance monitoring, regulation of customer service arrangements and compliance auditing of Melbourne Water and Melbourne's three retail water businesses. Responsibility for price regulation and che regulation of the regional water authorities reseed with the Minister for Water and the Department of Sustainability an d Environ ment.

44 NOVEMBER 2005 water

G1ampfolll Wlnun•••

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GltHtl9 Wt11tf

Figure 1. Businesses sub ject to the urba n water pri ce review. N ote: Glenelg Wa ter, Portland Coast W ater a nd South W est Water were merged o n 1 July 2005 to fo rm Wa nnon Water. On 1 January 2004, the Commissio n's role expanded to include the regulat ion of the regional water authorities and the regulation of prices fo r all water businesses. The Victorian Water Industry Act 1994 was amended in December 200 3 and establishes the Comm ission's regu latory functio ns in respect of the water ind ustry. The Water I ndustry Regulatory Order 2003 (the WIRO) co ntains more detailed principles which the Commission muse have regard to in performing these fu nctions. So far in i cs expanded role, the Commission has also issued a Customer Service Code applying to all metropolitan retail and regional u rban water businesses in V ictoria and a state-wide performance reporting framework. However, a key aspect of the new regulatory regime has been the urban water price review and determination.

The Price Review Process In September 2004, City West Water, South East Water, Yarra Valley Water and Melbourne Water (which provides wholesale water supplies and bulk wastewater treatment services to the three metropolitan retail businesses and drain age

services in Melbourne) and 13 regional water businesses were requ ired to submit 'Water Plans' to the Commission. The Water Plans were derailed submissions char sec out the key outcomes the business proposed to deliver over the next three years and rhe resultant prices th at would be charged to customers. All of the businesses shown in Figure I submitted Water Plans, except fo r Gramp ians W immera Mallee Water and Lower Murray Water. Grampians Wimmera Mallee Water and Lower Murray Water, which also sup ply u rban water and sewerage services, were formed in 2004 from mergers and were nor requ ired to sub mit a Water Plan. These rwo b usinesses, along with Victoria's three dedicated rural water authorities (not shown in Figu re 1) were required to submit Water Plans to th e Commission on 1 September 200 5 . In its review of Water Plans, the Commission was required to assess the businesses' pricing proposals agai nst rhe derailed princip les sec out in the WIRO . Consistent with these princip les, rhe Commission was required to ensure (among oth er things) chat the prices wou ld:

water pricing • enable businesses tO earn a sustainable revenue stream rhar does nor reflect mon opoly profits or inefficient expenditure; • allow businesses t0 recover operational costs and costs of renewing existing assets; • allow busin esses t0 earn a return on assets; • provide incentives for rhe sustainable use of water; • consider the interests of low income and vulnerable cusrnmers; and • be readily understandable by cusco mers. Although rhe price review formally co mmenced with rhe subm ission of Water Plans, the Com mission had already undertaken extensive consulrarion on rhe framework by which Water Plans would be assessed and prices determined. In February 2004, the Commission released a co nsultation paper outlinin g the Commission's proposed approach to regulating rhe water sect0r and a series of publ ic wo rkshops and discuss ion papers regarding specifi c aspects of rhe proposed approach. A Guidance Paper was released in J une 2004 which outlined the approach the Co mm ission would rake in reviewi ng the pricing proposals and the inform ation chat each business should incl ude in their Water Plans. Prior tO the subm ission and during the assess ment of Water Plans, rhe Co mmiss ion consulted with the Department of Sustainability and Environment, the Department of H uman Services and the Environ ment Prorecrion Authority on the regularnry obligations t0 apply tO the business duri ng rhe regularnry period. The approach adopted by the Co mmission t0 assess the Water Pl ans is consistent with rhe process used fo r other industries that rhe Commission regulates and rhe standard approach adopted by other regulators in Australia and overseas. In summary, this approach invo lves three broad steps: • Firstly, rhe outco mes rhar each business proposes ro deli ver over the regulatory period are assessed. T he proposed outcomes would include regularnry obligations, which in the case of the water industry include requirements relating t0 service reli abili ty, water qualiry obligations under the Vict0rian Safe Drinking W ater Act 2003 and environmental requirements prescribed by Environment Protection Authoriry. On the other hand, other proposed outcomes may be projects initiated by the business. T he review of such projects may also include an assessment about the level of consultation undertaken by the business with its customers and customer will ingness to pay. Also reviewed in rhis step are rhe

Table 1. Key price outcomes from the urba n water price review. Water Business

Melbourne Water City West Water South East Water Yarra Valley Water Barwon Water Central Hig hlands Water Coliban Water East Gippsland Water Gippsland Water Glenelg Water• Goulburn Valley Water North East Water Portland Coast Water• South Gippsland Water South West Water• Western Water Westernport Water

Average annual price increase (%) (proposed0 )

Average annual price increase (%) (approvedb)

Total revenue'


2.1 2.2 2.0 1.8 5.3 4.8 4.4 5.1 4.7 3.6 4.7 2.6 8.4 7.8 5.2 0.5 3 .6

$482.8 m $224. l m $330.8m $358.6m $90.lm $38.8m $44. l m $14.0m $51.3m $5.7m $35.9m $28.9m $6.2m $13.3m $17.Bm $33 .9m $10.3m


2.3 2.4 2.0 8.0 6.2 4.0 12.7 7.7 3.0 4.3 10.2 11.3 14.8 1.8 5.7

Average residential




N/ A $477 $481 $539 $581 $665 $524 $642 $554 $562 $453 $577 $491 $614 $700 $675 $679

a. average annual price increase across all services for the 3 year period /2005-06 to 2001-08) proposed in Water Plans. b. average annual price increase across all services for the 3 year period /2005-06 to 2007-08) as approved by the Commission. c. Revenue requirement as approved by the Commission for 2005-06 in real terms 0anuary 2004 prices). d. based on weighted average of residential tariffs applying in different towns and average consumption in each businesses supply area. Expressed in nominal (actual) terms. e. Glenelg Water, Portland Coast Water and South West Water were merged on 1 July 2005 to form Wannon Water. The prices approved by the Commission will apply in Wannon Water's · Hamilton, Portland and Warrnambool zones, which correspond with the areas previously serviced by the former businesses. business's demand forecasts, which are key determ inants of rhe expenditure requ ired by the business. • Once the key outco mes ro be delivered are assessed, rhe next step is to determine the 'revenue requirement' that is needed to deliver these outco mes. T he revenue requirem ent represents a sum of money rhar ensures rhar the business remai ns fi nancially viable bur does nor reflect monopoly profits. Ir consists of operational expenditure to meet the efficient day-co-day costs of providing services and capital financing costs of past investments in rhe fo rm of a return on assets and a return of assets (through regulato ry depreciation). • The fi nal step is to determine rhe maximum prices fo r services rhar will enable a business to earn its revenue requ irement. This can (among ocher fo rms of price control) take the fo rm of individual price caps, whereby rhe price charged for a particular service must not be greater rhan rhe price listed in rhe business's app roved price schedule, as set our in rhe releva n r determination. Prices are adjusted annually through rhe regularnry period with an inflation-linked price path . Tariff structures

are also reviewed ro ensure that they are consistent with the relevant principles of the review. The Co mmission rel eased a S ummary Paper in Ocrnber 2004 which s ummarised the proposals put fo rward in Water Plans and highlighted a number of key issues o n which it sought feedback from stakeholders. Public fo rums were also held in Melbourne and throughout regional Vict0 ria tO discuss businesses' proposals in more d etail and seek customer responses t0 rhe proposals. In order t0 ensure that the businesses' expenditure forecasts represented efficient expenditure and char rhe proposed projects were feasible within the regulatory period , the Commission engaged consultants Sinclair Knight Merz and PB Associates co assist in rhe review. Sinclair Kn ight Merz and MWH Australia were engaged ro ass ist in the review of busi nesses' dem and forecasts. In March 2005, rhe Commission released a D raft Decision which set out the Commission's views on whether to approve rhe prices proposed by businesses in their Water Plans as satisfying the principles set ou r in the Wl RO. T he Draft D ecision was


NOVEMBER 2005 45

a prod uct of the advice received from the consultants on businesses' expenditure and demand fo recasts, feedback received in submissions co Water Plans and in public forums and the Commission's own internal analysis. Businesses were given the opportunity co respo nd co the Draft Decision by amending their Water Plan proposals in accordance with the Commission's analysis or providing further information co justify their original proposals. All of the businesses revised their proposals co also reflect changes that had occurred since submitting their Water Plans.

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46 NOVEMBER 2005


T he Final Decision, released on l 5 June 2005, fo llowed the assessment of the revised proposals and fu rther information provided by businesses. Determinations, which are the enforceable regulatory instrum ents, were issued fo r each business. Each determination secs out the approved prices for 2005-0 6 and price path for che remain ing two years of the regulatory period. Another key feature of the review was the advice co the Minister for Water on regulatory asset values (RAVs) . A business's RAV is used for regulatory price setting purposes and represents the net value of past capi tal investment. Ir is central co the approach co price regulation used by the Commission (and ocher regulators) as che RAV is used co determine the cap ital fi nancing cost component of th e business's revenue requ iremen t. In June 2004, the Minister for Water (who was responsible for setting an initial RAV fo r each business under che WIR O) wrote co the Commission requesting advice on the initial RAVs co apply, which che Commission provided in January 2005. Using financia l in formation provided by businesses in their Water P lans, the Commission proposed a number of possible RAVs for each business co the Minister

and advised of che likely outcomes (prices and retu rns co the business) chat would result u nder each RAV scenario. T he Minister decided on the initial RAV for each business in March 2005 , which was reflected in the Commission's Draft Decision on the prices co ap ply.

Price Review Outcomes In its Final Decision, the Commission approved average annual price increases for each business in che range of 0 .5 and 8.4 per cent, increases the Commission considers sufficient fo r businesses co continue meeti ng regulatory obligations and providing quality and reliable services. The key driver behind these price increases is investment in new infrastructure over the next three years. A co cal of $ 1.9 billion will be spent on capital programs over the period , representing a 22 per cent increase compared co the previous three years. Of chis coral, $670 millio n (or 35 per cent) of capital investm ent will be made co expand and augment water and sewerage networks co carer for increased customer numbers. $574 mill ion (30 per cent) will be spent on renewing ageing in frastructure co imp rove service reliability and upgrade water and sewage treatment planes to meet regulatory obligations. Several initiatives co increase water recycli ng will also be introduced or increased over the regulatory period. Melbourne Water and the three m etropolitan retail water businesses are collectively required co recycle 20 per cent of Melbourne's wastewater by 2008. A total of $37 million dollars will be invested by these businesses over the next three years cowards achieving this target. While regio nal water businesses do not have specified water recycling targets, several will invest a coral of $26 million on recycling schemes as a least co st method of treat ing wastewater or because of community support for the schemes.

The increases approved in the F inal Decision were generally lower than chose proposed by businesses in their Water Plans. A number of factors have generally resulted in prices being lower than proposed. Firstly, businesses were required co submi t Water Plans before the M inister had decided on the initial regulatory asset values. In most cases, the initial RAVs as decided by the Minister for Water were lower than those implied by the businesses' p ricing proposals, which translate co lower prices than those proposed. Secondly, businesses proposed co earn a rate of return on assets of between 5.7 and 7 .0 per cent co meet their capital financing costs. After analysing the assumptions used by businesses co derive these figures and accounting for changes in financial market conditions following the submission of Water Plans, the Commission approved a uniform real rate of recurn of 5.2 per cent for each business. Thirdly, a number of adjustments were made co the businesses' expend iture forecasts co reflect the Commission's assessment of whether expenditure proposals were effi cient and whether projects were feasible within the three year timeframe. However, th e price increases approved for four b usinesses were higher than those initially proposed in chose b usinesses' Water Plans. Barwon Water and Goulburn Valley Water received higher increases because their proposed prices were nor sufficient co recover their required revenu e. East G ippsland Water received higher price increases because it assumed a lower return on assets than char approved by the Commission following rhe Minster's RAV decision . Ease Gippsland Water also had further expenditure approved for items sub mitted after the Water Plan. C ity West Water's approved price increases were higher than those proposed as the cost o f bulk water and

water pricing sewerage services supplied by Melbourne Water was higher than origi nally anticipated by City West Water. As pare of che review process, the Commission was requi red to ensure chat prices provide incentives for the sustainable use of Victoria's water resources. In their Water Plans, businesses generally sought to increase the usage component for their water charges (and decrease the fixed component). T his provided closer links between customers' water bills and the vol ume of water co nsumed and was supported by the Comm ission. Another prici ng ini tiative co promote water conversation is inclining block tariffs for residential customers. Inclining block tariffs were introduced in Melbourne in October 2004 as part of the Victorian Government's White Paper - Securing Our Water Future Together, (www.dse.vic.gov.au) and were adopted by another four businesses in July 2005. Under an inclining block tariff, the price per kilolitre of water increases after the customer has consumed a certain vo lume of water. T his structure is designed to target discretionary outdoor water use while ensuring char water for essential indoor use remains affordable. Customers in Melbourne will pay 'block I' prices for the fi rst 40 kL of water consu med each quarter, 'block 2' prices for the next 40 kL and 'block 3' prices for all wa ter consumed in excess of 80 kL a quarter. Al though the th resholds adopted by regional businesses va ry, their inclining block tariffs work the same way. [n addition to encouraging more sustainable water use, these pricing initiatives will also allow customers to reduce the impact of higher water prices on their bills by controlli ng the amou nt of water they use. Minimum service level targets have also been established in the price review process to ensure high quality and reliable services are maintained. These targets were sec so as to ensure char current levels of service will at lease remain at their current levels. Related to service quality and reliability are guaranteed service level (GSL) schemes, which wi ll be implemented by che three metropolitan retail water businesses, Barwon Water and Central Highlands Water. GSL schemes entitle customers who are affected by poor service levels to certain payments or rebates from their water business. The approved payments range fro m $25 to $500 (in the case of sewer spills in a customer's property or house for metropolitan customers) . GSL schemes were nor compulso ry for chis regulatory period and were not

Table 2. Approved residential ta riffs for Melbourne and selection of key Victorian towns for 2005-06 (nominal terms).

City/ town

Water service charge (annual)

Block levelb

Melbourne0 (City West)


0-40 kl per qtr 40-80 kl per qtr >80 kl per qtr

$0.78 $0.92 $1.36



Melbourne0 (South East)


0-40 kl per qtr 40-80 kl per qtr >80 kl per qtr

$0.78 $0.92 $1.44



$57.99 $1.01

0-40 kl per qtr


$14 1.63

40-80 kl per qtr >80 kl per qtr

$0.92 $1.36 $0.83 $0.61 $0.74 $1.21 $0.99 $0.78 $0.92 $0.51 $0.58 $0.65 $0.98

Melbourne0 (Yorra Valley)

Water usage Sewerage service Sewage disposal charge (per kl) charge (annual ) Scharge' (per kl)

Geelong Bendigo0

$129.86 $1 11.63

Bollorot Boirnsdole Trorolgon Shepporton Wodonga Warrnombool 0

$73.57 $133.04 $79.20 $100.96 $106.56 $176.41 0-100 kl per 4 months >100 kl per 4 months

0-50 kl per qtr 50-100 kl per qtr >80 kl per qtr

$161.21 $280.54


$410. 17 $308.43 $307.3 1 $2 16.33 $317.33 $304.17

N/A N/ A N/A N/A N/A N/A


a. Inclining black tariffs in effect. b. where inclining black tariffs are in effect. c. Mast regional business do not levy sewage disposal charges and recover sewerage costs through service charges. proposed by the ocher twelve water busi nesses. Reliable histo rical infor mation is required to implement a GSL scheme which made it difficul t for so me businesses to introduce a scheme by J uly 2005. Evidence fro m ocher industries indi cates char GSL schemes provide stro ng in centives for businesses to focus on provid ing quality and reliable services to all customers and reduce the inci dence of customers affected by poor service. Over th e next three years, businesses wi ll be required to submi t additional information as part of the performance reporting fram ewo rk. This will assist the Co mmission in assess ing the merits of introducing GSL schemes on a scare-wide basis from 1 Ju ly 2008.

Next Steps T he price review was che firs t for the Victorian water industry and was conducted under eight cimeframes. A num ber of difficult issues were discussed during che price review bur could not be fu lly resolved in the ri me available. The Commission will work closely wich businesses over the next

cwo years to consider these outstanding issues, which include developin g a framework for estimating long run marginal cost (which is used to determin e efficient variable prices), reviewing pricing princip les fo r metropoli ta n drainage charges levied by Melbourne Water and establish ing a bette r way to calculate new custo mer contributio ns in the future. The Commiss ion has received Water Plans from G rampians Wimmera Mallee Water, Lower Mu rray Wate r and the three rural water businesses as pare of ch e ru ral water price review. The process by which the Water Plans of these businesses wi ll be assessed wi ll be similar co the urban water price review, although prices will only be set fo r the years 20 06-07 an d 2007-08.

The Author Scott Harding is a regulatory analyse with the Essential Services Commission (Victoria). Website: www.esc.vic.gov.au, Email: water@esc.vic.gov.au, Phone: (03) 9651 0222.


NOVEMBER 2005 47

. . water pr1c1ng

NSW METROPOLITAN WATER PRICE REVIEW 200S R Warner, M Naidu Summary In September 20 05, the Independen t Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (I PART) completed its 2005 review of prices for NSW metropolitan water agencies with the publication of final determinations fo r Syd ney Water, H unter Water and Sydney Catchment Authority. The Tribunal publish ed determ inations for Gosford City Council and Wyong Sh ire Council in May. T he d eterminations fund amentally changed p ricing structu res for so me agencies, particularly Sydney Water Corporation and th e Sydney Catchment Authority. T he Tribunal's investigations also identifi ed a number of challenges fac ing each agency. The fou r facto rs common to each agency that heavily influenced the T ribunal's decisions were: • the scarcity of water the need to maintai n and renew assets • population growth • the increasing complexity of water supply arrangements. This paper discusses the processes of the T ribunal in reaching its fin al decisions and the challenges it faced in setti ng prices fo r agencies confront ing both short and long term water sup ply constrain ts.

Inclining block tariffs, reflecting the scarcity of water.

Figure 1. General area covered by the metropolitan water agencies.

agencies regulated by the T ribunal for pncmg purposes are: • Sydney Catchment Authority • Sydney Water Corporation • Hunter Water Corporation • Gosford City Coun cil


• Wyo ng Sh ire Council

IPART was established in 1992 (initially as the Governm ent Pricing T ri bunal) as the economic regulator fo r electricity, gas, water and t ransport prices in New South Wales. The Tribunal m ust have regard to the matters identified in Section 15 of the !PART Act 1992. T hese basically include consideration of social, environmental and economic impacts, sustainabili ty and the finan cial viability of regulated agencies.

Sydney Catchment Authority is a bulk water sup plier whose main customer is Sydney Water which provides water and wastewater services to more than 4 million people residing in the Syd ney, Blue Mou ntains and Illawarra Regions. le also provides stormwater services to 400,00 0 properties gen erally located in the inner city.

!PART regulates water services p rovided to the major urban areas on the east coast o f NSW as well as bulk water supplied for irrigation, and town and industrial p urposes in country regions. The metropolitan water

48 NOVEMBER 2005


H unter Water is a vertically integrated water and sewerage business which owns and manages a number of water storages as well as providing water and wastewater services to over 500,000 people in the Cessnock, Lake Macquarie, Maitland , Newcastle and Port Stephens local

government areas. Hunter Water also p rovides limited stormwater services in the Lower Hunter and has some I 00 km of storm water channels under its co ntrol. Gosford and Wyong provide similar services to the 300,000 people living in their local government areas. While Gosfo rd and Wyong are separate entities, their catchment and bulk water activities are shared. Figure l shows the gen eral area covered by the metropol itan water agencies. In regulati ng water, sewerage and stormwater prices, I PART sets the maximum p rices agencies can charge for each of their respective services in any year of the price path. Agencies are at liberty to set prices below the maximum determined by the Tribunal but must obtain the approval of the Treasurer of NSW.

The Price Review Process IPART's app roach to setting prices involves the process illustrated in Figu re 2.

water pricing The T ribunal adopts a "building block" approach char passes through into prices prudent and efficient operating and maintenance expen diture, an allowance fo r working capital, and a return of and on capital. In determi ning returns relating to capital, the Tribunal has established a Regulatory Asset Base {RAB) for each agency. Ar each pricing review rhis RAB is reset by adding in prudent and effi cient capital expenditure. T he T ribunal also assesses expected levels of co nsum ption and use of services and pricing structu res .

Issues Paper

Public Hearings

TRIBUNAL'S APPROACH TO SETTING PRICES Assumptions on metered water sales and customer numbers

Agency's revenue requirement over detennination period

Revenue for operaun;;-1 expenditure



Maximum prices to apply for determination period


Requirements under IPART Act

Revenue related to working capital


!PART released its Iss ues Paper for the price review in July 2004, in viting subm issions from the fi ve wa ter agencies setting our their capita l and operati ng expend iture Figure proposals, revenue requirements and dema nd projections over rh e period to 30 June 2009. The Issues Paper also in vited submissions from ocher interested parri es and from members of the public. Because of water supply shortages in the Sydney and Central Coast regions rhe Iss ues Paper also discussed price structure proposals designed to assist in conserving wa ter. Submissions and dera iled information returns from the agencies were received in October and November 2004. Subsequent to these initial returns, Sydney Water, Syd ney Catchment Authority and Hunter Water made furth er sub missions in Ma rch and July 2005. T hese revisions very much reflected the uncertain nature of water demands, and expend iture proposals necessary to manage the current drought. A summary of the expenditure proposals contained in submissions received from agencies is given in Tables 1 and 2. All rhe agency sub missions sought sign ifica nt increases in capital expend iture to augment supply and/or address growth. In addition, operating expenditure projectio ns also increased, in part in recognition of greater efforrs anticipated to meet demand management and new operati ng licence requirements. To assist it in evaluating che proposals, IPART engaged consulcanes, a joint venture between WS Ackins and Cardno MBK, to assess rhe expenditure proposals of each agency and determi ne appropriate efficiency targets.

p lus

venue rolatod to capital Investment Return on aaHta eturn of capital


axpondlturo rr,qu/rom•nt:s


WACC (Roal


The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal Ace requires the Tribunal to cond uct public hearings as pare of all price determination processes. Public hearings are a key strength of the !PART processes and are fundamental to achieving balanced and transparent outcomes. Public hearings were held on 10 March 2005. All agencies made presentations in support of their submissions. T he Total Enviro nment Centre, The Natu re Conservation Council, che Central Coast Environmen t Network, Services Sydney Pry Led , the Pub li c In terest Advocacy Centre and rh e Energy and Water Omb udsman also appeared.


Central Coast Determinations 2. IPART's approach to setting prices.

Determining rel iable water consumption forecas ts was also crucial to enable IPART to set prices. McLennan Magasanik Associa tes was engaged to review consum ption fo recasts and assess reasonableness. Issues relating to water demand forecasts were complicated by che drought and water restrictions currently in fo rce in ch e Sydney, Blue Mountains, Illawarra and Central Coast regions. Boch consultants released their reports in early 2005.

T he Central Coast is facing parti cu larly severe problems brought on by the dro ught. As a consequence of several years of below average rainfall and high rares of population growth it faces the urgent need to decide upon and implement water supply augmenta tion options. At che time of the com mencement of the !PART pricing review the Councils' plans were not sufficiently adva nced to enable chem to pu t forward a considered and costed sui te of augmentation options. In view of ch is the T ribunal decided in May 2005 to make one year pricing determi nations fo r Gosford and Wyong Councils.

Table 1. Proposed capital expe nditure ($M 2004/05) .

2005/ 06 Sydney Water - November 2004 671.8 - Morch 2005 510.0 -July 2005 599.7 Sydney Catchment Authority - November 2004 164.7 - Morch 2005 193.0 Hunter Water Corporation - November 2004 84.0 - Morch 2005 88.1 -June 2005 81.8 Gosford Council - November 2004 25.6 Wyong Council - November 2004 36.6

2006/ 07

2007/ 08



7 11.1 604.0 612.5

669.8 652.0 653.0

547.3 578.0 579.0

2600.0 2344.0 2444.2

125.1 139.9

136.9 142.2

85.6 104.3

512.3 579.4

88. 1 92.0 107. 1

86.7 86.4 99.3

80.3 84.3 90.3

339. 1 350.8 378.5 25.6 36.6


NOVEMBER 2005 49

water pricing Draft Report and Determinations for Sydney Water, Hunter Water and the Sydney Catchment Authority Following its public hear ings in March , the Tribunal released draft determinations for Sydney Water, Sydn ey Catch ment Authority and Hunter Water in mid June 2005. The T ribunal sought co mments on its recommendations and price levels for a period of one month. Prior to making its fina l determi nations, I PART engaged WS Atkins/Cardno M BK to review the additional capital and operating expenditure bids made by Sydney Water, the Sydney Catchment Authority and Hunter Water. In addition, the Tribunal considered che submissions received from stakeholders and interested parties . Final determinations for these agencies were publicly released on 2 September 2005. T hey cover the period from 1 October 2005 to 30 June 2009 for Sydney Water and Sydney Catchment Authority and from 1 November 200 5 to 30 June 2009 for Hunter Water Corporation.

Other Influencing Factors The Tribunal's review was u ndertaken during a rime of consid erable change and uncertain ty within the water industry. M uch of this was driven by the cu rrent d rought conditions and the long term demand supply imbalance. T here was a range of ocher work char was considered by che Tribunal wh en making its final decisions. This included: • I PART's fin al report on the Investigation

into Price Structures to Reduce the Demand for Water in the Sydney Basin. (IPART, July 2004, Other Paper OP24) • T he NSW Government's Metropolitan Water Plan • IPART's Investigation into Water and

Wastewater Service Provision in the Greater Sydney Region (IP ART, September 2005 , S9-l 4)

Investigation into Price Structures to reduce the demand for Water in the Sydney Basin In September 2003 che Premier of NSW requested that IPART investigate alternative structures for retail and wholesale water prices in the Sydney Basin to determine whether that would send a stro ng water conservation signal to consumers and h ence reduce che demand for water, whilst minimising the impact on vulnerable custom ers. The fi ndin g of this six month study was that a two tiered inclining block tariff fo r retail water usage was likely to generally meet the required

50 NOVEMBER 2005


Table 2. Proposed operating expenditure ($M 2004/05).






744.6 757.3 770.4

733.3 739.7 753.5

723.0 720.2 73 l.8

715.6 717.4 728.5

29 16.5 2934.6 2984.2

79.7 79.7

81. l 81. l

81.3 81.3

80.2 80.2

322.3 322.3

68.9 72. l

69.5 71. l

70.5 71.8

71.5 72.7

280.4 287.7

Sydney Water

- November 2004 -March 2005 -July 2005 Sydney Catchment Authority

- November 2004 - March 2005 Hunter Water Corporation

- November 2004 - March 2005 Gosford Council

- November 2004





Wyong Council

- November 2004

objectives. This finding was a departure from the existing single usage price chargi ng structure.

The NSW Metropolitan Water Plan In October 2004, the NSW Government released its Metropoli tan Water Plan. T he plan acknowledges that current water supply infrastructu re, even without drought conditions, is not suffi cient to satisfy the need s of Sydney's growing population over the next 25 years. The Plan identified a number of m easures aimed at addressing the demand and supply imbalance while also permitting environmental flows to p rotect the health of the river systems from which Sydney's water supply is drawn. These m easures included a diversified supply augmentation program incorporating recycled water, desalination and supplementing water in the Warragamba Dam from the Shoalhaven River. The Plan had considerable implications for Sydney W ater's and the Syd ney Catchmen t Authority's expenditure proposals.

Investigation into Water and Wastewater Service Provision in the Greater Sydney Region T he Metropolitan Water Plan, coupled with a proposal by Services Sydney Pry Ltd to enter the wastewater service market in Sydney, created an impetus for the NSW

Governmen t to look at the structure of the water and wastewater industry to determine whether current arrangements are app ropriate to meet the need s of Sydney's growing population. It therefore asked IPART to undertake an investigation to determine whether it would be app ropriate to increase the level of competition within the industry. This invescigacio n is currencly in progress with che d raft report released in Sep tember 2005 and a final report due on 31 October 200 5 .

Final Price Determinations The outcomes of che T ribunal's metropolitan pricing inquiry led to considerable price and revenue in creases fo r each of the agencies over the period to 30 June 2009. The increases will enable each agency to ensure adequate supplies of water fo r a growing customer base as well as provide a quality service and meet licence requirements. IPART adopts a "glide path" approach to agencies revenue requirements. That is, revenue increases and the associated prices for services are progressively introduced over the determinatio n period to mitigate the impact on custo mers and to avoid price volatility. In these determinations, the Tribunal decided it was appropriate to have higher increases in the first year to

Table 3. Summary of real revenue % increases.

Sydney Water Corporation Sydney Catchment Authority Hunter Water Corporation Goslord Council Wyong council





7.5 12.0 7.5 6.5 6.5

l. l 6.0 2.5

l. l 6.0 2.5

l. l 6.0 2.5

water pricing sen d a strong water conservation signal to customers.

Table 4. Notional revenue requirements ($M 2004/05 ).

Operating and Capital Expenditures




2008/ 09


1530.0 1505.8

1556.0 1533.4

1577.0 1559.3

1611.0 1583.2

6274.0 618 1.7

150. 1 149.8

163.3 160.6

173 .0 167.7

180.2 174.5

666.5 652.5

147.7 153.7

150.5 156.0

155.9 159.3

160.8 162 .6

614.9 631.6

Sydney Water

All agencies sought considerable increases in both operating and capital expenditures. Much of the addi tional expenditure was sought to enable agencies to meet Operating Licence requirements or Government policy. IPART's consultants found that most of rhe capital expenditure being sought was appropriate. However, they questioned rhe scope and coses associated with Sydney Catchment Aurhoriry's Shoalhaven Transfer project. Because of the considerable uncertain ty associated wi th this project, the T ribunal determined rhar a "claw back" mechanism would be in troduced. This mecha nism allows the Tribu nal to "claw back" any underspend on the project. WS Atkins/Cardno MBK also recommended deferral of expenditure on a desalination plant for Gosfo rd and Wyong.

The Weighted Average Cost of Capital

WS Arkins/Cardno MBK noted that agencies anti cipated a considerable increase in expenditu re over the determ ination period bur they fo und sco pe fo r the capital expenditure programs of all agencies to be re-phased, and rhar there was co nsiderab le scope fo r efficiency savings. T hey also reviewed the operating expend iture proposals of each agency, having regard to intern al processes of agencies as well as any specific issues identified as affecting operating costs. They also recomm ended operating efficiencies fo r each based on their experiences of similar efficiencies obtained by similarly sized water organisations elsewhere. T he T ribunal accepted the majority of rhe co nsultant's recommendations in relation to both operating and capital expend itures.

An important consid era tion of rhe T ribunal in determ in ing rhe revenue requirement of agencies is che rate of return . T he T ribun al es rimaced an appropri ate race of return for the metropolitan water ind ustry usin g the Weigh ted Average Cost of Capital (WACC) deri ved using rhe Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM). The T ribunal acknowledges that there is so me unce rta in ty surrounding the true values of som e of the parameters used to calculate rhe WACC. Acco rdingly it calculates a WACC range usin g high and low values of the relevant parameters. T he Tribunal exercises irs j udgement in determining rhe rate of return co adopt. T his judgement is inform ed by the argum ents pu t to it by stakeholders and in rerested parries and rhe previous decisions of rhe Tribunal in other

- Agency - Tribunal

Sydney Catchment Authority - Agency - Tribunal

Hunter Water Corporation -Agency - Tribunal

Gosford Council - Agency - Tribunal

42.0 43.2

42.0 43.2

36.7 38.3

36.7 38 .3

Wyong Council - Agency - Tribunal

industries. Fo r rhe 2005/2009 metropoli tan pricing review rhe Tribunal determined rhar rh e appro priate rea l pretax rare of return for all th e met ropoli ta n water businesses wou ld be 6.5%. T he returns earned by agencies are expected to progressively improve over rime so rhar the target rea l pre-rax return is attained by 2009. A co mparison of agency and Tribu nal notio nal (pre-s moothed) revenue requirements are shown in Table 4. Output Measures WS Ackins/Cardno M BK noted that it was difficult to underta ke a review of ch e prudence of past capital expenditures du e to difficul ties in verify ing actual outpu ts aga inst those plann ed. In view of this they limited the rev iew of capital expend iture to a high level review of th e overall program , id entify ing where

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NOVEMBER 2005 51

Table 5. Indivi dually metered residential properties with water and wastewater services - impact of prices - Sydney Water (dollars of the day).

2005/ 06

2008/ 09




2004/ 05











100 200 250 300 400 500 750 1,500

$525.58 $626.88 $677.53 $728.18 $829.48 $930.78 $1 , 184.03 $1,943.78

$562.28 $678.52

$36.70 $51.64

$12.96 $19.87

$59.10 $66.57 $81 .50 $116.84

$16.24 $25.98 $30.85 $35.72 $45.45 $72.09 $138 .66

$591.48 $724.36

$736.63 $794.75 $9 10.98 $1,047.62 $1,389.20 $2,413.94

$578.52 $704.49 $767.48 $830.47 $956.44

$790.81 $857.25 $990.14 $1 , 170.73 $1,622.20 $2,976.64

$23.33 $26.78 $33.70 $51.02 $94.34 $224.29

$606.1 7 $746.73 $817.01 $887.29

$14.69 $22.36 $26.20 $30.04 $37.71 $56.88 $104.80 $248.54

$205.17 $470. 16

$1 , 119.70 $1 ,527.86 $2,752.34


$1 ,027.85 $1 ,227.61 $1 ,727.00 $3,225.17

Note: figures under increose represent absolute increases or decreases relative to the previous year. Actual bi// is calculated to include water and wastewater charges only. Inflation rates used to calculate nominal dollars were 2.5 per cent in all years. Average water consumption in Sydney is 250 kilolitres per year.

• Packaging alternatives to suit any requi rement

Water Consumption Forecasts and Water Restrictions Four o ut of the five water agencies cu rrently have water restrictions in place. T hese restrictions h ave had a significant impact on water consumptions and revenues . Historically, the T ribu nal has taken che view chat water restrictions should no t b e taken into account when forecasting fu ture water consumpt ion . Howeve r, so me agencies have now had to impose water restrictions for a considerable period o f rime with a conseq uent ial impact on revenues. In view of the protracted nature o f the current drough t che T ribunal decided it was appropriate co reconsider its position on this issue. It decided that it would make allowance fo r lo ng term and permanent restrictions bur not shore term restrictions. This mean t char rhe effects of having co imp ose level 2 restrictions in G osfo rd , Wyong, and Sydney Water's o perating areas would b e taken into acco un t in assessing future water co nsump tio ns.

• Profi cient technical assistance and support

Price Structure and Implications

• Prompt delivery Austra lia-wide and Overseas

As part of the review process, the Tribunal considered wheth er it was appropriate co adopt its conclusions outlined in its Investigation into Price

slip page had app eared to occur, and o n t he bas is o f a selection of projects, w here efficiencies m ight be ab le to be ach ieved in the fu ture. T o overcome these difficulties in the futu re, the T rib unal, the co nsul tants and

agencies agreed on a range of o utpu ts measu res to be used to guide che T ribunal in assessing che prudence of past capital expenditure when the Tribu nal u nd ertakes its next round o f determinations in 2009.


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Structures to Reduce the Demand for Water in the Sydney Basin. T he report had supported an inclinin g block tariff for Sydney Water customers wh o were separately metered. The proposed step at w hich the second tier p rice would be imposed was 40 0kL per annum (approximately the pre restriction consump tion of a household of 5 people or more) .

water pricing Table 6. Individually metered residential properties w ith water ond wastewater services - impact of prices - Hunter Water (dollars of the day).


2004/ 05 Bill

100 206 250 300 400 500 750 1,000 1,500

435.67 564.99 6 18.67 679.67 80 1.67 923.67 1,228.67 1,533.67 2, 103.67


2005/ 06

2006/ 07

2007/ 08

2008/ 09









469.38 606.03 662.75 727,2 1

33.71 4 1.04 44.08 47.54 54.46 61 .37 78.66 95.95 135.21

505.59 649.99 709.93 778.04 91 4. 27 1,050.49 1,391.05 1,73 1.62 2,389.90

36.21 43.96 47.18 50.83 58.14

53 1.63 68 1.97 744.37 815.29 957.12 1,098.95 1,45 3.52 1,808.09 2,505.19

26.04 31.98 34.44 37.25 42.85 48.45 62.47 76. 48 115.29

558.97 715.5 1 780.48 854.32 1,001.99 l , 149.66 1,5 18.84 1,888.01 2,626.37

27.35 33.54 36. 11 39.03 44.87 50.71 65.3 2 79.92 121.18

856.13 985.04 1,307.33 1,629.62 2,238.88

65.45 83.72 102.00 15 1.02

Note: Figures under increase represent absolute increases ar decreoses relative to the previous year. Bills are calculated to include water and wastewater charges only {including Environmental Improvement Charge). The in flation rate used to calculate nominal dollars was 2.5 per cent in each year. Average water consumption in the Hunter is 206 kilolitres per year.

T he concepc of an inclining block cariff scructure had considerable supporr, particularly amongsc environ mencal scakeh olders. Indeed some submiss ions suppo rced che wider implemencario n of rhe new cariff srrucrure co flats and nonresidential custo mers. However, concerns abour an incli ning block ra riff were expressed by co nsumer gro ups who felc char large famil ies on low incom es would be pl aced under greater fina ncial pressure. Ulrimacely rhe T ribu nal determined rhac ir is appropri ate fo r Sydney Water to charge separately mecered residential properties fo r water on che basis of an inclin ing block cariff. Furthermore, greater weighr is co be placed on water usage charges as a component of revenue. T he second tier price is to be applied to households char are sepa rately metered. T he focus of the second cier is ro target discretionary water use such as garden wacering. Th e effecc of che price changes on customers' bills is shown in Table 5. T he Tribunal decided co generally exclude flacs and home unics from che applicacion of che incl ining block cariff because of rhe lack of individual wacer meters. Ir was also recogn ised char these cypes of dwellings generally use less water chan single dwelli ngs. Sydney Wacer's non residential cuscomers will also nor face the inclining block cariff as ch is would be inconsisrent with che objecc of cargecing discrecionary wacer use by households, wh ich is mosc easily rargeced and behaviour modified without adverse social and business im pacts. T he Tribunal was conscious of rhe impact rhe inclining block tariff wo uld

have on vulnerable cuscomers. Sydney Water had proposed a number of meas ures to miti gate th ese impacts on vulnerable fam ilies, such as fre e fi n ing of low flow shower roses and leak repairs, pension er rebates, extended payment arrangements, a payment assistan ce scheme and a no inceres c loan scheme co assist low income fami lies wirh rhe pu rchase of water efficient appl iances. The Tribunal accepted these proposa ls and furch er recommended that a $40 annual rebate be given co large fami lies in possess ion of a healrh care ca rd where water co nsum ption exceeds 400 kilolitres per annum . Furchermore, rhe Tribunal supported a proposal made by rhe Department of Energy, Uriliri es and Sustainability for an en hanced retrofit rebate for wacer efficient app liances fo r Syd ney Wacer custo mers. Hunter Wacer already had a decl ining block tariff scruccure, providing a discounc for large users of wacer. Huncer Wacer argued and the Tribunal accepted char the removal of che decli ning block tariff (co be phased our over the course of rhe determinacion period) wo uld beccer signal to irs cuscomers the va lue of water in rhe same way as an inclining block cariff in Sydney. Indicative customer bills fo r Hunter Water's operating area are shown in Table 6. T he Tribunal will further consider the issue of price srrucrure and impacts on cuscomers in the Cencral Coast during che next inquiry inco water prices for Gosford and Wyong.

Next Steps T he T ribu nal has already begun its nexc review of prices fo r Gosford and Wyong. The expecracion is char both councils will be in a better position co estimate expenditure and consumption ro allow a 3 year decerminarion. T he T ribunal is conscious that a number of drought relief measures are being considered by agencies. In particular, ic is aware of Syd ney Water's plans co build a desalination plant. The costs associated wirh ch is project were, for the 111.osc part, nor included in this dererm inacio n as derails and cost esti maces have nor yet been fi nalised. The Tribunal may be asked co reconsider water pri ce levels by m aking a furt her determination ro reflect the cost of chis sign ificant project. T he Metropolitan Water Plan idencified rhe potential for recycled wacer to subsci ru ce for up to S0GL per year of potable wacer by 2029. T o progress this, rhe Government is developing a mecropol iran recycled water strategy. In addition, che Tribunal is currently reviewing alternative arrangemen ts for rhe provision of water and wascewacer servi ces in the greacer Sydney region under Section 9 of its Act. Boch of these developments have implications for the prici ng of recycl ed wacer. T he Tribunal will consideracion pricing of recycled wacer pricing afcer che complecion of the Seccion 9 review.

The Authors Richard Warner is Program Manager, Meena Naidu is Senior analyse, Mecropolican Water Pricing, !PART, ema il Richard_ Warner@iparc.nsw.gov.au


NOVEMBER 2005 5 3

HOUSEHOLD WHOLE-OF-WASTE MANAGEMENT A K Panikkar, S A Okalebo, P A Hackney, S P Shrestha, S J Riley Abstract At the U n iversity of Western Syd ney, research was con d ucted in to developing a 'whole-of-waste' approach in dealing with domestic solid organic waste and wastewater using biological treatment, including vermicomposting. T h is paper d iscusses the project and resu lts from preliminary tests co nducted on a prototype treatment system. Further research will be cond ucted into the optimisation of th e tech nology and cowards a working installation for households and small communities in developi ng countries.

Biowaste & Blackwater Greywater tank

Vermicomposting Unit


______.,i.~----' Aerobic Grease Trap (Pretreatment)

Slow Sand Filter (Secondary Treatment)

Keywords: domestic organic waste, blackwater, greywater, vermicomposting, n utrient cycling.

Evaporation and Treatment Bed (Secondary Treatment)


Introduction The q uantity of domestic waste generated around the world is increasing and it requires better management o ptions. The develop ing world faces added problems due co lack of infrastructure and lack of awareness. New tech nologies based on natural p rocesses p rovide the most sustainable answer co these problems. At the University of Western Syd ney, research was undertaken ro test a technology using natural p rocesses of o rganic waste conversio n using co m posting by worms (vermicomposting). T he p urpose of this study was to p rovide a system that would be easy to maintain, flexible and affordable for households and small comm u n ities in developing countries. It is based o n a hol istic app roach to domestic waste management (R iley et al. 2003). The capacity of the aerobic grease trap an d slow sand fi lter to remove the common pollutants p resent in domestic greywater namely, o rganic matter, suspended solids, dissolved solids and n utrients were investigated u n der controlled conditions. This paper ourlines the approach, design and so me results of the tests co nducted so

far. Design, Materials and Methods T he system com posed of various com ponents as shown in Figu re 1. The organic solids and blackwater were t reated in a vermicomp osting unit (VU) made of stainless steel while the greywater passed

54 NOVEMBER 2005 water

Sump and Pumps

Ultra Violet Disinfection

To irrigation plots Water Storage Tank

Figure l . Schematic o f the treatme nt system.

through another verm icomposti ng un it that also fun ctioned as an aerobic grease t rap (AGT). Both these units contained a mixed breed of composting worms incl uding red worms (Lumbricus terrestris), tiger worms (Eisenia foetida), Indian blue worms (Peryonix excavatus) and European nightcrawlers (Eisenia hortensis). The quantity of worms used was determined after vermiculture tests with vario us loading rates for various substrate compos itio ns (Panikkar et al. 200 2) . T he same wo rm stocking rate was applied to both VU and AGT units. T he effluent from the vermicom posting unit was mixed with the greywater stream before it entered the grease trap. For the purpose of comparison, the greywater treatment system was tested with and

withou t the VU effl uent being ad ded . The solids in the blackwater along with the solid organic waste stream were converted into vermicasts. The fil teri ng media in the grease trap also became vermicasts. The effiuent fro m the grease trap was directed into a slow-sand fi lter (SSF) and then an evaporatio n treatment bed (ET B) prior to ultraviolet disi nfection, chlorinatio n and storage (Okalebo, 2004). For the experim ental design of the VU per capita quantities of garden waste, kitchen/food waste, b lackwater and other domestic waste such as paper sh reds were considered (Si ncero & Sin cero, 1996; Norsted t eta!. 1992; Halestrap, 20 01). The per capita organic waste generation is a minimum o f7 00 gm dry weigh t from all sources. Excreta waste is estimated at

The simple and cheap technology of vermicomposting can be applied to domestic wastewater treatment. refereed paper

on-site treatment 400 gm wet weight (Aalbers, 1999; Bernache, 2003), with the output of a normal toilet per fl ush at 6L. Seasonal variations can affect rhe quantities of garden waste added to rhe organic waste component. For rhe pu rpose of rhe experiments, liquid pig manure simulated rhe blackwarer component of rhe waste material. Several srudies have indicated char chis substirution is justified (Envirocycle, 2002; Sophin, 1999; Aalbers, 1999; Yang et al. 2002). To avoid system failure, no more biowasre could be added than chat which the stocked worms can process in a week. T his meant a minimum worm biomass of 5 kg to manage rhe added waste. A worm stocking rare of l 0 kg 111· 2 was decided based on literature (Panikkar et al. 2002; Panikkar, 2004). This worm population was divided into equal proportions fo r the rwo chambers in the VU - one receiving fresh waste and the other receiving partly degrad ed material from che ftrsr chamber. Therefore, the design surface area was rhar for 2.5 kg live wo rms and chis gave 0.25 m2 surface area for rhe vermicomposring unit (ROU, 2002a; ROU , 20026). A total volume of 0.25 m3 was decided upon. The system performance is derailed elsewhere (Panikkar & Riley, 2003). The per capita flow rare of greywarer is raken as I 00L per day for average developing country statistics. Synthetic greywater (Table I) was prepared based on dara available in lirerarure (Shresrha & Haber!, 2001). Liquid pig manure (composition given in Table 2) was added to the VU regularly where che ve rmico mposring solid matrix resided. T he effluent from the VU was added to the synthetic greywater conta iner (resulting in I :40 di lution) automatically using a bilge pum p operated by a level switch (to avoid drying out) in the effluent collection tank of th e VU. T his con tainer was co nnected to the AGT via PVC pipes, the gravity-fed liquid flow rate bei ng controlled by a bal l valve at 140 mL min·1 throughout rhe day. The AGT was a plastic tank with gave a hydraulic load ing rate of 0.3 16 m3 111· 2 day- 1. T his unit initially contained a 100 mm layer gravel (size 4-20 mm) bed at the bottom and a mid-layer of 350 mm sandy loam with a top- layer of 200 mm deep vermicomposring matrix. T he sandy loam layer was replaced with coarse sand (effective size 0.6 mm) for the testing period due to problems in effluent rurbidiry with the fo rmer configuration. T he contents of the SSF was decided through a series of rests with different fil.tration media layers and a final desian b w1rh layers of 250 mm fi ne sand (effective

refereed paper

Table 1. In fl uent greywater characteristics. Parameter




Total Suspended Solids (TSS) Turbidity pH Ammon ia-Nitrogen, NH 3-N Kjeldahl Nitrogen Nitrate, NO 3-N Total Phosphorus Chemical Oxygen Demand Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) Water Temperature

mg l·1 NTU

17.6-306 15.3-240 6.85-10.09 8.29-22.28 16-35 0. 18-3.53 10.67-30.03 167.2-678 439-823.1 13.5-38.1

171.9 129.6 8.3 11.4 23.7 1.8 22.4 387.3 645.4 23.6

mg mg mg mg mg mg

l·1 l·1 l·1 l· 1 l·1 l·1


size 0.3 mm) and a I 00 mm layer of coarse sand (0.6 mm) upo n 60 mm layer of support gravel (size 20m m). A network of 50 mm diameter PVC pipes underlain within the gravel layer fun ctioned as che drainage system. This unit produced a total headloss of 0.0215m. A multi-pass (recirculating) evaporation and treatment bed (hydraulic load in g rate 200 mm day- 1) was designed with a 0.6 m deep cell co nstructed of concrete blocks with an inner li ner of impermeable geomembran e to hold the filter media and prevent seepage. This unit conta in ed a top layer of 25 mm chick mu lch bed, a 350 mm deep coarse sand substrate and a gravel support bed around the drainage pipe. T he mulch bed supported growth of agapanthus, Fescue demeter grass, white clover and corn. ET B was designed with a sprinkler system with a recirculation ratio of 3: l (ratio of recircul ated flow from end of ETB to effl uent of SSF). A nominal spacing of 0.5 m and wall space of 0.3 m required 28 ori fices for the sprinkler system. A dosing freq uency of 12 times per day gave I 67.7 litres per dose, each of ch e 28 orifices giving 7.25 litres of water per dose. T his included

recycled/recirculated water from the outl et of the ET B. The drainage of the ETB was co nnected to a storage tank, where UV disin fect ion will be tested in the next phase of the project. T his will continue with an automatic chlorination uni t prior to srorage.

Sampling and Testing Raw blackwacer samples and fi ltered blackwater from the VU were tested during each fil tration fo r different phys ical, chemical and microbiological parameters. T he parameters tested at the U"WS laboratory on a regular bas is were TSS, T DS, turbidity, elecrrical co nductivity, pH, DO, BOD5 , COD, ammon ia -N, nitrate N and ph osphate. Standard Methods and Procedures fo r Water and Wastewater Analys is (Clesceri et al. 1999) were followed fo r sam pling, sample handling and testing. Where spectroscopic instruments used, the manufacru rer's manual was followed. Microbiological analys is was do ne at the Australian Government Analytical Laboratory fo r E.coli and faecal coli fo rms. T he same sampling and testing procedures were fo llowed fo r greywater

Table 2. Influent blackwater (raw pig manure) characteristics. Parameter

pH Temperature Conductivity Turbidity TSS TDS DO BOD5 COD NH3-N NO3-N PO4 -P Faecal coliform E.coli


•c mS/cm NTU mg l·1 mg l·1 mg l·1 mg l·1 mg l·1 mg l·1 mg l·1 mg l·1 CFU per 100 ml CFU per 100 ml



7.25 - 8.96 11.2 - 26.9 3.8 1 - 7.91 1250- 8000 1120 - 11100 2020- 6354 0.08 - 4.2 740 - 5900 1750-13000 460 - 1500 110- 1300 170-690 14000 - 800000 14000 - 680000

7.9 23.45 5.18 3244.8 4082 3143



2305 6153 994.2 703 582.2 448005 272316 NOVEMBER 2005 55

on-site treatment treatment as well. Samples were taken at the greywacer source tank, effluent of AGT and SSF. Derailed testi ng of effluents of the remaini ng units in the system is scheduled for the next phase of the project and will be presented in the fucure.

56 NOVEMBER 2005


DTuribdity (NTU)


80 60

Results and Discussions The approach adopted in this pilot scale study related to a simple input-o utput model, with less attention paid to the dynamics and processes with in the treatment system. The advantage of this approach was chat it red uced the co mplexity of the analyses and brought the project within an achievable cimeline. It was noted that irrespective of season, the temperature within both VU and AGT remained within habitable levels for the worms; the average temperature ranged 10300C. Any temperature difference in the added wastewater was quickly neutralised by the solid matrix. This is in ferred to be the resul t of the channels created by burrowing of the worms through the solid matrix and the low loading race. This indicated a stable worm population in both vermicomposting units. The carbonaceous material in the matrix and the compose itself acted as insulating material in cold season, retaining the heat generated by the decomposition process. The mulch added to the VU to increase bul k and assist water d rainage remained unprocessed by worms. In the AGT, an accumulation of unprocessed food organics reached an average depth of 60mm by the end of the fi rst week, due to high loading rate of 3.3 kg m-2 wk-1 per person. An acclimatisation period was introduced with a reduced loading rate (0.88 kg m-2 wk-1), which gave satisfactory results. In both the VU and the AGT, the worm population soon estab lished well and the biodegradable materials includ ing kitchen waste and garden organics were converted into vermicasts by the end of rhe composting period of two months. An overall mean red uction of 89.32% in TSS was observed between raw blackwater and the effl uent of the VU. Figure 2 shows this trend in red uction across VU for T SS and curbidiry. Due to the range of values for each trial, actual values are nor shown. T he T SS reductions reported from the AGT averaged 96.2% while the SSF attained a further 98.7% reduction in TSS (Figure 3). Values of the parameters in raw greywacer tank (GWT) are also shown in rhe graphs. The VU attained an average 88.7% reduction in turbidity, the corresponding figures for AGT were 86.5% and SSF 97.2%. T he mean final values for T SS and

•Tss (mgr')



20 0




4 trial #




Figure 2. TSS and turbidity reductions in VU during different trial runs.

increased nitrate and TDS (nitrification of ammonia into nitrate also increases dissolved solids). Analysis of the influent and effluent gave an average reduction of 88.82% in ammonia levels (NHrN) and an increase of 636% in ni trate levels (NO3-N) was noted. Phosphorous content, as reactive phosphate, also increased averagi ng at 182.58% over the entire resting period. On the contrary, the AGT achieved 54.8% reduction in TDS readings and SSF further reduced it by 59% (Figure 3). Release of nutrients from the AGT could be lower, compared to the VU, due to smaller loading of purrescible organics. Also, the nitrogen content of material input (raw pig manure) to the VU is far higher than chat of AGT (mainly synthetic greywater). The high increase in nitrate levels pointed co high nitrification rates promoted by aerobic co nditions in the VU. This was con firmed by an average increase of 81 % in

curbidiry, in the effluent from SSF, were 2.3 1 mg L-1 and 3.60 NTU. This was a reduction from initial mean values of 4030 mg L-1 and 3264 NTU respectively in rhe raw blackwarer. The turbidity reductio ns were due partly to treatment in rhe three units as well as due to dilution in the greywarer scream. Figu re 2 shows trend in reductions ofTSS and rurbidity in VU. Mose T DS readings concerning the VU increased between the raw blackwater and the created effluent at an average 74.77% over the entire testing period. Conductivity showed similar trends to T DS, as expected. The increased TDS probably accounts for most of the change in conductivity. The mean conductivity value increased over the entire resting period was 69.77%. The process of composti ng converts nutri ents such as nitrogen in the solids in the wormwaste matrix into more soluble form (H aug, 1993). This could be one reason for the

[ - - GWT-TSS


- - ssF-TSS



-ll!- SSF-IDS



350 -



800 250

700 600 ::;

::; Cl










Q I-



200 50

100 0

0 ~'l, ~"


~'l, 'fil"' c::,'o


f?°' c::,°'

'fil'l, ~,-..b<


~'l, ,~



<Y ,-..'o

Figure 3. TSS and TDS remova l wi th time across th e greywater treatment system .

refereed paper

on-site treatment DO read ings across VU. Increase in the DO somewhat corresponded in terms of variational trends to red uctions in BOD5 values. An overall average reduction of 97.49% in BOD 5 was reported between raw and final effluent across the VU, with a reductio n of 70% in COD. Red uctions in the organic pollutant content were consisten t and gave comparab le results between all the trial ru ns. The fi nal effl uent gave readi ngs co m parable to greywater (Eriksson et al. 200 l ; Craven & Davison, 200 l; Li ndstorm, 200 0a; Su rend ran & Wheately, 1998; Shin et al. 1998). T he greywater treat men t units of the AGT and SS F provided a COD reduction o f 89.45% and BOD 5 reductio n of 98.1% (Figure 4). T he ratio between COD and BOD 5 gives an indication whether or not the organic matter present in wastewater is read ily biodegradable. T he mean COD/BOD ratio of raw wastewater was approxi mately 2.85: l , wh ich is well withi n the reported range (Aalbers, 1999) while that of treated effluen t was 26.89: 1. The ra tio for AGT and SSF together was 1.7: l. Odegaard (2000) observed that on ly 2530% o f organic matter in wastewater is truly soluble and its removal is through oxidation in to CO 2 and H 2 0. The remaini ng 75% of organic matter in wastewater is present in suspended for m (Odegaard et al. 2000). They argued th at m ost biological treannent systems depend on gravity settl ing. It is bel ieved that in the verm icomposting matrix of VU and AGT, these susp ended organ ics becam e en trap ped withi n the m atrix. T h is compost possesses significant biosorptive and bioflocculat ive properties, which increases compaction and appears to enhance removal of solids and colloidal BOD. It supports a d iversity of m icroorganisms whose b iopolymer p roduction is respo nsib le for the above properties. As for the SSF, d ata from literature points o ut that purifi cation of wastewater occurs within the 20-30cm m edia depth (Venhuizen , l 997; Huisman & Wood, 1974). A fil ter bed 35cm deep ensu red a more consistent DO concentration throughout this unit. The VU reported an average two log red uctio n in both E. coli and faecal co li forms. Th is imp roved to a total of fou r log reduction in the effluen t from SSF (Figu re 5). Across the VU, the final effluent had cou nts of less than I 00 CFU per l00mL in a majority of occasions while the raw infl uent had more than 250 000 CFU per l 00ml. An average faecal coliform reading of l.8xl 0 7 CFU per I 0OmL in the raw pig manure was reduced to average 30 CFU per l 00ml. Consumption by worms

refereed paper



-+-GWT -AGT ----.-ssF

:7 300 Cl

C"' 0 a:i

200 100


R=f ,::




10-Aug-03 10-Sep-03

Date of Sampling Figure 4. BO D5 reduction across the greywater treatment system .

and effects of their metabolite secretions could be considered as che reaso ns fo r this effect.

Conclusions In ch is study, it was fo und that the si m ple and cheap tech nology of verm icomposting, wh ich has proven to be effi cient in solid waste management, can be

applied to domestic wastewater treatment. Blackwater and greywater at residential levels received excellent treatment wi th vermicomposting technology in terms of physical and biological po llution . T h is treatment could be further optim ised with other si m ple techn iq ues to yield good quality recycled water that could be used for domestic p u rposes including irrigation


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NOVEMBER 2005 57

on-site treatment and flushing. Compared to other existing techniques to treat domestic wastewater, this tech nology has the advantage char it is also viable to treat biological solid waste materials such as kitch en waste and garden waste. The system was found to be selfsustaining within constraints of proper maintenance. Compared to wetlands for water treatment, this option allows treatment of blackwater and requires less space. As the system does nor require expensive equipment, economic advantages also exist and can be applied to rural and developing areas, with proper scaling and designing. Further research with the remaini ng units of evaporation and treatment bed and subsequent disinfection should remove remaining ch em ical pollutants as well as making it safer in terms of biological pollution. Though it was envisaged chat the end product could be potable, chis would require further research and technological improvement to effect a complete treatment, coupled with long-term monitoring of the various parameters involved to meet the requirements of authorities. Also, real-world application of che technique and monitoring is n ecessary. Fu rther research into process optimisation and some level of automation and modelling attemp ts are planned and rhe results will b e presen ted in the future.

Acknowledgment The autho rs express their gratitude to rhe Microbiology laboratory at rhe Australian Government Analytical Laboratories (AGAL), Pymble, NSW for the microbiological analysis of the liquid and solid samples.

The Authors Dr Avanish K Panikkar (Email: a.panikkar@uws.edu.au) is a research fellow with the Research Grou p for Sustainability in Engineering and Technology ar the University of Western Sydney; Dr Surendra P Shrestha is a senior lecturer and Prof Steven J Riley is rhe H ead of rhe School of Engineering and Industrial D esign at The University of Western Sydney, Locked bag 1797, Pen rith South D C, NSW 1797, Australia; Susan A Okalebo, formerly associated with UWS, is now a graduate student in the Civil/Environ/Arch Engineering Department, University of Kansas, USA; and Dr Paul A Hackney is source water specialist with SA Water, Thebarton, Adelaide, Australia.

References Aalbers, H. (1999), Resource recovery from faecal

sludge using constntcted wetlands: a survey of




4 0 3 s::l

¡-.g 0




2 1



..9 0 1






faecal co lifo nn

--- e.coli


samples Figure 5. Log reductions of faeca l coliform and E. coli a cross VU. the literature, UWEP (Urban Waste Expertise Programme), WASTE (advisers on urban environment and development). The Netherlands. Bernache, G . (2003), 'The environmental impact of municipal waste management: the case of Guadalajara merro area', Resources, Conservation and Recycling, vol. 39, pp. 223237 . Clesceri, L. S., Eaton, A. D. & Greenberg, A. E. (eds.) (1999), Standard Methods for the examination ofwater and wastewater, 20 edn, American Public H ealth Association (with American Water Works Association and Water Environment Federation), Washington, DC, USA. Craven, J. & Davison, L. (2001), 'Treatment by reed bed and sand fi lter', in On-site 'OJ advancing on-site wastewater systems, ed. Patterson, R. A., & Jones, M.J. , Lanfax laboratories, University of New England, Armidale, NSW, pp. 97-104. Envirocycle (2002), CIN Ratio of Compostable Materials: Envirocycle Systems Inc. (Canada}; Available: (h ttp://www. e nvirocyclesystems.com/canada/C DN_EN. CNRatio.h tml) Accessed: 1- 11 -2002. Eriksson, E. , Auffarrh, K., Henze, M. & Ledin, A. (2001), 'Characteristics of grey wastewater', Urbanwate1; vol. 4, no. 4/2002, pp. 85-104 . Huisman, L. & Wood, W . E. (1974), Slow sand filtration, World H eald1 Organization, Geneva, Swirzerland. Lindstorm, C. (2000a) , Key differences between Greywater and Blackwater: lmp://www. greywater.com/] Accessed: April 200 I. Norstedt, R. A., Barkdoll, A. W. & Schroeder, R. M. (1992), 'Composting yard wastes.' in

International composting research symposium., ed. Hoitink, H. A. J. , & Keener, H .M., Ohio State Un iversity., O hio, USA., pp. 154- 167. Odegaard, H., T horsen, T. & Melin., E. (2000), 'Pracrical experiences from membrane filtrarion plans for humic substance removal', Water, Science and Technology, vol. 41. Okalebo, S. A. (2004), Viability ofa low-cost greywater treatment system, Master of Engineering Science (Hons), The University of Western Sydney. Panikk.ar, A. & Riley, S. (2003), 'Biological rrearment of blackwater and mixed solid waste - an example of a treatment system', in Proceedings of ORBIT 2003, eds. Pullammanappallil, P., McComb, A. , Diaz, L. F. & Bidlingmaier, W ., Murdoch University, Perth, Australia, pp. 692-701.

Panikkar, A. K. (2004), Use ofvermicomposting

in domestic onsite sewage and biowaste management, Doctoral Thesis, The University ofWesrern Sydney. Panikkar, A. K., Hackney, P.A. & R iley, S . J. (2002), 'Onsite residential waste rrearment via composring of blackwater and biowaste', in Environmental Engineering Research Event 2002, eds. Dandy, C. & Lamborn, J. , Flinders U niversity, Blackhearl1, NSW, Australia. Riley, S., Okalebo, S. & Panikkar, A. (2003), ' Multi-dimensional management of wasrewarer', in Sustainable development in the

21st century: Proceedings ofthe International Civil Engineering Conference on Sustainable Development in the 21st Century, ed . Makhanu, K. S., & Kamau, C. C., Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology & lnsriturion of Engineers of Kenya pub!., Nairobi, pp. 322-327 . ROU (2002a), Best Management Practice to

managing onsite vermiculture technologies, Recycled O rgan ics Unit, The University of New Sout h Wales, Sydney, Australia. ROU (20026), Vermiculture in Organics Management - The Truth Revealed (Seminar in March 2002), Recycled Organics Unit, UNSW, Sydney. Shin, H.-S., Lee, S.-M., Seo, I.-S., Kim, G.-O., Lim, K.-H. & Song, J.-S. (1998), ' Pilot-scale SBR and MF operation for the removal of organic and nitrogen compounds from greywater.' Water Science & Technology, vol. 38, no. 6, pp. 79-88. Sincere, A. P. & Sincero, G . A. (1996),

Environmental Engineering: a design approach, Prentice-Hall, Inc., New Jersey, USA. Sophin, P . (1999), Waste recycling and fish culture, MSc Thesis, Prek Leap Agricultural College, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Surendran, S. & Wheately, A. D. (1998), 'Greywater: reclamation and non-potable reuse', Journal ofthe Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management, vol. 12, pp.406-413 . Venhuizen, D. (1997), Decentralised wastewater treatment: The tme regional strategy, T he Warer Resources Research Institute, Raleigh, NC, USA. Yang, X. M., Drury, C. F., Reynolds, W. D., McKenney, D. J., Tan, C. S., Z hang, T. Q. & Fleming, R. J. (2002), ' Influence of composts and liquid pig manure on CO2 and N 2O em issions from a clay loam soil', Canadian journal ofSoil Science, vol. 82, no. 4, pp. 395-401.

refereed paper

DEVELOPING MECHANISMS FOR RESOLVING WATER DISPUTES PL Tan Abstract The objecti ves of chis paper are, Parr 1, to analyse recent Australian con fl ict arising from water reform and what, if any, dispute resolution mechanisms were used: Parr 2, to compare the range of conflict resolution mechanisms used in water disputes overseas with specific intra-stare, national and rransboundary casesrudies; Parr 3, co discuss the legal, social and political limitations of these mechanisms. This paper observes char char resolution processes are still nor being seriously considered by policy makers and that chis omission needs to be addressed.

Introduction Cooperation and conflict are two characteristics of water resource management. In rhe mid 1990s Scare and Commonwealth govern men rs ar a series of Council of Australian Government (CO AG) meetings adopted the Water Reform Framework in order to address the widespread natural resource degradation. Efficiency and sustainabili ty were objectives of rhe reform. A year after rhe COAG meeti ngs, the States accepted a report wh ich amongs t other principles, endorse that where environmental water requi rements co uld not be met due to ex isting uses, action (includi ng reallocation) should be taken to meet environmental needs (ARMCANZ 1999). W hile th ere has been outstanding co-operation between Federal and State governments over water policy reform, it has not been a feature of the implementation of the reform on rhe ground. T his is nor surprising given rhe scale and pace of the reform. After all, what was proposed would deliver radical change to entrenched perceptions of rights of access to water in rural Australia. These rights were poorly defined and wirh escalating demand, impossible to manage effectively. Conflict has arisen over numerous issues including environmental flows, water pricing, and third parry effects of water transfers. In at lease rwo states, Victoria and NSW, parties have resorted to licigarion. Licigacion is expensive, divides regional comm unities, and delays nationally important reforms. In general, mediation, when used properly, is said to produce fai rer outcomes, more efficient results, more stable po li tical commitments, and wiser use of rhe best scientific and techn ical information available (Adler 2000) . Ir has also been fou nd to promote continuity of working relationships, something which is viral for watershed management (Napier 1998, McKinney and Harmon 2004) . A comprehensive regime of resolution processes should have been adopted as pare of the implementation of the water reform framewo rk.

Clarification of Terms Environmental dispute resolution (EDR) has been practiced elsewhere for over 20 years. I cs import into Australia has been slow alth ough alternative dispute resolution (ADR) has been used widely in private law matters. Firstly terms need ro be clarified. ADR is a broad term rhac encompasses all fo rms of dispute resolu tion ocher than court-based adjudication. Whereas ADR refers mostly to private disputes where the parries are individuals or

refereed paper

private entities, environmental disputes involve public issues. Private individuals or entities may also be involved, bur several public entities are likely also to be parries. By defin ition, EDR disputes are over environmental quality or natural resource management invol ving multiple parries and complex issues. While some of the literatu re refers to 'co nflict' resolution, others refer to 'dispute' resolution. Generally 'conflict' refers to a longterm underlying disagreement whereas 'dispute' refe rs to individual episodes withi n such long-ru nn ing conflict. Because much con fl ict cannot be resolved , 'conflict management' is used to make the conflict less destructive: resul ti ng in goals being clarified, comm unication improved, and faces sought and clarified, and procedures improved. ' Dispute resolutio n' refers to negotiated or arbitrated outcome of a dispute, and incl udes ocher mechanisms, fo r example arbitration, mediation, med-arb (a combinatio n of mediation and arbitration), private judging, neutral expert face fin ding, mini-trials and summary jury trials.

Drawing on overseas experience.

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conflict resolution Part 1: Recent Australian conflict from water reform and what, if any, dispute resolution mechanisms were used Most commentators stare that there are rwo main sources of conflict over water. Firstly, scarcity through over-allocation (in some catchments allocations to water exceed the 'usual' volume of water available in the stream or aquifer), and secondly, over rhe requirements of the environment. Specific disputes may arise over: • quality of rhe resource; • other public interests such as economic issues, water pricin g; • confusion o ver facts and conflicting interpretation of complex scientific informatio n; and • Indigenous claims and current uses. EDR did cake place in water matters in th e 1980s. Efforts can be summed up th us - informal negoriarion , m in isterial review and intervention, multi-player workshops, purring our discussion papers to rhe public, bur much of it occurred on an ad-hoc basis in ' marey meetings and casual char' .(Day, 1990). An overview of the mechanisms for confl ict resolution in water management and planning in Australia occurred in rhe 1990s by a group of Australian and Canadian academics. Literature which emanated from a workshop held by this group suggested that th ere are four main mechanisms for resolving d isputes: poliri cal, judicial, adm inistrative, and th rough the marker. W hen considering rhe significance of market mechanisms proposed to be adopted in water management rhe group nored ' iris imporranr to realise that the marker mechanisms raise a new agenda for confl ict; they do nor necessarily solve ir. (Do rcey, 1991 ). This same group of academics pointed o ur rhar there has been limited explicit use of negotiation and mediation techniques in rhe water field. Ac around thar rime train ing workshops were run by visit ing experts from the US, bur measures were sporadic. Si nce thar rime trai ning and experimental development of techniq ues in chis field with specific application to water management have b een very limited , with little serious research or literature on rhe subject. In relation to judicial d ispute resolution, cases reached the High Court, wirh arguments involving mainly constitutional law in rhe Tasmanian Dams case, marrers involving rhe application of rhe common law of riparian rights, and statutory interpretation of relevant legislation. Many of the disputes related ro rhe building of

60 NOVEMBER 2005


dams or levees. This is consistent over all scares with examples relating to hydroelectric dams in Tasman ia, che Warragamba Dam in N ew South Wales, levees in NSW and SE Queensland. In the past few years there has been litigation over legislation regulating farm dams in Victoria while in Q ueensland there was successful court action to ensure that rhe Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cth) was complied wirh in rhe building of a new dam (McGrath 2004). Currently disputes occur wirh water planning when tensions arise over rhe process and rhe adequacy of public consultation, che reliability of data and scientifi c evidence, rhe amount of water reallocated from co nsumptive use to ecosystem needs, and che lack of compensation when access to water by existing users is diminished. Two cases decided in 2005 by rhe NSW Court of Appeal upheld rhe water planning in rhac srace, specifically the Water Sh aring Plan for the Lower Murrumbidgee Groundwater Sources and char for the Gwydir Regulated River Water Source. These matters reached rh e courrs through rhe judicial review process which means rhar decisions have to be based on administrative law issues relating to matters of process. Under rhe judicial review process it is nor possible for rhe courts to decide on matters of merit (or substance). While the plans have been held as legally val id , matters of substance wi ll probably still provide reason for discontent, if so, with continuing conflict. In some instances public participation in Australian processes has operated as an EDR mechanism and has been somewhat successful in resolving disputes and preventing them from reachi ng the courts. Take for example rhe Victorian conversion of existing entitlements to rhe Bulk Entitlement regime in the Murray in the !are 1990s. lrrigators in rhe First Mildura Irrigation Trust who intended to rake court action ro protect rheir interests perceived that their interests had been mer through negotiations in a conversion committee (Tan 2001). However public participation does nor always head off lirigarion. Currently Northern Victorian irrigarors are contemplating a compensation claim against the Victorian government over terms of converting 'sales' water to a medium security water entitlement. Public participation in water resources management has not been expressly aimed at conflict management. If it were, perhaps more of the knowledge available in the US regard ing consensus building, confli ct

assessment, and negotiated rule-maki ng would have been sought and ap plied where relevant. After rhe plann ing p rocess there are ar least three instances where conflict may anse:

• Management ofenvironmental flows W ith one of the main objectives of reform being the sustainable management of water, new environmental rights ro water have been created. T he management of environmental fl ows may prove contentious as concerns have been raised rhar perceived environmental benefits may nor be delivered .

• Water transfers While ir may resolve som e disputes, for example rh at of newcomers wan ring access to water, rhe marker may prove to be added reason fo r tensio ns to occur (Bond and Far rier, 1996) . With the ability to transfer water and a growing water market, there are concerns char transfer of water out of a co mmunity could have wide social and ecological impacts, eg. where a reduced nu mber of irrigators have to bear an increased burden of maintaining infrastructure. Some of these concerns have been addressed by adoptio n of procedures. For example in most states transfers within irrigatio n d istricts have limited restrictions. Provided they co mply with regulations rhese transfers are not subject to scrutiny. Those that do not comply, or result in water leaving the district or state, are then subj ect ro public notice requirements and a much higher level of scrutiny.

• Further reallocation when water allocation plans are revisited In most stares water allocation plans have a life of ten years whereupon a fresh planning process is starred. Ac this point in rime reallocation of water may occur, and in catch ments where ecosystems are degraded, more water may be allocated for environmental flows. This is again highly contentious. In Queensland a 'new' statu tory mechanism has been developed for resolution of grievances arising from conversion of licences under the previous regime to rradable water allocations. This is a mechanism adapted from an ano malies committee used in NSW around 1977 when licensees had volumetric limits attached to their water licences. Section 1004, Water Act 2000 (Qld) provides for rhe establishment of a referral panel ro advise the C hief Executive on these matters and its recommendations are not binding. The panel comprises at least 3 individuals d rawn from a pool which has relevant expertise or a community background in

refereed paper

water matters. le is provided with technical and administrative help . The panel plays an important albeit limited role in resolving dispu tes. I c is cost effective for water users with a grievance, and has the aim of providing an unbiased review of the implementation of the co nversion exercise. However rhe advice from the referral pa nel is nor made available co the co mplainant and decisions of che Chief Executive are not able co be challenged on substantive grounds. This mechanism supports administrative resolution of a small ra nge of disputes. Innovative regulations adopted in March 2004 by the NSW Land and Environmental Court may also be helpful if extended and adapted co resolve water disputes (McClellan, 2005) T he new rules relate co the appointment of a single 'Cou rt expert' and rhe giving of 'concurrent evidence' by all rhe experts in relation co a particular topic. The first mechanism involves a single expert being appointed by rhe court where iris satisfied char the integrity of the decision will benefi t or chat there may be savings co cost. T he expert's duty is co rhe court and nor co any of the parries. Ir is seen co prod uce a better quali ty of evidence and avoid rhe adversarial treatment char ordinarily applies co all evidence. Parries generally agree on the specific expert appointed, and if there is d isagreemen c, rhe cou rr steps in. T he expert's fee is agreed upon by rhe parries who are joinrly responsible fo r irs payment. Where mul tiple experts are retain ed, rhe mechanism of concurrent evidence is used. All experts giving evidence on a particular matter in court are assembled co do soar the same time. In effect they consrirure a panel and engage in a scrucrured discussion which highlights points of agreement or disagreement and is designed co info rm the judge hearing a matter. Ocher mechanisms ou rlined below may also prove helpfu l.

Part 2. Conflict resolution mechanisms used in water disputes overseas Resolution of water conflict in the United States of America

Lirigarion over water dispu tes in the US has occurred over Indian water rights, inter-stare water righrs, quality issues and water transfers. After a srudy of key cases, one commentator considers char besides Ii cigarion, parries need co pursue several different methods of conflict resol ution or problem solving co reach their goals (Arnold, 2002). In the US conflict and dispute resolution by federal agencies are

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enco uraged by key pieces of federal legislation rhus contribu ting co the growth ofEDR. Which rype of EDR mechanis m and whar sore of processes should be adopted very much depends on rhe specific dispute (Susskind er al, 1999). The US lireraru re suggests char disputes fall inco three broad categories. 'Upstream' disputes involve planning or policymaking. 'Midstream' dispu tes involve adm inistrative permitting. 'Downstream' disputes involve comp liance and enforcement. However where d isputes relate co water transfers, they may cue across all of these categories because the issues relate co pol icy, new pennies or licences and also enforcement of legislation. Water transfers in California have led co protracted conflict. Local governments and environmental organisations often had co undertake one round of major litigation before scare government, and the buyer and seller were willing co negotiate 'area of origin' concerns. Collaborative watershed initiatives have been adopted in many catchments co manage upstream disputes. For mid-scream and downstream dispu tes, mediation is often used. Scace agency adm inistrative mediation and court annexed environmental mediation have been used in Florida and O regon. Arbitration and medarb are seldom used in water dispute matters. Ir is beyond rhe scope of chis report co analyse mechanisms in derail, bur two examples stand out - joint fact finding, and the amalgam of mechanisms adopted by the US Federal Energy Regulatory Comm ission. Joint face find ing QFF) has been used with some success since the early 1990s in the US. (McCreary er al, 2001 ). J FF relies on interested parries pooling information, meeting in face-co face dialogues wirh technical experts, decisions makers and ocher parties, translating techn ical information so chat it is underscood by parries, mapping areas of scientific agreement or uncertainty, and recording results in a single text document. To some extent chis is carried our in Australia when technical advisory panels are co nvened and co nsultation meeti ngs and information exchanges are arranged between the panel and stakeholders. However these meetings and exchanges often cake place when the experts have drawn up a draft report, and stakeholders seldom have the opportunity co help co draw up the terms of reference or give information during the face finding process. Distrust of the scientific experts' reports may delay or derail processes.

conflict resolution W h en JFF pinpoints specific areas of uncertainty a jointly appointed expert may be asked to furnish an opinion which would then gain acceptance. There is an instance in Australia where this was carried out but it appears to be the exception rather than the norm (Tan, 2001). The next example refers to processes within Federal Energy Regulatory Com mission (FERC). J FF and other collaborative processes are well established in FERC which amongst ocher matters regulates both the construction and operational phase of a hydropower project. Issuance of licenses for the continuance of an existing hydro project (relicensing) is an important aspect of FERC's portfolio, involving multiple parties and complex questions. Early FERC relicensing process was 'traditional' in the sense that the hydropower appl icant developed and filed a study plan, supporting the application with limited stakeholder input but no FERC involvement. A study plan is a critical document which gives information on the project operations and effect on resources, explains the nexus between operations and effe cts, and how the applicant, in accordance with generally acted practice in the scientific community and with consideration of relevant tri bal knowledge and values, proposes to deal with effects. After a transitional 2 year period where an applicant may choose between several licensing processes, the Integrated Licensing Process (ILP) has become the default process on July 23, 2005. It includes an environmental scoping process to facil itate early issue identification for the making of the study plan. Pre-filing consultation with stakeholders is increased, with assistance from FERC staff. Meetings are held and informal dispute resolution is available to all participants which results in a revised study plan. If furthe r disputes regarding the revised study plan arise between a federal o r state agency, or Indian Tribe, formal dispute resolution occurs. A dispute resolution panel consists of: • an Office of Energy Projects officer no t otherwise involved in the proceeding; • a person nominated by the agency or Tribe (if more than one agency or Tribe is involved then these parties jointly select o ne nominee); and • a third person , selected by the other two panelists, from a list of persons with expertise in the matter. Prior to engaging in deliberative meetings, the panel holds a technical conference, open to all participants, for the purpose of clarifying the matters in dispute. Then the panel issues findings and

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recommendatio ns. The Director of the Office of Energy Projects reviews and considers the recomm endations and issues a written and final d etermination. If the panel's recommendations are rejected, the Director must explain why. Although the specific p rocess will not be directly applicable to Australian water disputes, the idea of a well considered process made known in advance to all participants will surely find resonance with members of the com munity who have been involved with public participation processes in water resource planning. The initial environmental scoping process to facil itate early issue identification before tech nical studies are done is one that should be explored. That and the fact that these d ispute resolution processes both formal and informal are embedded within th e process are take-home lessons fo r us. FERC studies have shown that a trial of the p rocess has been found to work well cutting down litigation and the length of time taken to finalise rhe re-licensing of the hydropower station.

Resolution of transboundary conflict under International Law There are many sources of international law including negotiated agreements between sovereign countries. In relation to transboundary water conflicts, these agreements exist in addition to non-bi nding documents, action plans strategies etc. M any negotiated agreements contain dispute resolution provisions that mostly refer to the International Court ofJ ustice, but there are few examples where referral has actually occurred. In the few cases where adjudications have taken place, years pass before an award is made. Duda and La Roche (1997) refer to the appropriateness of joint river co mmissions in resolving disputes. In particular, they refer to JFF by the International Joint Commission formed by US and Canada, and a similar process for establishing a strategic action program for international water projects under the Global Environmental Facility. Another source of international law is the 1997 Conventio n on the Law of the NonNavigational Uses of International Watercourses wh ich has been adopted by the United Nations General Assembly. The Convention adopts a staged approach for the avoidance and resolution of disputes . Article 33 provides that parties should first conduct negotiations. Decisions of the International Court of Justice have said that there is an obligation for parties to act in a meaningful manner, not to insist upon on e's own position without contemplating any modification of ic. If negotiations fail, then parties may seek to settle differences in

a non-binding way through a rhird party or through any applicable joint institution that they may have set up. Alternatively the matter may be sent for binding arbitration or to the International Court ofJ usrice. Compulsory fact finding is resorted to if the parties fail to resolve differences. After 6 months from the rime negotiations have been requested, the dispute 'shall b e submitted, at the request of any of the parties to the disp ute, to impartial factfinding.

Part 3: Legal, social and political considerations Strong political and policy commitment fo llowed by legal requirements, capacity building and financial support are needed for d evelopment of EDR processes.

Social, political and agency commitment: Voluntary consensus-based resolution models have traditionally been used in many Asian and African societies for resolving confli ct. Its acceptance into US has been gradual and is seen as preferable to litigation. In Europe, rather than avoiding litigation, EDR is seen to produce agreements that better satisfy the interests of parties. US Federal agencies have committed strongly to EDR processes (O'Leary and Raine, 2003). For example the Federal Aviation Administration, the D epartment of Transport, the EPA used negotiated rulemaking (reg-neg) since the 1980s and seventeen agencies have produced at least one reg-neg. In particular since 2000 the EPA has committed to increase the use of dispute resolution tech niques and practices across all agency programs.

Legal requirements: Several laws have been enacted to better implement ADR. After experim entation with reg-neg, Congress enacted the Negotiated Rulemaking Act I 990 (NRA) which was reauthorised as the Administrative Dispute Resolution Act 1996.

Capacity building within institutions: A report into the practice of dispute resolution at the US EPA noted chat there was strong support for E DR from top management but a need to educate middle management, a need to consistent quality amongst mediators, an d a need to integrate dispute resolution as part of the dominant culture of the agency.

Financial support. During the 1970s and early 1980s, many public dispute resolution services were offered at little or no cost to disputants by foundation sponsored, nonprofit private or university-based institutions. Experiments in EDR were funded by the Ford Foundation who also sponsored numerous institutes for dispute

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resolution. The Hewlett Foundation over IO years fu nded mill ions of research into building the theory of conflict resolution. T he US Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution which provi des services in relation to federal matters or agencies is fund ed by the Morris K Udall Foundation established in 1992 by the US Congress.

Conclusion T his article sets our to raise issues for consideration in pol icymaking, not give the definitive view on EDR on water matters. Litigation and arbitration are important mechan isms both under national and international law for dispute resolution particularly where parries are in dispu te over their rights. Seldom do these mechanisms provide a complete resolution of tensions over water. While tensions will always exist because water is scarce and humans place different values on it, EDR is seen to provide more lasting solutions in disputes. I have presented only a few of the numerous examples of mechanisms used in conflict reso lution in the US and at international law. EDR principles, if embedded withi n the public participation processes that lead to water sharing plans, should be helpful in preventing confli ct. For example decision-making in major water transfers and the management of environmental flows are heavily dependent on a large amoun t of scientifi c evidence, with often differing views of facts and important issues. T his is precisely the scenario where EDR has been found to be most useful. My initial fi ndings are that JF F could play a role in an early scoping process to pinpo int specific areas of uncertainty befo re positions by parties get entrenched. In addition the appointment of a single expert (agreeable to all parries) should be explored. If fu rther dispu te occu rs then a formal dispute resolution process may occur with a panel appointed. An adapted form of FERC's integrated licensing process should be considered. JFF and appointment of single experrs are also mechanisms which could be trialed where conflict has occurred. These are but two in a whole range of mechanisms which need to be explored. In the early I 990s it was pointed out that there is a need for experimental development of negotiation and mediation techniques along with associated conflict resolution mechanisms. Results of experimentation should then be fed into the policy development and im plementation. T here has been little evidence that this has been done, and given the pace and scale of water reform rhe need for research in this area is all the more urgent.

Bond M and Farrier D (1 996) 'Transferable Water Allocatio ns: Property Righ t or Shimmering Mirage?' Environmental and Planning Law

journal 13. Day D ( 1990) 'Conflict Resolurion for the Water Industry',Water 17(5). Dorcey A (1991) 'Conflict Resolution in Nat ural Resources Management: Sustainable D evelo pment and Negotiat ion ' in J W H andmer, A Dorcey and D I Smit!, (eds), Negotiating Water: Conflict Resolution in Austmlian Water Management (Centre of Resource and Environ men tal Studies, ANU, Canbe rra. Duda AM and Roche D L ( 1997) 'Joint Institutional Arran gements fo r Add ressing Transboundary Water Resources Issues - Lessons for rhe GEF' Natural Resources Fomm 21 (2). McCreary ST, Gamman J K a nd Brooks B (200 1) ' Refining and Testing Joinr Facr-Finding for Environmental Dispute Resolution : Ten Years of Success' Mediation Quarterly 18 (4) . M cClellan P (2005) 'Expert Witnesses - The Experience of che Land and Environment C ourt of NSW', Paper delivered at XJX Bie n nial LA WASIA Conference, Gold Coast, Q ueensland. Mc Kinney M and H armon W (2004) The Western Conjl.umce: A Guide to Governing Narum/ Resources, Island Press, Washingron D C. Napier C, ed (1998) Environmental Conflict Resolution, Cam eron, London. O ' Leary Rand S Raine (2003) ' D ispute Resolution at rhe US Environmenral Protection Agency' in R O ' Leary and L Bingham (eds),

The Promise and Pe,formance ofEnvironmental Conflict Resolution, Resources for the Future, Washi ngton DC. Susskind L, S McKearnan, and J T homas-Larmer, eds, (1 999) The

consensus building handbook: a comprehensive guide to reaching agreement, Sage Publications, Tho usand Oaks, Calif. Tan P L (2001 ) ' lrrigators Come First: Convers ion of Existing Allocations ro Bu lk En titlem ents in the Goulburn and Murray C atchmenrs, Vicroria' Environmental and Planning law journal 18 (2) .

Acknowledgments T he writer gratefu lly acknowledges the assistance of Land and Water Australia Travelling Fellowship in 2004, and comments by Lindsay Gilbert, hydrology and water management consul tant.

The Author Dr Poh Ling Tan is Associate Professor, Griffith Law School, Griffith University, p.tan@gri ffith. edu.au, tel: 07 5552 8177, fax: 07 5552 8667.

References Adler P S et al (2000) Managing Scientific and Technical Infom,ation in

Environmental Cases: Principles and Practices for Mediators and Facilitators, US Instirute for Environmental Conflict Resolurion, rhe Western Justice Foundarion, a nd Resolve, Inc, Washingron DC. ARMCANZ and ANZECC (1996) National Principles for rhe Provision of Water fo r Ecosystems, Occasional Paper SWR No 3, Canberra. Arnold CAT ( 2002) 'Litigation as Dispute Non- Resolution: Lessons from Case Studies in Water Rights Disputes' in CAT Arnold and L A Jewell (eds}, Beyond Litigation: Case Studies in Water Rights Dispum, Environmental Law Institute, Washingron DC.

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