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Volume 40 No 5 AUGUST 2013

Journal of the Australian Water Association

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Unconventional Gas Mining: What Can Australia Learn From The US Experience? – see page 4

PLUS > Biosolids Management > Odour Measurement > Smart Systems/ Smart Metering > Rainwater Tank Management > Governance & Regulation > Mining Water Management


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T UN N EL LI N G


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Contents regular features From the AWA President Where Gas And Water Mix Graham Dooley

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From the AWA Chief Executive

contents

Fostering A Strong Water Sector Jonathan McKeown

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water journal MANAGING EDITOR – Anne Lawton Tel: 02 9467 8434 Email: alawton@awa.asn.au TECHNICAL EDITOR – Chris Davis Email: cdavis@awa.asn.au

My Point of View

Comparing Coal Seam Gas To Shale Gas – What Can Australia Learn From The US Experience? Dr Ian Duncan

4

Crosscurrent

8 16

Industry News

CREATIVE DIRECTOR – Mike Wallace Email: mwallace@awa.asn.au ADVERTISING SALES MANAGER – Kirsti Couper Tel: 02 9467 8408 (Mob) 0417 441 821 Email: kcouper@awa.asn.au NATIONAL MANAGER – PUBLISHING – Wayne Castle Email: wcastle@awa.asn.au

AWA Young Water Professionals Linking Water And Education Jo Greene

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CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER – Jonathan McKeown

AWA News

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EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT – Despina Hasapis Email: dhasapis@awa.asn.au

Water Business

New Products and Services

113

Advertisers Index

116

EDITORIAL BOARD Frank R Bishop (Chair); Dr Bruce Anderson, Planreal Australasia; Dr Terry Anderson, Consultant SEWL; Dr Andrew Bath, Water Corporation; Michael Chapman, GHD; Wilf Finn, Norton Rose Fulbright; Robert Ford, Central Highlands Water (rtd); Ted Gardner (rtd); Antony Gibson, Orica Watercare; Dr Lionel Ho, AWQC, SA Water; Dr Brian Labza, Dept Health WA; Dr Robbert van Oorschot, GHD; John Poon, CH2M Hill; David Power, BECA Consultants; Dr Ashok Sharma, CSIRO. PUBLISH DATES Water Journal is published eight times per year: February, April, May, June, August, September, November and December. Please email journal@awa.asn.au for a copy of our 2013 Editorial Calendar. EDITORIAL SUBMISSIONS Acceptance of editorial submissions is at the discretion of the Editors and Editorial Board.

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• Technical Papers & Technical Features: Chris Davis, Technical Editor, email: cdavis@awa.asn.au AND journal@awa.asn.au

A helicopter lowers a destratification unit into place at Cotter Dam.

special reports

volume 40 no 5

Ozwater’13 Conference & Exhibition Report: Part 2

A Round-Up Of The Proceedings Of AWA’s Premier Water Event Chris Davis

38

Young Water Professionals Workshop

42

WASH Workshop

43

Unconventional Gas Thought Leadership Seminar Series Highlights From The Keynote Speakers Grant Leslie

46

Do We Need A Price On Carbon?

Singapore’s NEWater Program

48

Celebrating 10 Years Of Success

52

technical papers

54

Cover A hydro-fraccing rig in a field in North Pennsylvania. On page 4, Dr Ian Duncan, Research Scientist at the University of Texas and keynote speaker at AWA’s recent Unconventional Gas Thought Leadership Seminar Series, compares CSG and shale gas and discusses how Australia can benefit from the US experience.

• General Feature Articles, Industry News, Opinion Pieces & Media Releases: Anne Lawton, Managing Editor, email: journal@awa.asn.au General Feature Submission Guidelines General Features should be 1,500–2,000 words and accompanied by relevant graphics, tables and images. For more details please email: journal@awa.asn.au • Water Business & Product News: Kirsti Couper, Advertising Sales Manager, email: kcouper@awa.asn.au

feature articles The Wisdom Of The Water Cooler Greg Peters

Technical Paper Submission Guidelines Technical Papers should be 3,000–4,000 words long and accompanied by relevant graphics, tables and images. For more detailed submission guidelines please email: journal@awa.asn.au

ADVERTISING Advertisements are included as an information service to readers and are reviewed before publication to ensure relevance to the water sector and the objectives of AWA. PUBLISHER Australian Water Association (AWA) Publishing, Level 6, 655 Pacific Hwy, PO Box 222, St Leonards NSW 1590; Tel: +61 2 9436 0055 or 1300 361 426, Fax: +61 2 9436 0155, Email: journal@awa.asn.au, Web: www.awa.asn.au COPYRIGHT Water Journal is subject to copyright and may not be reproduced in any format without the written permission of AWA. Email: journal@awa.asn.au DISCLAIMER Australian Water Association assumes no responsibility for opinions or statements of fact expressed by contributors or advertisers.

AUGUST 2013 water


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From the President

WHERE WATER AND GAS MIX Graham Dooley – AWA President I am always amazed when I read about the harvesting of gas from under the ground and deep under the ocean. Over the millennia, why hasn’t all this gas leaked out before we could discover it? But there it is, in staggering quantities, for those countries fortunate enough to have it. And Australia is one of those ‘lucky countries’. The recent AWA Seminar Series on Unconventional Gas that was offered around Australia gave a clear insight into the successful harvesting of this gas and the challenges to our water systems that go with it. Our thanks go to cohost/convenor, the National Centre for Groundwater Research and Training, and the learned presenters for delivering this event in multiple locations. From the Seminar I attended, I learned that coal seam gas is quite shallow – only a few hundred metres deep – and is extracted from ‘pockets’ in the coal mass. ‘Tight’ gas and shale gas are, on the other hand, thousands of metres deep and the gas is bound up tightly in the sand and in the shale matrix respectively. The mining of this gas will only be successful if the impacts on water are properly managed. Australia needs to protect its groundwater resources from contamination to sustain the natural environment, rivers and populations that depend on it. Our agricultural, mining, and other industries all need to be integrated into a sustainable economic model with shared access to our water resources. Therefore, sound management of the water issues by the gas companies is essential. The lessons our industry has learned from dealing with difficult issues in the urban and irrigation water cycles, such as the securing of Perth’s water supply through multiple parallel solutions

water august 2013

and the development of the irrigation water trading solutions in our rivers (among others), are extremely relevant to this emerging gas industry. AWA is playing its role by developing a set of policy papers in this field that support its mission “to foster knowledge, understanding and advancement in sustainable water management”. I’m sure we will see the gas companies and their consultants and contractors playing increasing roles in the water industry and in AWA. This is very welcome. Meanwhile I see four key opportunities emerging for AWA members, both individual and corporate: 1.

There will be plenty of scientific, engineering, contracting, regulatory, legal and commercial work to be implemented as the CSG industry develops.

2.

A substantial amount of water is brought to the surface in the initial years of production of each CSG well. The productive use of this water needs to be a key objective for the industry.

3.

The separation and proper management of the salts in this water is going to need innovation of the kind we have shown in other challenging water issues over the years.

4.

There is a valuable body of knowledge as to how to manage the water aspect of this gas industry that is exportable to other nations through our consultants, contractors, researchers and training institutions. We have a lot of expertise in this area to sell overseas.

I am keen to see Aussie know-how lead the world in new fields of water management such as those relating to the CSG industry. AWA members are well positioned to contribute to the solutions needed – and to benefit from the outcomes that can be achieved.


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From the CEO

FOSTERING A STRONG WATER SECTOR Jonathan McKeown – AWA Chief Executive During my first two months in the job I have been able to meet with many AWA members, most of our Branches and many of our Specialist Networks. It has been an edifying experience hearing the different perspectives, including views from corporate members, individual professionals, water utilities from a number of states, and various research and academic organisations. I have also met with many of the State and Federal Government departmental and advisory bodies that work on water sector issues. From these introductions I have acquired a deeper understanding of the Australian water industry and some of the challenges it faces. Over the past 10 years there has been an extraordinary period of capital expenditure, providing the industry with numerous large infrastructure projects to secure future water supplies. We have now emerged into a more restrained period of industry contraction with limited new projects and fierce competition. Water, aside from the Murray-Darling Basin, has clearly slipped from the national political agenda. But there remains much to do to improve Australia’s water management practices and build a stronger Australian water industry. Some of the issues and challenges that members have articulated over the past few weeks include: The Need for a Water Industry Forum AWA represents more than 600 corporate members, and they need a platform to raise their concerns and discuss solutions to the challenges faced by the industry. Specific issues raised include expensive procurement procedures, supply chain management inefficiencies, and a need for workforce skills improvement and transferability of industry accredited training and experience. AWA is ideally positioned to provide such a forum

and is already planning a national accreditation scheme to develop solutions for our members. Export and Trade Opportunities Much of Asia and other markets in America and the Middle East look to Australia for expertise in water management. AWA needs to provide a range of export and trade facilitation services for our members to access new markets and business opportunities. We need to integrate our wholly owned subsidiary waterAUSTRALIA to ensure that its activities are better aligned to our staff resources and our membership base. Long-Term Funding for Research Aligned to Industry Capabilities Australia’s water sector is facing some uncertainty in its long-term delivery of research and development with several entities coming to an end of their current funding arrangements. A clear strategy is needed to ensure that Australia maintains the necessary funding to secure ongoing R & D. An Outward-Looking Water Sector As an industry sector, water appears to be quite inwardlooking. While the sector and AWA itself seem to be well connected to players within the sector, we are not so well connected outside the industry. We need to find a place at the policy forums of other sectors to ensure our voice is heard and to have a hand in setting policy agendas. By developing such links and collaborating with sectors such as agriculture, mining and manufacturing, our members will have their views heard in forums that often shape the nation’s development agenda. Determining how AWA can best meet the needs of our members will continue to occupy my energy over the coming months. It is essential that AWA continues to foster a strong water sector and adapt to the needs of our members as the industry itself undergoes changes.

august 2013 water


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My Point of View

Comparing Coal Seam Gas to Shale Gas…. What can Australia Learn from the US experience? Dr Ian Duncan, Program Director & Research Scientist, Bureau of Economic Geology, University of Texas, Austin Dr Duncan has 22 years of experience in university-level teaching and research in the areas of geological and environmental sciences and 10 years of experience in hydrology and resource management with the Virginia Geologic Survey. He is currently the Co-Principal Investigator on several grants focused on stray methane gas and possible groundwater contamination related to hydraulic fracturing of shale gas reservoirs. His current research focuses on scientific, environmental and public policy aspects of unconventional natural gas production, the waterenergy nexus, and carbon capture and storage. He has a particular interest in risk analysis, decision making, and legal/regulatory issues related to shale gas extraction, hydraulic fracturing, CO2 sequestration, CO2-EOR, and energy production. Issues associated with hydraulic fracturing of shale gas and tight gas sands in the US have ignited an international controversy over the environmental impact of such development. The documentary Gaslands has become one of the primary drivers for engendering public concerns in the US. In a similar vein the views expressed in the movie have been a source of concern to Australians, particularly in rural areas where coal seam gas (CSG) development is occurring or may occur in the future. This presents several issues that should be considered in the context of development of CSG in Australia: 1.

water august 2013

Are the hazardous conditions portrayed in Gasland (and similar reports) substantiated by scientific facts?

2.

To what extent are the issues raised about shale gas in the US applicable to the development of CSG in Australia?

In this opinion piece I will attempt to give the reader some insights into the issues raised by Gasland and into how the movie should be evaluated. I will also discuss whether information on shale gas development in the US is directly applicable to CSG development in Australia.

What about Gasland? Although Gasland is presented in the guise of a fact-based, investigatory, journalistic endeavour, a few aspects of the movie should be of concern to the thoughtful viewer. First, no credible scientist is listed in the credits as acting as a consultant for the production. Second, although many of the issues shown in the movie had been investigated by government agencies, none of the results of these investigations are mentioned, and none of the investigators are interviewed. Some of the most dramatic scenes are those showing home owners setting their tap water on fire. The movie’s director (and host) Josh Fox portrays the methane coming out of the well water as coming from nearby (presumably leaking) gas wells. ‘Taps on fire’ makes for compelling television and Fox uses these images repeatedly. He shows examples from Colorado, Texas and Pennsylvania. What he does not report is that it is well documented that natural methane contamination has existed in the groundwater in these areas apparently forever. It is a preexisting,


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My Point of View

A fraccing rig in a farmer’s field in Colorado, US. natural phenomenon. This has been documented in scientific reports, data from the US Geologic Survey, court cases, and in investigatory articles in the New York Times. The first home owner interviewed by Fox whose tap can be set on fire is Renee McClure. In his interview, Fox holds up the results of an investigation of the McClure’s water well chemistry conducted by the Colorado Oil & Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC), the state regulatory agency. Referring to this report, Fox asks McClure if she realises her water well is badly contaminated with Trichloromethane. Curiously this report does not support any of the movie’s points. The report states that the methane coming out of the McClure’s tap has been isotopically fingerprinted as being of biogenic origin, and does not come from the gas being produced in the nearby gas well. The report also clearly states that no contamination associated with hydrocarbon production has been identified in the extensive chemical analyses completed of water samples from the McClures’ well. So what is the significance of Fox’s charge that well is contaminated by Trichloromethane? This is a chemical that, as a scientist, I would not expect to be associated with natural gas or hydraulic fracturing fluids. In fact, the laboratory contracted by the COGCC uses this chemical as a “spike”, a chemical added to the sample by the laboratory to make sure their analytical systems are functioning up to specifications. Unfortunately this kind of misinformation is the rule rather than the exception in Fox’s movie. Space prevents me from documenting a myriad of similar factual errors in the movie that undercut most all of it points. The New York Times, not known as a defender of the gas industry, in an article entitled: “Groundtruthing Academy Award Nominee ‘Gasland’” provided analysis of 20 major issues raised in the movie where the point being made was not supported by documented facts. The COGCC has also written a report documenting numerous factual errors in the Colorado section of the movie and complained that although their Executive Director made himself available to be interviewed for the movie, they had no opportunity to correct the record. On the rare occasion that Josh Fox has been publicly confronted with any of the factual errors in the movie, he has passed his lack of veracity off as irrelevant. And perhaps it is irrelevant. Gasland the movie

should be evaluated not as if it was a scientific analysis or even as a work of journalism, but rather as a highly skilled piece of propaganda. Unfortunately most of the viewers of this movie will see it as a factbased documentary, and of course that is the ingenuity of Fox’s work.

Comparing Coal Seam Gas to Shale Gas Clearly a key question for Australians reading about issues associated with shale gas in the US is: “how relevant are these issues to coal seam gas in Australia?”. In general the differences between shale gas and CSG are probably more significant than their similarities. For much of the rest of this article I will focus on these differences and detail those things in the shale gas record that are inappropriate to link to CSG. High-volume high pressure hydraulic fracturing is essential for the production of gas from shale and tight gas sands. Some have assumed that “high-volume hydraulic fracturing” of shale gas reservoirs “in many aspects is similar to CSG”. In fact shale reservoirs always require fracturing, whereas most CSG wells (and many fields) do not. Shale gas reservoirs are typically at greater depths and substantially higher pressures than for CSG fields. Some in Australia have assumed that methane emissions from CSG development will be similar to those for shale gas. In 2011 researchers at Cornell published a paper suggesting that methane fugitive emissions are up to 7.9% over the lifetime of a well, with much of the leakage well completion, during pipeline transmission, and distribution. In the scenario put forward by these researchers the largest methane loss is in the first few days of the completion of the wells, during what is called flowback. During flowback the well produces part of the water injected into the well for fracturing. This water alternates with pulses of gas at increasingly high pressure, until the flow becomes purely natural gas and production begins. For shale gas the gas production rate builds rapidly to its maximum values over the first few weeks of the well’s production. CSG wells, by contrast, typically produce little if any natural gas immediately after completion. Rather, production gradually builds up over a period of months and years.

august 2013 water


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My Point of View As a result the shale gas methane emissions rates are largely irrelevant to CSG development. Statements to the effect that the uncertainties in the amounts of methane released during extraction, processing and transportation are so large that CSG cannot claim to be an energy source with a relatively low GHG profile are simply not based on sound science. WhAT ABoUT GRoUnD WATER ConTAMInATIon? Web pages are rife with stories about the contamination of groundwater by shale gas and CSG activities. In the five years that I have been conducting research into the environmental impacts of shale gas and CSG development, I have not found any documented examples where there is compelling evidence that either has resulted in contamination of drinking water aquifers. I have found several examples where limited contamination has occurred in association with tight gas sand wells, however, in each case the cause can be linked to improper well design and cementing problems. In one or two cases in the US, it has been suggested that there is evidence that hydraulic fracturing fluids have leaked during the fracturing process, and resulted in the contamination of freshwater aquifers. In one case in wells near Pavillion, Wyoming, recent resampling by the US Geological Survey failed to confirm earlier indications, and in the other case in West Virginia the evidence lacked credibility. So DoES ThIS MEAn ThAT ShAlE GAS DEVEloPMEnT DoES noT PoSE AnY RISKS? Shale gas development is an industrial activity that clearly involves a variety of hazards. Conducted according to accepted

best practices and well regulated, the evidence suggests that it can and is being done with a low risk of damage to the environment and a very low risk to the safety and health of the general public. Much of what is available on the internet regarding the environmental and health risks of shale gas development is a distorted mélange of misinformation. This misinformation has probably distracted some regulatory agencies’ attention away from the most serious risks. My research has suggested that in the US the highest risks to groundwater associated with shale gas development come from accidental spills during the surface transport of diesel fuel and fracturing chemicals. These risks in the US appear to be similar to other activities that transport similar quantities of fluids, such as supplying petrol stations.

ConClUSIonS The track record for coal bed methane (CBM) development in the US is a better analogy for the environmental impact of CSG in Australia, as CBM and CSG are two names for the same activity. The development of CBM in the US has been proceeding for well over 30 years at a very large scale and its track record can be used to evaluate some aspects of the future impact of CSG in Australia. It is perhaps significant that the environmental impact of the CBM in the US is seldom mentioned in the CSG debate. I hope to compare these two scenarios in a future article for Water Journal. Dr Duncan recently spoke at the Unconventional Gas Thought Leadership Seminar Series hosted by AWA and the National Centre for Groundwater Research & Training. Please turn to page 46 for a report on the series.

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CrossCurrent

International The Stockholm International Water Institute has named renowned sanitation innovator Dr Peter Morgan the 2013 Stockholm Water Prize Laureate, with pioneers of drip irrigation, Netafim, winning the 2013 Stockholm Industry Water Award. Dr Morgan has developed a low-cost and practical solution to provide access to safe sanitation and clean water for millions of people worldwide.

New studies suggest injecting water for geothermal power or fraccing can lead to larger earthquakes than previously thought. Pumping water underground at geothermal power plants can lead to dangerous earthquakes even in regions not prone to tremors, according to scientists. They say that quake risk should be factored into decisions about where to site geothermal plants and other drilling rigs where water is pumped underground – for example, in shale gas fracking.

Scientists from Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO, are applying their knowledge in trans-boundary river basin management to improve the livelihoods of people living in some of the poorest parts of Asia. CSIRO and its partners have begun work in the Koshi River Basin, which stretches from China across the Himalayas through Nepal and discharges into the Ganges River in India. The Koshi Basin is home to millions of people who rely on its fertile floodplains for their livelihoods.

National MWH Global has commissioned research to examine what Australians want from the cities they live in both now and in the future, to investigate attitudes towards water infrastructure. The survey, of more than 1000 people, found that water was ranked as the most important infrastructure need in choosing where to live, followed by electricity and roads.

The Australian Greens have rebuked the Prime Minister for suggesting coal seam gas could help lower electricity prices in Australia. “Extracting more gas won’t reduce its price any more than digging up more gold reduces the gold price,” said Australian Greens Leader Christine Milne. “Kevin Rudd is confused by the basics on coal seam gas in Australia. Increased production will have zero impact on electricity prices because the industry is geared up to export it out of Queensland.”

The Hon Mark Butler MP has replaced The Hon Tony Burke MP as Minister for Climate Change and Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Water. The Hon Amanda Rishworth MP will remain as Parliamentary Secretary for Environment and Urban Water. Minister Burke has been a strong supporter of AWA and we wish him well with his new portfolio. AWA congratulates Minister Butler on his appointment and looks forward to working together to ensure water stays on top of the political agenda.

water august 2013

The National Water Commission has released the Australian water markets trends and drivers 2007–08 to 2011–12. The report provides an overview of the geographical location of markets and trading mechanisms, analyses trends in volumes and prices of entitlement and allocation trades, with national, southern Murray–Darling Basin (MDB), northern MDB, and outside-MDB analyses, and analyses the key market drivers.

A shift from coal-fired to gas-fired power generation will not significantly lower carbon dioxide emissions, new research by the Global Change Institute at the University of Queensland has found. Energy economics researcher, Professor John Foster, said the modelling indicated that a transition to gas-fired generation reduced emissions only marginally, and that wholesale prices would be higher than with a renewable energy option.

Connecting rivers to floodplains, boosting river and wetland health and improving habitat will be some of the key areas Murray– Darling Basin environmental water managers will focus on over the next 12 months. MDBA Executive Director Jody Swirepik said the annual watering priorities are the first set to be developed under the Basin Plan, and identified a list of sites and natural processes to guide environmental watering activities across the basin.

Seven brands of so-called organic water can no longer be labelled as such, because water cannot be organic, says the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). Active Organic, Lithgow Valley Springs Organic, Nature’s Best Organic, Organic Australia, Organic Falls, Organic Nature’s Best and Organic Spring have all decided to change their name after negotiations with the ACCC to avoid enforcement action.

New South Wales Sydney Water is investing $50,000 to renew water mains in Mays Hill to ensure a reliable local water supply. Sydney Water’s Managing Director, Kevin Young, said the investment is part of a broader $177.3 million spend across Sydney Water’s water distribution systems and sewer networks for 2012–13.

A survey of more than 200 farmers in the Namoi Catchment, conducted by the National Centre for Groundwater Research and Training, has found two-thirds of respondents support the idea of storing surplus water from large floods underground. The process, called water banking, can potentially be used to recharge depleted water aquifers.

Thanks to a new Sydney Water grant and matching funding from the City of Sydney, the Smart Green Business program will target 200 businesses to implement easy water, waste and energy strategies that offer collective savings of $2 million each year by adopting some simple green habits and actions. “By 2030, we aim to reduce water use by 10 per cent and carbon pollution by 70 per cent,” said Lord Mayor Clover Moore.


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CrossCurrent

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CrossCurrent The NSW Office of Water is encouraging participation by Aboriginal communities in water management through workshops. NSW Office of Water Commissioner, David Harriss, said: “With the assistance of Aboriginal communities, we can develop water-sharing plans which focus on environmental, social, cultural and economic opportunities and priorities.”

Acting Minister for Finance and Services, Andrew Constance, has announced that not-for-profit organisation House With No Steps has won a $600,000 contract with Hunter Water that will ensure jobs for dozens of local people with a disability. The contract will see House With No Steps maintain grounds at Hunter Water’s 19 wastewater treatment plants, which stretch from Dora Creek in Lake Macquarie to Dungog in the Upper Hunter.

An agreement has been reached on a significant water-saving project in the Nimmie-Caira area of the Lower Murrumbidgee floodplain. The Federal Government has agreed to provide $180 million to NSW to purchase the land and water entitlements from 11 property owners in the Nimmie-Caira area, and for NSW to undertake extensive infrastructure works and develop long-term land management arrangements.

A microscopic collection of worms and mites could play havoc with Santos’ biggest coal seam gas project in the New South Wales Pilliga State Forest. The ancient subterranean creatures that live deep in an underground aquifer are only one millimetre long and thinner than a human hair. They are known as stygofauna and play an important role in filtering and determining the quality of groundwater. The Government will use its recently passed “water trigger” laws to determine if Santos can go ahead with the drilling. Hydro-biologist, Dr Peter Serov, who found the two new species of stygofauna, says the creatures could be at risk because they are extremely sensitive to changes in water quality.

The NSW Government has awarded the contract for cold-water pollution mitigation works at Burrendong Dam to Geotech Pty Ltd, Minister for Primary Industries Katrina Hodgkinson said. The structure will enable warmer water from the surface of the dam to be released downstream, rather than cold water from the depths of the storage. Cold-water pollution can have a negative impact on native fish populations. The $3.4–$4 million project involves installing a temperature control structure around the intake tower that sits below the surface, allowing warmer surface water to flow into the curtain enclosure, enter the intake tower and be released downstream through the outlet valves into the Macquarie River system.

NSW Minister for Finance and Services, Greg Pearce, has announced contracts worth $755 million have been awarded to deliver major upgrades across the Sydney Water network. Mr Pearce said that after an extensive procurement process, a range of delivery contractors have been selected to design and construct assets for the water and wastewater systems.

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Water Treatment Plant (RWTP) and upgrade existing wastewater infrastructure for the Bingara Gorge and Wilton communities.

Hurstville City Council, with funding support from the Australian Government’s Water for the Future initiative and the NSW Office of Environment & Heritage, is constructing a stormwater harvesting and reuse scheme within Hurstville Golf Course in Sydney.

ACT The ACT Government is inviting the community to have their say on its draft plan for managing Canberra’s water supply for the next 50 years. Water For The Future – Striking the Balance: Draft ACT Water Strategy 2013 is a long-term strategic vision for water management across the ACT and wider region. A series of public meetings will be held in centres across Canberra to ensure people have the opportunity to have their say on the draft plan. For further information on the public meetings, and to lodge a submission on the draft strategy, go to www.timetotalk.act.gov.au.

Water and sewerage prices for the average Canberra household will fall by 7 per cent or $83 a year from July. The Independent Competition and Regulatory Commission (ICRC) announced the cut on Wednesday. The cut in prices is achieved by an increase in water prices of almost 5 per cent, to be offset by a cut in sewerage prices or around 18 per cent, made possible by unforecast increased revenues in that area.

Victoria Victorian Water Minister, Peter Walsh, has released Melbourne’s Water Future, a draft whole-of-water-cycle strategy that will ensure Melbourne households and businesses are not subject to everincreasing water bills caused by poor planning decisions. “The Victorian Coalition Government’s strategy will deliver ample water for all of Melbourne’s growing needs, at a lower price than the approach adopted by the previous State Government,” Mr Walsh said.

Stormwater will soon meet the irrigation needs of one of Brimbank’s biggest sporting facilities
with the completion of a $3.1 million dollar stormwater harvesting project at Green Gully
Reserve in Keilor Downs.
Water Minister Peter Walsh officially launched the Green Gully Stormwater Harvesting
Project, which will save tens of millions of litres of drinking water every year.
Mr Walsh said the stormwater project was in line with the Victorian Coalition Government’s
recently released strategy, Melbourne’s Water Future.

Victorian Minister for Water, Peter Walsh, has announced the launch of a $357 million sewerage system servicing the Southern Mornington Peninsula. The South East Water project is one of the largest of its kind in Australia and offers customers an early connection option.


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Tasmania Tenders to construct the $28 million Upper Ringarooma Irrigation Scheme have been awarded by Tasmanian Irrigation to three Tasmanian companies. The scheme will construct an earthen dam, 40km of underground pipeline and two pump stations for farmland irrigation in Tasmania’s northeast.

South Australia Major trenching work for a $17 million pipeline project to deliver secure water supplies to the Port Wakefield region and the Yorke Peninsula has begun. Minister for Water Ian Hunter says the pipeline project is a significant investment in the state’s northern region and will deliver job opportunities through on-farm and support roles in the animal industry, the retail trade and food services sector, and flow-on employment through suppliers, transport and equipment.

Western Australia With funding from the National Centre of Excellence in desalination, Edith Cowan University researchers are developing a cost-effective water quality sensor using fibre optic nano technology. The thin, real-time monitoring sensor will be able to provide early warning of membrane fouling in desalination plants.

Households in Perth and south-west WA must start drinking recycled water within three years or be prepared to pay $1 billion for a third desalination plant within a decade. In comments that put the State Government on notice over Perth’s next major drinking water source, the Water Corporation said there were limited options in meeting growing demand, given Perth’s rapidly drying climate.

A $29 million pipeline linking Manjimup Dam to the Bridgetown Regional Water Supply Scheme (BRWSS) has been completed and will secure the area’s water supply. Construction of the connecting 49km pipeline began in 2012 after long periods of dry conditions left local water storage levels at an historic low. The pipeline has the capacity to deliver up to 4ML/d of water to Manjimup Dam if required.

Queensland Veolia Water has established a meter testing and repair laboratory building, the Water Meter Unit, based in Eagle Farm, Queensland. The laboratory is fully equipped to test the accuracy of all types of water meters to comply with Australian standard or other specific requirements. The new unit marks a milestone in the development of smart water services offered by Veolia Water.

Unitywater will save close to half-a-million dollars in chemical costs and significantly improve its operational efficiency, thanks to an

water august 2013

innovative approach to producing Magnesium Hydroxide Liquid (MHL) using recycled water. Over one million litres of MHL, also known as ‘Milk of Magnesia’, is added to raw sewage by Unitywater each year to reduce odour and protect underground assets against corrosion.

A panel looking into the management of Western Queensland rivers has recommended there be no increase to water allocations for the Cooper Creek, Georgina and Diamantina river catchments. The Western Rivers Advisory Panel is made up of 11 members including representatives from AgForce, local government and the resources sector. The findings from the panel will help the State Government make changes to legislation governing wild rivers.

The Queensland Government’s plans for shale gas in Queensland threaten groundwater supplies, including the Lake Eyre Basin, say the Australian Greens. “Queenslanders will rally against this latest onslaught to our agricultural industry, regional communities and the environment by the Newman Government,” Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens mining spokesperson, said.

Member News Neil Aldum from Water Corporation WA has won a $1000 Flight Centre voucher for completing the State of the Water Sector Survey. AWA and Deloitte thank all 1500+ respondents for taking the time to complete the survey. The 2013 State of the Water Sector Report will be released at the National Water Leadership Summit in late October.

DSEWPC has invited input on the Draft significant impact guidelines: Coal seam gas and large coal mining developments – impacts on water resources. You can have your say on the ‘water trigger’ bill by visiting www.environment.gov.au/epbc/about/water-trigger.html

AECOM has appointed Adrian Vlok as Business Development Manager – Water and Infrastructure Services. With over 20 years’ experience across Australia in the fields of project feasibility and approvals in the water, infrastructure, transport and oil and gas sector, Adrian has a reputation for achieving client outcomes on complex, controversial and challenging projects. He is particularly interested in exploring how technology and knowledge can be applied to improve performance, efficiency and help clients adapt to change.

Pentair Water Solutions has struck an alliance with Saint-Gobain PAM for the sale and distribution of PAM’s ductile iron pipeline products by Pentair to customers throughout Australasia. The Alliance will mean significant benefits for the water industry including short lead times, new products and technical support for customers through the extensive experience of both companies.

Dr Amit Chanan, State Water’s Executive Manager Operations, has been awarded the 2013 Winston Churchill Fellowship. Under the fellowship, Dr Chanan will visit major dam owners in the US, Canada, UK and Germany to study dam operating procedures for major gated dams. The study will particularly look at the role of pre-releasing during floods, regulatory framework and stakeholder engagement.


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CrossCurrent

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CrossCurrent

POSTCARD FROM THE SOUTH GOBI DESERT – from Kenny Liew Sain Baan Uu…! Greetings from a land rich in history, civilisation and, until recently, mining resources. In July 2011, I was asked to be part of the commissioning team on the Oyu Tolgoi copper mine project in Mongolia. At the time, I was asking questions such as: “Going to where? Mongolia? Do they have Mongolian BBQ’s?” After doing some background research and getting over the initial surprise, I decided to take the plunge into what has been a challenging but rewarding experience for a young engineer. While much of its ancient history dates back to a time when the Mongolian Empire ruled vast lands under the regime of the great Genghis Khan (pronounced “Chinggis Khaan” by Mongolian nationals), it is only within the last five years that Mongolia has seen unprecedented economic growth – largely driven by mining resource exploration – and is now writing a new chapter in its modern history.

EXPERIENCING CITY AND COUNTRY LIFE Initially most of our time was spent in the capital, Ulaanbaatar, where much of the urban transformation is happening at a rapid pace. At times, it can seem difficult to understand the rate at which this transformation is happening, where high-rise apartments and coffee shops are sprouting up with high speed WIFI available, yet main roads are full of potholes and difficult to drive on during harsh winters. With a total population of 2.8 million people in Mongolia, only half live within Ulaanbaatar. The other half are spread out in smaller towns around this country the size of Alaska. However, it is in the countryside that most foreigners get to truly experience the nomadic lifestyle, where people live in traditional Ger tents (circular tents that originally date back to the 12th century) and herd their cattle and goats. A big event in the Mongolian calendar that my colleagues and I experienced in the summer time was the Nadaam Festival, traditionally known as the festival of three “manly” events – archery, horse riding and, my favourite, wrestling. Wrestling is the most popular event and holds a high prestige among the local males. But don’t let the maroon underpants fool you – these are big guys with the intent of putting their opponent into the ground, followed by a walk around the traditional horsehair banner and flapping slowly like an eagle to symbolise their win.

PUMPING WATER IN THE GOBI DESERT With construction ramping up on site, the commissioning team soon mobilised to the Gobi Desert, where we began commissioning activities on various infrastructure facilities. Being part of the team responsible for commissioning the Raw Water Supply System (which includes 28 bores, six pump stations, an 80-kilometre pipeline, and two storage lagoons pumping aquifer water to the site for mining and treated for site consumption) was a big task and had its own unique challenges along the way. Temperature changes in the desert were extreme, ranging from minus 40°C in the winter to 40°C in the summer; as well as sudden weather events such as light snow, dust storms and heavy rain. Communication was vital in order to test pumping equipment without causing serious damage. Often, this was via radio communication at various locations with multinational expatriates, Chinese and Mongolians talking at the same time (three-way translation often took longer than expected). However, operator training was crucial as many of the Mongolian nationals had never worked at pump stations before. This required patience and understanding till they became confident in controlling the Raw Water Supply System.

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CrossCurrent

COLLABORATIVE EFFORT A key milestone on the project was starting up the Raw Water Supply System and proving the full design capacity at 900 litres per second. A memorable moment I’ll cherish during this commissioning phase was when we opened the inlet valve to the Storage Lagoon and having a Chinese, a Mongolian and an Australian standing together and listening for the water to pass through the inlet pipe – a collaborative check for water movement! Water is a precious resource, especially in the Gobi Desert, and equally as important as the underground copper. It was encouraging to see the environmental team regularly monitoring the aquifer bore levels and educating the workers on site on reducing water consumption. Working with the local herders and nearby communities is also vital to ensure that everyone has access to water – even the camels! Kenny Liew is a Process Engineer in the Water Business Group with CH2M HILL and is a member of the Queensland Young Water Professionals Committee. He has recently returned to Brisbane after spending 20 months on the Oyu Tolgoi project in Mongolia.

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Industry News

HELICOPTER LIFT AIDS ENLARGEMENT OF COTTER DAM A specialist helicopter has been used to drop one of the final pieces in the Cotter Dam jigsaw puzzle into place. As the dam nears completion the destratification units will be lowered into place, improving oxygenation of the reservoir to a much greater depth and increasing the volume of water available to the community. Ray Hezkial, Project Manager for the Bulk Water Alliance (BWA) delivering the new Cotter Dam program said: “When you flood such a large area as the valley on either side of the dam, stirring up sediment and vegetation, it can be difficult to maintain levels of dissolved oxygen and a consistent temperature. “By mixing the water in the reservoir the destratification units will help to maintain a high quality water supply in the Cotter Dam as it enters into operation by ensuring that the water remains oxygenated to a greater depth and with a more consistent temperature profile, increasing the raw water supply available to us.” Ensuring the water remains oxygenated will not only significantly reduce the potential for blue-green algae growth but will also benefit the endangered Macquarie Perch population within the reservoir. Reservoirs can undergo stratification when sunlight warms the surface layer, making it more buoyant than the water below. This reduces water circulation and stops the underlying water from reaching the surface where the natural oxygenation process takes place. When this second layer of water is trapped in this way the main body of water can become depleted of dissolved oxygen.

FLOOD APPOINTMENTS FOR AURECON Aurecon has recently been engaged by the Gladstone Regional Council for flood restoration work and by the Gympie Regional Council for a flood mitigation study. Severe flooding occurred in the region during January 2013, causing damage to road and drainage infrastructure. Aurecon will assist the council with restoration work, which is expected to cost AUD70 million and be completed by November 2014. Aurecon was initially appointed in early 2011 to assist council to restore the major damage to the roads caused by flooding over the 2010/2011 festive period. Council’s engineering services portfolio spokesperson Councillor Rick Hansen said: “Aurecon has previously provided flood damage assessment, scoping, funding applications, tender documentation, tender assessment, procurement and construction management services for Council, as required under Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA).” The council last week approved a tender exemption request for Aurecon’s appointment to speed up the repair works. Aurecon has also been engaged by Gympie Regional Council to deliver a flood mitigation study identifying options to relieve the impacts of flooding on local businesses and residents. The Gympie Regional Council area has a significant history of flooding from the Mary River and local tributary streams. Gympie and its surrounds have experienced at least 16 floods since records were first collected in the 1870s.

Mark Sullivan, ACTEW Water’s Managing Director, concluded: “The installation of the destratification unit will provide a sustainable, long-term solution which will help our teams to maintain a high quality raw water supply.”

A multidisciplinary project team representing Aurecon’s water, economics, community and communications services will examine flood mitigation options that may benefit flood-affected business communities across the council area.

The ResMix destratification unit is the design and product of Queensland firm WEARS Australia.

The study will gather information about the costs businesses encounter when they have floodwater through their property or

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when they are isolated from workers, customers or suppliers, and develop a business case for flood mitigation works. Please visit www.aurecongroup.com for further information.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT NSW WATER MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE As the driest inhabited continent on earth, the sustainable management of Australia’s water resources is of paramount importance for both metropolitan and regional areas. Urban environments have become a focal point for sustainable practices, while the opportunity to create more water-sensitive cities and towns has never been more achievable.

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Local Government NSW’s (LGNSW) Water Management Conference, which will take place on the Central Coast in September, will look at innovative solutions to achieve an integrated design of the urban water cycle and make cities and towns more water-sensitive. The conference will feature a keynote address by Professor Tony Wong, Chief Executive Officer of CRC for Water Sensitive Cities, who will discuss how council-owned local water utilities in regional NSW can incorporate water-sensitive urban design in their utility planning and operation as well as how councils from the Sydney metropolitan area can work effectively with a large water utility to achieve watersensitive cities. The Chair of Melbourne’s Clearwater Project, Chris Davis, will also be at the conference to talk about the transition to watersensitive cities, while Monica Barone, Chief Executive Officer of the City of Sydney, has been invited to address the City of Sydney’s decentralised water plan. The conference will address structural and regulatory reform of local water utilities in regional NSW and implications arising from various inquiries. The program of the two-day conference also includes presentations on initiatives from Liverpool Plains Shire Council and an overview of Gosford and Wyong’s joint water supply and integrated resource planning. Attendees have the option to go on a site visit to either the MardiMangrove Link or to facilities aiding Gosford’s efforts to become a water-sensitive city. An alternative is to attend a forum organised by the Water Directorate NSW. The forum will provide an opportunity to discuss issues surrounding the operations of local water utilities. The second day of the conference offers participants a choice to attend one of three topic streams that focus on: • Regulatory reform – Australian Drinking Water Guidelines (ADWG), urban water regulation and others.

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• Water-sensitive cities and towns. • Structural reform – current trends and models. Co-hosted by Gosford City Council and Wyong Shire Council, the Conference will be held at Crowne Plaza Terrigal. To register please go to: lgnsw.org.au/events-training/lgnsw-water-managementconference/registration before 30 August 2013.

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Industry News

AQUASURE BOARD ANNOUNCES NEW CEO

PLANS FOR A NEW WASTE-TO-ENERGY FACILITY IN MELBOURNE’S NORTH

AquaSure’s Board of Directors is pleased to announce the appointment of Matt Brassington as CEO of AquaSure. Mr Brassington replaces Chris Herbert who advised the Board of his intention to retire earlier this year.

Yarra Valley Water is developing a waste-to-energy facility in the northern suburbs of Melbourne, which will convert organic waste destined for landfills into energy – reducing energy costs, waste to landfill and greenhouse gas emissions. The project is part of the utility’s approach to operating its facilities within the carrying capacity of nature, with the aim of delivering better outcomes for the environment and customers.

Matt has significant experience in the business services and utilities sector. Most recently he was Melbourne-based CEO and Managing Director of Epic Energy Holdings, one of Australia’s largest gas transmission companies. Prior to joining Epic, Matt held senior financial roles within the business services sector in the United Kingdom. 

Yarra Valley Water has selected Aquatec-Maxcon, an Australian company specialising in industrial wastewater treatment, as its partner to develop the facility. “We are designing the waste-to-energy facility to sit next to one of our existing sewage treatment plants,” says Mr Tony Kelly, Managing Director at Yarra Valley Water.

AquaSure Chairman, Ron Finlay said: “This appointment comes as the Victorian Desalination Project (VDP) enters a new and exciting phase. With construction and commissioning of the VDP – one of the largest infrastructure developments undertaken in Australia in recent years – complete, AquaSure’s focus is now on the strong and responsible management of the project over the next 27 years,” he said. Matt said he was very excited to have the opportunity to be involved with such an iconic project.

an example of a waste-to-energy facility, similar to that proposed by Yarra Valley Water, in Piddlehinton in Dorset, England.

“The Victorian Desalination Project is a long-term public asset that provides Melbourne and Geelong with reliable, high quality, drought-proof water to supplement existing catchment supplies if required, for generations to come,” he said.

“The project will generate enough biogas to run the facility and the existing sewage treatment plant by co-digesting sewage sludge with organic waste trucked to the site. It’s a great solution for reusing organic waste that would otherwise go to landfill. Instead of treating our sludge as waste, we’re treating it as a product with value that can be reused to create and capture methane gas resulting in significant environmental and cost benefits.”

In announcing the appointment Ron Finlay also acknowledged outgoing CEO, Chris Herbert. “The Board would like to thank Chris for his leadership over the past three years and his role in achieving the successful construction and commissioning of this complex, large scale project.”

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Driving value through an understanding of customer priorities “Developing deep relationships with clients is central to our business. As a Client Relationship Manager working closely with water utilities like Sydney Water, I am conscious of the issues facing the industry and the need to balance technical, business and sustainable outcomes. Ageing assets, increasing operation costs and other factors are putting pressure on customer prices, making it critical for water utilities to drive value to customers. By bringing the right people to partner with our clients we can deliver smart solutions that are geared towards achieving the required outcomes.� Aurecon provides engineering, management and specialist technical services for public and private sector clients globally. Suzie Batson Client Relationship Manager T +61 3 9975 3400 E suzie.batson@aurecongroup.com

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Industry News The waste-to-energy facility will provide an environmentally friendly disposal solution for organic wastes that cannot be composted. “The facility will help us meet our environmental obligations to reduce the quantity of nutrients being discharged into Port Phillip Bay, while creating a sewage treatment plant site that is energy selfsufficient,” Mr Kelly says. At the facility, sewage sludge left over from the treatment plant process would be co-digested with imported organic waste in an anaerobic digester where it is converted into methane or “biogas” in the absence of oxygen. This process captures the methane before it hits the environment and turns it into renewable energy, preventing greenhouse gas emissions. Yarra Valley Water decided to use anaerobic digestion technology based on a business feasibility decision-making framework, which included a detailed site selection process to determine the most appropriate site for the first facility. The feasibility study also identified numerous opportunities for recovery and re-use of organic waste.

UNITYWATER OPERATOR WINS STATE AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE Unitywater Sewage Treatment Supervisor, Chris Hughes, has been recognised for his excellent performance and initiative, taking home the Queensland Water Industry Operator of the Year Award by the Water Industry Operators Association (WIOA). The award was presented to Chris at the 38th Queensland Water Industry Operations Conference and Exhibition on the Gold Coast, an event that celebrates innovation, safety and service in the water sector. With 28 years of experience, Chris has contributed to improved practices at numerous water, sewerage and recycled water treatment plants in South-East Queensland. “Across his lengthy career, Chris has been proactive in the early adoption of practices that improve operations and enhance safety,”

said Unitywater’s Executive Manager Infrastructure Services, Glen Babington. “Chris has helped Unitywater to achieve major operational efficiencies by increasing the skills base of operators and taking a more regional approach to plant operations. Chris is a valued team member and we are delighted he has been recognised by WIOA.” The WIAO awards are presented annually, with winners selected by a panel of industry experts.

INDUSTRIAL AND RESOURCES WATER TREATMENT SPECIALIST JOINS NUBIAN WATER SYSTEMS Nubian Water Systems has announced the appointment of Sunil Krishnamurthy as National Sales Manager for industrial and resources solutions. With over 20 years of industry experience, Sunil brings invaluable expertise to Nubian Water Systems. He is tasked with overseeing the company’s strategic alliance with RWL Group Nirosoft and continuing strong growth in the industrial water and wastewater industry in Australia. Having worked in multinational companies across the globe, Sunil has developed a strong understanding of the South East Asian and Australia-New Zealand markets. He looks forward to using this knowledge to lead Nubian Water Systems, as water sustainability becomes an increasingly problematic issue.

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Industry News “There’s a growing demand in the industrial and resources water treatment sector,” Sunil comments. “Water is a precious resource which is under threat and needs to be handled carefully. It is going to become a commodity like gold. I think it is critical the right quality water is made available to industries at the right price point.” Nubian CEO Barry Porter comments, “Sunil’s vast experience is a valuable addition to the Nubian team and his capabilities will continue to take Nubian from strength to strength. We are pleased to bring Sunil on board to further expand our talent pool.” Since starting in early June, Sunil has already developed a broad range of strategies aimed at attracting and consolidating clients, upgrading technology and forging strategic alliances. Nubian expects the appointment of Sunil will accelerate the company’s growth in the industrial water market.

SOUTH-EAST QUEENSLAND ADOPTS REGIONAL STANDARDS For the first time, a uniform code will apply across South-East Queensland for the design and construction of new water supply and sewerage assets, making it easier for developers, engineers, consultants and service providers to deliver water infrastructure. The five South-East Queensland (SEQ) water service providers – Gold Coast City Council, Logan City Council, Queensland Urban Utilities, Redland Water and Unitywater – worked together to develop the new SEQ Water Supply and Sewerage Design and Construction Code (SEQ Code), which became effective on 1 July. Spokesman David Fillmore said the new SEQ Code would provide greater consistency in asset planning, design and construction standards across the region, providing better long-term services and ultimately lowering costs for customers. An industry and community consultation process was undertaken to develop the SEQ Code. A Project Steering Committee was established two years ago to draft the code and public comment and feedback was incorporated into the final code. “The new SEQ Code has replaced the wide range of existing provisions within councils’ planning schemes, streamlining the design and construction process for new water and sewerage assets

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in the region,” Mr Fillmore said. “The previous differing technical standards made it difficult for developers and other parties to do business across the region.” The SEQ Code is compliant with Chapter 4A of the South East Queensland Water (Distribution and Retail Restructuring) Act and is based on the Water Services Association of Australia’s (WSAA) national codes. To find out more about the code please go to www.seqcode. com.au/

WATER SCARCITY DRIVES DEMAND FOR WATER TREATMENT TECHNOLOGY Perth-based manufacturer, MAK Industrial Water Systems (MAK Water) has acquired Queensland-based water treatment manufacturer, Clearmake Water Treatment and Recycling Solutions (Clearmake) as part of a national expansion strategy. MAK Water has experienced huge growth in demand for desalination and wastewater treatment plants as companies seek to desalinate bore or seawater or recycle wastewater for remote industrial, commercial and residential operations where water is a scarce commodity. MAK Water CEO Andy Byk said, “The demand for desalination and water treatment is growing exponentially. The scarcity of water is a growing issue in Australia as rainfall is not as dependable and remote communities and operations have to rely on treating water to fill the gap. “MAK Water’s water treatment services enable communities to recycle wastewater that would normally be disposed and wasted. Our processes make wastewater useful for other purposes, such as toilet flushing, in laundries and for irrigation. Recycling wastewater benefits the environment by preserving scarce clean natural water resources for drinking.” The privately owned company has experienced 50 per cent year-on-year growth since 2009, servicing mining, oil and gas and other industrial clients as well as communities lacking clean freshwater services such as the town of Eucla, Ayers Rock Resort and Rottnest Island.

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“MAK Water operates a dozen desalination plants in the Pilbara region for industrial and drinking water supply for clients such as Woodside, Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton. In the past we have also run the management of the water systems for the Chevron Gorgon project on Barrow Island servicing a population of 4,500,” Andy Byk said. Exports account for 15 per cent of MAK Water’s trade, with products exported to the offshore gas industry and clients based in Kazakhstan, Mongolia and the Pacific Islands, where MAK Water provides desalination services for the Nauru Detention Centre. MAK Water acquired 100 per cent of Clearmake as of 1 July 2013. Clearmake manufactures water treatment and recycling systems that enable industrial wastewater and harvested stormwater to be recycled for commercial and industrial applications. Clearmake has developed the technology locally and has over 4,000 systems in operation throughout Australia. They have extensive exposure to the coal seam gas sector, where they have recently supplied condensate recycling systems to Santos for its GLNG project. MAK Water CEO Andy Byk said that the acquisition was part of MAK Water’s strategy to develop its capabilities on the east coast and provided additional value through MAK’s ability to better support Clearmake’s customers through its Perth, Karratha, Melbourne and Adelaide service offices.   “Clearmake’s water recycling products will enhance MAK Water’s existing capabilities in desalination and wastewater treatment and enable both MAK Water and Clearmake to support each other’s products in new geographical markets. The scarcity of water is a topical issue in WA and is driving innovation in industrial and commercial sectors to look at every option to recycle water” Andy Byk said.

LEND LEASE COMMENCES OPERATIONS AND MAINTENANCE CONTRACT WITH COLIBAN WATER Lend Lease’s infrastructure services business has commenced a contract to manage the operations and maintenance of Coliban Water’s water and wastewater networks. Lend Lease will perform all water operations and civil, electrical and mechanical maintenance. The contract scope includes the operation of the majority of Coliban Water’s 31 treatment plants. Services will be delivered on a 24/7 basis and will include treatment plant and network operations, planned and reactive maintenance. The contract commenced on 1 July 2013 and is for four years, with the option to extend the term of the contract to a maximum of 14 years. The Coliban Water networks cover a 16,550 square kilometre area of north-central Victoria, servicing 49 towns. The networks include 35 reservoirs and water storage basins, 31 treatment plants and 2,368 kilometres of water mains. Lend Lease’s infrastructure services business Executive Director, Ashley Mason, said, “Our business provides services to major water assets and water network operators in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland and New Zealand. We are looking forward to supporting Coliban Water in continuing to deliver a high level of service to around 140,000 residents.”

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Industry News

NEW AUSTRALIAN STANDARD FOR UNDERGROUND UTILITIES Standards Australia has launched a new Australian Standard that will for the first time outline a consistent approach towards the classification of information relating to subsurface utilities.

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Chief Executive Officer of Standards Australia, Colin Blair, said Australian utility owners, operators and locators have welcomed the Australian Standard, which sets a new benchmark for subsurface utility information management. “The primary objective of this Australian Standard is to provide utility owners, operators and locators with a framework for the consistent classification of information concerning subsurface utilities,” Mr Blair said. “The standard also provides guidance on how subsurface utility information may be obtained, and how that information should be conveyed to users,” Mr Blair said. Mr Blair said knowledge of the precise details of subsurface utilities can protect the asset lifecycle and reduce interference to infrastructure. AS 5488-2013 Subsurface Utility Information was prepared by the Standards Australia Committee IT-036, Subsurface Utility Engineering. The following groups are represented on the committee. • ANZLIC – The Spatial Information Council

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Young Water Professionals

LINKING WATER AND EDUCATION Jo Greene – AWA YWP National Committee President Usually when it’s time to write my column for Water Journal, I have no hesitation in finding something front of mind that I would like to talk about. This edition has been more difficult. I suppose with the lead-up to Ozwater, going to Perth and being involved in the conference, and then coming back being faced with deciding on what the next path in my career was to be, the front of my mind has been occupied with other things! Taking a different direction in career and life is important and is something I myself was faced with recently. Before I made the choice as to which path I would take, a number of options presented themselves. One was to complete a Graduate Diploma in Education. Teaching and the passing on of knowledge has always been something that I have seen as important; after all, it is our responsibility to pass on what we know. Although taking this course on full-time and moving into the world of teaching high school science meant that I would be leaving the water industry, I saw it as an opportunity to bring the world of engineering and the water industry into schools. There needs to be a stronger link between these worlds and what our young people are learning. If we want to produce a generation of people who can responsibly manage our water, our environment and our planet, it’s not going to happen if we wait until they are in university. Educators have a tremendous opportunity to teach their young students about the significant role water plays in our society. But should we not also be educators? Should we as water professionals and engineers not have a stronger link with these educators and the content of the school curriculum? I believe this is vital, not just in high school but in primary school also.

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BETTER RESOURCES NEEDED Some water utilities do provide educational resources to schools, usually via links on their website, but there needs to be a higher level of connection between the content of this material and the teachers in schools. There needs to be consistency with what information is presented, and how, and steps to ensure its permanent inclusion in our schools’ curricula. The National Water Week ambassador program used to provide a forum for volunteers to go out into schools and the community. I participated in this program in 2011. I went out to several schools, where I spoke to students aged from six through to young teens about catchment management. I found the appetite for this material was enormous. After my presentation there was no end to the questions and ideas they had. These young people are sponges for this knowledge, and have fresh, active minds that can put a whole new spin on things. So I was faced with a decision: continue as a water professional and take the exciting new career opportunity – or become a teacher and look for a way to link the two areas. Luckily I am able to do both. I will study part-time to become a teacher, but will stay working in the water industry too. In the future I hope to play a part in helping our educational system bring young people knowledge about water. This may be about conservation, how water plays such a significant role in society, water pollution, water management – in fact, all aspects of the water and engineering industries. I believe this is an important role for our industry and look forward to seeing how I can help make a difference.


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AWA News

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awa News

ADDING VALUE TO AWA’S SPECIALIST NETWORKS

AWA RURAL WATER SPECIALIST NETWORK ESTABLISHED

Over the past few months the AWA Policy and Programs Team has been looking at how it can add greater value to Specialist Network membership. With new Manager Grant Leslie on board, the team undertook a review of the management of the Specialist Networks, exploring methods of extracting greater value for members, and strengthening AWA as a policy and advocacy body.

Earlier this year, a group of AWA and non-AWA members interested in providing a national platform for the exchange of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) research findings, came together and established the AWA Rural Water Specialist Network. The objective of the network is to promote sustainable water management in rural and peri-urban regions of Australia. Specific areas of interest that are intended to be covered include:

All the networks were reviewed in the context of each other and the water cycle. A number of natural “clusters” emerged and it was agreed that there would be significant benefit to the management, organisational efficiency and member engagement if networks were grouped in ‘like’ themes – taking into account that there will also be some cross-pollination of ideas and activities. As a resource for the AWA Policy and Programs Team, the Specialist Networks have been identified as key information sources in the development of policy positioning for AWA. Ideally, information on important issues should be communicated upwards from the Specialist Networks to the AWA policy development process; similarly, information from each Specialist Network Committee should flow down to individual Network members, thereby forming an information loop. This loop will provide AWA with the best possible opportunity to reflect member views. AWA believes this new era of programs and networks management will result in a more efficient use of member energy and bring about a period of new opportunities for members and the Association. The organisational chart below illustrates the new structure and the clusters of networks and programs. To learn more about AWA Specialist Networks, or to join, please see the information on the AWA website: www.awa.asn.au/networks. If you have any queries, please feel free to contact the Policy and Programs Team on networks@awa.asn.au or 02 9436 0055. Please note: AWA’s Specialist Network Actions Plans, setting out objectives and activities for the coming year, have now been published online. Please see www.awa.asn.au/Specialist_Network_ Action_Plans for more details.

• Irrigation water management; • Drainage and reuse; • Water resources management; • Environmental water management; and • Flood control. Cross-cutting drivers and topics, such as climate change, planning and design, advances in operating, measurement and control equipment, Murray-Darling Basin Plan, and Triple Bottom Line (TBL) may all be considered as needed and appropriate. Groundwater use and Coal Seam Gas water are seen as part of IWRM. To join this network and be kept up to date on developments, log on to the AWA website and go to ‘Manage your account’.

CALL FOR COMMITTEE MEMBERS The committee for the Rural Water Specialist Network currently comprises mainly members from the Australian Capital Territory, Victoria and New South Wales. In order to establish a broader base and balanced representation from all states and territories, AWA is seeking active members to join the committee. It is envisaged that committee members will take on activities in the areas of interest described, including development of policies relating to rural water, contributing to rural water features in Water Journal and having a Rural Water presence at Ozwater’14. Being a committee member will take on average one hour a week and is a great way to strengthen your engagement, contacts and influence in your area of interest. The network’s action plan is now available online at http://www. awa.asn.au/Specialist_Network_Action_Plans/ Activities include: • Establishment of the network; • Investigating the possibility of a joint network stream at Ozwater’14 involving Rural Water, Catchment Management and Environmental Management Specialist Networks; • Sponsor and facilitate activities at the Periurban 2014 International Conference, jointly organised by the University of Western Sydney and University of Melbourne, in collaboration with AWA. • Contribute Rural Water Statistics to AWA’s annual Australian Water Directory. If you are interested in becoming a committee member, or have any suggestions for further topics/activities that you wish to see the network take on, please contact Laura Evanson email: levanson@awa.asn.au.

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awa News

SPECIALIST NETWORK MEMBER PROFILE AWA talks to Matthew Bowman, Distribution and Systems Manager – Drinking Water Quality at Water Corporation and member of AWA’s Specialist Network – Operations, about why he chose a career in water and what benefits he receives from being a network volunteer. What was it that attracted you to the water industry? The offer of a fulltime job initially! I had an interview on the day of my last university exam and then refereed one of the interview panel in a game of touch rugby that evening. Their team won and I got offered a job the next day… Well, it wasn’t quite like that. I was fortunate enough to get offered a graduate engineer position with the Water Corporation back in 1997. Although I had plans to travel overseas my mum took the phone call from the recruitment officer and pretty much accepted the role in my absence. The variety of the work, working with passionate and inspiring colleagues, the sense of achievement and satisfaction when resolving challenging issues, and being able to visit some of Western Australia’s isolated towns have all combined to keep me at the Water Corporation. What was your first job in the industry and what has been your career path since? I started as a graduate engineer managing minor capital works projects on Perth metropolitan wastewater treatment plants for a couple of years and then moved to providing technical advice and training to operations staff operating and maintaining regional wastewater treatment plants. I then spent almost 12 months travelling overseas before coming back to the Water Corporation to work in our infrastructure planning branch. The lure of regional Western Australia took me to Karratha

in the north-west, where I spent three years providing drinking water quality and environmental management advice to operations teams in the Pilbara and Kimberley. I followed my girlfriend (now wife) back to Perth and had a short stint delivering and developing drinking water quality training courses for operations staff. I have been with the Water Corporation’s drinking water quality branch since 2005 working in a variety of roles. I led a team responsible for developing water safety plans for 245 schemes to which the Water Corporation supplies safe drinking water, and I now lead a team responsible for managing the sampling and reporting processes for those schemes, including interaction with the Western Australian Department of Health. What does your job entail (please describe a typical working day) and what are your key responsibilities/accountabilities? The key responsibility I have is making sure that the Water Corporation meets the requirements of its Memorandum of Understanding with the Department of Health, which includes meeting the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines. This is made challenging by the fact that we operate 245 schemes across the length and breadth of Western Australia, some supplying less than 10 services and others almost two million people. A typical day will see me reviewing drinking water quality reports for ‘out of spec’ results and ensuring our operations teams is following up as necessary. This will often result in initiating investigations for my own and other teams to complete to ensure the scheme is capable of continuously delivering safe drinking water, and in others requiring the Water Corporation’s incident management process to be initiated. This can take five minutes or a number of days, depending on the issue. What do you find most challenging – and rewarding – about your role? The most challenging aspect of the role is to often have to provide immediate operational advice based on limited information – ‘risk management on the run’. Supplying safe drinking water is all about protecting public health so decisions are not taken lightly. This is made easier by having clear drinking water quality management principles and a robust process. The most rewarding aspect is probably in two related areas. The first is where I see or hear of operations staff supporting the drinking water

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awa News quality process by being proactive in their actions or communicating improvements. The second is the teamwork aspect of incident management and response – everyone working towards achieving a common goal. It would be great to be able to do that all the time. How has the water industry changed since you started working in it, and how do you see it changing in future? The biggest changes have been in the areas of safety, technology and communications. Ensuring a safe work place and that activities are completed with safety as a priority is now part and parcel of everyday work. Advances in technology have enabled us to have greater confidence in the delivery of water services in remote areas. We collect a lot of data through our SCADA systems but we need to make sure we are doing something with that data to better operate and maintain assets. A desk phone, faxes and internal ‘snail mail’ were the norm back in the late 1990s, but now with PDAs and email, decisions are expected round the clock. A current evolution I see continuing into the future and challenging water utilities is social media, the demand for information 24/7, and the ability for consumers to pass comment and judgement on service, but limited ability for water utilities to control any interactions. In Western Australia, we are also seeing different contracting arrangements to manage the finances associated with limited capital and rapid growth. This will no doubt continue and requires careful integration of the risk management philosophies of water utilities and third parties where water services are non-core business. What do you think are the key challenges facing the water industry today both here in Australia and globally? In Australia and from a water utility perspective, I think it’s about demonstrating value to our customers. The signals are that prices will increase, so customer expectation will be that the level of service improves. In the drinking water quality space, this can be difficult as customer perception of drinking water is related to aesthetics (the safety of drinking water is a given), and improvements in aesthetic water quality can be expensive. Research and innovation are important – and critically important will be collaboration between utilities and researchers to maximise research investment. This needs to be complemented by an effective community engagement strategy demonstrating to customers what good practice, risk management and acceptable levels of investment are. Globally, it is about access to safe drinking water for all. Australian companies and individual Australians are doing great things overseas to develop technology appropriate for developing nations. I think there are more of us who can support these initiatives and we should be encouraged and supported to do so. Why is it important to you to volunteer your time to an organisation such as AWA? To enable an organisation to achieve its objectives by using the passion, enthusiasm, skills, knowledge and expertise of those willing to give their time to support it. Volunteers are the lifeblood of thousands of organisations worldwide.

advice, it worked – or we met someone at the network’s conference and we’ve been able to work together to solve an issue. Where do you see yourself in 10 years’ time? I really enjoy the drinking water quality management part of the water industry and the Water Corporation is a great organisation to work for, so I can see myself still doing what I’m doing. However, I do have a desire to head back to the country, interstate or even overseas to gain knowledge of other utilities’ operations and share what I‘ve learnt in my career. Fitting it in with my daughters’ schooling and wife’s career will be the challenge! If you hadn’t chosen to work in the water industry, what alternative career would you have chosen? I love playing and watching sport so it would have to be something involving that – either teaching, coaching or working in sports administration. I have been able to partially satisfy those aspirations, having coached a number of local and state sports teams, and by serving on the committee of a local sports association. It has become more difficult with work and two young daughters, but as they grow and – hopefully – take up sport, I can play a role teaching and coaching their teams. To ensure you keep updated about Operations activities and receive their newsletters, visit the AWA website, go to ‘Manage Your Account’ and select ‘Operations’ as one of your specialist networks. For further information please email networks@awa.asn.au

LOOKING FOR STAFF? AWA provides a unique, sophisticated and efficient water job advertising service on the H2Oz careers in water website. The website’s job board is accessible to all members and stakeholders with promotion to jobseekers within and outside of the water sector, making it the perfect place to advertise your next role in the water sector. Best of all, corporate members of AWA are able to take advantage of free advertisements! For more information or to place an advertisement please visit www.h2oz.org.au/Job-Advertising.aspx

AMENDMENT In the June 2013 edition of Water Journal, the organisation for the winner of the Water Professional of the Year Award was incorrectly stated. Jurg Keller is actually from the Advanced Water Management Centre, University of Queensland. AWA apologises for any inconvenience caused.

BRANCH NEWS NEW SOUTH WALES

What benefits do you receive from contributing your time and expertise?

Water Industry Awards

Many! They include: the opportunity to meet people who have the same interests; sharing your experiences and telling others what not to do; hearing others’ experiences and finding out what not to do; eventually finding out what to do and solving an issue; and, finally, a sense of personal satisfaction when someone says thanks for your

The NSW Branch Water Industry Awards are now open and will close on Friday 6 September. The NSW awards have been designed to acknowledge the best of the best in the New South Wales water sector as well as recognise exceptional achievements in a range of project and individual categories. Building on past success, the 2013

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AWA News Awards are in line with the AWA National Awards and provide the opportunity for the NSW winners to enter in the National Awards, which are presented at Ozwater each year. Please visit the AWA website for more information on award categories and selection criteria.

15th Engineers & Operators Conference Registration has opened for the 15th NSW Engineers & Operators Conference. This year’s event will take place at the Novotel, Sydney Olympic Park from 28–30 October 2013. The theme for the conference is ‘Doing More With Less While Keeping The Customer Satisfied’. In this constrained cost environment operators of water and wastewater infrastructure are being asked to continually optimise and look for smarter, cheaper ways of delivering services while keeping customer service levels the same or improved. This conference will address ways in which NSW operations staff are meeting and coping with the challenges they are facing. For more information about the event, please visit the AWA website.

“The individuals and organisations awarded demonstrate the innovation, courage, leadership and outstanding achievement that is needed to meet Queensland’s water needs in the decades to come. Australia has an outstanding reputation for its capability in sustainable water management and this year’s winners are proof that this reputation is well deserved,” said Mr McKeown. All nominees were subject to a rigorous process by a panel of experts before the final winners were decided. The winners are now automatically entered into AWA’s National Water Awards to be awarded at Ozwater’14 in May 2014 in Brisbane. The winners for 2013 are: • Research Innovation Award: Advanced Biosolids Technology Program (Advanced Water Management Centre, The University of Queensland). • Program Innovation Award: Moreton Bay Regional Council’s Total Water Cycle Management Plan – (BMT WBM, Moreton Bay Regional Council, Unitywater, Bligh Tanner).

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• Infrastructure Innovation Award: Coombabah and Stapylton Program Alliance – (Gold Coast City Council, Abigroup Contractors, WorleyParsons, KBR).

Water Industry Awards

• Regional Service Award: Bruce Gardiner, Cairns Regional Council.

The ACT Branch Water Industry Awards are now open until Friday 6 September. The Branch Awards have been developed to promote the outstanding work achieved by individuals and organisations in the water sector. The 2013 award winners will be automatically entered into the National Award category to compete on a national level and presented at OzWater’14. We encourage you to visit the website for more information about the award categories and selection criteria.

• Distinguished Service Award: Chris Pipe-Martin, Logan City Council. • Young Water Professional of the Year Award: Dr Sarah Schroeder, Senior Water Quality Officer – (Queensland Urban Utilities). • Water Professional of the Year Award: Fiona Chandler (International WaterCentre). For more information please visit www.awa.asn.au/awards

Annual Water Matters Conference On Wednesday 5 June, the ACT Branch held the annual ACT Water Matters Conference at the CSIRO Discovery Centre. There was a fantastic turnout of delegates from both the private and public sector. This year’s conference consisted of invited talks from government policy makers, CSIRO and university scientists, and experienced industry consultants. The presentations were followed by an interactive panel discussion exploring the “way forward” for management of water quality and the ACT’s water resources, lakes and waterways. The ACT Branch would like to thank the speakers and delegates who attended this event. We would also like to thank the Host Sponsor, CSIRO, and our Event Partner, AECOM, for their support of the event!

Young Water Professional of the Year winner Sarah Schroeder with Queensland President Colin Lewis and Brian Nicholas of sponsor Acciona Agua.

QUEENSLAND Water Industry Awards Announced Leaders in the Queensland water industry have been recognised at the Queensland Water Awards in July. The Awards were presented at an Awards Ceremony Dinner attended by over 480 guests including Minister for Energy and Water Supply, Mark McArdle. Seven awards were presented to a diverse range of organisations and individuals from across the state. AWA CEO, Jonathan McKeown, commended the high standard of entries for this year’s awards and stated that the genuine commitment the finalists have given to water leadership and management is acknowledged by their nomination to the Awards.

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Water Professional of the Year winner Fiona Chandler.


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awa News YWP Mid-Year Catch-Up As part of the 2013 Mentoring Program, the Queensland YWPs hosted a Mid-Year Catch Up Event at the Ship Inn on 20 June. It was with much pleasure that we were able to have Dr Brian McIntosh from the International Water Centre (IWC) facilitate the event once again. Prior to the event, the Mentoring Program participants filled out a survey to determine some of the major challenges faced by the mentoring pairs so far. Surprisingly, many of the pairs had similar problems that centred around how to make more effective use of the mentoring relationship, so many of the activities were tailored to address these issues. On the evening, it was great to see a number of returning pairs from the launch who were committed to keeping a strong mentoring relationship. The event began with a short presentation from Mark Pascoe, CEO of the IWC, on his experiences with previous mentoring relationships. Mark had many wise words for our young water professionals, but also provided some insight on how mentors should handle mentee questions. Mark said that the best piece of advice he had received in his career from a mentor was his mentor’s confidence in his abilities to handle not only his own work, but that of a higher ranking position. Following Mark’s presentation, Dr McIntosh had everyone thinking outside the box with an ice-breaker game that used the letters from each person on the table’s name to come up with words to describe their mentors. People came up with some very creative

Mark Pascoe (left) and Dr Brian McIntosh (right) address questions from the crowd.

words such as ‘earthy’, ‘calming’ and ‘umbrella’, while others were able to string together aptly descriptive words such as ‘leader’, ‘wise’ and ‘management’. Continuing the fun, the group then participated in a ‘speed dating’ type exercise sharing top mentoring tips. It was a fun and dynamic exercise (quite a physical one, too!) and by the end everyone was brimming with ideas on how to take their mentoring relationship to the next level. This was followed by a consolidated discussion on how to put the advice into practical use. Here are the top tips that were shared on the night: 1. Set up regular meetings and over-schedule to take into account cancellations. Regular meetings can help to build trust and get to know each other more. 2. Mentees need to be engaged with their mentor’s career too. Show mutual interest. 3. Come up with a list of actions. This need not be limited to actions for mentees only. To wrap things up, two mentees were picked as winners to receive a free ticket each to the AWA Gala Dinner for their fantastic suggestions on how to improve the Mentoring Program. Congratulations to Nigel Garson and Paul Viskovich. We would like to take this opportunity to thank Dr McIntosh for his time; Mark Pascoe for his generous advice; and the IWC for their continuing support in the Mentoring Program.

Sarah Schroeder, Mentoring Program coordinator, welcomes everyone to the evening.

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awa News

NEW MEMBERS AWA welcomes the following new members since the most recent issue of Water Journal

NEW CORPORATE MEMBERS

NEW INDIVIDUAL MEMBERS

NSW

NSW C Rymer; C Laydon; R Bates; L Bryan; M Boyle; L Christoffersen; G Seal; S Lee; J Tenedero; P West; D Love

Corporate Silver

Charlatte Reservoirs SAS

VIC

Corporate Silver Reece Civil

QLD E Bruynius; F Chandler; C Susanto; S Leonard; I White; G Croker; S Mak; C Mehta; O Santiago; Z Staples SA PJ Hayde; L Bulbeck

VIC N Arold; G Rice; K Whiteoak; O Tezcan; E Hendy; L Banda; H Ho; M Blackam; R Nadebaum; G Cullen WA M Thame; M Stewart; Y Kim; JA Sanchez; L Reeves; A Boucher

NEW OVERSEAS MEMBERS Z Ye, Beijing, China; M Ewen, Manukau, New Zealand

NEW STUDENT MEMBERS NSW M Ramezanian Pour; W Anwar; KD Vu VIC R Cowan WA T Adyel

YOUNG WATER PROFESSIONALS NSW J Hamill QLD N Osborne; A Twomey

TAS B Goodsir

SA N Turich

AWA EVENTS CALENDAR This list is correct at the time of printing. For up-to-date listings and booking information please check the AWA online events calendar at: www.awa.asn.au/events

August Wed, 14 Aug 2013

NSW Seminar Series – Seminar 5, Wastewater Treatment: New Horizons, Innovations and Challenges, UTS Aerial Function Centre, Sydney, NSW

Thu, 15 Aug – Fri, 16 Aug 2013

Unconventional Gas and Water Short Course, Brisbane, QLD

Thu, 22 Aug 2013

Victorian 51st Annual Dinner, Palladium at Crown, Melbourne, VIC

Thu, 29 Aug 2013 – Fri, 30 Aug 2013

North Qld Regional Conference, Townsville, QLD

Thu, 29 Aug 2013

TasWater’13, Wrest Point Convention Centre, Hobart, TAS

September Wed, 4 Sep 2013 – Thu, 5 Sep 2013

Water Quality and the Environment Master Class, Perth, WA

Thu, 5 Sep 2013

ACT Water Leaders Dinner, Boat House by the Lake, Canberra, ACT

Tue, 10 Sep 2013 – Thu, 12 Sep 2013

LESAM 2013 – 5th IWA Leading Edge Strategic Asset Management Conference, Sydney Convention Centre, NSW

Wed, 11 Sep 2013

QLD Monthly Technical Meeting, Brisbane, QLD

Wed, 18 Sep 2013

NSW Seminar Series – Seminar 6, UTS Aerial Function Centre, Sydney, NSW

October Tue, 1 Oct 2013 – Fri, 4 Oct 2013 

NOM 2013 – IWA Natural Organic Matter Specialist Conference, Perth, WA

Wed, 9 Oct 2013

QLD Monthly Technical Meeting, Brisbane, QLD

Thu, 10 Oct 2013

NSW YWP Mentoring Event, Sydney, NSW

Wed, 16 Oct 2013

SA Technical Seminar, Adelaide, SA

Thu, 17 Oct 2013

ACT Student Awards Presentation Evening, University House, ANU Canberra, ACT

Tue, 22 Oct 2013

Victorian Water Summit and Awards Ceremony, VIC

Fri, 25 Oct – Sat, 26 Oct 2013

WA National Water Week Conference, Broadwater Resort, Busselton, WA

Mon, 28 Oct – Tue, 29 Oct 2013

National Water Leadership Summit 2013, Hyatt Hotel, Canberra, NSW

Mon, 28 Oct – Tue, 29 Oct 2013

15th NSW Engineers and Operators Conference, Novotel, Sydney Olympic Park, NSW

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awa News

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Feature Article Ozwater Report

OZWATER GOES WEST: PART 2 Here is Part 2 of our comprehensive report on Ozwater’13, which took place in May at the Perth Conference & Exhibition Centre in Western Australia. By Chris Davis. Following the pattern for Part 1 of this report, paper thumbnails are grouped thematically rather than chronologically and the presenter’s name is given in each case. The technical content is book-ended by brief descriptions of the Dinner and Closing Ceremony.

GALA DINNER As always the Gala Dinner, which took place on the evening of Wednesday 8 May, was the social highlight of the event, with about a thousand people attending. Local band, 2:5 Soul, kicked off the entertainment and achieved that rare balance for conference dinners – music loud enough to be enjoyed, but not so loud as to drown out conversation. MC Peter Rowsthorn (probably best known as the hapless husband in the Kath and Kim series) kept things moving and injected humour, and virtuoso Sally Cooper serenaded diners on her electric violin, strolling among the tables. After the entrée AWA Outgoing President Lucia Cade made introductions and recognised Dinner Sponsor Trility’s MD, Francois Gouws, who made a short presentation focusing on WaterAid. The Awards were presented, then the Germein Sisters from Adelaide wowed the audience with their multi-instrument talents, fresh good looks and enthusiasm.

CONFERENCE THEMES OPERATIONS AND ASSET MANAGEMENT Dayang Wang proposed a framework to both manage long-term performance for AC pipes and also to provide a clearer picture of future renewal funding needs. It gives better information on what the expected change in burst frequency may be over time, and provides insights for those assets that may be younger, but where operating conditions may lead to shorter lives than might be expected.

WATER JUNE 2013

A long-term study of concrete pipe corrosion was presented by Jurg Keller. Controlled H2S exposure chambers investigated important factors affecting sewer concrete corrosion. Fresh concrete coupons suffered little attack, owing to the very high initial pH (>10) of the concrete. However, pre-corroded coupons, especially those partially submerged in sewage, experienced a rapid pH drop to around 4, with a significant onset of sulfate-based corrosion. An international flavour was provided by Sock-Hoon Koh, who spoke about a Texas case study by the Trinity River Authority (Dallas/Fort Worth area) into odour and corrosion control in sewers. Successful development and implementation of a comprehensive collection system odour and corrosion management program (CMP) is vital for utilities to proactively address and/or prevent odour and corrosion problems. The TRA approach includes chemical dosing and pipe replacement. Stephen Beckwith addressed performance-based maintenance of wastewater pump stations. He had developed a tool that gathered all needed information in one place, allowing directed maintenance effort to be supported by facts and where the effect of maintenance effort on the real-time performance of a station can be viewed at a glance. This was in contrast to previous methods, driven by anecdotal evidence and tedious data gathering. An independent EPA auditor was engaged to provide assurance that South East Water had satisfied the requirements of an Enforceable Undertaking imposed by the EPA, in relation to sewage spills. John Theobald described the outcomes. The investigations carried out by South East Water improved its procedures to manage any remaining spills and reduce the environmental effects of any spills that may occur in the future. Several authors shared learnings from the disastrous earthquakes in Christchurch in 2010–2011. Peter Kinley outlined development and application of a GIS and Excel-based Pipe Damage Assessment (PDA) Tool. It provided a desktop assessment of the condition of wastewater and stormwater pipes after the earthquakes. Using a multiple-parameter approach it achieved up to 95% accuracy, compared to up to 60% accuracy for a single parameter approach. Dennis Hunt told the story of the Huntsbury No. 1 reservoir, which was extensively damaged, lost its water and had to be rebuilt. The project was a reminder to all involved of the need for teamwork, prompt decision-making, astute risk assessment and consultation with the community in


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Ozwater Report reconstruction of a significant water infrastructure facility following severe earthquake damage. According to Robert Meek, the earthquakes highlighted the need to develop resilient infrastructure and robust management plans. Transforming spatial risk-based earthquake observations and mitigation measures into components of the asset lifecycle is bringing further clarity to the significance and staff responsibilities of each item. Mitigation measures, such as preparing water tanker fittings, fostering relationships, field operator measurement of network pressures and good management of data, from the start of an earthquake event are invaluable. In the long term, maintaining business continuity plans and holding realistic training exercises are vital. Gary Hallsworth said that disaster resilience for a small water utility requires timely resumption of essential business activities. Aqwest, a small water utility on the south-western coast of Western Australia, used recommended tools, training and advice to find and address vulnerabilities associated with dependence on a single business centre, lack of standby power, and management of critical spares. Under the quirky title, ‘Resilience, The New Black’, Warren Adams made the point that resilience is increasingly becoming a dominant objective in the planning, design, operation and maintenance of public infrastructure – both for major or extreme events, and more commonly, day-to-day incidents. Simon Webber presented details of the successful design, proving and regulatory approval of unique in-line fish egg filtration screens that prevent the transfer of alien fish eggs from the Murrumbidgee River into the Googong Reservoir. Robust design, a prudent approach to fabrication and testing, including construction and testing of a full-sized prototype, enabled the proponents to effectively manage a major environmental risk to the project. The merging of Seqwater with LinkWater in SE Queensland led to the integration of a Drinking Water Quality Management Plan and associated systems for the new organisation. The focus will be to provide a safe, secure and reliable water supply and to protect public safety through established, holistic water quality management. Wade Manuel laid out the process by which certification under ASNS ISO22000 was achieved, providing assurance for stakeholders that water quality and business processes will be continuously improved. Elsinore Mann described a computerised, high-speed optimisation process that quickly establishes a short-list of the most cost-effective water system designs that also provide a high degree of operational redundancy and, hence, robustness. Delegates learned from Karl Mallon that the AdaptWaterTM tool can be used to assist in managing the complex nature of climate change related decision-making for asset management, including temporal, spatial, technical, financial, social and probabilistic information management. The tool has been developed to deliver a flexible risk management investment/adaptation approach acceptable to stakeholders (financial controllers, economic regulators and environmental authorities) to enable effective climate change adaptation. Iterative use allows the discovery of optimum adaptation solutions. Moving from planning to real-time operations, Martijn Bakker spoke about the Gruszczyn Water Treatment Plant, which supplies part of the city of Poznan in Poland. The conventional production control and pressure controls of the facility were replaced by advanced software called OPIR. Production flows and pressures were compared, under normal and advanced control, revealing

that advanced control led to 83% less variation in production flow and 29% lower pressure of the clear water pumps. The lower pressure resulted in 20% less background leakage and the overall energy costs of the system were reduced by 11.5%. Stephen Jewell related the story of devastation caused by floods in Victoria in January 2011. The poor water quality associated with the floods in the Grampians has persisted, after two years, being worse than at any time before. In a financial regulatory climate that emphasised frugality, the water business had to be very ingenious to find solutions that were both affordable and effective. Turning from water to pipes, Relene Wei and colleagues in WA had found the failure of cast iron pipes could be attributed to several factors, one of the most important being graphitisation of sections of pipe. The worst offenders were pipes laid in the 1940s and 1950s. Environmental factors that also contributed to failures included soil aggressiveness, depth to water table and operating pressure. A priority list for replacing pipes on rational criteria was developed. Peter Kinley demonstrated a methodology for understanding and benchmarking the performance of water industry assets. A severity and extent scoring system is used to translate subcomponent condition observations into reliability scores against a variety of failure modes, namely: structural integrity; water quality; and health and safety performance. An innovative iPad and Cloud storage data management system provides an efficient and common framework complaint approach, which is able to quantifiably prioritise maintenance and investment programs of work. A key asset class in water systems is flow meters, and Karl Blackhall revealed an innovative new algorithm for identifying faulty meters based on age, meter type, location and consumption pattern. This results in a reduction in non-revenue water, adherence to compliance guidelines, and more efficient meter replacement through targeted prediction of meter non-compliance. The challenge of achieving good waterway condition in a climate of cost minimisation was described by Ashley Lorenz. He suggested that, for wastewater treatment plants in SE Queensland to perform any better than they currently do, service providers need fewer constraints on treatment options. An holistic approach to planning and implementation is needed, so optimal outcomes can be achieved through synergies. Unity Water was able to augment the Maleny STP and save $11m on capital through total water cycle management. To replicate this success, though, requires the regulators to consider works outside the STP as part of a solution. Karen Cox addressed the need to store polyvinyl fluoride ultrafiltration membranes in a sodium hypochlorite solution when not in use. Low water demand on two membrane plants in Adelaide meant that frequent storage was required. The membranes were thus exposed to high levels of chlorine, potentially shortening their lives. Alternative strategies had to be found to mitigate the chlorine exposure. Turning from treatment to storage, Kah Boon Quek outlined the difficulties of optimising the frequency of reservoir cleaning. A decision tool was required to help decide when to clear sediment that compromises water quality. It was found that, in Perth, groundwater was most prone to lead to a build-up of sediment; followed by untreated water; then a low rate of turnover of the reservoir. The authors noted weaknesses in some of the underlying assumptions, and looked forward to empirical evidence to refine the tool. Current cleaning cycles are typically in the one-to-five-year range.

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Feature Article Ozwater Report number of wavelengths. UV254nm measurement was found to be a useful distribution system monitoring tool in place of traditional laboratory-based aesthetic water quality monitoring analyses. The Water Corporation’s Surface Water Treatment Manual was developed to manage public health risk in its provision of drinking water services. Peter Spencer explained that a review of the Manual’s application by the Corporation showed a successful history of efficient investment, improving operations and continuing excellent public health performance.

GROUNDWATER Margaret Scott presented two case studies of numerical modelling tools developed to support a Groundwater Management Framework established to manage potential cumulative environmental effects within the Athabasca Oil Sands in Alberta, Canada. Although models vary for geographic regions, the methodology for developing these tools is consistent. The lessons learned from this international experience may be applied to cumulative effects assessments for large-scale developments in Western Australia. Public acceptance of stormwater and managed aquifer recharge was the subject of research explained by Aditi Mankad. The study qualitatively explored psychological factors underlying community acceptance of treated urban stormwater for domestic uses, as well as community views of managed aquifer recharge (MAR) for stormwater treatment and delivery. Participants in focus groups discussed existing knowledge and perceptions of stormwater and MAR. Results showed a high general acceptance for MAR using stormwater. Four key themes were found to be dominant indicators of acceptance: 1. Equitable distribution of treated stormwater; 2. Trust in MAR technology and scientific information; 3. Environmental impact of MAR; and 4. Cost of treating and distributing stormwater. Brian Llewellyn spelled out how innovative groundwater monitoring equipment enabled automated collection and transfer of critical data from Falls Creek Alpine Resort in Victoria. Instrumentation, data loggers and telemetry equipment were installed to provide real-time monitoring information accessible via the internet, enabling timely downloads from any location with internet access. Selection and installation of the equipment was completed taking into account the effects of snowfalls, rugged terrain and inaccessibility for manual monitoring of the bore network.

Duncan Middleton told delegates how Seqwater, as the bulk drinking water supplier for South East Queensland, is required to produce drinking water that complies with the guideline values in the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines. Some parameters may change between the water treatment plant and the consumer, so Seqwater developed a bulk drinking water quality specification. It informs the design of new plants and upgrades and is an aspirational target for the existing plants. Mt Crosby Water Treatment Plant is Seqwater’s largest, at 900ML/d. To ensure the right chemical and chemistry was being used for coagulation, alum was compared with other coagulants such as polyaluminium chloride (with and without polyelectroytes) to assist flocculation. The program assessed turbidity removal, organic matter removal, organic matter characterisation and treatment cost. Lee Foster said that, based on the performance during the dirty water events and the cost analysis, the plant will continue to use alum. PLANNING To develop a 10-year capital plan, East Gippsland Water used, inter alia, a risk management framework to enable objective identification of business risks and to ensure transparency and consistency. The other key ingredient was Issues Optioneering Reports (IOR) which, Simon Robertson explained, were used to assess and rank more than 160 potential projects which, in turn, would guide the development of the Water Plan. Rachel Watson attributed enhanced direct private investment in water infrastructure to the green market, prolonged water restrictions and a suite of regulatory changes. This is particularly true for distributed recycled water systems (small, local systems that complement, or are in competition with, a centralised service). She compared and contrasted the drivers and constraints that are influencing how the public and private sector make decisions to invest in the distributed recycled water market and what this means for their future uptake.

The suitability of multiple wavelength UV absorbance spectroscopy as a tool for online monitoring and process control at water treatment plants was explored and Amanda Byrne told the story. It was found that novel parameters appear to provide additional information to the standard absorbance measurement at 254nm, and may be useful for early detection of water quality changes. Variable quality caused by the introduction of desalinated water to a conventional supply system requires feed-forward control to ensure that the treatment/disinfection process remains optimised, so chlorine control via online UV spectroscopy may be a viable way to achieve this.

An alternative framework for supporting small and remote Indigenous communities to improve their water supply management was presented by Madeleine Jenkins. Currently, residents tend to be responsible for managing their own water supply with limited external support and, although they usually have a good level of knowledge of operational procedures, aspects such as risk and asset management are less well understood. Four case studies demonstrated how applying a risk management approach in line with the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines and building local capacity enable communities to thrive on their traditional homelands by securing reliable and well-managed water supplies. However, ongoing support for programs run with sufficient engagement and technical capacity is required.

Rolando Fabris reported on colour, turbidity and UV254nm analyses at the inlet and outlet of four pilot distribution systems, with four independent treated waters ranging from conventional coagulation to dual-stage membrane filtration. The monitoring was compared with automated online UV-Vis monitoring assessing a

Catherine Vero gave an overview of the Water for Healthy Communities – Advanced Water Treatment project, which involved the construction of inland desalination plants in three remote Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory. A critical success factor was communication with the communities involved. Another

WATER QUALITY

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Ozwater Report factor was adoption of Electrodialysis Reversal (EDR) treatment technology, which is simpler, more robust and more forgiving of variable feed water quality than the more widely known Reverse Osmosis process.

National President of AWA’s Young Water Professionals, Jo Greene, took to the podium to give an overview of the conference. Ms Green noted that there were more than 125 papers presented, divisible into key themes:

CLOSING CEREMONY

• What we do today will resonate to the next generation and shape society;

Ozwater generally gets a bit nostalgic at the end, as delegates reflect on the event, part with new and old friends, and leadership transition is celebrated. Outgoing President Lucia Cade presided, introducing closing keynote speaker Chloe Munro. Ms Munro, the CEO of the Clean Energy Regulator, said that no two commodities are more critical to economic, social and environmental well-being than energy and water. These resources are intimately connected with each other and with the risk of climate change. The Clean Energy Regulator administers a range of measures, including the carbon pricing mechanism and the Renewable Energy Target, to reduce carbon emissions and increase investment in renewable energy. Nationally, Australia has had some success in taking a cohesive approach to the way water is managed, measured, planned for, priced and traded. As the water industry adapts to the risk of increased climate variability and patterns of energy production and consumption change to mitigate climate risk, might the water industry become more energy intensive and the energy sector make a greater call on scarce water resources?

• Increasing water consumption in a constrained market is driving innovation and optimisation across all areas; • Cooperation and collaboration within the water industry, with the community, with legislators, and all other key stakeholders is crucial; • Commitment, trust and transparency – public trust will be vital to our ability to implement many of the alternative water supply solutions that have been proposed. The Michael Flynn Awards, for best paper, were presented to Andrew Watkinson (platform) and Thomas Ransome (poster). Sue Murphy reflected on Ozwater’13 and introduced Dr Helen Stratton, Chairman of Ozwater’14, which will take place in Brisbane from 29 April to 1 May next year. Helen announced that the tagline for Ozwater’14 will be ‘Water for Everyone’. Outgoing President Lucia Cade told delegates how much she had enjoyed her two-year stint in the role, before handing the ceremonial gavel to incoming President Graham Dooley. Graham’s roots in AWWA/AWA go back many years and he brings a deep knowledge of the history and culture of the Association. He thanked Lucia for her contribution and wished everyone a safe trip home.

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Ozwater Report

YOUNG WATER PROFESSIONALS WORKSHOP After years of drought across the country the water industry’s focus on big water projects to supply capital cities came to an end with rains on the east coast. While water supplies are secure in most of Australia’s major cities, the case is not the same for regional and remote towns. In many cases remote and regional towns exist for agriculture or to support the extraction of a resource deposit located close to their town. In these situations the needs of the people and the environment have the potential to be forgotten in favour of the needs of big industry. As young professionals mostly working in an urban water environment we can often take our access to water for granted, even after years of stretched water supplies. Our colleagues working overseas in third-world or war-torn countries often have added challenges that we don’t even think about. These thoughts were the topics of discussion at the recent Ozwater’13 Young Water Professionals (YWP) workshop held in Perth. The workshop heard from three speakers: Doug Brown (hydrogeologist); Peter McAllister (Regional Manager North West Region, Water Corporation); and Danielle Brunton (Mechanical Engineer, PDC). Each of them shared their experiences of working in remote areas and the challenges they faced. The experiences detailed by both Doug and Peter emphasised the need for organisations such as mining companies, utilities, community and environmental groups to work together to achieve the best outcome for both the local community and the environment. Danielle’s experiences working in refugee camps reminded the attendees that sometimes even the basics are hard to get and are precious. A hypothetical unconventional gas proposal was given to the attendees to assess, as they represented different sectors of the local community. As expected, the environmental group was strongly opposed to the proposal and could not be convinced otherwise. The local community group were divided in their views and wanted to know either what was in it for them or how their

already established businesses were going to be affected. Utilities and the local approving authorities were understandably non-committal in their views and wanted to see all sides of the story before voicing their opinions. All the groups got to provide their views at a town hall meeting before the exploration company had right of reply. Interestingly they had done their homework and provided good feedback and considered responses to how they were going to deal with the negative aspects of their proposal. In the end, when it came to a vote for or against the proposal the vote was no, but the margin was much closer than the participants may have originally thought. The thoughts and ideas that came from the group showed that as long as resource companies do their homework and fully understand the risks of a proposal they have a much greater chance of gaining community acceptance. The water industry has made great leaps and bounds in working together with industry to get what is best for local water supplies. However, there is still a long way to go and it is only by cooperation and collaboration that we are going to protect water supplies in our most vulnerable areas. Kusum Athuokorala’s address to the YWP Breakfast also emphasised this need for cooperation and the need for Australia to offer our skills and expertise to assist other regions. The AWA YWP network can assist in providing knowledge and resources to fledgling YWP networks in other countries. Getting young people excited about our precious resource is always the first step to ensuring it is protected and appreciated.


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Ozwater Report

WASH WORKSHOP Presented by AWA’s WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Developing Communities) Specialist Network

• Increased hand-washing • Sustainable village maintenance • Increase in construction

The AWA WASH Specialist Network presented a workshop on the problem that plagues aid projects again and again, large or small – taking projects so brilliant in innovation and life-changing potential to nothing but a pile of rubble – and stories of what was, for a short while, a successful initiative.

• Increase in participation of women in program

Sustaining WASH behaviour… how do we do it? The workshop was called ‘Sustaining WASH Behaviour Change Through Participatory Approaches in Developing Countries and Remote Australia – An Interactive Experience’. It explored a number of methodologies that try to create change around WASH behaviour in developing communities for human health goals.

The Red Cross is currently looking at whether this approach can be adopted in the Solomon Islands, but has been used widely in parts of Africa.

The approaches themselves applied to engage a community to change the existing day-to-day WASH practices are variable, but so are their successes and failures. Research into the targeted community is necessary to understand the existing WASH practices, to tailor an approach that will more likely succeed than fail in working with the community to achieve their WASH goals. The workshop featured case studies from two professional WASH women, Sarah Davies, a Water and Sanitation in Emergencies Manager for the Australian Red Cross based in Melbourne; and Kylie Climie, a Senior Community Engagement Officer for Power and Water Corporation working with Indigenous communities of the Northern Territory, and based in Darwin. Sarah Davies started her presentation with a video featuring “Silas” from the Solomon Islands, talking about how the Red Cross had helped his community identify problems such as malaria and diarrhoea, and educate them on hygiene practices like keeping animals away from water sources.

CLTS: COMMUNITY-LED TOTAL SANITATION The aim of the CLTS approach is to achieve ‘open defecation-free status’.

This approach uses trigger activities such as shock, disgust and shame, to change behaviour quickly. The steps in this process are: • Pre-trigger > Select community and build rapport > Map defecation areas • Trigger > Identify dirtiest areas – shame > Calculate how much faeces is being produced and link it to disease > Identify disgust pathways, for example, a glass of water versus a glass of water containing a piece of hair touched by faeces • Post-trigger > Informed choice manual. Once the community want to change, provide technical options to build sanitation Some of the challenges faced were:

She then introduced two different approaches to improve hygiene practices:

• Quality of facilitation and follow-up

• PHAST

• Sustainable change

• CLTS

• Ensuring social inclusion (poor, disabled etc)

PHAST: PARTICIPATORY HYGIENE AND SANITATION TRANSFORMATION

• Community resources

This approach empowers the community to take responsibility and gain an understanding of sanitation issues. In the Solomon Islands, the Red Cross facilitates the approach, while the community itself does the work. There are seven steps to PHAST: • Identification • Analysis • Planning solutions • Selecting options • Planning new facilities and behaviour change • Planning monitoring and evaluation • Participatory evaluation Successes of this approach have been: • Modest impact on health • Increased knowledge about disease transmission

• Difficult locations to gain access to, such as war zones Learning from the experience in Africa: • Listening to and respecting local culture


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Ozwater Report • Helping males and females participate equally • Talking about and measuring participation • Need for technical input and innovation The second speaker, Kylie Climie (Power and Water), provided a case study presentation on Galiwinku Conservation – Empowering People to Live Sustainably. Kylie works with Indigenous Essential Services, a not-for-profit arm of Power and Water, which receives 80 per cent of its funding from the Northern Territory government and 20 per cent from revenue.Ninety-five per cent of the Indigenous communities provided with water services from Power and Water source the water supply from groundwater. Of these communities 30 per cent have stressed water supplies. Community engagement work in the area of water and energy demand management has identified the importance of twoway education and creating community partnerships. Galiwinku is an island community located in North East Arnhem Land on Elcho Island with a population of around 2500 people. The water conservation project for Galiwinku was reactive in its design, due to the fast response required to reduce water demand so that the water supply could cope with the additional houses that were being built, and delays in commissioning additional bores to meet the increasing demand. Service interruptions were already a problem in Galiwinku where the on-site operator was having issues in keeping up with demand as it was. Short-term actions included undertaking leak detection in housing and infrastructure, publishing water-saving messages in monthly newspapers, advocating using water wisely through local sporting ambassadors – the Northern Territory Thunder football team – which held a footy clinic with the community, and setting up a community stall for discussions and questions. The long-term actions included local employment of water conservation officers. Training of the officers was a “train the trainer” approach, with the aim of empowering the officers to be able to teach people in the community about the water source and the water supply, personal water use in litres per person per day, making this tangible using visual materials and buckets and drum demonstrations, understanding where water is used in the house, what the target amount of water to use is and encouraging people to commit to using less.

and finding out what proportion of water waste was due to behaviour or were infrastructure issues. This information was then shared with the Department of Housing. The officers encouraged people to commit to using water wisely with the help of pictorial representation of ways to achieve this, such as shorter showers, reporting leaks, not letting water run when it’s not being used, and using a sink plug when washing up. Each family was asked to commit to three to four water-efficient behaviours.

OUTCOMES The project was successful in raising awareness around water efficiency behaviours and why they are important to Galiwinku. The training and materials were tailored around the audience to be culturally acceptable and socially engaging by being locally run and incorporated sharing stories so that they encouraged knowledge sharing between officers and residents.

CHALLENGES The community housing development increased demand, which challenged our supply system further. There was a feeling of disempowerment when audits were being undertaken but leaks reported were not being fixed within a timely manner. Residential water use is not currently metered or charged, so there is no financial incentive to motivate people to use less. The employment of the officers is a new area for Power and Water and, as such, we were continually learning how to cater this project component to be respectful of cultural and community commitments, along with the challenge of keeping the officer motivated when other peers were “working for the dole” and receiving payment for doing less work. The presentations led into workshop activities where workshop participants were split into three groups and given an activity related to CLTS or PHAST. These included: 1.

Diagramming the faecal-oral contamination route by using some visual cards to prompt the development of pathways discussed by the group. This element of CLTS is intended to create disgust through realisation of how easily food and drink can become in contact with faeces through different environmental or other carriers.

2.

Looking at picture cards and deciding as a group what the safe and dangerous activities were in relation to health and hygiene. This element of PHAST is to create discussion around what people are doing and what they should be doing differently to protect their health.

3.

Calculation of sh*t – members of this group discussed and calculated the average amount of faeces one person excretes per day and then multiplied this by the number of people that were in that group. They used this amount to think about how much that would be equal to each day if they were openly defecating, and then how much in a week and how much in a year. This element of CLTS brings about an element of shame and awareness around how much is being openly defecated around a small community.

The officers also undertook audits around the homes to capture information on appliances that were being left on or were leaking,

There was great interest around the application of community engagement methods and overall the workshop was well received with great feedback from participants. To ensure you keep updated about WASH activities and receive their newsletters, visit the AWA website, go to ‘Manage Your AWA Account’ and select ‘WASH’ as one of your specialist networks. For further information please contact: Kim Wuyts, Program Manager – Specialist Networks, email kwuyts@awa.asn.au


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Ozwater Report

Creating tomorrow’s water solutions today In a rapidly developing world, now more than ever Australia’s future is dependent upon the effective and efficient management of water.

UGL continues to meet large scale urban, regional and industrial development challenges in designing and delivering comprehensive integrated infrastructure solutions. Clients benefit from UGL’s established systems and procedures ensuring safety and quality while minimising impact on the environment and community. UGL is a leader in all facets of water and wastewater engineering, construction, and operations and maintenance services. UGL is proud sponsors of the AWA’s Victorian Branch 51st Annual Dinner held 21 August, Palladium at Crown, Southbank.

www.ugllimited.com


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Conference Report

Grant Leslie, AWA National Policy and Programs Manager, reports on the recent series of AWA Unconventional Gas Thought Leadership Seminars. During June, the Australian Water Association (AWA), in conjunction with the National Centre for Groundwater Research and Training, presented a series of thought leadership seminars on unconventional gas. The purpose of these seminars was to bring together a number of world experts in the science of unconventional gas production and to highlight some of the issues. The seminars were held in Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne and Canberra and were well attended. They provided a national and international perspective on unconventional gases including coal seam gas (also known as coal bed methane), tight gas and shale gas. Collectively these gases, along with conventional gas, are processed to create Liquefied Natural Gas, or LNG, as it is commonly known and used in Australia. The presenters were some of the most experienced professionals and academics in the field. Professor Peter Flood and Dr Ian Duncan presented at all four seminars, with other speakers added to the program at each location to provide the local context. In Perth, Jeff Haworth from the WA Department of Mines and Petroleum presented, while in Melbourne Chris McCauley from the Victorian Department of Sustainability and Environment and Dr Vaughan Beck, from the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering took the stage. In Adelaide, Professor Craig Simmons from the National Centre for Groundwater Research and Training, Neil Power from the SA Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources, and Professor Robert Clark from ACOLA presented. In Canberra, Professor Peter Cook from ALCOA, and Dr Peter Baker from the Commonwealth Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, People and Communities provided a national context. Emeritus Professor Peter Flood was the chair of all four seminars. Professor Flood is a retired Deputy Vice Chancellor from the University of New England. He is a geologist with 44 years’ experience in Basin Studies, including within the Gunnedah, Bowen and Surat Basins, and a member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy. He has been a consultant to State and Commonwealth Governments and the mining and oil/gas industry, and has studied the impacts of mining and coal seam gas extraction on water resources. Professor Flood was appointed to the Interim Committee to advise the Federal Government on coal seam and large coal mining in January 2012. Dr Ian Duncan is a Research Scientist at the Bureau of Economic Geology at the University of Texas in Austin. Dr Duncan’s recent research has focused on the scientific, environmental and public policy aspects of unconventional natural gas production, and he has presented on these topics and others at the Atlantic Council. Dr Duncan has also been exploring the implications for effective regulatory frameworks of recent US environmental impacts associated with unconventional gas production. Dr Duncan is interested in the similarities and contrasts between US experiences with shale gas and Australian experiences with coal seam gas. Dr Duncan discussed some of the more controversial issues of the environmental and health impacts of shale gas development.

water august 2013

Shale gas is extracted from as deep as 3000m below the surface and was first extracted in the 1800s in America. However, it was not commercially produced until the 1970s. In Australia, shale gas is currently uneconomical to produce, although vast reserves have been identified (see Figure 1). 120°

130°

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McARTHUR BASIN BONAPARTE BASIN 0

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BEETALOO SUB-BASIN

750 km

WISO BASIN SOUTHERN CARNARVON BASIN

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QLD WA

AMADEUS BASIN ARCKARINGA BASIN

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Shale liquids and tight oil potential

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Gas pipeline Gas pipeline (proposed)

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HOBART

The map is intended as a schematic depiction of the location of sedimentary basins with predicted potential for shale oil or gas based on their gross geological characteristics. Many basins highlighted do not have proven potential for shale oil or gas, and not all of the highlighted areas are necessarily prospective. Shale oil or gas may also occur outside of the highlighted areas. AERA 3.22

Figure 1. Location of potential shale gas reserves in Australia. Dr Duncan identified four key questions that formed the basis of his presentation: • Is water consumption for hydraulic fracturing a problem? • Has hydraulic fracturing contaminated drinking water? • Has shale gas production led to dangerous levels of atmospheric emissions? • Are there any documented exposure pathways that could result in negative health impacts? A more general proposition was offered to the audience, which was: Are the risks associated with shale gas acceptable? Dr Duncan defined sustainable as: If years after the activity is over there is no significant evidence that it took place, then the activity was sustainable. He explained that the amount of water consumed per well depends on the geology of the shale, the number of fracturing stages and the amount of water that flows back to the surface (estimated to be between 20–80 per cent). So there is no perfect answer here. In fact, it could be less intrusive than other extractive industries. It all depends on the geology. Dr Duncan cited the most famous example implying contaminated drinking water as a result of hydraulic fracturing in a film called Gasland (see Dr Duncan’s My Point Of View article, page 4, for more information). In this film a woman was able to light on fire water running from a tap. Dr Duncan advised that in this case methane had in fact been naturally bubbling through the aquifer from where the water was drawn for over 30 years, so what had occurred was no real surprise. Addressing the issue of atmospheric contamination, Dr Duncan presented a number of case studies on the emissions of gas processing plants at nine locations in Texas. The evidence indicated that the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) longterm average for concentrations of Benzene, Toluene, o-xylene and

Credit: Geoscience Australia

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Conference Report Ethyl benzene was typically one or two orders of magnitude below the long term ESL (ESL is the Effects Screening Levels and the screening levels used in TCEQ’s air permitting process to evaluate air dispersion modelling predicted impacts. They are used to evaluate the potential for effects to occur as a result of exposure to concentrations of constituents in the air). Health hazards associated with shale gas typically occur via two pathways, waterborne and airborne. Dr Duncan discussed levels of risk and quoted William W Lowrance, author of a 1976 book called Acceptable Risk. Lowrance states that “because nothing can be absolutely free of risk, nothing can be absolutely safe”. Dr Duncan has researched the levels of risk associated with risk well leakage. The leakage rate for Class 1 injection wells is estimated to be 1 x 10-8 and the estimated rate of subsurface blowouts of shale gas wells is 2 to 4 x 10-6. However, most of the environmental incidents that have occurred since then have been found to have been caused by operator or human error rather than the engineering of the extraction process. This is a valuable take-home message for the Australian experience, according to Dr Duncan. The second keynote speaker for all four seminars was Dr Peter Flood. He offered an Australian context to the unconventional gas market in Australia, recognising that there were many opportunities and challenges in this country. The opportunities for coal seam gas are mainly in Queensland in the Surat Basin, and for shale gas in the Canning Basin in Western Australia and the Cooper Basin in South Australia. Some of the perceived issues for this emerging gas industry include environmental concerns about the contamination of water from the ‘fraccing’ process (hydraulic fracturing); social concerns from landowners seeking the right to restrict gas company access to farmland from which gas can be extracted; and inconsistent and often changing regulatory frameworks at both a state and federal level, bring uncertainty to investment in the industry. Dr Flood gave a good explanation of the different geology types of the different sources of conventional and unconventional gases, as shown in Figure 2. He also gave a very concise explanation of the extraction process and the way that fraccing is conducted. In discussing Australia’s gas reserves, Dr Flood advised that Australia has about two per cent of the world’s gas reserves and approximately 2.1 per cent of the global production in 2010. He said that gas is Australia’s third largest energy resource after coal and uranium. The table below gives an estimate of where the global coal seam gas reserves are located. Dr Flood also discussed issues of community concern and how the gas industry was responding to these concerns, which relate to blowout risk, casing failure, and issues relating to fraccing such as earthquakes and the escape of methane into aquifers. As Dr Duncan discussed, the risk related to blowout and casing failure can be demonstrated to be very low; however, other risks are still somewhat unknown and largely depend on the geology of the gas field. Country

Estimated CSG resource base (Trillion cubic metres)

Canada

17–92

Russia

17–80

China

30–35

Australia

8–14

USA

4–11

Source: IEA CCC 2005

Land surface Conventional non-associated gas

Coalbed methane Conventional associated gas Seal Sandstone

Tight sand gas Gas-rich shale

Figure 2. Different geological sources of conventional and unconventional gases. What is clear from the Unconventional Gas Thought Leadership Seminar series is that there is a wealth of engineering and scientific information that Australia can leverage from the United States and that more research needs to be done for the Australian context. During the panel session of the Canberra seminar, there was a good deal of discussion regarding policy interventions that create uncertainty in the industry. Interestingly, during the series an amendment to Australia’s national environment law, the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act), passed the senate and received Royal assent. The following information is from the Department of Sustainability, Employment, Water, Population and Communities regarding the amendments to the EPBC Act: ‘This amendment to Australia’s national environment law, the EPBC Act, makes water resources a matter of national environmental significance, in relation to coal seam gas and large coal mining development. This means that such developments will require federal assessment and approval to ensure the protection of water resources. Any coal seam gas and large coal developments that have a significant impact on any of the existing matters of national environmental significance, e.g. nationally threatened plants and animals, already have to be referred under the EPBC Act. Since 2012 these projects have been referred to the Independent Expert Scientific Committee for advice on the impacts on water resources. The Minister takes this advice into consideration when making a final decision. However, the Minister does not currently have the power to consider and impose conditions directly relating to impacts on a water resource itself. This amendment adds water as a trigger in its own right, and the Minister can set appropriate conditions as part of the project approval to ensure that any significant impacts on a water resource are acceptable. The amendment does not apply to shale gas. The amendments to the EPBC Act build on the objectives of the National Partnership Agreement on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining (NPA).’ For more information please refer to www.environment.gov.au/ epbc/about/water-trigger.html#overview AWA and the National Centre for Groundwater Research and Training is holding a series of two-day short courses titled ‘The Science: Coal Seam and Shale Gas’, which will run in Perth on 12 August, Adelaide on 14 August and Brisbane on 16 August. To register please go to www.awa.asn.au/unconventionalgas/

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Feature Article

DO WE NEED A PRICE ON CARBON? The wisdom of the water cooler By Greg Peters, Associate Professor of Chemical Environmental Science at Chalmers University of Technology

Many big fans of small government are opposed to the government’s carbon tax*. While delivering the science of climate change is best left to the relevant scientists, if you are a water engineer or anyone else in a democracy you are entitled to debate the best administrative response to climate change. Unfortunately the “debate” in the usual media outlets is often exaggerated rhetoric about destroying the planet, or the economy, depending on the cultural allegiances of the “debater”. So let’s be calm and concrete, and turn to the traditional place for getting the inside story at many workplaces: the water cooler.

SUSPICIOUS CLAIMS A bottled water cooler typically consists of a plastic stand containing a small gas compression refrigerator connected to a steel reservoir with a reusable 15L polycarbonate bottle on top of the stand. In Sydney, the water is typically groundwater trucked from an aquifer north of the Hawkesbury River. The bottled water cooler is very convenient in office foyers and on building sites where plumbing into the mains supply would not be feasible. Of course, the same service could be delivered using an ordinary refrigerator with a refillable bottle inside. Recently, an alternative has been making inroads into this market: the atmospheric water generator (AWG). AWGs often look like water coolers and likewise contain a small gas compression refrigerator, but in addition to chilling the reservoir, the refrigerator cools air to below dew point.

1,2 1 0,8 0,6 0,4 0,2 0

Figure 1.

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We were surprised by how unambiguous the results were. Clearly, if you care about conserving water resources or minimising climate change, the claim that the AWG is “ecologically friendly” is absurd. The condensed water vapour is not included in the wateruse figure – it is remarkable that a device that requires no direct water supply nevertheless demands so much more fresh water than the alternatives. This is on account of the AWG’s high energy consumption (an order of magnitude higher than the water cooler) and the diesel link between energy consumption and water use refrigerant for coal washing and cooling power stations.

3,5

other materials

5 4,5

3 2,5 2 1,5 1 0,5 0

Water use (L/L)

Climate change potential (kg CO2-e/L)

In this sense AWGs are like dripping air conditioners, but they also perform filtration and UV disinfection (processes that require additional power) in order to protect users from anything colleagues may have accidentally sneezed into the air intake. They have been marketed as “ecologically friendly”, perhaps on account of the absence of a plastic bottle – but any engineer who has done calculations involving water’s enthalpy of vapourisation might be suspicious of such claims.

My honours students and I were, and we set about testing this claim by comparing the AWG with a water cooler, and with a refrigerator containing a bottle. We assumed a small business obtains 5L per day, weekdays, from one of these three sources. The results of the test were recently published in the peer-reviewed International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment (Peters et al., 2013). Some of the key results are shown in Figure 1.

polymer bottling plant groundwater mains water operation

The absolute climate change impacts are also striking. At about 4.2 kWh/kL and 1kg CO2/kWh, seawater desalination emits 4.2g CO2/L, much higher than traditional surface water supplies. But compared to this benchmark for (bulk, nonchilled) water, the AWG is three orders of magnitude worse. The comparison with desalination invokes an interesting scenario. If we were to assume that the roughly 150,000 water coolers in Australia were all replaced by AWGs, and these were used at a rate of 5L per weekday, the increase in greenhouse emissions would be 160 thousand tonnes of CO2 per annum. This is 93% of the


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Feature Article (unabated) greenhouse emissions of the Sydney desalination plant in 2012, a number so large that, as with many large desalination facilities in Australia, it has been a political necessity to offset the emissions with renewable energy certificates since startup.

WHERE TO FROM HERE? In this context, regulating the spread of AWGs might be reasonable. Given enough time and prodding, the Government’s Equipment Energy Efficiency Program might be extended to office water coolers. Perhaps a Minimum Energy Performance Standard could be created under the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards legislation – one way of banning AWGs. In the meantime, the only regulatory lever available is the carbon pricing legislation. If we do a little maths using the original $23/tonne cost of carbon, assuming this is passed from power generators through to consumers, this presents a financial disincentive of between $25 and $46 per annum for owners of water coolers to avoid the switch to AWGs. To implement this, the government’s legislation creates the administrative work of interacting with about 300 major greenhouse emitters. On the other hand, there is no mention of AWGs in the opposition’s policy, nor is it easy to see how an equivalent incentive could be practically and efficiently distributed as “direct action” subsidies to 150,000 water cooler owners. So big fans of small government ought to be big fans of economic instruments to mitigate greenhouse emissions. Environmental engineers would call the AWG an inefficient use of resources, but it is one of many pieces of energy-using equipment that currently lack any regulatory intervention other than that provided by the price on carbon. The alternative of delivering direct subsidies to equipment users would provide employment for a new army of government bureaucrats, while avoiding the issue has natural resource consequences independent of any contribution to climate change, on account of the energy-water nexus. It seems if you are a conservative who wants to conserve water, there are chilling reasons to favour a carbon tax. Disclaimer: The author is not a member of any political party. The research was funded by a $250 grant for measuring equipment from the University of New South Wales. Most of the effort was volunteered by honours thesis students. WJ *At time of writing, the carbon tax was being reviewed by the Labor Government in favour of an Emissions Trading Scheme.

REFERENCE Peters GM, Blackburn NJ & Armedion M (2013): Environmental Assessment of Air to Water Machines – Triangulation in the Presence of Scope Uncertainty. International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, 18, pp 1149–1157.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Associate Professor Greg Peters (email: g.peters@unsw.edu.au) is based at Chalmers University of Technology and is a Visiting Fellow at the UNSW School of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

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Feature Article

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Feature article

SINGAPORE’S NEWATER PROGRAM: CELEBRATING 10 YEARS OF SUCCESS A decade after its official launch, PUB, Singapore’s water management agency, has plenty to be proud of, writes John Poon. Here he reminisces on how an idea all those years ago led to a truly unique and world-class water-recycling program. Conceived in an era where water projects strictly followed the long-established and well-served paradigm for drinking water and sewage, it is remarkable that the seed for Asia-Pacific’s first forays into drinking water reuse were ever sown. Even more remarkable is the fact that that seed was allowed to germinate and reach full bloom, and continue to be reborn and nourished with ongoing care and new investment. The tangible milestones and achievements of Singapore’s NEWater program could never have been envisaged by the original team of scientists, engineers and project managers. All that those of us on the study team knew at the time was that this would be special, and possibly a once-in-a-life-time opportunity to put a dent in the world. The idea of drinking recycled water was abhorrent to many people and was seriously misunderstood by the public and its leaders. This only makes the indisputable achievements of PUB to develop credibility, a trusted brand and recognition all the more extraordinary. It is difficult to think of a water utility on this planet that has made such real achievements in such a short space of time. Not content to sit back and rest on its laurels, PUB continues to push well beyond the boundaries of the norms for the water industry – not just in Asia-Pacific, but also the world. It is again setting new

the spectacular koi fish pond at the NEWater Visitor Centre.

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benchmarks for design, innovation and sheer guts for the water projects it has completed over the past decade. All of this can be traced back to the legacy of the transformations initiated by the official launch of the NEWater program on 21 February 2003.

in the beginning It is 10 years since the official opening of the first two NEWater factories in Singapore, including the enormously successful – and probably the most visited – advanced water treatment facility ever built, the NEWater Visitor Centre. The extensive use of glass and steel and the clean lines of the building are more reminiscent of an Apple store than a full-scale advanced water treatment plant that has been closely weaved in with a visitor centre experience. Visitation to the Centre now exceeds 1.3 million – not too shabby for what is in essence a very fancy water treatment plant! The facility is now a designated tourist destination that all taxi drivers know how to get to. Try asking your local cabbie where the water recycling plant is! Integrated water cycle management in Singapore has been fully embraced by PUB. In fact, the first strategies and thinking about the closer knitting of the water cycle into the fabric of the city and its urban experience were initiated by the transformative experiences of NEWater.


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Some of the team that delivered the NEWater Visitor Centre, photographed at the front of the centre as the final touches were being added for the official launch.

Leading the world PUB is now taking integrated water cycle management to the ultimate level in Singapore. This is best exemplified by Bishan Ang Mo Kio Park. As part of the Kallang Basin that feeds into the Marina Bay stormwater to drinking water system, an old and ugly concrete trapezoidal stormwater drainage channel and uninspired linear park has been transformed into a more natural and aesthetically pleasing waterway and urban living environment. Liveability and human connection with the water has been vastly improved, which has reflected on housing prices. Public housing along each side of the park is now quoted at the million-dollar mark – a stunning result and one that definitely shows the benefits of integrated water management from a social and economic aspect.

The Bishan Ang Mo KioPark is an example of city-scale integrated water cycle management and liveability in action. up in the Marina Bay stormwater harvesting system for further treatment and drinking. People, water and the urban systems are now intimately and strongly intertwined and bonded. The Bishan Ang Mo Kio Park project is a 2013 Global Water Award winner – but the true winners are the people of Singapore and their efforts to build a more liveable urban environment and city. Where else do magical things with water and liveability happen like this? We hope more and more places take take the seed of an idea, grow it, nurture it and renew it. WJ

The water flowing here no longer travels in a concrete drain to the sea. Following wetland natural treatment this water now ends

Inside the NEWater Visitor Centre.

About the Author John Poon (email: john.poon@ch2m.com. au) is Principal Technologist with CH2M HILL Australia. He is an Accredited Recycled Water Auditor and Skills Examiner and was Study The stunning Marina Bay precinct not only looks good and serves the function of a drinking water reservoir for the city through the collection and harvesting of urban stormwater at a scale unmatched in the world; it is also a visitor destination and entertainment complex. It is quite mind-bending to think that all this was achieved in the space of a decade from the seed of an idea.

Manager for the Singapore Water Reclamation Study (2000–2003), Lead Producer for the NEWater Visitor Centre, Versions 1 and 2 (2002– 2003), and Project Technical Leader for the Delhi and Bengaluru Drinking Water Reuse Projects (2012 to present).

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technical features

Application Of Sonar Technology For The Profiling Of Sludge In Wastewater Pond Systems

Biosolids Management Application Of Sonar Technology For The Profiling Of Sludge In Wastewater Pond Systems

A Chua et al.

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M Calzada et al.

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M Anda, J Brennan & E Paskett

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A Liu, D Giurco, P Mukheiber & G Watkins

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An outline of benefits realised by the WA Water Corporation

Odour Measurement Development Of A Protocol For Odour Measurement And Characterisation In WWTPS

A multi-disciplinary study at the Industrial Wastewater Treatment Plant of an ice-cream factory in Spain

Smart Systems/Smart Metering Combining Smart Metering Infrastructure And Behavioural Change

Results of a trial on residential water efficiency in the southern suburbs of Perth, WA

Smart Metering And Billing Information to guide household water consumption

Modelling Bounceback In Water Consumption Post-Drought

D Giurco et al.

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A Balberg & G Hauber-Davidson

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M Moglia et al.

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N Shishkina, T Hannelly & C Rodriguez

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Comparison of a custom-built regression model and end-use based water projections using the iSDP model

Smart Water Metering At Supermarkets For Proactive Leak Detection And Advanced Data Analysis

Installation of a smart metering system at 175 Coles stores results in a saving of $330,000

Rainwater Tank Management Management Of Urban Rainwater Tanks

This icon means the paper has been refereed

Lessons and findings from South-East Queensland

Governance & Regulation Compliance Of Water Recycling Schemes In Western Australia

An analysis of water recycling from 2003 to 2009

Mining Water Management Preparing Drinking Water Quality Management Plans For Mining Operations In Western Australia

JE Wajon

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J Krampe et al.

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An outline of the key issues that need to be addressed

Aeration Efficiency Diffuser Selection For Foul Air Treatment In An Activated Sludge Plant

Results of ongoing energy efficiency trials at SA Water’s Bolivar WWTP

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NEXT ISSUE:

SEPTEMBER 2013 • MEMBRANES & DESALINATION • WATER RECYCLING • INDUSTRIAL TREATMENT • COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT

Comparison of the aeration pattern of newly installed (left) and three-year-old blade diffusers.


APPLICATION OF SONAR TECHNOLOGY FOR THE PROFILING OF SLUDGE IN WASTEWATER POND SYSTEMS An outline of benefits realised by the WA Water Corporation A Chua, R Trolio, A Ghadouani, L Coggins

ABSTRACT Wastewater ponds are used extensively around the world to treat municipal wastewater. Pond treatment is reliant on surface area and available volume, both of which are impacted by the steady accumulation of sludge at the pond bottom and surface. Current methods for pond desludging are costly and hampered by limited resolution of sludge profiling for determining the specific sludge quantity and location. A safety risk to plant operators is present due to wastewater exposure and manual handing while profiling ponds with conventional methods. To address these matters, the Water Corporation has partnered with the University of Western Australia (UWA) to develop a remote-controlled boat with sonar capability to profile wastewater ponds. The boat was deployed at various wastewater treatment plants with odour, sludge and treatment problems. The information provided from sonar profiling enabled the Water Corporation to make effective decisions on asset and operational management and demonstrated that sonar profiling has strong practical applications in the water industry. This paper demonstrates the application of sonar sludge profiling technology and the tangible benefits realised by the Water Corporation.

INTRODUCTION Wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) are key public service facilities that utilise biological, chemical and physical processes to reduce the organic and inorganic load in wastewater. Discharge of untreated wastewater poses a significant risk to the environment and public health. In recent times

and as water becomes more scarce in Western Australia, recycling of treated wastewater is being increasingly considered and applied in areas such as the irrigation of public open spaces and non-edible vegetation such as tree lots, as well as in industrial and construction activities. As such, the treatment performance and management of WWTPs is integral to minimising risk to public health and the environment. The majority of WWTPs operated by the Water Corporation in rural and regional areas of Western Australia consist of pond systems, as they provide robust and effective wastewater treatment at relatively low construction, operational and maintenance costs. Wastewater ponds are extensively used throughout the world for the same reasons.

IMPACTS FROM SLUDGE IN WASTEWATER PONDS Wastewater treatment in ponds consists of complex biological and physico-chemical processes (shown in simplified form in Figure 1) where certain conditions are required for

the effective removal of biochemical/ chemical oxygen demand (BOD/COD) as well as the reduction of suspended solids in solution. One of these conditions relates to the available volume of water for such complex processes to happen, as well as the available surface area for oxygen diffusion and sunlight as input to algae photosynthesis. The wastewater pond receives a significant amount of solids, primarily from incoming wastewater and from the growth and death of wastewater microorganisms. The insoluble fraction of these solids is not easily degraded and accumulates at the bottom of the pond over time. These solids (termed sludge) accumulate to a point where the sludge volume displaces the volume of water required for biological wastewater treatment by algae and aerobic bacteria. At this stage, anaerobic bacteria in the bottom sludge layer typically dominate the microbial ecosystem, resulting in the ponds turning septic, which subsequently degrades treated wastewater (effluent) Light

BOD lost as gas Influent BOD

Settleable solids

Algae MUTUALISM bacteria

Soluble fermentation products

Effluent BOD algae soluble

BOD removed

Sludge layer Figure 1. BOD removal and sludge deposition in wastewater ponds (Mara et al., 1998).

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Technical Features of sonar technology for profiling sludge in wastewater ponds was feasible.

Figure 2. A wastewater pond with significant floating sludge issues. quality and increases the likelihood for odour emissions from the plant. In addition, the incidence of floating surface sludge increases (an example is shown in Figure 2), as the fringe ‘fluffy’ sludge is carried up by gas bubbles produced by anaerobic bacteria. The floating sludge blocks sunlight, prevents algal photosynthesis and subsequently impacts on wastewater treatment.

As a result, the Water Corporation in 2009 engaged with the School of Environment Systems Engineering at UWA to modify a marine sonar depth sounder unit (a more advanced fish finder from the units, trialled in 2005) to profile ponds with shallow water depths. This sonar unit was recalibrated to facilitate shallow depth measurement as well as minimise data ‘noise’ by factoring for near-surface sonar reflection and diffuse (fluffy) sludge-water layer characteristics (compared to well-defined sand-seawater interfaces). The sonar unit was then tested at wastewater ponds, with sludge judge measurements done concurrently to facilitate comparison. The results of this comparative study are shown in Figure 4, which shows that sonar unit measurements correlated highly with sludge judge measurement (Morgan, 2010).

into the wastewater pond. In addition, this method takes a long time (about half a day for a conventional sized pond) and requires on-road transport of the manned boat and associated equipment. Data output resolution from sludge judge profiling is relatively low, providing from 20 to, at most, 100 data points.

POND SLUDGE PROFILING The removal of sludge from a pond system (termed desludging) is, therefore, required to prevent sludge levels from affecting wastewater treatment. Prior to desludging, the determination of sludge volume and total dry solids mass is required to confirm the most suitable and cost-effective method for desludging as well as to accurately estimate desludging operation costs. Sludge profiling is the determination of sludge levels and volume in a pond system, which is typically expressed as the average sludge height from the pond base. The current profiling method employed by the Water Corporation uses a tool known as a ‘sludge judge’ (Figure 3) to capture and measure the water and sludge column. While this method is easily reproducible and accurate, there are safety issues associated with such profiling activities. At least two operators are required to be in a boat and handling heavy equipment, which increases the risk of an operator falling

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Figure 4. Correlation between sludge judge and sonar profiling measurements. (Data from Morgan 2010)

Figure 3. Sludge judge column sampler (empty) (left); and sludge profiling using a sludge judge.

SONAR PROFILING BOAT In an attempt to address the issues associated with sludge judge profiling, initial trials were conducted by the Water Corporation’s Wastewater Quality Branch in 2005 with handheld sonar fish finders. While these trials were unsuccessful due to the shallow depths typical of wastewater ponds (1–3 metres), this work confirmed that the application

Figure 5. Prototype sonar profiling boat. A subsequent research project was commenced by UWA in late 2010 with the aim of incorporating the modified sonar unit developed in 2009 into a remote-controlled boat. This was to address safety considerations from current sludge profiling activities by eliminating the requirement for operators


Figure 7. Sonar profiling graph for the Brunswick WWTP (light sludge load). Figure 6. Sonar profiling case study sites. to be working on water. The boat was required to be durable enough to handle the variable nature of wastewater ponds, while the size of the boat was to be small enough to facilitate transport to remote areas. A boat was developed in May 2011 (Figure 5) and was deployed at two trial sites (Sites 1 and 2) to verify sonar profiling at known low and high sludge volumes respectively. From these trials, a number of opportunities arose where this technology was applied to investigate wastewater treatment issues (Sites 3–5). To date, the boat has profiled 30 ponds and provided insight into the deposition of sludge in relation to pond performance and sludge management. The application and benefits from sonar profiling are demonstrated in the following case studies (a map outlining the various trial and investigation locations is presented in Figure 6).

SONAR PROFILING CASE STUDY SITE 1: BRUNSWICK JUNCTION The sonar boat was safely launched into the Brunswick Junction pond and took less than 30 minutes to profile the pond (3–4 metre transects along the length of the pond were used). One person operated the boat via remote control while another person was at the opposite side of the pond acting as a spotter to minimise boat collision with the pond edge. Once profiling was completed, the data from the sonar unit was uploaded into a field laptop. Data filtering (removal of data outside standard deviation ranges) was applied; the final data set (at least 27,000 data points) was entered into three-dimensional mapping software (Surfer®) to produce a 3D profile graph (Figure 7). The high-resolution 3D profiles are possible through the tagging of sonar data points with GPS information. This profile clearly shows that the sludge level in Brunswick is very low (average <0.2m) across the entire pond. From this data, the volumes of water and sludge in the pond were calculated.

Figure 8. Sonar profiling graph for the Waroona WWTP (heavy sludge load).

SONAR PROFILING CASE STUDY SITE 3: KARRATHA In October 2011, the Karratha WWTP experienced a significant process failure where all ponds turned anaerobic, seen as a white/pink colour. Visual observation from the plant (Figure 9) indicated a significant amount of floating sludge. This had impacts on downstream water recycling schemes where there was a risk of providing insufficiently treated wastewater for the irrigation of public open spaces. The sonar boat was subsequently deployed on site to investigate and determine the sludge content in the ponds. The sludge profile (Figure 11) indicates that the bulk of the sludge was located at the edges of the pond rather than at the

SONAR PROFILING CASE STUDY SITE 2: WAROONA Sludge profiling at Waroona was carried out in a similar way to the Brunswick Junction site. The Waroona sludge profile (Figure 8) demonstrates an overall high sludge level with an obvious channel indicating the path in which the incoming wastewater was flowing through the pond. Further work involving the use of rhodamine tracer studies (Coggins, 2011) shows that pond sludge levels have a significant impact on the flow profile and, therefore, the treatment capability of a pond system.

Figure 9. Karratha WWTP pond in an anaerobic condition, with significant floating sludge.

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Technical Features the volume and location of sludge deposits that is required for desludge planning activities. The sonar boat was deployed in December 2011 to address this issue. Figure 12 represents the sonar profile of the treatment pond, which clearly depicts the centre deep section as well as the surrounding shallow section. It can be shown that there is significant sludge deposition (estimated at 40%) in the deep section. This information is being used to plan for effective and safe pond desludging. The sonar profile has been able to conduct profiling in deep sections where no other method was available, in a safe and efficient manner.

Figure 10. Karratha WWTP pond in a normal facultative state, with no floating sludge present. centre. The volume of the sludge was not sufficient to trigger the criteria for receiving complete pond desludge funding. However, the detailed profile resolution provided the insight for alternative means of reducing the sludge content by dredging the edges with an excavator and removing surface sludge by vacuum truck or water jetting. These methods are significantly less costly than complete desludging and can be implemented quickly compared to current desludging methods. Through a combination of sludge removal by excavator dredging and other actions by the region, the WWTP reverted back to a healthy state within three weeks after profiling activities (Figure 10). During this time, contingency plans were instigated to provide additional treatment and disinfection to ensure safe recycled water for irrigation.

Figure 11. Sonar profiling chart for Karratha WWTP, which visualises extensive sludge accumulation at the edge of the pond (note – the red box represents the overall shape of the pond, while the blue arrows are inlet and outlet orientation).

Figure 12. Sonar profiling chart for Broome WWTP, which visualises the deep section of the pond.

SONAR PROFILING CASE STUDY SITE 5: DENMARK The Denmark WWTP has strict limit requirements on effluent total phosphorus placed by the environmental regulator, as the receiving environment is an inland waterway. To manage compliance, aluminium sulphate (alum) is dosed into the wastewater stream. Alum binds with free phosphorus to form a precipitate that settles at the bottom of this pond. This ‘alum sludge’ accumulates at a much faster rate than typical pond sludge and, therefore, desludging of alum sludge ponds is done at higher frequencies (current rate is every two to three years, compared to >10 years for typical wastewater ponds), and at a high cost to the business. The sonar boat was deployed at the Denmark alum pond to confirm the sludge level, which could be seen from the pond surface. Figure 13 is the profile for this pond. It can be shown that alum sludge levels are very high (average 0.8m

SONAR PROFILING CASE STUDY SITE 4: BROOME The first treatment pond at the Broome WWTP is a combination anaerobic and aerobic pond system (depicted in Figure 12) where raw wastewater is pumped into the centre deep anaerobic section (8.5 metres deep) to reduce BOD. This subsequently flows into the shallow aerobic section (1.8 metres deep) for further treatment. This section provides an aerobic cap through surface aerators to minimise odour emissions through oxidation. Due to the significant depth of the deep anaerobic section, profiling by current manual means was not possible and deemed to be unsafe. Therefore, regional operations were not aware of

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Figure 13. Sonar profiling chart for Denmark WWTP alum pond (red rectangle outlines the pond).


WAROONA Primary Pond 1A MAP/LOCATION

N

3A

N 2A

1A

FIGURE 1: View from pond southwest corner. Formation of a channel between the inlet and outlets (indicated by arrows). Sludge accumulations on the eastern side, and on the southwestern side. Colour scale in metres, indicates sludge height from bottom of pond.

POND DESCRIPTION Pond length at TWL

84 m

Pond width at TWL

84 m

Depth estimate (TFL-FFL)

1.10 m

Total volume (est.)

7105 kL

SLUDGE STATISTICS Pond length profiled

79 m

Pond width profiled

79 m

Sludge volume (est.)

2869 m3 (2869 kL)

Percentage sludge of total volume (est.)

41.3 %

Average sludge height

0.4 m

N

FIGURE 2: View from northwest corner. Shows extent of the channel and basin formed between the inlet and outlet (marked). Highlights the accumulations of sludge on the eastern side, and in the southwest corner.

Maximum water depth (est.) CLIENT AND JOB

Water Corporation Waroona WWTP Primary Pond 1A

JOB NO.

2011-07-25-WAR1A

REPORT TYPE

3D Sonar Sludge Profile

PROFILED BY:

LXC

25/07/2011

DRAWN BY:

LXC

01/08/2011

STATISTICS BY:

LXC/AG

24/08/2011

CHECKED BY:

AG

07/09/2011

APPROVED BY:

LXC

24/04/2012

Figure 14. Example of a report output from sonar profiling for the Waroona WWTP. sludge depth in a 1.2m deep pond). Optimisation of alum dosing operations as well as desludge planning have been coordinated following this work. This demonstrates that sonar profiling can also be used in ponds with sludge very near to the water surface and in shallow ponds generally.

APPLICATIONS FOR SONAR PROFILING TECHNOLOGY Sonar profiling technology has demonstrated the ability to provide high-resolution, three-dimensional pond sludge profiles. From the case studies, the application of this technology

has mitigated operational incidents, facilitated system evaluation and maintenance planning events, and enhanced understanding of sludge deposition in wastewater ponds. The sonar-profiling package now includes a standard reporting system that provides profile charts as well as key profiling indices (refer to Figure 14 for an example report based on the Waroona WWTP (Trial Site 2)). The remote-controlled boat provides a platform that is safe to operate, easy to transport and provides quick turnaround of high-resolution data. The technology

has been able to profile deep and shallow wastewater systems. As such, this technology could be applied for freshwater and drinking water applications such as the inspection of water tanks, storage and mining tailings dams. Another possible application is the retrofit of such a remote vessel as a water quality monitoring unit (fitted with monitoring probes), for distant or hard to access areas.

The sonar profile measures the height from the top of the water level to the top of the sludge layer; the technology does not differentiate between subsequent sludge density layers as well as the base of the pond. Sludge volume estimates are, therefore, dependent on accurate and legible engineering drawings (note that water volume estimates from sonar profiling are more accurate).

Prof. Anas Ghadouani Aquatic Ecology and Ecosystem Studies School of Environmental Systems Engineering Faculty of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics The University of Western Australia 35 Stirling Highway, M015 CRAWLEY WA 6009 PHONE: (08) 6488 2687 FAX: (08) 6488 1015 EMAIL: anas.ghadouani@uwa.edu.au

To address this issue, a separate new prototype boat that can resolve and visualise variable sludge density is currently being developed by UWA. This new boat will be based on technology similar to the sonar profiling boat, but will be able to resolve variable sludge density/pond base levels as shown conceptually in Figure 15, and provide accurate data on total sludge density and quantities. The benefits of such technology are: • Improved desludging cost management by setting clear performance goals for desludging contractors based on sludge density and mass data; • Determination of pond base levels to provide accurate water volume data as well as construction verification of new sites;

Figure 15. A conceptual output of sludge density profiling: a cross-section indicating sludge of different densities (brown, orange, blue), and an indication of the pond bottom (grey). Water is shown in green.

• Information to further understand the mechanism of sludge accumulation in ponds.

AUGUST 2013 WATER

BIOSOLIDS MANAGEMENT

59

Technical Features


BIOSOLIDS MANAGEMENT

60

Technical Features CONCLUSION

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Sonar technology has been successfully applied in sludge profiling in wastewater ponds, in which the high data resolution, 3D imagery and short turnaround time enable effective operational decisions to be made. This also represents a step forward in terms of conducting qualitative water analysis in a safe manner that eliminates the risk of operators drowning when working on water.

Acknowledgements go to Associate Professor Anas Ghadouani, Liah Coggins and Elke Reichwaldt from the University of Western Australia – School of Environmental Systems Engineering for the development, testing and verification of the sonar profiling unit. Special thanks go to Rino Trolio, Ken Eade, Scott Mcphee, Dean Italiano, Gabrielle O’Dwyer, Sandra Henville and Laura Edgecombe at the Water Corporation for the strong support, endorsement and application of this technology in the Corporation.

There is significant potential for this technology to be applied in the investigation and analysis of solids accumulation in water and wastewater systems. The addition of future sonar density measurement will provide a powerful tool in determining specific sludge/silt loads to facilitate effective removal and to identify the causes of sludge accumulation. The culmination of this work will be a remote-controlled boat for water investigation and monitoring, which provides sludge density profiling and water quality monitoring data in an efficient and safe manner. Note: This paper was Runner-Up for the Best Paper Award at Ozwater’13 in May.

THE AUTHORS Andrew Chua (email: Andrew.Chua@water corporation.com.au) is Process Specialist Team Leader, Wastewater Quality Branch at the Water Corporation, WA. Rino Trolio (email: Rino. Trolio@watercorporation. com.au) is Branch Manager for Wastewater Quality at the Water Corporation, WA.

Anas Ghadouani (email: anas.ghadouani.uwa. edu.au) is a Professor of Environmental Engineering in the School of Environmental Systems Engineering at The University of Western Australia. Liah Coggins (email: liah. coggins@uwa.edu.au) is an Environmental Engineer with interest in Water and Wastewater Engineering. Liah is currently completing a PhD at The University of Western Australia.

REFERENCES Coggins LX (2011): Impact of Sludge Accumulation on the Hydraulic Efficiency of Waste Stabilisation Ponds: Toward Sustainable Management of Wastewater Sludge in Australia. Bachelor of Engineering Honours Thesis, The University of Western Australia. Mara D & Pearson H (1998): Design Manual for Wastewater Stabilisation Ponds in Mediterranean Countries. Leeds Lagoon Technology International, Leeds. p 13. Morgan D (2010): Application of Sonar for the Measurement of Sludge Heights in Wastewater Stabilisation Ponds. Bachelor of Engineering Honours Thesis, University of Western Australia.

Delivering world class water infrastructure projects • Specialising in small to large diameter pipeline projects • Pump stations and storages • Water, Sewer and Recycled Water EPC, D&C and construction projects Phone: +61 (0) 3 8848 1888 | Fax: +61 (0) 3 8848 1899 | Email: info@nacap.com.au

WATER AUGUST 2013


61

Technical Features

Outcomes from a multi-disciplinary study conducted at the Industrial Wastewater Treatment Plant of an ice-cream factory in Alicante, Spain. M Calzada, E Campos, D Zarzo, T Ransome, D Prats, M Ruiz

ABSTRACT Odour sources, dispersion and human response depend on many factors and, as a result, the determination of pollution and nuisance degree is complex. In order to study odour emission problems in Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTPs) and their environmental impact, a comparative study of odour measurement and detection techniques was carried out. The best method for odour generation diagnosis and monitoring involves sensory methods and physico-chemical characterisation. In this paper we propose a protocol for the evaluation and effective control of odour in WWTP facilities. All this work is based on a multi-disciplinary study conducted at the Industrial Wastewater Treatment Plant (IWWTP) of the ice-cream factory “Helados Alacant” located in San Vicente del Raspeig, Alicante, Spain.

kinds of method was selected. The study was conducted between March 2011 and June 2012 at the IWWTP in an ice-cream factory (Helados Alacant) and its surroundings. Several odour events in the factory have caused complaints in the neighbourhood. The production of treated water is around 500m/day during the manufacturing season (peak season). The whole IWWTP is inside two deodorised adjacent buildings: process and pretreatment, dissolved air flotation (DAF), membrane bioreactor (MBR), sludge drying and storage. In the IWWTP there is an activated carbon deodorisation unit and a grid of pipes to collect the air to treat, as shown in Figure 1.

This study is part of a more ambitious R&D project, including the comparison of different technologies for odour elimination by means of different pilot plants that are currently in progress.

Several points in the IWWTP were selected for sampling on-site measurements. Odour measurements were carried out at the chosen points and in the environment. For the sensory study Nasal Ranger® (field dynamic olfactometry) was used and laboratory dynamic olfactometry on collected samples in the chosen points in the IWWTP. Several chemicalphysical methodologies such as gas chromatography, portable analysers, an electronic nose and the measurement of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) were used. Since many countries, such as Spain, do not have uniform national legislation, different criteria were used such as the Dutch law (Ner, 2004), the last draft of odour regulation in Catalonia (Generalitat de Catalunya, 2010), and the FIDO protocol from Socioenginyeria (Cid-Montanes et al., 2008)). In the case of ambient air quality, Australia’s Air NEPM (National Environment Protection Measure for Ambient Air Quality) establishes standards for carbon monoxide, ozone, sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, lead and particles in air.

INTRODUCTION Human activity and the natural environment itself are continuously generating odours of many kinds. Wastewater treatment can involve odour generation and can be a nuisance for the neighbourhood. In recent years the methodology of odour measurement has been improved significantly, with different techniques (McGinley & McGinley, 2000; Aitken et al., 1992). There are two main types of methodologies: olfactometry techniques (sensory methods); and instrumental compound analysis (physico-chemical methods) (Nicolai & Pohl, 2005). For this work the combined analysis of two

EXPERIMENTAL METHODOLOGY

The onus is on each level of Commonwealth, State or Territory Government to meet the ambient standards and monitor air quality. Formal governmental reporting against the Air NEPM standards have been in force since 2002.

Figure 1. General overview of the process building of the IWWTP of the ice-cream factory, Alicante (top); and (bottom) view of the process area.

Despite the existence of national ambient standards for air quality, Australia does not have national air quality emission standards. The environmental protection authorities

AUGUST 2013 WATER

ODOUR MEASUREMENT

DEVELOPMENT OF A PROTOCOL FOR ODOUR MEASUREMENT AND CHARACTERISATION IN WWTPS


62

ODOUR MEASUREMENT

Technical Features

Figure 2. Field olfactometry with Nasal Ranger®, in situ measurements taken by Valoriza Agua panellists. in individual states and territories have however set standards. In addition, the publication Air Quality Regulations and Odour Management in Australia and New Zealand provides a summary of the standards and air pollution legislation existing in Australia.

monitored with two high precision portable analysers (ECOTECH 57 Serinus (TRS) and ECOTECH 44 Serinus (NOx and NH3)). These analysers worked continuously and allowed the temporal evolution of the specific compounds and the response to different events.

SENSORY METHODS

The electronic nose is a device that works via electrochemical sensors. The E-Nose BMS2 Mk4 consists of six sensors for different groups of compounds and temperature and humidity sensors. It has been calibrated to the particular conditions of the IWWTP. It allows us to achieve measurements in odour units in real time and to compare their results with those from the dynamic olfactometry method. The TIGER PhoCheck Meter is a portable gas detector that uses the technology of photo-ionisation (PID) to detect a wide range of VOCs. All sensor readings are measured in real time and alarm levels are set manually.

The olfactometry study was carried out following the methodology of the standard norm UNE-EN 13725, AENOR (2004) and VDI 3940, VDI (2003). The Nasal Ranger® field olfactometer is a portable instrument that assesses the intensity of ambient odour using the technique of “Dilution to Threshold” (Nasal Ranger®, 2011). For the laboratory emission measurements, following the UNE-EN 13725, the main odour sources were identified and samples were taken by probes and a wind tunnel (Labaqua SA, 2011). The olfactometry technique uses the human nose as a detection system to quantify the sources, and by means of a mathematical dispersion model (AERMOD and CALPUFF) the odour dispersion (plume) in the atmosphere is simulated (EPA, 2004). Moreover, a study in the IWWTP surrounding was done throughout a year where many measurements were made by panellists and calibrated according to VDI 3940. Subsequently it produced a map of odour occurrence percentage using the SURFER software. PHYSICO-CHEMICAL METHODS

Gas chromatography allows identification of the main compounds causing odour, using the discontinuous punctual and passive or diffusive sampling techniques (diffusion of analytes through a diffusive surface onto an adsorbent), (Kleeberg et al., 2005); (AENOR, 1991). Total reduced sulfur (TRS), nitrogen oxides (NOx) and ammonia (NH3) were continuously

WATER AUGUST 2013

Figure 3. Map of emission odours inside the IWWTP (yellow: sampling points; blue: detection threshold; green: European odour units).

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION With the Nasal Ranger®, 330 control events were carried out (Figure 2) with 1974 pieces of data taken from 6 points inside the plant (1. Pretreatment, 2. Sludge tank, 3. Spin/ centrifuge (on duty and off duty), 4. Biological tank, 5. Dissolved air flotation (DAF), 6. Membrane bioreactor (MBR)). Additionally, 20 control events were carried out with 120 pieces of data taken from 4 points in the vicinity. Odour maps (Figures 2, 3 and 4) show dilution values in comparison with detection threshold (D/T) and the corresponding European Odour Unit (UOE/m3). Laboratory analysis detected the output of the deodorisation system in the bioreactor and the access doors as potential hotspots. The sample analysis and modelling led to the results shown in

Figure 4. Odour emission around residential area (yellow: sampling points; blue: detection threshold; green: European odour units). Figure 5 with the AERMOD and Figure 6 with the CALPUFF. Although the shapes of odour concentration ranges are different, emission values obtained with both models show no significant differences: in both cases the red area shows the concentration of odour nuisances possible; in each of the Figures 5 and 6 below this possible maximum is located inside the factory, covering approximately the same area.


63

Technical Features concentrations of two odorous compounds: limonene in the pretreatment area (see Table 1 and Figure 8) and indole, mainly in the MBR area when the biological process was not operating correctly

Table 1. Mean values of the studied compounds in the pre-treatment zone. Mean (ppb, v/v)

Range (ppb, v/v)

Standard deviation

2.75

0.42–8.26

1.41

Carbon disulfide

148

11.2–652

141

Dimethyl disulfide

30.6

2.98–125

22.3

Compound Methyl mercaptan Figure 5. Modelling emissions surrounding the WWTP. UNE-EN 13725. Model AERMOD.

Toluene

8875

7.06–34000

9318

Ethylbenzene

40.9

0.52–223

41.4

M, p-xylene

140

0.52–576

125.6

O-xylene

86.5

23.9–363

74.5

Limonene

825

2.35–10800

1866

Indole

1205

220–2760

547

50000 45000 40000

ppb (v/v)

35000

10000 5000

11 /0 7

/2 0 27

/0 6 29

/0 6 08

/2 0

11

11

11

/2 0

11

/2 0 /0 3

/2 0 /0 3 07

/0 2 16

L imoneno

28

11

/2 0

10 /0 1 18

/1 1 26

/1 0 28

/2 0

10

/2 0

10

/2 0

10 /1 0 05

/0 9 06

/0 7 27

/2 0

10

/2 0

10

/2 0

10

/2 0 08

/0 7

/2 0

T olueno

11

0

/0 6

For the field campaign a study area of 1.4km x 1km was defined, with a grid of 80 points and a duration of 26 weeks. Figure 7 shows the different percentages of time of occurrence of odour in the surrounding area of this IWWTP. At any grid point, the percentage of time was higher than 10%.

20000 15000

09

Figure 6. Modelling emissions surrounding the WWTP. UNE-EN 13725. Model CALPUFF.

30000 25000

Indol

Figure 8. Evolution of the major compound concentration in the pre-treatment zone. Table 2. Mean values of the studied compounds in the MBR area. Compound Methyl mercaptan

Figure 7. Map of percentage of time of occurrence of odour, IWWTP Alicante VDI-3940. The results with different sensory methods show that there were some strong odour levels inside the plant – point 1- pre-treatment and 3-centrifugation (see Figure 3) and some specific events in the sludge storage tank discharge area or in the MBR. The emission levels in the surroundings can be considered “not unpleasant” and comply with all considered regulations (see Figures 5, 6 and 7). Simultaneously from 2 to 5 samples per month were analysed by gas chromatography. The results showed the occurrence of higher

Mean (ppb, v/v)

Range (ppb, v/v)

Standard deviation

15.51

0.21–83.7

13.65

Carbon disulfide

191

6.28–1160

212

Dimethyl disulfide

81.9

4.55–412

79.0

Toluene

5644

217–32600

6152

Ethylbenzene

42.9

1.20–240

53.3

M, p-xylene

167

3.24–717

179.1

O-xylene

77.8

9.41–330

63.2

Limonene

253

1.46–4580

735

Indole

3440

456–8670

1898

The evolution of the concentration of TRS, NOx and NH3 could be measured with the portable continuous monitoring system. The occurrence of high concentrations of these compounds was directly related to the discharge time of the sludge storage tank. Figure 10 shows the evolution of the concentrations of TRS, NOx, NH3 during a period of study in the plant, and peak discharge sludge tank.

AUGUST 2013 WATER

ODOUR MEASUREMENT

(see Table 2 and Figure 9).


64

Technical Features

Table 3. Concentration of VOCs in different areas in WWTP. Sludge tank

Centrifuge

Biological reactor

DAF

Membrane area

Average value (ppb, v/v)

3.7

2.7

0.7

0.3

0.5

0.2

Standard deviation

710

830

27

4.5

8.8

6.1

15-0.1

26-0.0

3.1-0.0

2.1-0.0

2.6-0.0

1.9-0.0

Range of values 50000

processes causing odour events have been identified as well as their impact on the neighbourhood. This has led to the diagnosis and improvement of its production process and social impact.

45000 40000

ppb (v/v)

35000

Based on this current experience we propose the following guide or protocol for evaluating performance and efficient control of odours in a WWTP:

30000 25000 20000 15000

1.

Preliminary selection of sampling points both for emission and ambient odour evaluation (measure of air quality and environment; inside facility and surrounding) by simple perception, taking into account the nuisance degree.

2.

Simultaneous sensory measurements (field olfactometer) and physico-chemical (portable continuous monitoring device) monitoring.

3.

Results review, comparison of data and, as a consequence, definition of criteria (based on recommendations, current regulations etc) for classification of critical activities or events causing nuisance odour emission.

4.

Take corrective actions and improvements for operation of WWTP and a deodorisation system.

5.

Development of a monitoring plan with the support of Nasal Ranger® and Electronic Nose.

10000 5000

T olueno

L imoneno

11

27

/0 7

/2 0 /0 6 29

/0 6 08

/2 0

11

11

11

/2 0

11

/2 0 /0 3 28

/0 3 07

/0 2 16

/0 1 18

/2 0

11

11

/2 0

10

/2 0

10

/2 0 /1 1 26

28

05

/1 0

/1 0

/2 0

/2 0

10

10

10

/2 0 /0 9 06

27

/0 7

/2 0

/2 0

/0 7 08

/0 6

/2 0

10

10

0

09

ODOUR MEASUREMENT

Pre-treatment

Indol

Figure 9. Evolution of the major compound concentration in the MBR area.

Note: This paper won the Best Poster Presentation Award at Ozwater’13 in May.

THE AUTHORS Figure 10. Evolution of the concentrations of TRS, NOx, NH3 during a study period. The electronic nose measurements showed a similar trend to that registered with the Nasal Ranger® and the advantage of continuous work was sometimes used as a warning alarm. Tables 3 and 4 show 480 measurements were made registering the highest VOC emissions in the pre-treatment and during sludge discharges, although outside concentrations were very low or undetectable. These results were confirmed by the contrast of both methods, but there is not an obvious relationship between the presence of VOCs and olfactometric detection. Table 5 shows these last results.

CONCLUSIONS Using combined methods for odour measurement a complete characterisation of odour generation (both physico-chemical and sensorial) in the studied IWWTP has been achieved. The

Mercedes Calzada (email: macalzada@sacyr.com) is a Civil Works Engineer specialising in hydrology and a member of the Research & Development Department at Valoriza Agua, Murcia, Spain. Elena Campos (email: ecamposp@sacyr.com) is a Doctor in Agricultural Engineering and is responsible for the Research & Development Department at Valoriza Agua. Domingo Zarzo (email: dzarzo@sacyr.com ) is Technical and Research & Development Director at Valoriza Agua. He has 25 years’ experience in water treatment, wastewater treatment, desalination, drinking water and water reuse.

Thomas Ransome (email: tom.ransome@ssjv.com.au) is Operations Manager at the Southern Seawater Desalination Plant, Table 4. Concentration of VOCs in surrounding areas (7–9, Binningup, WA. He has eight years’ experience as Project neighbourhood outside the factory, 10, close to an external Manager in construction/commissioning/operations in Spain pumping station). and five years’ similar experience in Australia. Zone 7 Zone 8 Zone 9 Zone 10 Daniel Prats (email: Prats@ua.es) is Director, Institute of Average value (ppb, v/v) 0.1 0.1 0.0 0.5 Water and Environmental Sciences, University of Alicante. Standard deviation 2.8 2.8 0.0 210 Marceliano Ruiz (email: ruiz.marceliano@gmail.com) is Range of values (ppb, v/v) 1.7–0.0 1.7–0.0 0.1-0.0 15-0.0 a PhD Student at the University of Alicante.

WATER AUGUST 2013


65

Technical Features

Table 5:. Comparison of the Nasal Ranger® and the meter of VOCs in different areas in WWTP. Pre-treatment Date

Sludge tank

Spin/centrifuge

Biological reactor

DAF

Membrane area

D/T

VOCs (ppm)

D/T

VOCs (ppm)

D/T

VOCs (ppm)

D/T

VOCs (ppm)

D/T

VOCs (ppm)

D/T

12/04/2012

1,3

>30

0,4

<2

0,1

>4

0,3

>2

0,6

>7

0,1

>2

19/04/2012

9,2

>60

2,0

>4

0,2

>2

0,1

>2

0,3

>15

0,1

>2

20/04/2012

0,7

>30

1,5

<2

0,4

>2

0,1

>2

0,6

>7

0,1

<2

27/04/2012

6,9

>30

0,2

<2

0,5

>4

0,3

>2

0,1

<2

0,1

<2

03/05/2012

1,3

>15

0,9

<2

0,1

>2

0,1

>2

0,3

>7

0,1

<2

08/05/2012

9,1

>15

3,4

>7

0,9

>7

0,0

<2

1,4

>15

0,0

<2

11/05/2012

11

>15

1,6

>7

2,6

>15

0,2

>2

2,6

>15

0,0

>2

15/05/2012

15

>30

2,0

>2

1,7

>15

0,1

>2

1,3

>7

0,1

>2

18/05/2012

13

>60

0,5

>4

0,2

>4

0,1

>4

0,5

>15

0,0

>4

24/05/2012

9,3

>30

0,7

>2

1,7

>7

0,1

>2

0,1

>2

0,1

>2

25/05/2012

6,7

>15

0,6

>2

2,6

>7

0,0

>2

0,0

>2

0,0

>2

31/05/2012

1,7

>7

1,0

>4

0,5

>7

0,2

>4

0,2

>2

0,1

>2

01/06/2012

6,3

>60

1,1

>4

0,6

>4

0,1

>2

0,4

<2

0,1

>2

05/06/2012

1,6

>30

0,3

>2

2,6

>7

0,1

>2

0,1

>4

0,1

>4

07/06/2012

1,4

>30

0,9

>4

1,8

>7

0,3

>4

0,1

>4

0,1

>2

12/06/2012

0,6

>30

0,6

>2

0,1

>2

0,0

>4

0,2

>4

0,0

>2

15/06/2012

0,8

>7

0,6

>4

0,0

>4

0,0

>4

0,1

>4

0,0

>4

25/05/2012

1,3

>30

0,4

<2

0,1

>4

0,3

>2

0,6

>7

0,1

>2

31/05/2012

1,7

>7

1,0

>4

0,5

>7

0,2

>4

0,2

>2

0,1

>2

01/06/2012

6,3

>60

1,1

>4

0,6

>4

0,1

>2

0,4

<2

0,1

>2

05/06/2012

1,6

>30

0,3

>2

2,6

>7

0,1

>2

0,1

>4

0,1

>4

07/06/2012

1,4

>30

0,9

>4

1,8

>7

0,3

>4

0,1

>4

0,1

>2

12/06/2012

0,6

>30

0,6

>2

0,1

>2

0,0

>4

0,2

>4

0,0

>2

15/06/2012

0,8

>7

0,6

>4

0,0

>4

0,0

>4

0,1

>4

0,0

>4

REFERENCES AENOR (Spanish Normalization Association) (1991): UNE 77202. Calidad del aire. Determinacion de compuestos de azufre en la atmosfera. Equipo de toma de muestras. (Spanish National Standard. Air Quality. Determination of Sulfur Compounds in the Atmosphere. Sampling equipment). Spanish Normalization Association, Spain. AENOR (2004): UNE-EN 13725. Calidad del aire. Determinacion de la concentracion de olor por olfatometria dinamica. (Spanish National Standard. Air Quality. Determination of Odour Concentration by Dynamics Olfactometry). Spanish Normalization Association, Spain. Air NEPM (National Environment Protection Measure for Ambient Air Quality) (1998): Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities, Australia. Aitken MD & Okun MF (1992): Quantification of Wastewater Odours by the Affected Public. Water Environment Research, 64, pp 720–727. Cid-Montanez JF, Jorba R & Tomas R (2008): Effectiveness of Field Olfactometry and Neighbor Control to Reduce Odor Annoyance from Biosolids and MSW Composting.

Proceedings WEF/A&WMA Odors and Air Emissions 2008 Conference, pp 331–344, Phoenix, Arizona, USA. EPA (US Environmental Protection Agency) (2004): AERMOD: Description of Model Formulation. EPA-454/R-03-04.U.S.A. CALPUFF: System: EPA-Approved Version 3.8. Generalitat de Catalunya (Government of Catalonia) (2010) Avant projecte de llei de qualitat odorifera. (Draft Project for Odour Quality Law). Regional Government of Catalonia, Spain. Kleeberg KK, Liu Y, Jans M, Schlegelmilch M, Streese J & Stegmann R (2005): Development of a Simple and Sensitive Method for the Characterization of Odorous Waste Gas Emissions by Means of Solid-Phase Microextraction (SPME) and GC–MS/ Olfactometry. Hamburg University, Germany. Labaqua SA (2011): Estudio de olores en el Campello. Informe 1.074.403, Tunel de viento pp 83–105, Alicante, España. (Odour Study at El Campello. Report 1.074.403. Wind Tunnel). Labaqua, Spain. Martinez JV, Suarez C, Valor-Herencia I & Cortada C (2004): Una norma española para

medir el olor: UNE-EN-13725. (A Spanish Standard for Odour Measurement). Ingeniería Química (Spanish technical magazine Chemical Engineering). 412, pp 111–116. McGinley CM & McGinley MA (2000): Field Odour Monitoring and Enforcement. Presented at the 2nd Hawaii Water Environment Association Conference Honolulu, Hawaii, 6–7 June 2000. Ner (Netherlands Emission Guidelines for Air) (2004): NL Agency, Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment. The Netherlands. Nicolai R & Pohl S (2005): Understanding Livestock Odours. College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences. South Dakota State University, USA. VDI (2003): Bestimmung von Geruchsstoffimmissionen durch Begehungen – Bestimmung der Immissionshäufigkeit von erkennbaren Gerüchen – Rastermessung, Berichtigung zur Richtlinie Blatt 1, Deutschland. (Measurement of Odour Impact by Field Inspection – Measurement of the Impact Frequency of Recognizable Odours – Grid Measurement, Corrigendum Concerning Guideline Part 1, Germany.

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VOCs (ppm)


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Technical Features

COMBINING SMART METERING INFRASTRUCTURE AND BEHAVIOURAL CHANGE FOR RESIDENTIAL WATER EFFICIENCY SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

Results of a trial in the southern suburbs of Perth, Western Australia M Anda, J Brennan, E Paskett

ABSTRACT Smart meters are informative and educational tools that allow households to instantaneously view personal real-time water use feedback. A smart metering trial was incorporated into a residential water efficiency project in Perth, Western Australia. The H2ome Smart program by the Water Corporation and its contractor ENV Australia Pty Ltd engaged 12,000 households in selected suburbs of the Perth metropolitan area. After a selection process, nine households were accepted from the most active participants to participate in the Greensense smart metering trial, with the 10th participant being local television sustainable gardening celebrity Josh Byrne. A number of findings were made on how to derive benefits from smart meters in behavioural change programs.

INTRODUCTION Smart metering (advanced metering infrastructure – AMI) that is integrated with online portals or in-home displays (IHD) is fairly well established in the US and the UK, especially for the energy sector. Companies such as Opower (Laskey et al., 2010), GreenWave Reality and Tendril provide sophisticated services for energy utilities, while SmartReach (Sensus, 2012) is also undergoing smart metering trials for water utilities. These companies provide online or paper feedback founded on the same principles as Community Based Social Marketing (CBSM) behaviour change programs (McKenzie-Mohr and Smith, 1999), but are generally not implemented in conjunction with any formal behaviour change program that includes one-to-one coaching or dialogue marketing.

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In Australia, smart metering rollout has commenced, with a number of trials having been undertaken by water and energy utilities. Smart metering for water consumption has been implemented in communities such as Hervey Bay in Queensland (Turner et al., 2010) and trials are recommended by research, such as that conducted for the Victorian Water Trust and Sydney Water (Marchment, 2010; Sydney Water, 2009). At present, smart meter technology in Australia is being implemented rapidly in the energy sector (e.g. by Department of Primary Industries in Victoria and Ausgrid in NSW) and is not integrated with a behaviour change program. The Water Corporation has successfully rolled out smart meters in Kalgoorlie and the Pilbara region of the north-west of Western Australia and follow-up with behaviour change programs is being considered. In Kalgoorlie, 600km inland to the east of Perth, the capital city of Western Australia, 13,838 smart meters were installed on residential and commercial properties. A fixed wireless network collection system, called EverBlu, was used to transmit data by radio frequency (RF) and through the Ethernet. A cyble, or pulse module, an RF radio transmitter/ receiver, is fitted to the meter, records water use by the hour and transmits this data to a collector once a day. A collector can manage up to 50 meters and relays the data, by RF, to an Access Point each day. Access Points can manage up to 1,200 meters and relay the data once per day via the Ethernet, through an FTP server in the Perth central office, into the EverBlu system. The Collectors were installed on the overhead power and street light poles of the electricity network provider, Western Power (Peach, 2012).

Water supplied to Kalgoorlie fell by 837,500 kilolitres (kL) (10.13%) over the two-year period (2009–2011) of the smart meter trial. The long-term cost of water supplied to Kalgoorlie is $A7 per kL. Early detection of leaks inside property boundaries is perhaps the greatest benefit to customers from smart meters (Peach, 2012). The future potential benefit is the ability to deliver CBSM programs without the need to physically read meters, thereby resulting in a significant cost saving. Western Australia is experiencing a drying climate. In the South West, Perth has a Mediterranean climate, but winter rainfall has been steadily declining since the 1970s. The Water Corporation is Western Australia’s principal water utility, a state government-owned enterprise, and set the following targets by 2030 to address the state’s water crisis: • Reducing water use by 15%; • Increasing wastewater recycling to 30%; and • Developing new sources (Water Corporation, 2009). In Perth, the city drinking water supply, known as the Integrated Water Supply Scheme (IWSS), is sourced from a combination of surface water catchment dams (15%), groundwater (35%) and seawater desalination (50%) (typical percentages given) to provide an annual total supply of about 300GL/yr. Most of this water supply, 70%, is used by the residential sector. Average household water use in Perth is 280 kilolitres per annum (klpa) and of this about 40% is used outdoors on garden irrigation. Reading of water meters for billing purposes is done physically twice per year. The intention of the Water


67

Technical Features Corporation is to move to reading meters and billing six times per year.

METHODS In the residential sector, a behavioural change pilot project was designed using Community Based Social Marketing (CBSM) methods to reduce residential water use for a small town in the southwest of Western Australia, Margaret River. Besides raising awareness for water conservation, the project aimed to provide 1,030 participating households with information delivery and a 10% reduction in water consumption in 2009. Starting with an adjusted gross of 1,351, 96% of the contacted households were interested in the project. With 89% requesting information, delivery to a total number of 1,157 participating households was accomplished. A continuously high participation resulted in 1,043 households being part of the project until the very end. Upon completion of the project, the participating households reduced their water consumption by 12%, amounting to a saving of 35 kilolitres per household in one year. Due to a highly effective diffusion effect in the community, all residents in the Margaret River township reduced their water consumption by 7% to 11%, adding up to savings of 72,970 kilolitres in one year for all 2,644 residential properties for which valid readings existed. Before the project the households had used an average of 296kL/yr; after the project they reduced to 260kL/yr. With 97% being satisfied with the project,

Figure 1. The CBSM eco-coaching feedback loop for residential water use behaviour change programs. a deeper understanding of their own water use and a considerable number of water-saving appliances purchased during the project, the evaluation of the participants’ behavioural changes seems to indicate sustainable water savings for some time to come. The Water Corporation then decided to apply the methods in the north of the state, on a select group of towns that were experiencing water shortages. All households in these towns could participate. The selected group of eight towns in the north of the state have an annual average household water use of 606kL/yr. This is about twice that of towns and cities in the south of the state. The higher water use in the north is due to a combination of factors, including yearround higher temperatures, dust, free water use allowances for mining company housing tenants, and the fact that fewer demand management programs have been implemented compared to those in the southern towns and cities. It was estimated that the water use in these households of the north was evenly split between indoor and outdoor use, the latter including gardens and wash-down of cars and boats. Another important factor is the relatively low cost of water at approximately $A1.90 per kilolitre at this level of consumption. This tariff is approximately the same across the state, even though cost of supply in the north is much higher. This is made possible by a state government subsidy to the Water Corporation. By

comparison, the residential tariff for electricity in WA is $A0.25/kWh. McKenzie-Mohr (2000) and Sheehy & Dingle (2005) identified that unintegrated intensive approaches towards changing individuals’ behaviour, such as provision of information and economic selfinterest, are not successful. Instead, CBSM has shown to be very effective at inducing behavioural change, due to its pragmatic approach. In particular, it is important to introduce goal setting (Sheehy and Dingle, 2005), a sense of community (“your neighbours are doing it”) and to inspire concern for the environment (McKenzie-Mohr, 2000) as better motivators for change. Accordingly, the H2ome Smart programs by Water Corporation and ENV have undertaken the following methodological development. Firstly, a conceptual framework of CBSM has been refined, with the main actions developed into an ongoing feedback loop, as shown in Figure 1. Secondly, community engagement strategies have been incorporated that connect people with their community interests and raise awareness of the drying climate. After recruitment, coaching is done with facilitative conversations that help customers set targets for themselves. The CBSM methods deployed across these towns during 2010 and 2011 included:

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There are approximately 60 licensed wastewater recycling schemes in small towns across regional Western Australia and these are typically reusing effluent from treatment lagoons for turf irrigation on sports fields at the rate of about 3GL/yr. In Perth, wastewater recycling for industry is undertaken at the Kwinana Water Reclamation Plant at the rate of 6GL/yr. In order to increase this rate of recycling, the Water Corporation will commence recharge of Perth’s main groundwater source, the Gnangara Mound, with treated wastewater. Currently, Perth discharges approximately 130GL/yr of treated wastewater into the Indian Ocean from three main treatment plants. Aquifer recharge is proposed at about 40GL/ yr by 2015, with a major trial currently under way. This simultaneously becomes a new source of water for the IWSS.


68

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

Technical Features a.

identifying the barriers to engaging sustainable behaviours through research prior to delivery;

b.

designing a strategic approach that integrates behaviour change tools;

c.

announcement letter and phone call;

d.

delivery of requested educational materials;

e.

three annual meter reads supplemented by five more by the contractor and self-reads by willing households;

f.

five feedback/progress letters followed by coaching phone calls, each conducted by trained eco-coaches;

g.

final thank you letter and scorecard.

The Water Corporation coined the term “H2ome Smart” for this program and specified a target of 15% water savings from behavioural change in 8,331 households to be recruited from 13,643 in eight selected towns in the Pilbara and Kimberley regions of the north-west of Western Australia. Another 8% savings was targeted from retrofits to houses that provided free product upgrades, including new shower roses, toilet cisterns and tap aerators. Water Corporation was the Principal in this program with methodological design, project management, community forums, training of coaches, call and mail centre operations, including coaching, meter reading, website development, statistical analysis of data and evaluation by subcontractors. The targets were overly ambitious in the absence of sound information at the time of scoping. Unknown at the time was the very small proportion of owner-occupied households. The vast majority of tenancies were employer-owned housing (large mining companies) with free water-use allowances provided as part of the salary package, thereby creating disincentives for water conservation practices and participation in the program. Despite the target of engaging 8,331 households, the Water Corporation databases only held 4,413 accounts, with most of these lacking customer contact details. Eventually, 1,428 of these households were registered on the program – only 17% of the registration target. Therefore the project team needed to source other databases to increase the potential number of registrations. After several months,

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when contact details could be augmented from other sources and a total of 4,997 households were ultimately registered (with some withdrawals along the way), a reduced amount of time was available for engagement of the new recruits with CBSM techniques. Not all households received all calls because of their late recruitment in the program. Nevertheless, final evaluation showed that, as an overall average, participating households achieved a 6.9% savings from behavioural change and 9.9% overall if the results were annualised. Once the north-west region H2ome Smart program was underway, and despite the difficulties encountered, results were encouraging enough, so the Water Corporation decided to launch similar CBSM programs in the Great Southern and Perth regions in the south-west of the state, jointly funded by the Water Corporation and the Australian Government’s Water for the Future initiative. In Perth, the target number of households was specified as a minimum of 10,000 households participating throughout the program. The water reduction target to be achieved by the contractor with the participating households was an average of 12% in the first full year after program completion compared to non-participating households. Wastewater flows from these households were to be reduced accordingly. The program intent was to inform and empower the participating households on a one-on-one basis so they were able to formulate their own plan to put water efficiency into practice in their homes and ensure efficient use of scheme water into the future by forming sustainable water saving habits. The CBSM core methods of Figure 1 were again applied, with five rounds of meter reading, data analysis, feedback letters and coaching calls after the initial planning and announcement phase. During this research before delivery, baseline meter reads were taken, control households selected and appropriate communications and feedback materials developed in focus groups and surveys. A smart metering trial was run in conjunction with the Perth H2ome Smart program as a prize. Smart meters are an informative and educational tool that allows households to instantaneously view personal real-time water use

feedback. Western Australian company, Greensense, partnered with the H2ome Smart program to run the trial. After a selection process, nine participants agreed to participate in the trial, with the 10th participant being local television sustainable gardening celebrity, Josh Byrne, at his local Perth metropolitan residence. Josh was included in the trial to provide a baseline dataset of efficient water use for households to compare their water use and aim to emulate. The selection of the nine households was based on the following factors: • The budget available only allowed for this small-scale trial; • The offer was made only to participants in the southern suburbs to reduce geographical coverage and thereby minimise the time required for installation of the equipment; • A shortlist of 30 households was compiled from those that had registered early and online to H2ome Smart; had access to a computer and the internet; were clearly a keen H2ome Smart participant; and willing to monitor their water use weekly and engage with the H2ome Smart team; • The project team reviewed the selected properties and compared the data collected during the first round of phone calls, and the latest aerial imagery; • The project team called the shortlisted households to collect additional data needed to determine eligibility and their enthusiasm for the program; • The project team conducted a site visit to assess the shortlisted properties on site and to assess the households on a variety of parameters including meter access, meter type, water consumption and participation level, among others; • The final nine households were confirmed by direct contact. The Greensense product, GreensenseView, is provided as a hosted software service (Figure 2). It monitors electricity, water and gas use, displaying the results on an interactive ‘dashboard’ on a website or kiosk displays within homes or buildings. Greensense brings the data to life for building users, enabling people to see, in real time, how their actions impact on the sustainability performance on the spaces they live and work in. The Greensense product


69

Technical Features

Greensense Connect™

2

Greensense Crunch™

3

Greensense View™

Information Kiosk

Aggregation and Calculation Engine

Water Black Power Green Power

Sensors

Weather

Web Portal

Local ZigBee network

Smart Meters

Twitter

Hosted

Temperature BMS & Equipment

The Internet

Email Alerts

Excel Reports

Third-party systems can connect to Greensense Crunch directly

Greensense View Platform

Figure 2. The Greensense Process.

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

All nine (9) loggers were successfully installed by the end of March 2012 (Figures 3 and 4). These were only temporary installations for the duration of the trial.

1

Gas/LPG

Existing Systems

works by providing timely and sustained feedback and evidence of performance improvements. One of the unique features of the Greensense product is its ability to aggregate information across multiple facilities to enable real-time benchmarking, comparative performance tracking, and competitions between home or office occupants.

The water use data captured and processed for each household is then displayed on the Smart Meter Challenge Dashboard (Figure 5). The Smart Meter Challenge Dashboard has been tailored to align with Water Corporation branding, the feedback letters provided to participants and eco coaching. The main module shows water use in real time (within each five-minute interval) and can be updated as frequently as desired, with consideration given to the battery in the data logger. Greensense data is uploaded to the dashboard every four hours. When interacting with the dashboard the user can hover over each peak to clarify the volume of water used in the last five minutes. By clicking on the Select Date Range button, the householder can modify the timeframe in which the data is viewed (e.g. yesterday, last week, last month etc). The dashboard underwent many edits during the establishment period. All wording on the dashboard was revised to ensure it provided softer feedback; for example, the wording in the right-hand module was modified from “Worst” and “Best” to “Highest” and “Lowest”. The Water Corporation supplied a series of tips and the Water Corporation website address to be utilised in the rotating tips box. Focus groups were conducted during the planning phase of the H2ome Smart program. From this research, appropriate wording and graphics for feedback letters were developed to optimise participant experience. The main feedback graphic was a quintile pyramid, as shown in Figure 6. A quintile is a statistical value of a data set that represents 20% of a given population. Participant households were assigned their quintile according to their water use. The water use quintiles were recalculated in each round by ranking

Figure 3. Unidata logger and transmitter connected to V100 Elster water meter via T-probe.

Figure 4. Unidata logger and transmitter connected to Actaris water meter via a Cyble sensor.

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Technical Features • A summary of what the participants received (letter and information pack); • An online run through GreensenseView and dashboard; and

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

• Discussion around the script and how important it would be for the coaches to try and tailor their eco-coaching to the available real time data. The selected eco-coaches also had access to each household’s dashboard and web-based reports to allow them to further understand the household’s water use and facilitate behavioural change. In order to understand the real-time water use data received and to provide personalised feedback to Greensense participants it was essential that each individual household’s situation was understood.

Figure 5. Smart meter challenge dashboard. the control households according to their water use (highest to lowest) and allocating 20% of the control households to each water use quintile. This meant that the water use of the household at the bottom of each 20% group (in L/ person/day) was a ‘breakpoint’.

the households for the remaining rounds. This approach allowed the team to technically train these two eco-coaches and allow them to become familiar with the real-time data and develop a rapport with the households. These two eco-coaches underwent a targeted training session covering the following:

An example of a web-based ‘heat map’ report is shown in Figure 7. This report shows the average pattern of water use in a given period. In the example shown, the report provides evidence of a household using automatic garden irrigation in winter (the large flows at 10:00pm on Thursday and Sunday) and possible evidence of a water leak (minimum nighttime flows are above zero).

This report shows the average 24-hour consumption profile over each day of the week for 'Water (L)' for the period 1Jul-2012 to 30-Sep-2012. Mon

Tue

Wed

Thu

Fri

Sat

Sun

12:00 AM

4.2

0.4

5.0

1.9

2.3

3.5

1.5

01:00 AM

1.9

1.2

3.1

0.4

0.0

1.2

0.0

02:00 AM

0.0

0.4

2.3

1.5

0.0

0.4

0.8

03:00 AM

3.1

1.2

1.2

2.3

0.4

0.0

0.0

04:00 AM

1.9

1.2

10.4

1.2

0.4

0.8

0.0

05:00 AM

1.5

5.8

2.3

1.5

2.3

2.3

1.5

06:00 AM

3.8

16.5

18.1

6.5

13.8

5.4

18.1

07:00 AM

55.0

39.6

61.2

23.8

29.2

8.5

18.1

08:00 AM

83.8

77.3

83.8

85.0

81.9

29.2

61.9

09:00 AM

30.8

36.5

50.0

38.8

28.1

43.1

39.2

10:00 AM

15.0

21.9

34.2

23.1

9.6

70.8

32.7

11:00 AM

28.5

26.5

23.5

12.3

13.1

47.3

42.7

took its place. The draft information pack

12:00 PM

22.7

24.6

33.8

11.2

13.5

36.9

37.3

was edited and updated to reflect all of

01:00 PM

23.8

19.2

23.8

24.6

16.5

8.5

19.2

02:00 PM

12.3

20.8

11.9

16.5

15.0

12.3

19.6

03:00 PM

19.2

15.8

10.0

20.8

11.9

12.7

5.4

04:00 PM

24.2

18.8

11.2

16.2

10.8

21.9

8.8

05:00 PM

13.8

16.5

9.2

10.0

20.0

29.2

9.6

06:00 PM

11.2

17.7

16.5

14.2

10.8

15.8

17.3

07:00 PM

22.7

14.6

6.9

13.5

8.5

10.0

14.6

08:00 PM

13.8

16.9

8.8

8.5

17.7

4.6

8.5

09:00 PM

11.2

18.5

7.7

6.5

18.1

16.5

7.3

10:00 PM

11.9

9.2

7.7

168.1

10.0

7.7

164.2

specific type of eco-coaching call, only

11:00 PM

7.7

4.2

2.7

8.8

7.3

5.8

3.1

two eco-coaches were identified to call

Figure 7. Heat-map report.

Figure 6. Quintile module. During eco-coaching weeks the quintile diagram (Figure 6) for each household was displayed on the dashboard, and for all other weeks a general weather module

the above changes to the dashboard. Once confirmed and approved the packs were individually tailored to each Greensense participant to include their username and password. To ensure Greensense smart metering challenge households got a targeted and

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71

Technical Features As can be seen in Figure 8, water use

Average daily water consumption (L/pp/day)

is generally much higher in the months

1000

of February and March, when high

900

summer temperatures require garden

800

irrigation. One particular household,

700

Bodis (green line) showed the highest

600

water use due to large areas of turf that were subsequently replaced with a more

500

waterwise garden design leading to

400

substantial reduction in water use.

300

The Byrne household (purple line) water use during this same time was

100

low, even with the lush, productive garden, because of the use of greywater

0 February

March

April

May

June

July (to date)

Ramlugan

Byrne

Powell

Chen

Cooper

McGowan

Keenan

Chang

Bodis

Westwood

Household Average

Perth Average Scheme Water Use

Figure 8. Average daily water use (L/p/day) of Greensense VIP households.

RESULTS The Perth H2ome Smart program ran from July 2011 to August 2012 and 12,256 households were initially recruited from approximately 33,000 households in the target suburbs. By the end of the program 11,067 were still participating. At the time of publishing this paper, the water saved as a result of this program was still being evaluated. The Greensense smart metering trial system started to record data for all 10 participating households on Wednesday, 1 February, 2012. It is interesting to note the patterns in water use before households could view their dashboards, and after they had access to their dashboard and had had a few days to understand the real-time data and patterns in water use. By comparing these two separate date ranges (‘before’ corresponding to Thursday, 23 February, 2012–Wednesday, 28 March, 2012, and ‘after’ corresponding to Thursday, 29 March, 2012–Wednesday, 2 May, 2012) we can see the effect that access to real-time water use data can have on water use behaviours. The Greensense smart metering trial, or ‘challenge’ as it was communicated to participants, demonstrated a variable response to the real-time water use dashboards. By utilising Heat Maps the Greensense system can retrieve hourly averages for water use in an average week and display the data using average litre figures and colour coding to help identify anomalies and patterns of water

for irrigation.

FINDINGS At the conclusion of the program the team collated all water use data and

use. The Greensense system can also produce Weekly Profile Comparison Reports where the average water use and maximums can be tabulated and graphed for two periods of time.

feedback from the participants to

Water use data was downloaded from GreensenseView to track water usage in each household. It is evident from Figure 8 that most households made significant water savings since the start date.

The following findings are important

Josh Byrne, from ABC TV’s Gardening Australia, and his family were consistently low-water users. Their household is a great example of a waterwise household that has a highly functional (and productive) garden. Indeed, many of their water savings come from actions taken in the garden. Some of the other households in the smart metering trial had established gardens with lower percentages of lawn, but most of these were not highly functional. In order to create a highly productive and waterwise garden, the Byrne household has implemented the following:

complete a final analysis demonstrating the outcomes of the challenge, including its advantages/disadvantages and opportunities/constraints for the future. for the future: 1.

can be limited by water meters that measure in 5-litre intervals; the data displayed is likely to lag behind when the water was actually used. 2.

meter reads) proved difficult. Though significant effort was expended to design meaningful modules for the dashboard, the quintile module was eventually pulled down. 3.

Participants enjoyed seeing their water use in real-time, but engagement by the participants with the dashboard was lower than anticipated and decreased as the program progressed. Monitoring their own water use was not a high priority

• Hydrozoning of plants;

and there were no mechanisms to ensure that participants would log on.

• Seasonal planting of food plants;

• Collection of rainwater for drip irrigation, as well as supplying water to the toilet and washing machine.

The integration of two data collection methods (real-time and manual

• Careful design of the garden with consideration to space, sunlight, aspect etc;

• Collection and treatment of greywater for drip irrigation;

The display of water use versus time

4.

Some participants stated that they would prefer an in-home display (IHD), whereas others preferred an online portal. This suggests that one solution does not fit all.

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72

Technical Features 5.

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

6.

The eco-coaches found it beneficial if they and the participant were viewing the dashboard during the coaching calls, but this would not be practical as part of a larger program where speed and efficiency is necessary to achieve cost-effectiveness. To integrate the data collected into this trial, the dashboards were reviewed manually and key points summarised for the eco-coach. However, the ideal scenario would be for the data to be analysed automatically and then included within feedback letters and scripting.

RECOMMENDATIONS The following recommendations are particularly relevant for utilities, industry practitioners and project managers of behaviour change programs: 1.

2.

Install water meters with a small logging interval (i.e. 1 litre instead of 5 litres) to improve the accuracy of real-time data and allow actions to be directly correlated to water use. Smart metering should be utilised to collect baseline data for at least a year before the implementation of a BCP.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Particular thanks are owed to Kim Dennison, Aisha Chalmers, Kristy Ferguson, John Hunt and Brenten Wellington at ENV Australia Pty Ltd, Fabian Le Gay Brereton at Greensense, Bill Heppard at Research Panel, Bartholomew Hart at IA (Australia) Group Pty Ltd, Alex Maund at Data Analysis Australia Pty Ltd, Colin Ashton Graham and Josh Byrne.

THE AUTHORS Dr Martin Anda (email: m.anda@murdoch. edu.au) is Coordinator Environmental Engineering, School of Engineering and Information Technology, Murdoch University, Perth, WA. John Brennan has retired from his position as Manager of Water Efficiency Projects Team at Water Corporation, Leederville, Perth, WA. Elise Paskett (email: elise.paskett@ watercorporation.com.au) is Water Efficiency Project Manager at Water Corporation, Leederville, Perth, WA.

REFERENCES

3.

IHDs or online portals should be opt-in, as it is unlikely that all households will engage with these as often as desired.

Laskey A & Kavazovic O (2010): Opower: Energy Efficiency Through Behavioural Change and Technology, XRDS Magazine, Vol 17, No 4.

4.

Water use feedback should also be available as an automatic daily or weekly email, with embedded charts showing comparative water use to continuously re-engage participants through the duration of the program.

Loh M & Coghlan P (2003): Domestic Water Use Study: In Perth, Western Australia 1998â&#x20AC;&#x201C;2000. Water Corporation, Perth, Western Australia.

5.

The display of data and any additional analysis for participants should be as clear and easy to understand as possible. It is recommended that water use be displayed in litres per 1 min. units (although this will only be effective if the water meter logs in 1L intervals). Analysis results displayed on an IHD or portal must align with the aims of the program and provide real value.

6.

Results from regular data analysis of the real-time data should be incorporated into personalised feedback letters, along with up-to-date results of the community effort and a reminder of their agreed actions.

7.

Feedback letters should be followed by an eco-coaching call that does not require the eco-coach or the participant to see their real-time data to be effective.

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Marchment Hill Consulting Pty Ltd (2010): Smart Water Metering Cost Benefit Study,

Final Report â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Available for Information. Report prepared for the Victorian Water Trust, Melbourne. McKenzie-Mohr D & Smith S (1999): Fostering Sustainable Behaviour: An Introduction to Community-Based Social Marketing. New Society Publishers: Gabriola Island, BC Canada. McKenzie-Mohr D (2000): Fostering Sustainable Behaviour Through Community Based Social Marketing. American Psychologist, 55, 5: 531537. Peach G (2012): Kalgoorlie Smart Metering Trial: Key findings and outcomes, Water Corporation, Perth. Sensus (2012): Thames Water and SmartReach Extend Smart Water Meter Trial, sensus.com/ web/usca/news/display?news_ id=thameswater-and-smartreach-extend-smartwatermeter-trial-press-release, access 19/9/12. Sheehy L & Dingle P (2005): Evaluating Environmental Education Programs: How Do We Know if They Work? AAEE 2004, Adelaide. Sydney Water (2009): National Smart Metering Program, Discussion Paper for the Requirements Work Stream, Sydney Water, Sydney. Turner A, Retemal M, White S, Palfreeman L & Panikkar A (2010): Third Party Evaluation of Wide Bay Water Smart Metering and Sustainable Water Pricing Initiative Project. DEWHA, Canberra. Water Corporation (2009): Water Forever: Towards Climate Resilience. Water Corporation, Perth. Water Corporation (2010): Perth Residential Water Use Study 2008/2009. Water Corporation, Perth.


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SMART METERING AND BILLING Information to guide household water consumption A Liu, D Giurco, P Mukheibir, G Watkins

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION Until recently, householders have had limited knowledge of water consumption beyond their quarterly paper bill, which has traditionally displayed little more than the total volume of water consumed over the period, pricing information and the total amount due. More recently many water utilities have begun to introduce additional information in their water bills. This new information typically includes bar charts depicting past consumption in monthly or quarterly blocks for the previous year. Other utilities have gone further to include some means of comparison with other households according to size, e.g. the number of occupants or the dwelling size. Recent developments in smart water metering technology make far more detailed information available at enduse level, creating new opportunities for water utilities to manage water more efficiently (Boyle et al., 2013). If correctly harnessed, the technology and information resources offer the potential to transform urban water management for both water utilities and their consumers (Giurco et al., 2010). Indeed, through tailored water use information, householders can more readily identify opportunities for increased efficiencies.

Significantly, any changes in consumption patterns and behaviours that lead to efficiency gains in water usage can make important contributions to the achievement of a sustainable urban water future. The wealth of new water consumption information that can be acquired by water utilities through investment in smart metering technology can be used internally for water demand forecasting and planning. However, to maximise benefits on the consumer side, a key challenge is to understand what additional information is of interest and value to consumers. Within the energy sector, a number of studies have tested the impact of increased information through smart metering on household electricity consumption (Abrahamse, 2005; Fischer, 2008). In the water sector, still more work is required to understand the role for additional information. In particular, it is essential to gain a deeper understanding of the voice of the customer in order to strike a balance somewhere between providing the current minimum levels of information and the breadth and depth of information that can be presented through smart metering. Key questions that have yet to be explored include whether customers want more detailed information and, if so, what specific information they are interested in. In parallel, water utilities considering smart metering technology and information also need to carefully consider what their underlying goals are vis-Ă -vis their consumers. A move towards improved customer relationship management might be envisioned; or, more complexly, the empowerment of consumers through increased access to information to enable water saving behaviours. There are, naturally, both costs and benefits in using smart water meters and in providing additional information to consumers. However, the potential benefits are more likely to be realised through a clearer understanding of customer needs.

METHOD The Institute for Sustainable Futures at the University of Technology, Sydney, Griffith University and MidCoast Water are collaborating on an Australian Research Council project from 2012 to 2015 that investigates the role of intelligent water metering in a sustainable urban water future. The project was established to gain a better understanding of the intersection between water consumption, access to information, technology and behaviour practices, and will explore the hypothesis that households are likely to reduce their water consumption through the increased availability of relevant and detailed consumption information. This paper presents key findings on informational preferences of householders regarding their water consumption, gauged through the use of a householder survey. This detailed survey was distributed by post in November/December 2012 to a total of 262 householders in MidCoast Water service areas in New South Wales. The survey was designed to measure a broad range of aspects of household water consumption pertinent to the age of smart water metering and a parallel need for sustainable urban water management. In addition to capturing informational preferences, the scope of the questions included water appliance stock, water related practices, attitudes towards conservation and new technologies, and household demographics. A financial incentive involving a $50 water bill rebate was offered to respondents to compensate for the time taken to complete the extensive survey. This paper focuses on the subset of results pertaining to the household surveys that were distributed to 141 households within the Tea Gardens, Hawks Nest, Swan Bay and Windy Whoppa areas of New South Wales. Through a first mail-out, 53 households returned surveys, yielding an initial 38% response rate. It is on these respondents that we report in this paper. However,

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Until now householders have received limited information on their water consumption patterns. Smart water metering presents far more detailed information resources and the opportunity to transform the existing flow of information to consumers for improved efficiencies in water usage. However, a balance is needed between delivering current minimal information and the full detail smart metering can provide on time of use and end uses. It is critical to understand what information is of value to householders. This paper presents results from a recent householder survey at MidCoast Water (NSW), which improves our understanding of the customer perspective on water consumption information.


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Technical Features a second mail-out with an extended deadline is currently underway in an effort to increase the overall survey response rate.

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

DISCUSSION AND RESULT ANALYSIS The potential level of detail that can be presented to householders through smart water metering is very high and could theoretically go as far as itemised billing, which parallels billing for communications, e.g. mobile phone and broadband usage. The flow data collected through smart water metering can be disaggregated through smart meter data management software (e.g. Trace Wizard© or SmartMon) to single events. That is, for each water-consuming event (e.g. each shower, toilet flush, tap use, etc) it is possible to capture start time, duration, volume and flow rates (i.e. average, minimum, maximum and mode). Smart water meter data can therefore be presented to consumers as informational content at a variety of different levels of detail, with varying degrees of accompanying analysis or interpretation. The challenge for water utilities is to find a suitable balance and to provide information that can be readily interpreted by consumers and can elicit favourable responses, e.g. more efficient behaviours. It is therefore critical to understand how much information consumers need or want, and what informational content resonates with consumers. Our overall survey results from 145 respondents showed promisingly that the overwhelming majority (84%) agreed with the statement “I want more detail about my water use”. This result seems to bode well for the potential use of smart water metering to enhance information for householders. Within the sub-group of survey participants in Tea Gardens, Hawks Nest, Swan Bay and Windy Whoppa, which are presented in detail in this paper, more than three-quarters agreed with this statement, showing a similarly high level of demand for more detailed information about water use. Regarding information content itself, householders were asked what additional information they would like to have about their water use. They were also asked about their preferences in terms of how often they would like to receive information about their water use and mode of information delivery. The survey also gauged householder perceptions

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Figure 1. Householder preferences in terms of cost and volume information.

Figure 2. Householder preferences in terms of informational comparisons.

Figure 3. Householder preferences in terms of advice. on the potential impact of additional information. The presentation of our results begins with householder preferences in terms of informational content and the level of detail that is of interest. Figure 1 shows the survey results on both cost and volume data given on per activity, per day, per week and per month levels. Here we observe that the respondents’ greatest interest lies in receiving information on an activity level (i.e. an end-use breakdown between different water consuming events such as showering, watering the garden etc). Of respondents, 60% expressed an interest in receiving cost information per activity and 40% on volume per activity. Householders showed a stronger preference for cost information (i.e. in

dollar terms) over information presented in terms of volumes (i.e. litres). This we interpret as a reflection of the fact that financial data is more tangible and easier for householders to relate to and think in terms of than are litres, and especially larger units (e.g. kilolitres or megalitres). The respondents further revealed a preference for information to be presented in weekly terms, rather than the figures representing daily or monthly values. This is the case for both cost and volumetric data. This probably reflects a tendency for other costs and personal budgeting to be considered in weekly terms; e.g. rental payments and salaries are often thought of in weekly terms. Figure 2 shows the informational preferences of householders expressed using a variety of possible comparators.


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Figure 4. Ranking of householders’ strongest information preferences. There is a strong interest in end-use information. Almost three-quarters wished to receive information on where most water is used in the home, which would allow for comparisons between different water using activities. Householders were similarly keen to be notified of high usage and if using above or below average. More than half were interested to know if they were using more than usual. These results reveal an interest among householders to compare their consumption both with themselves (historically) and with others. Interestingly, though, when asked directly if they wished to know how much the community use, the level of interest was surprisingly low at just under one-quarter. This perhaps signifies that knowing where they stand in comparison to the average might suffice rather than any further details on community usage. With regards to information given in the form of advice, we found a greater level of interest among the surveyed householders (see Figure 3). The vast majority of respondents displayed interest in receiving information on how much they can save, and specifically on current rebate programs. Information on how to reduce water use and general water saving tips were also popular. These results show householders are keen on information about how much they can save and how they can practically achieve this.

To understand information priorities, householders were additionally asked to select their top three from all the options presented above. The results are shown in Figure 4. Again we see the strongest preference of householders is for more practical information on how much they can save and how to reduce use. Finally, householders were also given the opportunity to state any other information about water use they would like to receive; however, the householders declined to make any additional suggestions. In retrospect, this question could have been given more space within the questionnaire as it may simply have been missed by some survey participants.

We also asked householders if they agreed with the statement that their water utility “should do more to help me save”. Half the respondents agreed, while onethird was undecided. A minority of about 10% of householders were of the opinion that the water utility does not need to do more to help them save water. The survey also questioned householders as to whether they believed that their existing (quarterly) bill gives them all the information they need. Figure 6 shows one-third of respondents were dissatisfied with the current levels of information in their water bills. A quarter of responses were neutral, suggesting these householders were uncertain about the potential benefits of additional information. Overall, about 40% of respondents agreed their bill gives them all the information they need, but a handful of these strongly agreed. Householders were also asked if they felt informed about their household water use. Figure 7 shows more than

To gauge whether householders believe additional information would help them to better manage their household water consumption they were asked if they agreed with the statement “I think that additional information would help me to reduce my water consumption”. Figure 5 shows that three-quarters agreed additional information would help, of which one-third strongly agreed. About 10% responded neutrally, showing more uncertainty about the role additional information might play. The remaining 10% disagreed that information would help, but no one strongly disagreed.

Figure 6. Level of satisfaction with current water bill information.

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Figure 5. Householders’ belief that additional information would help them to save water.


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SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

one-third felt informed, but slightly fewer than this did not. As in the previous question, about one-quarter of responses were neutral.

Figure 7. How well informed householders feel about their water use. The survey instrument was also used to gauge householders’ preferences in terms of how frequently they would like to receive information and through which mode of delivery (e.g. by post, email, etc). Figure 8 depicts householders’ preferred frequency of water consumption information. Almost two-thirds of respondents preferred the current (quarterly) frequency of information. One-third would prefer to receive information on a monthly basis. A very small minority is interested in either fortnightly or real-time information.

Figure 8. How often householders prefer to receive water consumption information. In order to understand preferred modes of information delivery, the survey requested respondents to rank seven choices. Few respondents went as far as to rank all options, with progressively fewer responses provided towards the least preferred end of the scale – i.e. seventh choice (where just two responses were supplied). We therefore only

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present the top three choices, which we believe summarise the opinions well.

weekly terms, as opposed to either daily or monthly units.

Figure 9 shows there was a surprisingly clear overall preference for information to be received via post. Almost twothirds of respondents ranked post as their first choice mode of delivery. Email was the next most popular choice with a quarter of respondents selecting this as their most preferred option. All other options (i.e. website, SMS, smartphone applications, in-home displays and phone) were unpopular among respondents. Between zero and three households included these options within any of their top three choices.

In terms of comparisons, we found householders are interested to know if their own use is particularly high (either between end-uses within the home; or compared to usual). We found little interest in the community’s usage, beyond a simple average.

Finally, we also asked householders if they would like to be able to choose the mode of information delivery. Here more than three-quarters agreed they would appreciate the choice, showing potential for increased flexibility in how household water information is transmitted to householders.

CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS Smart water metering carries a wide range of potential new opportunities, including a contribution towards creating better informed consumers. In this regard, the key challenge for water utilities is to sort through the mounds of data that can be collected by water utilities through smart metering in order to transmit information that is useful to householders.

The overwhelming majority of survey respondents identified a paper bill as their preferred mode of information delivery, which is the existing mode of communication used by water utilities. Email was a distant second choice. In terms of frequency, the vast majority are happy to receive information every quarter (which is also the status quo). One-third would prefer more frequent information on a monthly basis. Only a handful of respondents were interested in real-time information, which was also reflected in the lack of interest in communication via a website, SMS, smart phone applications and in-home displays. Smart metering has been hailed for enduse and real-time information; however, for consumers here it is the end-use component that seems to be of greater interest than the real-time aspect. Our results show strong support for water utilities to continue providing water consumption information to households via quarterly paper bills, and that most customers would welcome specific informational enhancements made possible through smart metering.

Our survey examined three key components of informational content, In terms of next steps, the project namely information units, comparators team is currently working to develop and advice. The results of our survey a smart water bill for households. The show that householders’ greatest interest “smart bill” will be used to present lies in receiving advice on how to save. end-use data collected via smart meters It is understandable that consumers to a subset of the householders within can more readily act if armed with the present study area to test the impact practical tips and information. In terms of smart meter information on household water consumption. Questions that of information units, we found that arise through working on this current data presented in terms of volumes paper include: does not resonate well with customers. On the contrary, consumption data in dollar terms makes data more meaningful to consumers. In addition, householders showed a preference for information at the activity level (i.e. Figure 9. Householders’ preferred mode of delivery for end-uses); and in water consumption information.


77

Technical Features • What information is useful for household water users; and what can householders understand? • Should householders have choice regarding what information they receive; and how far should water utilities go in providing advice from the general to the very specific, or indeed personal?

An important limitation of the present analysis is the relatively small sample size, with mostly two-person households and slightly older householders. However, through the combined analysis of other surveyed areas within New South Wales (e.g. Taree and Forster) and a second mail-out of surveys, we should capture a broader demographic and understanding of customer perspective on additional smart water meter information to inform a potential future involving smarter water billing.

The Authors would like to thank the Australian Research Council (Linkage Project LP110200767) for supporting the research, and the project team – Tom Boyle, Candice Moy and Sarah Henderson – for contributing to the production and distribution of the householder survey.

THE AUTHORS

Ariane Liu (email: Ariane.Liu@uts.edu. au) is a a PhD Candidate at the Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), NSW.

Graeme Watkins (email: Graeme. Watkins@midcoastwater.com.au) is Manager Strategic Operations at MidCoast Water, Taree, NSW.

REFERENCES Abrahamse W, Steg L, Vlek C & Rothengatter T (2005): A Review of Intervention Studies Aimed at Household Energy Conservation. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 25, 2005, pp 273–291. Boyle T, Giurco D, Mukheibir P, Liu A, Moy C, White S & Stewart R (2013): Intelligent Metering for Urban Water: A Review. Water Open-Access Journal, 5, 3, pp 1052-1081. Fischer C (2008): Feedback On Household Electricity Consumption: A Tool For Saving Energy? Energy Efficiency, 1, 1, pp 79–104. Giurco DP, White SB & Stewart RA (2010): Smart Metering and Water End-Use Data: Conservation Benefits and Privacy Risks, Water Open-Access Journal, 2, 3, pp 461–467.

Associate Professor Damien Giurco (email: Damien.Giurco@uts.edu.au) is a Research Director at the Institute for Sustainable Futures, UTS, NSW.

Marchment Hill (2010): Smart Water Metering Cost Benefit Study, Final Report. Prepared for the Department of Sustainability and Environment, Victoria.

Pierre Mukheibir (email: Pierre.Mukheibir@ uts.edu.au) is a Research Director at the Institute for Sustainable Futures, UTS, NSW.

Moy C, Liu A, Boyle T & Giurco D (2012): Know Your Water: MidCoast Water Householder Survey, Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology, Sydney.

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Technical Features

MODELLING BOUNCE-BACK IN WATER CONSUMPTION POST-DROUGHT D Giurco, S Mohr, J Fyfe, P Rickwood, M Teng, J Franklin

ABSTRACT Focused on a case study of Geelong, Victoria, this paper presents the results of a unique comparison of (i) a custombuilt regression model for forecasting total customer water demand and (ii) end-use based water projections using the integrated Supply Demand Planning model (iSDP) model. The regression model used historical data for calibration based on level of restrictions, evapotranspiration, temperature, and rainfall. By selecting a future climate scenario (and any anticipated restriction periods) for the next 10-year period, demand can be projected by the model. By contrast, the end-use model was calibrated to consumption data during drought (rather than long-term averages) to determine the extent to which end-use consumption was suppressed and how much each end-use may be expected to rebound under a range of scenarios. Results from both approaches are contrasted and reflections of the relative strengths of each approach are discussed.

INTRODUCTION Major population centres in Australia have experienced significant periods of drought over the last decade. As a result, restriction regimes were put in place that resulted in significant water savings. In the case of Geelong, with a population of over 250,000 people, Level 3 and 4 restrictions were in place from late 2006 to early 2010 and were progressively lifted as the drought eased. Determining the effect of restriction periods on urban water consumption is an important modelling exercise that can be used to more effectively manage scarce water resources. Not only is it important to determine the reduction of water consumption during periods

of restrictions, it is also important to determine the longevity of reductions after the stages of restrictions are lifted. This has given rise to the term bounce-back, which is the extent to which water consumption levels will rise toward pre-restriction levels following the lifting of restrictions. To date, limited research has been published on bounce-back in Australia. This paper contrasts two approaches to modelling future water demand following the lifting of restrictions – a regressionbased model and an end-use model. Each has strengths and weaknesses and the combination of techniques offers complementary insights. The paper is structured in three main sections. The first introduces the regression model for estimating the effect of historical restrictions and future water demand proejctions based on different climate scenarios. The second introduces results from the end-use model/integrated Supply Demand Planning (iSDP) model and explores future water demand projections based on different customer behaviour scenarios. The iSDP model also has the capacity to run scenarios of low or high uptake of water-efficient technologies. Finally, in the third section, results and modelling approaches are contrasted.

REGRESSION MODEL In the literature, regression modelling has been used to determine water savings associated with periods of water restrictions. Such models may be fitted on pre-restriction data and used to derive estimates of water consumption during restrictions periods, which are subsequently compared with observed consumption in order to generate estimates of water savings (Hansen and

Narayanan, 1981; Kenney et al., 2004; Kidson et al., 2006; Neal et al., 2010; Spaninks, 2010). The effect of restrictions may also be determined by incorporating one or more additional variables into the regression model to reflect the implementation of restrictions (Anderson et al., 1980; Roberts, 2008). Simple dummy variables reflecting when a given stage of restrictions is in force are often used (Anderson et al., 1980; Roberts, 2008), although more complex specifications can be applied. In a similar manner, the long-lasting effects of restrictions may also be determined, using a simple dummy variable that defines the post-restrictions period. For Geelong, a 10-year forecast model was built and forecasts bulk water demand under user-specified climate scenarios and bounce-back from the 2007–2010/11 water restrictions. The model applies linear regression to historical data between 2001 and 2011. It predicts bulk water demand based on temperature and rainfall under varying levels of restrictions (to allow for climate variability). Future forecasts can then be made for ‘wet’ or ‘dry’ climate years under varying levels of anticipated future restrictions or bounce-back. The regression model is:

where the per capita water demand D is a function of: • a constant term a0 • evapotranspiration (more evap. leads to higher water usage) a1.E

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A comparison of a custom-built regression model for forecasting total customer water demand and end-use based water projections using the integrated Supply Demand Planning (iSDP) model.


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Technical Features • the number of days in the month over 20°C (more warm days, higher water use) a2.W • the amount of rain (more rain, less demand) a3.R • the level of restrictions (i.e. Level 1, Level 2, Level 3, Level 4) E.(x1.r1+...+x4.r4)

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

• the degree of bounce-back specified/ expected [used for future projection scenarios] (1-B).E.((1-x1).r1+...+(1-x4)r4 The regression model is run using calibration data from 2001 to 2011 to determine: • the constants a0, a1, a2, a3 which are then also used for the future projection.

Figure 1. Illustration of influence of climate.

To calculate the 10-year projection, for each year, the user specifies: • Any expected level of restriction for the given year [default = none; and all projections in this paper use the default of no anticipated restriction periods]; • The level of progress back towards unrestricted demand for each year in the future projection period, specified on a zero (0) to one hundred (100) scale » 0 = litres per capita per day (LCD) demand as per under Stage 4 restrictions (no bounce-back) » 100 = LCD demand as per prerestriction levels (full bounce-back); • The specific climate reference year to be used as the basis for the projection (e.g. we expect the next 10 years to have a climate like 1985, or 2010, etc). The model then uses the evapotranspiration, rainy days and warm days data from the specified year as a basis for the future projections. As an alternative to specifying a specific climate reference year, a percentile figure from zero to one can be used, i.e. 0.5 is a neutral climate, 0.01 is an extremely wet-cold climate (lowers projected water use), or 0.99 is an extremely dry-hot climate (increases projected use). To illustrate, Figure 1 shows the influence of climate; three scenarios are run, each goes to 50% bounce-back over six years (i.e. 0% bounce-back in year one, 10% in year two, 20% in year three,

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Figure 2. Calibration of 10-year regression model July 2001 to July 2011. 30% in year four, 40% in year five, 50%

ISDP/END-USE MODEL

in years 6–10):

Another approach to projecting demand is to use an end-use model. Unlike regression, which tries to find a relationship between a small number of explanatory variables, an end-use model takes explicit account of water consumption by different end uses (residential shower use, toilets, irrigation, industrial, etc) and, because of this, knowledge of particular trends (such as the trend to more water-efficient appliances) can be explicitly included in the model. By contrast with the regression model, whose calibration period is 2001 to 2011, the calibration period for the End-Use Model (also called iSDP or integrated Supply Demand Planning model) is June 2000 to June 2006.

I.

is for a 90th percentile climate (dry-hot) [indicated by a long dash in Figure 1] and

II.

is for a 50th percentile climate (average) [indicated by a solid line in Figure 1]

III. is

for a 10th percentile climate (wet-

cold) [indicated by a dotted line in Figure 1]. The calibration data is shown in Figure 2 – note that at the time of analysis, only actual water consumption data to 2011 were available.


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Figure 3. Water demand projections. Under the end-use modelling approach, in addition to the baseline forecast (black dash) two scenarios are developed, one of which is presented here: • Low demand projection (low bounceback/high savings) (red dash); • Medium projection (medium water use/bounce-back) (blue dash). The purpose of describing these plausible scenarios to the end-use level is to show how relative changes in enduse consumption affect projections. They take into consideration the work of Beatty (2011), who estimated significant indoor savings of up to 44% in Sydney under Stage 3 restrictions, where previously it was commonly assumed that savings from restrictions were overwhelmingly from outdoor savings. The projection in Table 1 (overleaf) shows that residential showers and residential landscapes are the dominant areas of use and uncertainty. While toilets and clothes washers are also big uses, use in these appliances is influenced by technology (i.e. is the toilet or clothes washer efficient or inefficient?). Usage and behaviours do play a part and could relax following lifting of restrictions (e.g. washing clothes without a full load, or using full-flush instead of half-flush); however, these behaviours have a lesser impact on usage than shower length and watering gardens. The length of time people stay in the shower or

It should be recognised that there is a lack of published literature on bounce-back by end-use, therefore this paper has cross-checked projections with the regression model. Approaching the projections from two starting points and comparing results strengthens the insights derived from the results.

RESULTS The results of the scenarios for future demand projections using the end-use model (dotted) and regression model (solid lines) are presented in Figure 3. This figure shows the mid-range prediction in dotted red based on end-use assumptions and medium bounce-back of 5% per year from the 10-year regression model as a solid red line, assuming a 50th percentile climate) with a low bounce-back scenario in blue (again, the dotted line from the end-use model and solid line in light blue representing 0% bounce-back for a 50th percentile climate). The high scenario from the 10-year regression model (green) could occur if there is 50% bounce-back over six years, which is then maintained (i.e. 0% in the first year, 10% in the second year, 20% in the third year, 30% in the fourth year, 40% in the fifth year, 50% in the sixth–10th years). This LCD demand is a little less than that seen under Level 2 restrictions. The solid dark blue line uses actual 2011/12 data showing consumption in this year. It is higher than other projections (except the black dotted line). The most recent data used in the 10-year regression model and end-use model were 2010/2011 data. The dotted black line is the baseline forecast from the End-Use Model and would be equivalent to all the values in Table 1 being 100% of pre-restrictions levels across the projection period.

Future projections could also be sensitive to significant (unexpected) changes in population or industry demand over the period – these have not been explicitly explored, however, both the 10-year forecasting model and the end-use model have the capacity to do so. It is important to note that the baseline demand for the end-use model (represented as a black dotted line in Figure 3) DOES NOT consider future climate variability (i.e. hot-wet or colddry); however, it does consider changes to stock efficiency made during the four years of restrictions and over the 10-year projection period (i.e. further introduction of water-efficient showers, toilets etc. in new and existing dwellings).

DISCUSSION There are several sources of difference between the end-use model (iSDP model) and the regression forecast. • Base year – the unrestricted per capita demand for the regression model is based on the 2001–2006 period. For the end-use model, it is continually being updated based on changes to stock efficiency over time; • Climate – the regression model allows for the influence of climate, the end-use model assumes a dry-average climate; • Starting consumption – the end-use model projections start from ACTUAL observed consumption in the financial year beginning 2012. By contrast, the regression model takes an average of per capita demand over years under Stage 4 restrictions to use as the basis. As the final year of Stage 4 restrictions had the lowest demand, this means the average of per capita consumption under Stage 4 restrictions is higher than the ACTUAL figure used in the end use model projections. This is understood well with reference to Figure 3; • Efficient stock – the end-use model incorporates improvements in stock efficiency whereas the regression model does not explicitly; a proxy can be incorporated by modifying the level of bounce-back specified; • Changed behaviours – the end-use model introduces a proxy for relaxed behaviours over time in Table 1; the regression model incorporates this as part of the bounce-back variable specified. (Please see overleaf for Table 1, then turn the page again for Conclusion of paper)

AUGUST 2013 WATER

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

water the garden are things that can easily be extended and contribute significantly to bounceback. The accelerated introduction of efficient showerheads helps limit this bounce-back (a 20-minute shower under a low-flow showerhead uses approximately half the water of an inefficient showerhead) and has been allowed for.


WATER AUGUST 2013 80% 3317

80% 359

85% 3474 443 80%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

Dampened industrial demand

Institutional demand modelled

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

1049

672 85% 571 2609 85% 2217

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

Dampened residential baths demand

Residential clothes washers demand modelled

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

Dampened residential clothes washers demand

729

Dampened residential basins demand

Residential baths demand modelled

85%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

617

457 858

Dampened recreational demand

Residential basins demand modelled

40%

30%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

573

2258

87%

2595

593

87%

681

757

87%

870

1541

565 1524

Dampened other residential demand

100%

573

802

2864

100%

Recreational demand modelled

100%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

802

790

100%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

565

790

Dampened other demand

2836

Dampened non-revenue water demand

Other demand modelled

Other residential demand modelled

100%

100%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

2864

354 2836

Dampened institutional demand

Non-revenue water demand modelled

449

4146

1098 4087

80%

Dampened commercial demand

85%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

1433 1311

Industrial demand modelled

1413 1292

Dampened agricultural demand

Commercial demand modelled

100%

1433

1413 100%

Agricultural demand modelled

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

End-use [ML]

30/6/2011

Table 1. Medium end-use projection. 30/6/2012

1453

30/6/2013 2298

89%

2582

615

89%

691

786

89%

883

780

50%

1560

581

100%

581

813

100%

813

2893

100%

2893

364

80%

455

3364

80%

4205

1064

80%

1329

1453

100%

1474

30/6/2014 2340

91%

2571

638

91%

701

815

91%

895

947

60%

1578

589

100%

589

825

100%

825

2921

100%

2921

369

80%

462

3412

80%

4265

1079

80%

1348

1474

100%

1495

30/6/2015 2382

93%

2562

661

93%

711

844

93%

908

1117

70%

1596

598

100%

598

836

100%

836

2951

100%

2951

375

80%

468

3460

80%

4325

1094

80%

1367

1495

100%

1516

30/6/2016 2426

95%

2554

685

95%

721

875

95%

921

1292

80%

1615

606

100%

606

848

100%

848

2980

100%

2980

380

80%

475

3509

80%

4386

1109

80%

1386

1516

100%

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

1537

30/6/2017 2548

100%

2548

731

100%

731

933

100%

933

1307

80%

1633

615

100%

615

860

100%

860

3011

100%

3011

385

80%

482

3558

80%

4447

1125

80%

1406

1537

100%

1558

30/6/2018 2544

100%

2544

741

100%

741

946

100%

946

1322

80%

1652

623

100%

623

872

100%

872

3042

100%

3042

391

80%

488

3607

80%

4509

1140

80%

1425

1558

100%

1580

30/6/2019 2542

100%

2542

751

100%

751

959

100%

959

1337

80%

1671

632

100%

632

884

100%

884

3073

100%

3073

396

80%

495

3656

80%

4570

1156

80%

1445

1580

100%

1601

30/6/2020 2541

100%

2541

761

100%

761

972

100%

972

1352

80%

1690

640

100%

640

895

100%

895

3104

100%

3104

402

80%

502

3706

80%

4632

1171

80%

1464

1601

100%

1622

30/6/2021 2542

100%

2542

771

100%

771

985

100%

985

1367

80%

1708

649

100%

649

907

100%

907

3136

100%

3136

407

80%

508

3755

80%

4694

1187

80%

1484

1622

100%

Clothes washers in 2011 85% of pre-restrictions (via new technology and full load behaviour) assumed to rise to 100%: relaxed full load behaviour

Bath use in 2011 85% of prerestrictions (due to behaviour change) assumed to rise to 100% in 2017 due to relaxed behaviours

Basin use in 2011 85% of prerestrictions (due to more efficient taps) assumed to rise to 100% in 2017 from relaxed behaviours, teeth cleaning etc.

Recreational assumed to be 30% of pre-restrictions level in 2011 rising to 80% of pre-restrictions level in 2016

Other residential assumed to be as per pre-restrictions (i.e. 100%)

Other potable assumed to be as per pre-restrictions (i.e. 100%)

Non-revenue water assumed to be as per pre-restrictions (i.e. 100%)

Efficiency savings in place in 2011 for institutional use (e.g. showers, toilets) assumed to endure over projection period

Efficiency savings in place in 2011 for industrial use (e.g. efficient technologies) assumed to endure over projection period

Efficiency savings in place in 2011 for commercial use (e.g. showers, toilets) assumed to endure over projection period

Agricultural use assumed to be as per pre-restrictions (i.e. 100%)

Assumptions

82

Technical Features


AUGUST 2013 WATER

6150 30% 1845 27

Residential landscapes demand modelled

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

Dampened landscapes baths demand

Residential pools demand modelled

100% 644

100%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

321

670

4507

Dampened residential showers demand

281

268,084

278

264,279

Litres per capita per day

Population

27,489

26,809

2229 35,804

Dampened demand (to ~match actual 26,556 in 2011)

2249

Dampened residential toilet demand

100%

35,456

100%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

2229

670

100%

82%

100%

Total demand 100%

664 2249

Dampened residential sinks demand

Residential toilet demand modelled

664

80%

100%

4657

5634

Residential showers demand modelled

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

Residential sinks demand modelled

5679

1675

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

1700

100%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

Dampened unexplained trend demand

1700

635 1675

Dampened residential tap leaks demand

Residential unexplained trend demand modelled

644

271 635

Dampened outdoor misc. demand

917 35%

904 30%

Residential outdoor misc. demand modelled

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

Residential tap leaks demand modelled

28

100%

28

2181

35%

6233

164

100%

27

Dampened residential pools demand

100%

161

Dampened residential dishwashers demand

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

100%

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

164

275

271 161

Dampened residential coolers demand

Residential dishwashers demand modelled

275 100%

271 100%

Residential coolers demand modelled

279

287

271,918

28,459

36,158

2210

100%

2210

677

100%

677

4808

84%

5724

1726

100%

1726

654

100%

654

372

40%

931

28

100%

28

2526

40%

6316

166

100%

166

279

100%

283

293

275,779

29,449

36158

2192

100%

2192

683

100%

683

4963

86%

5771

1753

100%

1753

663

100%

663

425

45%

945

29

100%

29

2880

45%

6400

169

100%

169

283

100%

288

298

279,667

30,461

36,884

2175

100%

2175

690

100%

690

5121

88%

5819

1779

100%

1779

673

100%

673

479

50%

959

29

100%

29

3242

50%

6485

172

100%

172

288

100%

292

304

283,583

31,429

37,255

2155

100%

2155

697

100%

697

5281

90%

5868

1806

100%

1806

683

100%

683

535

55%

973

29

100%

29

3613

55%

6570

175

100%

175

292

100%

296

310

287,553

32,511

37,635

2137

100%

2137

705

100%

705

5446

92%

5919

1833

100%

1833

693

100%

693

592

60%

987

30

100%

30

3993

60%

6656

178

100%

178

296

100%

301

313

291,521

33,286

38,019

2120

100%

2120

712

100%

712

5613

94%

5971

1860

100%

1860

702

100%

702

601

60%

1001

30

100%

30

4382

65%

6741

181

100%

181

301

100%

305

310

316

295,515

34,079

319

299,504

34,885

2089 38,804

2104

100%

2089

727

100%

727

5956

98%

6078

1915

100%

1915

722

100%

722

618

60%

1030

31

100%

31

5185

75%

6914

187

100%

187

310

100%

38,410

100%

2104

719

100%

719

5783

96%

6024

1887

100%

1887

712

100%

712

609

60%

1015

30

100%

30

4779

70%

6828

184

100%

184

305

100%

314

35,705

39,201

2075

100%

2075

735

100%

735

6132

100%

6132

1942

100%

1942

732

100%

732

626

60%

1044

31

100%

31

5600

80%

7000

190

100%

190

314

100%

322

303,488

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

Percent of projection under bounce-back scenario

Toilets as per pre-restrictions levels (stock turnover towards efficient accounted for in demand component of model)

Sinks as per pre-restrictions levels (100%)

Showers in 2011 at 80% of prerestrictions due to new technology and shorter showers, assumed to rise to 100% in 2021 due to longer showers

Trend is a correction term (100%)

Tap leaks as per pre-restrictions (100%)

Outdoor misc. (car washing etc) assumed to rise from 30% in 2011 to 80% in 2017 as people swap bucket for hose

Pools as per pre-restrictions levels (100%) â&#x20AC;&#x201C; small use anyway

Landscapes use in 2011 30% of pre-restrictions assumed to rise to 80% in 2021 as new gardens and lawns planted and watered

Dishwashers as per pre-restrictions levels (100%) â&#x20AC;&#x201C; these are a small end use overall so any efficiency savings from new technologies small

Coolers use as per pre-restrictions levels (100%)

Technical Features

83


84

Technical Features CONCLUSION

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

This paper contrasts two approaches to modelling future bounce-back scenarios. The regression model allows future changes in climate or periods of restrictions to be modelled but does not show where water demand increases post-drought (e.g. longer showers, greater garden irrigation). By contrast, the end-use model offers the ability to construct future scenarios, but rates of uptake are estimated in the absence of recent data on experiences in other jurisdictions around Australia. The combination of these models allows future predictions to be made, while detailing what such future consumption patterns would mean in practice.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The Authors wish to thank Daniel May from the Institute for Sustainable Futures at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), who contributed to an earlier version of this paper and to the modelling work. Thanks also goes to Thomas Boyle, also from the Institute for Sustainable Futures, for his input to the project.

THE AUTHORS Damien Giurco (email: Damien.Giurco@uts.edu. au) is Associate Professor at the Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), NSW. He has 10 years of research expertise in smart metering, urban water futures and end-use modelling.

Dr Steve Mohr (email: steve. mohr@uts.edu.au) is a mathematician at the Institute for Sustainable Futures, UTS, NSW. He has five years of modelling expertise across the water, energy and resources sectors. Julian Fyfe (email: julian. fyfe@uts.edu.au) is an Engineer at the Institute for Sustainable Futures, UTS, NSW. He has 10 years of expertise in integrated resources planning, the water-energy nexus and nutrient recovery modelling. Dr Peter Rickwood (email: peter.rickwood@ uts.edu.au) is an expert in citywide integrated modelling and evaluation of water and energy efficiency programs at the Institute for Sustainable Futures, UTS, NSW. Mee Teng (email: Mee. Teng@barwonwater.vic.gov. au) is a Senior Engineer with expertise in water resource planning and demand forecasting at Barwon Water, Geelong, Victoria. Justin Franklin (email: justin.franklin@ barwonwater.vic.gov. au) is the Water Resource Planning Coordinator at Barwon Water. He has 10 years of experience in water engineering, forecasting and option development.

TH F O SICS Y? A B TR HE S T U D W K NO ATER IN O T W T WAN RALIAN T AUS

REFERENCES Anderson RL, Miller TA & Washburn MC (1980): Water Savings From Lawn Watering Restrictions During a Drought Year, Fort Collins, Colorado, Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 16, 4, pp 642–645. Beatty K (2011): Unsung Water Savings – How People in Greater Sydney Saved Water During Drought Restrictions. AWA Water Efficiency Conference, 1–3 March 2011, Melbourne. Hansen RD & Narayanan R (1981): A Monthly Time-Series Model of Municipal Water Demand, Water Resources Bulletin, 17, 4, pp 578–585. Kenney DS, Klein RA & Clark MP (2004): Use and Effectiveness of Municipal Water Restrictions During Drought in Colorado, Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 40, 1, pp 77–87. Kidson R, Spaninks F & Wang Y (2006): Evaluation of Water Saving Options: Examples From Sydney Water’s Demand Management Programs, paper presented to the 2006 AWA Water Efficiency Conference, 13 October 2006, Ballarat, Victoria. McKibbin J, Inman M & Turner A (2009): ISDP: A New National Tool For Integrated Water Resource Planning. Paper presented at Ozwater’09, 16–18 March 2009, Melbourne, Victoria. Neal B, Meneses C, Hughes D & Wisener T (2010): The Impact of Water Restrictions on Regional Urban Demand in the 2006/07 Drought. Paper presented at Ozwater’10, 8–10 March 2010, Brisbane, Queensland. Roberts P (2008): Estimating the Impact of Drought Restrictions on Indoor Use. Paper presented to the 2008 AWA Water Efficiency Conference, 30 March–2 April, Sunshine Coast, Queensland. Spaninks F (2010): Estimating the Savings From Water Restrictions in Sydney. Paper presented at Ozwater’10, 8–10 March 2010, Brisbane, Queensland.

E

GET T HE T RAINING Y OU NE ED IN EASY-TOAN ACCESS O NLINE FO R MAT!

www.awa.asn.au/water10 1 WATER AUGUST 2013

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85

Technical Features

SMART WATER METERING AT SUPERMARKETS FOR PROACTIVE LEAK DETECTION AND ADVANCED DATA ANALYSIS A Balberg, G Hauber-Davidson

ABSTRACT The water usage at many supermarkets is unknown. Smart water metering systems were implemented at 175 Coles supermarkets to manage their water usage. A new smart metering website was designed to present the supermarkets’ water data in a matrix appropriate for large-scale smart metering systems. Data filtration systems were tested on the matrix for optimal analysis capabilities and ease of use for the purposes of reporting, leak detection and water management. In addition to the system automatically catching leaks, the user can model the water consumption for proposed supermarkets and set water usage benchmarks. The cumulative water savings achieved by this project over 1.5 years is 101,000kL and $330,000.

The selection of stores chosen for smart metering was based on the aim to include a representative sample of all types of stores (of varying size, location, water-using cooling systems and age). An initial list of targeted stores included 250 sites. This list was changed upon discovering that at approximately half of these stores it was not possible to either locate a water meter or verify if the water meter measured only the supermarket’s water usage or also the usage of adjacent tenants. At these stores it was not feasible to costeffectively install new water meters. Another 50 second-priority stores were identified that did have pulse-enabled water meters so the smart metering systems could be installed. After six months of installations 175 stores were now continuously monitored.

INTRODUCTION

REQUIREMENTS FOR DATA DISPLAY

Supermarkets use water for many purposes, including meat preparation, fish preparation, baking, heating water for ovens/warmers, cooling towers, amenities, wash-down, ice machines etc. Smart water metering systems were implemented at a large number of Coles supermarkets nationally to manage their water usage responsibly and improve water efficiency. The system architecture is displayed in Figure 1.

The smart metering data would be displayed on a website with two user levels: a basic administrator level that presents a list of all sites monitored, and a sub-level consisting of water data graphs for each of the sites. As the purpose of the smart water metering system is to manage water and catch leaks as soon as they occur, this website would not have been a practical system for keeping track of water usage at all 175 sites every day.

A new smart metering website was designed whereby the administrator level would show summary water usage statistics and have sorting and filtration algorithms for the list of all monitored sites. This allowed the sites with the most abnormal water usage in the past day to be brought to the website user’s attention at first glance. The website is enabling Coles to proactively and time-efficiently analyse their water consumption data. To model the water consumption for future supermarkets, a filtering system was established whereby the user could filter supermarkets by category – location, environment, size, age, equipment (such as cooling systems, bakery, fishmonger) on site – and then run statistical tables and charts on water usage, minimum night flows and changes from historical data. The filtering functions also permit the user to set water usage benchmarks based on the size, location and cooling systems of each store. There was an extensive design and review process for the website user interface. Once the smart metering hardware and software was installed, leakage auto-alerts were set up. They were set after analysing the water consumption patterns across the supermarkets to establish an alert threshold for each store. By responding to the auto-alerts and finding leaks on site, approximately 101,000kL savings were achieved, with further water savings projected in the months to come.

WEBSITE TRIALS

Figure 1. Smart metering system architecture.

To display the 175 supermarkets’ water meter data, a website was developed whereby the administrator level would include a snapshot water usage

AUGUST 2013 WATER

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

Installation of a smart metering system at 175 Coles stores results in a saving of $330,000


86

Technical Features changes. Annual re-evaluations of the extrapolated water usage will be made to maintain its accuracy.

Snapshot of Average Water Usage for Coles Supermarkets

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

kL / Store

To provide meaningful information to state managers, a feature was added whereby the snapshot graphs could be filtered by state.

23-12 - 29/12

30/12 - 05/01

06/01 - 12/01

13/01 - 19/01

20/01 - 26/01

Figure 2. Average water usage per store per week. summary for all sites (and extrapolation to nationwide water usage). The administrator level also includes an auto-filtering scheme to prioritise the sites with water usage of concern. SNAPSHOT FOR ALL SITES (MONITORED)

The snapshot water usage display on the smart metering website first shows a graph of average water usage per store per week for all stores with smart metering (see Figure 2). The graph is regenerated daily to reflect the most recent water usage data available. This is useful to the user for tracking their water usage in real time, so that they are made aware of issues early and can act on them before water usage gets out of hand. It was decided to display the average consumption per store per week over the previous five weeks because it was assessed that this period is the optimal viewing range to identify unexpected increasing or decreasing trends. A larger time range provides more data than is necessary for interpretation, and a smaller time range may lead to misinterpretation if, for example, a holiday period inflates store output and, hence, water usage over a two- or three-week period.

The water usage by store for all stores (monitored and unmonitored) was calculated by extrapolating the water usage of the 175 monitored sites to the estimated water usage that of all 740+ supermarkets under Coles. The water usage for unmonitored stores was extrapolated by testing which criteria most greatly affect water usage for a store, and calculating average water usage per square metre for stores in each criterion. Then the water usage was projected for the sum of all unmonitored stores. The stores were categorised by state, locational environment (metro/provincial/ rural) and presence of cooling towers. After calculating average kL/m2 for the stores in each category, it was identified that the locational environment and presence of cooling towers were the most influential factors in a storeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s water usage. The theoretical calculation of water usage for all monitored and unmonitored supermarkets was approximately five times the water usage for the 175 monitored stores. As new stores are added and more stores are smart metered, this percentage

The parameter of water usage per store was more effective than the parameter of total water usage for all stores monitored because the total number of stores monitored may increase or decrease over time. SNAPSHOT FOR ALL SITES (MONITORED AND UNMONITORED)

Following the graph of average water usage per store, a second graph was developed, displaying total water usage for all stores, monitored and unmonitored.

WATER AUGUST 2013

Figure 3. Filter criteria.

Sources of error include decreased kL/store/week values when a smart meter stops recording water usage data, whether due to vandalism, meter malfunction, smart water meter malfunction, or other interference. FILTER FOR MONITORED SITES

Upon interpreting the snapshot graphs for increasing or decreasing water trends, it is necessary to identify the stores with abnormal water consumption that needs to be addressed. The list of smart-metered supermarkets had a filter established to turn the list of sites into a useful report highlighting those of concern. It was also important that the filter could be used to search for any store or selection of stores. The process of developing the web filter included identifying the criteria on which to filter, designing the output display, creating the system on the website and undertaking revisions. The list of useful criteria for inclusion in the filter was developed and tested against the website userâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s needs. The order of filters the website user would encounter was important for ease of use of the website. First the user would choose the dates over which to view data. Then the user could filter out stores by state, individual site, store age, store size and other store properties: equipment on site, locational environment and billing regime. Figure 3 shows the filter criteria.


87

Technical Features that the filtering occurs with only one button instead of having a second sub-level button as well). Other revisions included setting default filtering settings and displaying the filtered data in a graph that would retain the filter, and sorting settings of the report table while providing an alternative visual aid (see Figure 5).

$/period

Baseflow (l/min)

kL/sqm/period

Figure 4. Output from filter (table).

DISCUSSION AND RESULT ANALYSIS WEBSITE FUNCTIONALITY

kL

The website filter system has allowed for sites with abnormally high or low water consumption to be identified easily. It was documented that, 18 months after commencing the project, 101ML of leakage or other inefficient water usage were identified and reported. Net savings were $330,000. CASE STUDIES

Figure 5. Output from filter (graph). Daily Site Total

Flow Rate L/min

kL 30

L/min 45 40

25

35

20

30 25

15

20

10

15 10

5 0 Wed 08 Aug 2012

5

Sun 12

Thu 16

Mon 20

Fri 24

Tue 28

Sat Sep 01

0 Wed 05

Figure 6. Example of faulty valve in chicken warmer. The results of the filter show the total volume of water used over the designated period, the average afterhours water usage, the total water cost, the kL/m2/period, and/or other custom filtering. These results were required to

be sortable in ascending or descending order (see Figure 4). The filter system underwent a revision process whereby a subfiltering level for individual sites was eliminated (so

The auto-alerts have brought the usersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; attention to abnormal water usage events, issues with the smart meteringâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s data collection, and also picked up on seasonal changes in water usage at the stores (some of which is acceptable). Leaks detected and repaired are delineated below. One store developed a baseflow of 20L/ min between 7am and 9pm on most days. The cause was a faulty valve in the chicken warmer system. This repair was estimated to have saved 5ML or $15,000 over a 12-month period (see Figure 6). A second site was later found to have the same issue. A third site was found to have a 20L/ min baseflow most days between 7am and 9pm. This was thought to have been due to another chicken warmer valve, but was later discovered to have been caused by a faulty valve in a bain-marie. This resulted in savings of 6ML or $20,000 over a 12-month period (see Figure 7).

AUGUST 2013 WATER

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

kL/period

A graph of cumulative water savings was also developed, documenting how much water was saved each day and over what time period the savings occurred. Each detection and repair of a leak is estimated to have achieved water savings over a certain period of time based on how likely it is for someone on site to notice the leak (i.e. water going to a drain is less likely to be noticed than water pooling).


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Technical Features

Daily Site Total kL 50

Flow Rate L/min

L/min 60

40 40 Bain-marie repaired (it was constantly topping up due to faulty valve) 20

30 20 10 0

Wed 02 Jan 2013

Sat 05

Tue 08

Fri 11

Mon 14

Thu 17

Sun 20

Wed 23

Sat 26

0

Tue 29

Figure 7. Example of faulty valve in bain-marie. Flow Rate L/min

SMART SYSTEMS/METERING

Daily Site Total

80

kL 80

60

60

L/min

Roof leak repeaired

40 20

20

0 Mon 12 Nov 2012

0 Thu 15

Sun 18

Wed 21

Sat 24

Tue 27

Fri 30

Mon Dec 03

Thu 06

Sun 09

Figure 8. Example of cooling system leak. Another site was found to have a continuous 45L/min baseflow all the time. This was caused by a leak in the roof cooling system. Upon repair, this saved 12ML (assuming the leak would have continued to exist unnoticed over a six-month period). See Figure 8. These examples represent savings of 23ML and are only a selection of the largest leaks identified. In total, after 18 months of operating the system on behalf of the user, the system has saved over 101ML of water worth $330,000. CHALLENGES

The website functionality has proven to be highly useful but there are some features we would like to further improve – e.g. date display, look and feel. The filters required data collection about the stores, but that data was not always available (e.g. billed by kL vs billed at flat rate). Also, the stores with cooling towers were classified as open or closed loop, and were grouped together in one cooling tower category.

The auto-alerts required some seasonal adjustment as it was found that water usage increases in warmer weather, particularly for sites with cooling towers. MANAGEMENT OF AUTO-ALERTS

The auto-alerts bring to light issues that need to be addressed. Sometimes it takes days for the issues to be addressed, depending on how difficult it is to pinpoint the problem on site, access to the problem and complexity of repair. As such, there can be 20+ auto-alerts being sent out daily for the 175 supermarkets, with new alerts appearing as well as addressed problems disappearing from the alerts. To keep track of the issues addressed, water savings achieved, and ongoing alerts, comments are added to the smart metering website and a system was created in Microsoft Access to report on the savings achieved. This system can be transferred onto the smart metering website database in the future.

The website and alerts have facilitated water management by revealing water inefficiencies the day after they began, enabling them to be addressed with minimal time and water lost. The water saving to date is 101,000kL, which is worth $330,000. As smart water data accumulates for the stores, water usage benchmarks can be established, based on national averages for different categories of stores (size, locational environmental, and/or presence of cooling towers), helping with future water efficient planning.

THE AUTHORS Allison Balberg (email: allisonb@ watergroup.com.au) is a Water Savings Engineer with WaterGroup Pty Ltd, Pymble NSW. She has four years of experience in smart metering, with involvement in all aspects of this department including project management, QA, data analysis and identification of further savings and business opportunities. Allison oversees the maintenance of WaterGroup’s smart metering installations nationally.

CONCLUSION

Auto-alerts for abnormal water usage at the stores were set up to be emailed to the designated recipients when water usage either rose above or dropped below a threshold level.

Previously, water usage at supermarkets was largely unknown. Coles implemented a smart water metering system to accurately report on water usage and to assist in management of their water.

Over time, this notified users of other water-using equipment previously unaccounted for – e.g. many stores have roof sprinklers for cooling equipment. It was revealed that, during summer, some of these had 20–40L/min flows running 24/7 when high temperatures triggered a sensor to turn on the roof sprinklers, or when they were manually operated.

The new smart water metering website was designed for water management, effective leak detection and reporting for a large database of supermarkets. This involved developing and testing a data filtering system on the website and setting up a virtual water meter to extrapolate the monitored water usage to all Coles supermarkets nationwide.

WATER AUGUST 2013

Challenges included finding a suitable representation of stores to smart meter (which did not require the installation of new water meters), collecting sufficient data for the website filters, and customising alerts to the stores and seasons. Ongoing monitoring and maintenance of the smart metering system is required to continue catching water inefficiencies promptly, and to identify issues with the smart metering system that would skew the data and snapshot graphs of average kL/store and total kL for all sites. It is also necessary to update the database when new stores are added or old stores removed.

Guenter Hauber-Davidson (email: guenterhd@watergroup.com.au) is the Managing Director of WaterGroup Pty Ltd. He is one of Australia’s leading water conservation practitioners and has been instrumental in developing leading edge water conservation design tools and models, including smart meters. He has spent his whole career in the water and wastewater fields.


89

Technical Features www.riversymposium.com

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90

Technical Features

MANAGEMENT OF URBAN RAINWATER TANKS Lessons and findings from South-East Queensland M Moglia, A Walton, AK Sharma, G Tjandraatmadja, J Gardner, D Begbie

RAINWATER TANK MANAGEMENT

ABSTRACT Rainwater tanks are a common feature of the urban landscape in Australia. Many were installed in response to the recent dry years that left many large cities struggling to maintain a positive supplydemand balance. In Queensland, for the period from 2007 to 2012, following the initial success of a number of tank rebate schemes, legislation required all new single dwellings across Queensland built after January 2007 to achieve minimum mains water savings targets which could be fulfilled by use of waterefficient devices, rainwater tanks and/or other non-mains water sources installed (Government of Queensland, 2009). The net result of the investment in rainwater tanks can be seen in data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics; for example, there are now over 300,000 tanks in the South-East Queensland (SEQ) region alone. If one assumes a conservative estimated average cost per tank at a little over $3,300 including installation, this amounts to a community investment of almost $1 billion in SEQ alone. This large number of rainwater tanks can collect a significant amount of water, with important benefits for urban water planning, including considerable environmental benefits. As such, there are very good reasons for not letting this major investment go to waste, even when legislation no longer requires new households to install tanks. Because tanks are in private ownership, this infrastructure management challenge is more complicated than in the case of centrally controlled large-scale infrastructure. This article concerns the management of urban rainwater tanks, and reports on findings from a handful of interconnected studies as part of the Urban Water Security Research Alliance in SEQ.

WATER AUGUST 2013

THE HISTORY AND RECENT EXPERIENCE OF RAINWATER TANKS IN SEQ Rainwater tanks have always been part of the rural and urban landscape in Australia, ever since the days of early settlement. Growing concern about rainwater tanks as a potential breeding site for the Aedes aegypti mosquito and the spread of dengue fever saw the demise of rainwater tanks in urban areas across Queensland during the 1960s and early 1970s. With the onset of the millennium drought in Australia at the turn of the 21st century, rainwater tanks were widely promoted in urban areas as a supplementary water source for nonpotable uses to alleviate the demand on centralised potable water supply and increase resilience to drought. Financial incentives such as rebates have been provided by all levels of government to promote and encourage the uptake of rainwater tanks. Legislation enforcing installation of rainwater tanks in new housing has also been enacted in various Australian jurisdictions. Mandated water savings for new dwellings in South Australia and New South Wales has resulted in the installation of rainwater tanks as a common feature in new housing. The South-East Queensland (SEQ) Water Strategy advocates the reduction of household mains water consumption to increase the security of water supply, with alternative water resources (rainwater and stormwater) in new developments expected to reduce demand on bulk water supplies by nearly seven per cent by 2056 (QWC, 2010). The Queensland Development Code (QDC) Mandatory Part (MP) 4.2 (2007) required all new Class 1 residential dwellings in SEQ built after 1 January 2007 to meet a water savings target of 70 kilolitres/household/year (kL/hh/ yr) (Queensland Government, 2009). A common approach to meet this water

savings target was a 5kL rainwater tank connected to at least 100m² of roof area and internally plumbed for toilet flushing, the washing-machine cold water tap and an external tap(s) for outside water use and garden irrigation. In SEQ alone, approximately 59,000 homes with rainwater tanks have been built since 2007 (ABS, 2010). There are over 300,000 tanks in SEQ (Gardiner, 2009). An additional 745,000 new dwellings are projected to be built by 2031 (QWC, 2010). Following the repeal of regulations mandating the installation of water supply systems on 1 February 2013, buildings in Queensland no longer have to meet compulsory water savings targets (Department of Housing and Public Works, 2013). Local governments can now choose to opt-in to water savings requirements in recognition of Queensland’s varying climatic conditions and regional circumstances. Builders in these local government areas will still need to comply with water savings requirements. Rainwater tanks can still be installed voluntarily by homeowners and builders in all areas of the state, but must comply with the health and safety standards set out in QDC MP 4.2.

UWSRA PROJECTS ON RAINWATER TANK MANAGEMENT This research was undertaken as part of the Urban Water Security Research Alliance (UWSRA), which was a $50 million partnership over five years involving CSIRO, The University of Queensland and Griffith University. The research paper describes the part of the alliance research that focused on rainwater tank management. As such it synthesises the contents of four out of the approximately 100 technical reports on the UWSRA website, briefly laying out the findings from a series of interconnected study activities:


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Technical Features

Table 1. Recommended maintenance activities for rainwater tanks (adapted from Moglia et al., 2013). Recommended frequency

Maintenance required

Inspect and clean gutters

Remove leaves and debris

Inspect and clean first-flush devices and leaf guards on rainheads

Clean, repair or replace if necessary

Check screens on tank overflow outlet

Repair or replace if necessary

Check roof and flashings for defects and remove overhanging branches

Repair if necessary and remove overhanging branches

Check tank for defects, screens and lids are in place and functional

Repair if necessary

Check water quality

Identify cause for quality change

Check rainwater taps have correct signage

Repair or replace if necessary

Check pump for noise, pressure, leaks and acoustic enclosure if applicable

Repair or replace if necessary

Annual

Check tank support for structural integrity

Repair or replace if necessary

2â&#x20AC;&#x201C;3 years

Check sediment level in tank, and desludge if necessary

Organise removal with a qualified contractor if sediments pose a risk to block tank outlet

3 months

6 months

1.

2.

Investigations to map out the current state of management of tanks, and to explore professional perceptions and judgements relating to rainwater tanksâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; conditions and maintenance (Moglia et al., 2012a; Moglia et al., 2013). Stakeholder workshop to develop ideas for management of rainwater tanks in the SEQ context, and to evaluate their likely acceptability and judge-expected effectiveness (Walton et al., 2012).

3.

Focus groups to explore the views and attitudes of community towards various policy options for rainwater tank management, and the preferred options for ensuring ongoing performance of household rainwater tanks (Walton et al., 2012).

4.

Survey of socio-psychological factors associated with the maintenance of household rainwater tanks (Walton and Gardner, 2012).

5.

Follow-up interviews, survey and modelling to develop a strategy portfolio for the management of rainwater tanks in SEQ (Moglia et al., 2012a).

In this paper we will describe some of the key outputs of these study activities.

MAINTENANCE REQUIREMENTS Before describing the main study, the maintenance requirements of tanks, according to literature, are described. Rainwater tanks at the household scale require basic but ongoing maintenance, as per Table 1, which is adapted from guidelines authored by Queensland Health (2007) and Standards Australia (2008). Guidelines, professional judgements and literature suggest that neglect of the tank system, if not attended to, is likely to lead to a range of problems. Broken or faulty pumps will render the tank more or less useless, as water would be provided at very low pressures. Inadequate mosquito meshing will lead to public health risks, as this could introduce habitats for mosquito breeding and increase the risk of mosquitoborne diseases spreading, especially in tropical or subtropical climates where there is a possibility of occurrence of dengue fever, Ross River fever or malaria. Queensland Medical Research Institute is undertaking a large-scale survey of the presence of mosquitoes breeding in rainwater tanks in South-East Queensland, focusing specifically on those types that are vectors for disease. Inadequate roof harvesting area, faulty or inadequate plumbing, blocked gutters

or debris accumulation at screens will lead to limited rainwater capture by the tank, and as those tanks have mains water top-up, mains water is used, while householders are oblivious to the problem. Water quality concerns may also arise due to various types of sediment accumulation and pollution entering the tank, especially relating to animal faeces. For example, Ahmed et al. (2012) found that 72% of 80 sampled tanks in South-East Queensland exceeded the Australian drinking guidelines of 0 E. coli per 100mL of water. Not surprisingly, but despite commonly encountered public opinion, some would argue that untreated rainwater is not suitable for potable consumption, and indeed various studies have shown the risks of potable consumption of untreated roof-captured rainwater, although these appear to be low to moderate and difficult to measure (Ahmed et al., 2012). Regular cleaning of roofs and gutters, along with pruning of overhanging tree branches, might prove effective in reducing animal faecal contamination of rainwater tanks; in addition, such practices and the adoption of first-flush devices contribute to reduced sediment accumulation at the bottom of tanks.

AUGUST 2013 WATER

RAINWATER TANK MANAGEMENT

Activity


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Technical Features

Table 2. Likelihood of critical faults, as a function of maintenance frequency (adapted from Moglia et al., 2012a). Frequency of maintenance

Likelihood of faults relating to pumps, mosquito meshing and/or structural failure

1 month

2%

3 months

8%

6 months

18%

1 year

37%

2 years

63%

Note: The basis of this data is the computer simulations, with the survey data used to established probability density functions as inputs to the modelling exercise.

RAINWATER TANK MANAGEMENT

SURVEYS OF PROFESSIONAL JUDGEMENTS As a first step in addressing the apparent lack of information on the condition of rainwater tanks, professional judgements were gathered, as were the judgements by plumbers who were thought to have more direct experience with tanks (Moglia et al., 2013). In the email-based survey of 256 water professionals across Australia (Moglia et al., 2013), the breakdown of pumps and/ or parts was considered to be the most commonly occurring problem, followed by problems with water quality and mosquitoes. The main causes of failures were considered to be: not enough maintenance (40%); poor installation (18%); design failure (15%); incorrect maintenance (15%); and others (12%). Possibly more problematic is the fact that professionals to a large extent do not believe that tanks are being adequately maintained by householders.

CONDITION INSPECTIONS Better than the judgement by professionals and plumbers is to have some hard data on the condition of tanks. As far as we know, this can only be collected by means of on-site assessment of the householder tank. Data was collected for 223 relatively new tanks in South-East Queensland across four local government areas and, in this data, the following rates of faults were found (Biermann et al., 2012): • Mosquito meshing was absent in 4% of cases; • The pump condition was less than good in 11% of cases, and poor in 4% of cases; • The gutters were in a less than good condition in 6% of cases; • The tank was in a less than good structural condition in 4% of cases, and in poor structural condition in 1% of cases.

To cross-check these results, 15 plumbers in South-East Queensland were also surveyed as they were thought to be able to make better judgements on the condition of tanks. This is because they ought to have more hands-on experience with a more diverse array of household rainwater tanks. The views of the plumbers were largely consistent with those found in the professional survey.

In this study it was also found that as many as 40% of tanks were not connected to a sufficiently large roof catchment area, as required by the local development code at the time. There were also concerns that there were serious plumbing errors at the time of installation that should have been picked up during post-installation inspections.

On the basis of the collected judgements by professionals and plumbers, using computer simulations and statistical manipulation of the data we were able to estimate the likely frequency of failures at various inspection and maintenance schedules, as shown in Table 2. The details of the calculations can be found in the project report (Moglia et al., 2012a).

Following on from this, there is another study underway to inspect at least 400 tanks across the Melbourne metropolitan area (for further information contact the lead author). This study is jointly funded by the Smart Water Fund and by CSIRO. The inspection schedule includes both a short 10-minute survey of the householder to get key data on age of the tank, whether it is a rebated tank,

WATER AUGUST 2013

how tank water is used, etc, as well as to understand the socio-psychological factors associated with maintenance behaviours. This is followed up with an onsite assessment of the condition of the tank, which includes collection of basic tank data (size, connection, etc), inspection of fittings and components (tank screens, first-flush devices), the plumbing (stormwater overflows, signage of taps)and pumps, as well as judgement of roof and gutter conditions.

COLLECTING PREFERENCE INFORMATION By means of stakeholder workshops, community focus groups and stakeholder interviews; as described by Walton et al. (2012) and Moglia et al. (2012b), we explored the various strategies that can improve the management of tanks, and how the community may respond to these. Stakeholder workshops were held to identify the various ways in which the management of rainwater tanks can be improved. The suggested approaches related to improvements in installation practices, improvements in design to reduce the maintenance requirements, and supporting householders to manage the tanks by themselves. There was little support for setting up a register of tanks, or to hand the maintenance to a party other than householders. Community focus groups were held to gain a deeper understanding of how the community thinks about rainwater tank maintenance and how people may respond to various management strategies. An output of these focus groups was a preliminary model to describe the socio-psychological factors that influence whether householders intend to undertake maintenance, and whether they are likely to put that intention into action. The community focus groups also reinforced the idea that registers of tanks would be highly unpopular and that there is a strong mandate for householders’ selfmanagement approaches. Finally, interviews were held with the key stakeholders who have indicated a strong interest in ensuring that tanks are well maintained. This led to the definition of the criteria for successful rainwater tank management as described in Table 3.


93

Technical Features

Table 3. Criteria for successful rainwater tank management (adapted from Moglia et al., 2012c). Criteria

Details

A. Adequate water savings

At least 90% of tanks need to provide the projected water savings from now and into the future. From a water planning perspective, this also needs to be factual, backed up by sampling of the condition of tanks and statistical analysis of the condition data (criterion D).

B. Acceptable low risk of mosquito breeding in tank systems

In the context of SEQ, at least 99% of tanks need to be protected by mosquito meshing, and the amount of stagnant open water needs to be kept to a minimum.

C. Acceptable low risk of health risks related to poor drinking water quality

Stakeholders consider that it will be impossible to ensure drinking water quality at an adequate level with adequate certainty. Information campaigns need to ensure that the community is advised not to drink untreated rainwater.

D. Knowledge of the condition of tanks

It was argued by the key stakeholders that the condition of tanks needs to be known. Not all tanks need to be sampled, but an adequate number of randomly selected tanks need to be inspected. Adequate water savings need to be assessed every 3–5 years, and acceptable low health risks need to be assessed on an ongoing basis every year. To support the inspection program, there is a need for criterion E, knowledge of the tank stock.

E. Knowledge of the tank stock

In order to undertake a program of random inspections of rainwater tanks, there needs to be a database of tanks and their locations. Currently this type of information is managed by local councils, but there is a need to centralise this dataset in a single location.

SURVEYS OF SOCIOPSYCHOLOGICAL FACTORS

Survey findings indicated that, although tank owners had low levels of awareness of the tasks involved in keeping a tank maintained, there were high levels of support among respondents for the introduction of measures that could foster tank maintenance within the community.

This finding suggested that interventions which promote the benefits of tank maintenance over the costs of not keeping a tank maintained could foster a favourable attitude towards tank maintenance. Similarly, solutions that link tank maintenance with other home maintenance activities could be appealing to those who see themselves as someone who keeps things maintained. Finally, interventions that support a person’s belief in their own capability and provide confidence to undertake tank maintenance could be effective.

However, community acceptance for interventions related to perceptions of fairness and effectiveness, with fairness twice as important as effectiveness. Interventions that were based on ‘enabling’ tank maintenance, and those that provided incentives for tank maintenance, were viewed as more fair, effective and acceptable than interventions based on penalties and monitoring through registers and inspections.

Education initiatives, awareness campaigns and information services could result in improved control beliefs, and ultimately influence tank maintenance behaviour. Furthermore, survey results demonstrated that even with a positive intention to undertake tank maintenance, if people don’t feel capable or confident of their ability, then tank maintenance is less likely to occur. This finding further highlights the importance of providing enablers as a policy intervention to support tank maintenance behaviour.

PROPOSED MANAGEMENT FRAMEWORK The collected information was synthesised into one coherent Bayesian Network model (Moglia et al., 2012c) to assess what kind of strategies may be successful in achieving the criteria in Table 3. This was used to evaluate combinations of strategy components, but it was found that, for a strategy to have a good likelihood of achieving the criteria in Table 3, it needs to address the full range of considerations, including appropriate design, ensuring maintenance and ensuring good quality installations. It will also be necessary to have ongoing tank inspections to ensure that the condition of the stock of household tanks is maintained. There is no easy way around this fact. A strategy for improving the management of tanks would include the following elements: 1.

Review the industry learning in tank system design and installation for the period 2008–2012, and make the required amendments in design and installation guidelines and standards.

2.

Review the need for better training for plumbers, and perhaps the need for further certification of plumbers and, if necessary, set up training programs for plumbers.

3.

Improve the communication and support for householders to promote changes in attitudes and improve motivation and capacity to maintain tanks.

AUGUST 2013 WATER

RAINWATER TANK MANAGEMENT

Surveys of 533 domestic tank owners from South-East Queensland investigated their acceptance of various interventions related to tank maintenance (Walton & Gardner, 2012). The survey used a choice modelling approach to test tank owners’ preferences for three different types of interventions that could be used to encourage them to maintain their tanks. The survey also quantitatively examined previous focus group findings (Walton et al., 2012), and further investigated the links between socio-psychological factors and tank maintenance.

These preferences for incentives and enabling interventions were in line with the socio-psychological factors that seemed to underpin tank maintenance behaviour. The survey found that favourable attitudes towards tank maintenance, a strong self-image as someone who likes to keep things well maintained, and perceptions of capability and self-efficacy were all important predictors of a person’s intention to undertake tank maintenance.


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Technical Features 4.

Collect data on the condition of tanks; this requires, in turn: • Digitising and centralising tank system data. • Random inspection of approximately 1,200 tanks per annum (with periodic review for the size and scope of this inspection program). • Statistical analysis of the tank condition data.

Further details of the proposed strategy can be found in Moglia et al. (2012c).

CONCLUSIONS

RAINWATER TANK MANAGEMENT

This paper has described a number of linked research activities on the topic of managing household rainwater tanks, with specific focus on South-East Queensland. This is a topic that has previously been largely ignored but which has recently become important because many householders in Australian cities have invested in rainwater tanks. We conclude that there is a need for change in the current arrangements, at the very least in SEQ. Unfortunately, there are no simple solutions, and any strategy for managing household rainwater tanks will need to consider a range of issues, including the psychology of householders, perceptions of fairness and effectiveness, potential improvements to design and potential improvements in installation practices. Based on this research in SEQ, a threephase approach was recommended. The first phase involves developing better knowledge of the condition of tanks through an annual on-site condition inspection program, as well as an understanding of what contributes to achieving tank maintenance, as well as review of current design and installation guidelines. The second phase involves changes to standards and guidelines, as well as training of plumbers and updating of certification processes. The third phase involves review of the prior actions, and to revise them as appropriate. Furthermore, based on the SEQ study, a project to investigate the condition of rainwater tanks in Melbourne metro region has been initiated.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS We would like to acknowledge the funding from the CSIRO Water for a Healthy Country Flagship and from the Urban Water Security Research Alliance in South-East Queensland. Furthermore,

WATER AUGUST 2013

we would like to acknowledge the contribution of study participants (in workshops, forums, surveys, interviews, etc) as well as the critical contributions from, in particular, Vourn Lutton, Ian White and Tim Hurst, as well as the group of people that we have interacted with at Queensland Health. Also thanks to Tim Naylor and Shiv Umapathi who, during their time at CSIRO, contributed to the study. We also acknowledge the review of this article within CSIRO.

THE AUTHORS Dr Magnus Moglia (email: Magnus.Moglia@csiro.au) is a Senior Research Scientist at CSIRO Land and Water, Highett, Victoria. Andrea Walton (email: Andrea.Walton@csiro.au) is a Social Science Researcher in the Ecosystem Sciences Division of CSIRO, working on community acceptance in the water domain. Ashok K Sharma (email: Ashok.Sharma@csiro.au) is Principal Research Engineer at CSIRO Land and Water, Highett, Victoria. Grace Tjandraatmadja (email: Grace.Tjandra@csiro. au) is a Research Scientist with the Land and Water Division of CSIRO, working with various aspects of alternative water systems. John Gardner (email: John.Gardner@csiro.au) is a Social Psychologist in the Ecosystem Sciences Division of CSIRO. Don Begbie (email: Don.Begbie@csiro.au) is an Honorary Visiting Fellow with CSIRO, previously the Director of the Urban Water Security Research Alliance.

REFERENCES Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) (2010): Census data. Available at: www.abs.gov.au/ websitedbs/D3310114.nsf/home/Census+data (accessed 3 December 2010). Ahmed W, Hodgers L, Sidhu J, Gardner T, Richardson K, Palmer A & Toze S (2012): Health Risk Assessment of Roof-Captured Rainwater, Urban Water Security Research Alliance Technical Report No 77. Urban Water Security Research Alliance, Brisbane, Queensland.

Biermann S, Sharma A, Chong MN, Umapathi S & Cook S (2012): Assessment of the Physical Characteristics of Individual Household Rainwater Tank Systems in South East Queensland, In: Begbie D (Ed), Urban Water Security Research Alliance Technical Report No 66. Urban Water Security Research Alliance, Brisbane, Queensland. Department of Housing and Public Works (2013): Website accessed 15 February 2013. www.hpw.qld.gov.au/ construction/BuildingPlumbing/Building/ WaterSupplySystems/Pages/default.aspx. Gardiner A (2009): Domestic Rainwater Tanks: Usage and Maintenance Patterns in South East Queensland, Water Journal, Vol 36, 1, pp 73–77. Government of Queensland (2009): Queensland Development Code MP 4.2 – Water Savings Targets (2007), Queensland Department of Local Government and Planning, accessed May 2011. Moglia M, Tjandraatmadja G & Sharma A (2012a): Initial Investigation into the Governance and Management Models for Rainwater Systems, In: Begbie D (Ed), Technical Report No 50. Urban Water Security Research Alliance, Brisbane, Queensland. Moglia M, Tjandraatmadja G & Sharma AK (2013): Exploring the Need for Rainwater Tank Maintenance: Survey, Review and Simulations. Water Science & Technology: Water Supply 13, 2, pp 191–201. Moglia M, Tjandraatmadja G, Sharma AK, Walton A, Umapathi S & Gardner J (2012b): Proposed Strategy Portfolio for the Management of Rainwater Tanks: The South East Queensland Case, Urban Water Security Research Alliance Technical Report No 75, Brisbane, Queensland. Tjandraatmadja G, Pollard C, Sharma A & Gardner T (2013): Optimisation of Energy Use in Household Rainwater Supply Systems, Urban Water Security Research Alliance Technical Report No 89, Urban Water Security Research Alliance, Brisbane, Queensland. Queensland Government (2009): Queensland Development Code MP 4.2 – Water Savings Targets (2007), Queensland Department of Local Government and Planning, accessed May 2011. Queensland Water Commission (2010): South East Queensland Water Strategy. Queensland Water Commission, Brisbane, Queensland. Walton A & Gardner J (2012): Rainwater Tank Maintenance: Community Perceptions of Policy Options, In: Begbie D (Ed), Urban Water Security Research Alliance Technical Report No 71. UWSRA, Brisbane, Queensland. Walton A, Gardner J, Sharma A, Moglia M & Tjandraatmadja G (2012): Exploring Interventions to Encourage Rainwater Tank Maintenance, In: Begbie D (Ed), Urban Water Security Research Alliance Technical Report No 59. UWSRA, Brisbane, Queensland.


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Technical Features

COMPLIANCE OF WATER RECYCLING SCHEMES IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA An analysis of water recycling from 2003 to 2009 N Shishkina, T Hannelly, C Rodriguez

ABSTRACT

GOVERNANCE AND REGULATION

Water recycling schemes have been in operation in Western Australia since 1960. Periodic microbial water quality monitoring has been in place to demonstrate fit-for-purpose recycled water as part of the regulatory framework for wastewater reuse. This study analysed the compliance of water recycling schemes in the Department of Health database over a seven-year period (2003–2009). The original intention was to analyse the compliance of all 92 schemes in the database; however it was necessary to exclude 21 schemes because they either lacked sufficient data or their recording standards were too inconsistent for the analysis. Compliance was analysed by comparing: i) the observed microbial results against the quality criteria; and ii) the number of samples analysed against the expected number of samples based on regulatory frequency requirements. The results indicate that 12% of the 71 schemes analysed did not comply with water quality criteria over the sevenyear period and most of the original 92 recycling schemes did not comply with the expected number of samples. Challenges faced by existing schemes in conforming to the Australian Guidelines for Water Recycling: Managing Health and Environmental Risks (Phase 1) (2006) and the Guidelines for the Non-Potable Uses of Recycled Water in Western Australia (2011) are discussed. Keywords: health risk; water management; water quality; water recycling.

INTRODUCTION Wastewater recycling is a sustainable option for reducing the pressure on existing drinking water resources through the substitution of lower quality water for applications that do not require drinking water quality. In Western Australia, recycling schemes have been in operation for over 50 years.

WATER AUGUST 2013

The first wastewater reuse scheme used in WA was approved by the Department of Health (DOHWA) in 1958 and became operational in 1960. Since then the DOHWA has approved over 150 schemes, most outside the metropolitan area, and the majority of those to country local governments for open space irrigation. Recycled water from these schemes is mainly used for the irrigation of public ovals and sports facilities, tree plantations and industrial uses such as dust suppression and construction activities. The DOHWA conditions of approval for recycling schemes during the study period (2003– 2009), were set based on the National Water Quality Management Strategy Guidelines for Sewerage Systems – Use of Reclaimed Water (ARMCANZ ANZECC and NHMRC, 2000). In WA, responsibility for the different aspects of recycled water quality is shared across the DOHWA, the Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), the Department of Water (DOW), the Environmental Protection Authority WA (EPAWA) and the particular local government where the scheme is located. The regulation of wastewater and recycled water in WA is provided by a range of legislative and regulatory instruments under the provision of the Health Act 1911. The requirements for on-site wastewater system approval are specified in the Health (Treatment of Sewage and Disposal of Effluent and Liquid Waste) Regulations 1974 (Government of WA). Similarly, the use of greywater is regulated under the Code of Practice for the Reuse of Greywater in Western Australia (DOHWA, 2010). Applications for recycling schemes come directly to the DOHWA and require approval from the Executive Director of Public Health (EDPH). Since 2000, there has been a significant increase in both the number of recycling schemes and potential end-

uses (National Water Commission, 2011). This is in response to increased pressure on fresh water sources and advances in treatment technologies that are able to achieve better wastewater quality. In 2006, the Australian Guidelines for Water Recycling – Managing Health and Environmental Risks (Phase 1) were released (NRMMC and NHMRC, 2006). A simplified version, the Guidelines for the Non-Potable Uses of Recycled Water in Western Australia, is intended to bring WA recycled water practices and schemes up to the National Guidelines standards (DOHWA, 2011). Both National and State Guidelines are designed to provide planning, risk management and implementation frameworks for water recycling schemes through the assessment of human and environmental risks, and through the implementation of the ‘12-element’ risk assessment framework, which was initially developed for the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines (NRMMC and NHMRC, 2004). This study analysed the water quality data from existing recycling schemes in WA. The primary objectives of this study were to: • Determine the water quality compliance of water recycling schemes in WA based on the intended end-uses; and • Determine the compliance of water recycling schemes with the number of samples analysed based on the expected number of samples and the number of months the schemes are in operation.

METHODOLOGY SAMPLING PROTOCOL

Sampling is mainly the responsibility of local government Environmental Health Officers (EHO) who are required to take monthly water samples of all recycling schemes within their area. Samples were collected, preserved and transported to


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Technical Features

The microbiological quality of the recycled water was analysed in accordance with AS/NZS 4276.7-1995: Water Microbiology – Thermotolerant Coliforms and Escherichia coli – Membrane Filtration Method (Standards Australia, 1995a) and AS/NZS 4276.141995: Water Microbiology – Salmonellae (Standards Australia, 1995b). Results of analysis were sent to the local government and electronic copies sent to the DOHWA. For this study, data were accessed from the DOHWA Global Data Management System (GDMS), which is a centralised data access point that has been customised to meet the DOHWA requirements. DATA ANALYSIS

Both E. coli and Thermotolerant Coliforms have been reported as useful indicators of possible faecal contamination. E. coli is a more reliable indicator of faecal contamination (Leclerc et al., 2001); however, it was excluded

18 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 1977 1979 1981 1983 1985 1987 1989 1991 1993 1995 1997 1999 2001 2003 2005 2007 2009

Year

Figure 1. Number of recycling schemes approved per year. from the analysis, as it was not consistently analysed over the study period. Although some Thermotolerant Coliforms can be found naturally in the environment (Tallon et al., 2005), they have been commonly used as ‘Faecal Indicators’ for monitoring wastewater samples. A series of trend analyses were conducted to identify and investigate tendencies and periodicity that may have occurred within the collected data at the specific sampling sites. Microbial test data were extracted based on test definition, whereby confirmed Thermotolerant Coliform data were collectively analysed as Faecal Indicators. Incidences of compliance were measured according to minimum microbial values in cfu/100mL. Microbial compliance values were determined depending on the product quality required for end use (Table 1). Schemes using recycled water for the irrigation of public open spaces with restricted access and application are classified as a “low” exposure risk level. Given that 85% of the schemes (Figure 2) were this “low” level, they were required to demonstrate compliance with the microbial compliance value of Thermotolerant Coliform/E. coli < 1000 cfu/100mL (ARMCANZ, ANZECC and NHMRC, 2000).

Thermotolerant Coliforms were measured using count data. Each scheme submitted five samples from the same sampling point for analysis and the results of these were averaged to determine water quality performance. Compliance requirements in relation to the number of samples analysed were compared with the annual number of expected samples. A minimum of six months’ sampling results was considered to determine the expected number of samples. The majority of water recycling schemes operate only in the dry season from October to May, consequently a minimum of six batches of five samples were expected. As most of the conditions of approval require that samples are taken monthly when a scheme is in use, it is expected that 12 batches of five samples will be submitted annually by each waterrecycling scheme. Conditions of approval require schemes to notify the months of proposed operation. However, there was very limited information available for the majority of the schemes.

RESULTS RECYCLING SCHEMES IN WA

The majority of schemes were approved in 1993 when 19 local governments

Table 1: Minimum microbial compliance values. Exposure Risk Levels

End Uses

Microbial Compliance Value

High

Urban residential garden watering

Thermotolerant coliform/E. coli < 10 cfu/100mL

Medium

Drinking water for stock (except pigs)

Thermotolerant coliform/E. coli < 100 cfu/100mL

Irrigation of open spaces with controlled public access

Thermotolerant coliform/E. coli < 1000 cfu/100mL

Low Non-human food chain

Thermotolerant coliform/E. coli <10,000 cfu/100mL

Source: National Water Quality Management Strategy Guidelines for Sewerage Systems Use of Reclaimed Water (2000).

Figure 2. Proportion of recycling schemes by end-uses.

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GOVERNANCE AND REGULATION

Manual data cleaning and validation were conducted to detect and correct (or remove) incomplete or inaccurate data from the DOHWA’s database that could affect the validity of the analysis. Incorrectly entered site codes, years of approval, sample results, names of the schemes and other errors of the data were carefully examined and, where possible, were corrected using semi-structured interviews. As a result of this process, 21 schemes were found to have a lack of data or inconsistent information. They were marked as ‘non-compliant’ and excluded from the analysis, leaving 71 out of 92 recycling schemes for analysis.

20

No of Schemes

PathWest (a NATA-accredited laboratory) as per the Recycled Water Sampling Technique Factsheet (Environmental Health Directorate, 2010).


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Technical Features

Figure 3. Annual microbial compliance of recycling schemes in WA, 2003–2009.

Figure 4. Annual microbial compliance of recycling schemes by type of scheme.

Table 2. Number of samples taken by type of scheme per year. No of schemes

No of expected samples per year

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

Total Compliance

Single

26

156

164

215

253

312

286

282

244

100%

Multiple

45

270

271

312

300

163

183

244

245

43%

Operator Type

GOVERNANCE AND REGULATION

in country areas initiated the use of municipal wastewater for irrigation of ovals and sport facilities (Figure 1). Between 1978 and 1993, the DOHWA approved only one per year and, after 1993, the DOHWA approved between one and seven recycling schemes every year (Figure 1). Most of the analysed recycling schemes (84.5%) used treated wastewater to irrigate municipal green spaces such as ovals, golf courses, parks, gardens and race courses with a few schemes irrigating pasture crops. A further 8.4% used recycled water for non-edible crop irrigation (woodlots, turf, flowers) and 5.7% used the water for dust suppression of roads on mine sites (Figure 2). One of the schemes (1.4%) used treated wastewater to enhance the environmental flows of a river. Microbial compliance ranged from a minimum of 85% in 2004 to a maximum of 91% in 2009 (Figure 3). On average, the percentage of microbial noncompliance with expected water quality for the analysed period was 12%. The overall quality of recycled water slightly improved towards the end of the period 2003–2009. Each recycling scheme was individually analysed for microbial compliance and the total number of samples taken (data not shown). OPERATION OF RECYCLING SCHEMES BY SINGLE AND MULTIPLE ENTITIES

There were 26 single entity schemes (in which only one organisation is responsible for all stages of the process

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from wastewater collection to end-use) and 45 multiple entity schemes (in which at least two organisations are involved, one as the wastewater provider and the other as the scheme manager) operating in WA over the study period. Single entity schemes demonstrated better microbial compliance than the multiple entity schemes, except for the years 2005 and 2009 when both types of schemes showed approximately 90% microbial compliance (Figure 4). Single entity schemes also tended to perform better in relation to the number of expected samples (Table 2). For instance, if we assume that the operation period of all analysed recycling schemes is only six months a year, then the estimated minimum number of samples that is required to be taken by single and multiple entity schemes combined can be calculated as follows (figures taken from Table 2): For single entities schemes: 26 schemes x 6 months = 156 samples/year For multiple entity schemes: 45 schemes x 6 months = 270 samples/year. By comparing the above calculated numbers with the actual numbers of samples that were taken by each category of entity, it can be noted that during the analysed period, single entity schemes consistently took more than the minimum 156 samples required each year and, therefore, showed 100% compliance. In comparison, multiple entity schemes took fewer than the minimum 270 samples required in all but three of the years examined.

PERFORMANCE OF RECYCLING SCHEMES BY END-USES

Microbial water quality compliance of the analysed recycling schemes by end-uses is presented in Figure 5. Most schemes performed well with between 80 to 100% microbial compliance for the period 2003–2009. All four recycling schemes that reuse treated wastewater for industrial use demonstrated 100% microbial compliance in each year of the analysis period. Not all of the schemes, however, took the required number of samples per year to demonstrate microbial compliance (Table 3). For instance, the ‘Environmental’ recycling scheme, which uses treated wastewater to enhance a river stream, took an insufficient number of samples over the study period. This scheme, which has been in operation since 2002, did not submit samples for microbial analyses in 2003, 2004, 2007 and 2008. Even though in 2005 the scheme took only four samples, the result of all these samples exceeded the Thermotolerant Coliform/E. coli <1000cfu/100ml compliance value. In 2006 the scheme took samples only once (Table 3) and demonstrated 100% compliance (Figure 5). In 2009, the scheme collected only two samples (Table 3) with 50% compliance (Figure 5). Considering that the majority of schemes for irrigation and industrial uses were approved before the analysed period, the problem of under-sampling is clearly identified.


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Table 3. Number of samples collected by end uses per year. End Uses

No of schemes

No of expected samples per year

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

Total Compliance

Industrial

4

24

7

8

12

17

10

19

18

0%

Irrigation

60

360

428

511

526

440

459

498

418

100%

Woodlot

6

36

0

8

11

17

0

9

51

14%

Environmental

1

6

0

0

4

1

0

0

2

0%

DISCUSSION Using recycled water for non-potable uses is a sustainable way to help alleviate the pressure on scarce water resources, provided public health is adequately protected. Currently there are National and State Guidelines to ensure adequate management of health and environmental risk by implementing a risk management framework. Most of the 92 approved recycling schemes in WA analysed during the seven-year study period do not comply with water quality monitoring requirements stipulated in the conditions of approval, mainly due to the low number of samples taken rather than non-compliance with microbial water quality.

This study found that multiple entity schemes performed more poorly than single entity ones, highlighting that it is necessary to ensure that the responsibilities of the entities are clearly stated and that both parties know their roles and responsibilities. Recycled water supply agreements between the supplier and the user are often in place, but not always. Moreover, agreements signed in accordance with the National Water Quality Management Strategy Guidelines for Sewerage Systems Use of Reclaimed Water (2000) did not specify the water quality targets of recycled water to be delivered by the wastewater service provider. As a result, the operation of a multiple-entity recycling scheme is less controlled and the quality of recycled water does not always comply with the requirements of the DOHWA.

The DOHWA requirements during the study period were set based on the National Water Quality Management The DOHWA regulations and guidelines Strategy Guidelines for Sewerage Systems for recycled water deal largely with â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;open Use of Reclaimed Water (2000). These spaceâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; irrigation recycling schemes, many Guidelines did not include the current risk management framework approach, which also includes the concept of tolerable or acceptable risks to end users of recycled water. Adoption of the Figure 5. Annual microbial compliance of recycling schemes by end-uses. National and

State guidelines for water recycling will require a transitional period given that the majority of existing schemes were in operation before their implementation. Under-sampling was a significant issue for several schemes, with the sampling data unavailable for entire years in some cases, particularly from those schemes that were more isolated and from areas with smaller populations. The failure to take regular samples is also a concern, as regular sampling provides a much clearer picture of water quality trends. At present, new schemes are required to provide sufficient detail relevant to the proposal for assessment including a Recycled Water Quality Management Plan (RWQMP). The level of detail required depends on the type of system and the associated risk to health, which is based on the proposed end use and potential for human exposure. It is expected that existing schemes in WA will amend their operational procedures and will develop and implement a RWQMP in order to comply with the new guidelines within a two- to five-year transitional period. This study identified that poor performance of the water recycling schemes was related to inadequate planning and management of the schemes. This was also highlighted by Keremane and McKay (2007), who found that sustainability of recycled water can be achieved with adequate policies, good planning and management, adequate financial obligations, and public participation and support.

CONCLUSION This study was undertaken using water quality data collected over a sevenyear period between 2003 and 2009 to examine compliance of water recycling schemes in WA. The issue of noncompliance of recycling schemes with DOHWA requirements was mainly due to under-sampling rather than water quality. This was considered to be a significant problem and will need to be addressed by the DOHWA. Most of the non-compliance can be attributed to the lack of appropriate risk management and

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GOVERNANCE AND REGULATION

Notifying individual schemes of microbial water quality results that fall outside compliance values, or a lack of samples submitted for analysis, is done by the DOHWA. This is not done consistently, however, and the schemes do not always send the requested samples to the laboratory. The lack of human resources and high staff turnover at local governments may also have impacted on sampling frequency. An additional complication is that when non-compliance has occurred, the DOHWA has been unable to take prompt corrective actions due to the lack of resources. This gap can be better addressed through adequate resources, better data management systems, and a better communication and follow-up of approved recycling schemes by the DOHWA.

of which have been in place for over 30 years. So, due to the age of some recycling schemes and the lack of appropriate risk management documentation and planning, none of the 92 analysed schemes in WA are in full compliance with Australian Guidelines for Water Recycling (Phase 1). The high levels of staff turnover reinforce the need to implement adequate documentation and reporting mechanisms such as written procedures on the operation and maintenance of recycling schemes to ensure continuity and consistency of operations.


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Technical Features documentation; therefore, it is expected that implementation of the National and State Guidelines will address this gap. This implementation would help identify and manage risk in a proactive way rather than reacting to problems when they arise. Adoption of these Guidelines will require a transitional period for the development and implementation of RWQMPs. It is, therefore, expected that all stakeholders, in particular the Water Corporation as the main wastewater service provider in WA, and local governments as the main end-user, will work in a coordinated and collaborative way to achieve compliance with the new Guidelines.

RECOMMENDATIONS To improve the performance of the water recycling schemes in WA, it is recommended that: DOHWA: • Improve the maintenance, follow-up and response procedures of the recycled water quality database in order to provide prompt feedback when non-compliance results arise;

GOVERNANCE AND REGULATION

• Review all conditions of approval of schemes previously approved and develop a plan with each scheme to agree to the activities and timeframe for implementation of new regulatory requirements; • Establish risk mitigation priorities and practices to ensure that the responsibilities of each party are clearly defined and the recycled water is ‘fit for purpose’; • Enforce internal and external audits of all water recycling schemes to ensure that the schemes operate in accordance with the approvals; • Request that managers of recycling schemes submit annual reports that include monitoring programs, monitoring results, incidents, compliance and maintenance programs, and provide an overview of how the scheme is operating; • Address the knowledge gaps over the implementation of the National and State Guidelines as well as the lack of linkages between science policy makers, science practitioners and end users (i.e. adopters) through the educational training and workshops, particularly in regional areas. Wastewater service providers: • Conduct regular maintenance and

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upgrading of systems to ensure that equipment and systems are adequate; • Ensure that all sections of the ‘Recycled Water Supply Agreement’ are addressed and the quality of the provided water is suitable for the intended end use; • Implement process control programs following the HACCP approach to ensure the plant is operating as per operational target limits; • Where feasible, invest in scientific research, particularly in relation to how contaminants and pathogens can be inactivated, improving treatment plant and pipe system cleaning operations, and improving wastewater treatment efficiencies; • Develop a Memorandum of Understanding for Wastewater Services implementing a risk-based approach for wastewater management in line with National and State Guidelines. Scheme managers: • Be responsible for the implementation of the Recycled Water Quality Management Plan and for the notification of end-users of the conditions of recycled water use and their responsibilities; • Define the roles and responsibilities of all stakeholders and organisations involved in the scheme; • Commit to the recycling scheme with the allocation of resources for the longterm viability of the project; • Perform regular internal audits of recycling schemes to ensure that the management and operational strategies are undertaken and any non-compliance is dealt with; • Maintain written procedures on the operation and maintenance of recycling schemes for continuity of the operation.

THE AUTHORS Natalia Shishkina (email: natalia.shishkina@health. wa.gov.au) is a Scientific Officer with the WA Department of Health. Toni Hannelly (email: T.Hannelly@curtin.edu. au) is a lecturer in the Health Safety & Environment Directorate of the School of Public Health at Curtin University and is the Coordinator of the Postgraduate Environmental Health Programs.

Dr Clemencia Rodriguez (email: clemencia. rodriguez@health.wa.gov. au) is a Special Project Officer with the WA Department of Health.

REFERENCES ARMCANZ ANZECC & NHMRC (2000): National Water Quality Management Strategy: Guidelines for Sewerage Systems Use of Reclaimed Water. Canberra, Commonwealth of Australia. Department of Health of Western Australia (2010): Code of Practice for the Reuse of Greywater in Western Australia 2010. DOHWA. Perth. Department of Health of Western Australia (2011): Guidelines for the Non-Portable Uses of Recycled Water in Western Australia. DOHWA. Perth. Environmental Health Directorate (2010): Sampling Techniques Factsheet. Perth. Government of Western Australia (1974): Health (Treatment of Sewage and Disposal of Effluent and Liquid Waste) Regulations 1974. Perth, Government of Western Australia. Keremane GB & McKay J (2007): Successful Wastewater Reuse Scheme and Sustainable Development: A Case Study in Adelaide. Water and Environment Journal, 21, 2, pp 83–91. Leclerc H, Mossel DA, Edberg SC & Struijk CB (2001): Advances in the Bacteriology of the Coliform Group: Their Suitability as Markers of Microbial Water Safety. Annual Reviews in Microbiology, 55, 1, pp 201–234. National Water Commission (2011): Urban Water in Australia: Future Directions. Canberra, NWC. NRMMC & NHMRC (2004): Australian Drinking Water Guidelines. Canberra, Natural Resource Management Ministerial Council, Environment Protection and Heritage Council and the National Health Medical Research Council. NRMMC & NHMRC (2006): Australian Guidelines for Water Recycling: Managing Health and Environmental Risks (Phase 1). Canberra, Natural Resource Management Ministerial Council, Environment Protection and Heritage Council and National Health Medical Research Council. Standards Australia (1995a): Australian Standards 4276.7—1995: Water Microbiology – Thermotolerant Coliforms and Escherichia coli – Membrane Filtration Method. Sydney, Australia. Standards Australia (1995b): Australian Standards 4276.14 – 1995: Water Microbiology – Salmonellae. Sydney, Australia. Tallon P, Magajna B, Lofranco C & Leung KT (2005): Microbial Indicators of Faecal Contamination in Water: A Current Perspective. Water, Air and Soil Pollution 166, 3, pp 139–166.


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PREPARING DRINKING WATER QUALITY MANAGEMENT PLANS FOR MINING OPERATIONS IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA An outline of the key issues that need to be addressed JE Wajon

ABSTRACT

WATER IN MINING

This paper discusses the background, requirements, need and content of plans for management of drinking water selfsupplied to mining-related operations, including construction camps, especially in remote areas of Western Australia. The paper discusses the importance of cooperation between regulators, the mine site operator and the consultant in preparing a plan fully compliant with the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines to protect the quality and safety of drinking water supplied to mine sites. The paper outlines some of the issues that need to be addressed in preparing a Drinking Water Quality Management Plan, such as hazard identification, risk assessment, the multiple barrier approach and the concept of Critical Control Points. Data requirements, monitoring, incident management, training and reporting are also covered.

Mine sites need water for a wide range of purposes, including drinking, cooking, showering, washing, swimming, irrigation, dust suppression, ore beneficiation, ore moisture control, conditioning of soil materials for compaction, washdown, cooling and steam raising in power stations. Typically, mine sites need to supply their own water, as they are often remote from distribution networks, require large amounts of water and require water of various qualities (see Figure 1). Water for mine site operations may be obtained or generated from a number of different sources, including surface water, rainfall runoff, groundwater, dewatering and wastewater recycling. Water used for drinking and cooking needs to be of drinking water quality, i.e. safe to ingest and free of hazardous or

objectionable chemical, physical and microbiological components. Water used for other purposes, including showering, washing, swimming and dust suppression, can be of nondrinking water quality, with the water quality being fit for the purpose for which it is intended. Sometimes the quality of non-drinking water may be better in some respects than that of drinking water (eg colour, suspended solids), but it may not be free of all components injurious to health, such as bacteria and viruses. Consequently, non-drinking water should not be used for drinking purposes, and where it is used in close proximity to, or in places normally associated with the use of drinking water, such as for showers or lawn irrigation, signs need to be erected warning against its use for drinking purposes.

REGULATORY REQUIREMENTS

• Comply with the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines (ADWG) (2004 ADWG, now 2011 ADWG), (NHMRC, MRMMC 2011); • Provide results of routine monitoring of such water supplies to the DoH;

Figure 1. Mine camps in Western Australia’s Pilbara region need to source their own drinking water.

• Establish a drinking water quality monitoring program, which normally involves chemical and microbiological analysis of the drinking water.

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MINING WATER MANAGEMENT

According to instructions from the Western Australian Department of Minerals and Petroleum and the Department of Health Western Australia (DoH) (Department of Health Western Australia, 2009), all mining companies and mining operators who supply drinking water to employees and/ or associated communities (mine sites), are obliged to:


102

Technical Features In addition, those mining companies or mine sites that use onsite or selfmanaged water abstraction, treatment and reticulation, distribution and consumption systems must submit formal advice to the Water Unit of the DoH that they are providing water services and establish a Drinking Water Quality Management Plan (DWQMP). The DWQMP must be prepared in accordance with the DoH’s “Model Drinking Water Quality Management Plan” (Department of Health Western Australia, 2008).

through a risk assessment workshop and/ or a land use compatibility assessment.

Monitoring and reporting must be undertaken in accordance with DoH’s “System Compliance and Routine Reporting Requirements for Minesites and Exploration Camps” (Department of Health Western Australia, 2010), and DoH’s “Small Community Model Assessable Sampling Grid” documentation (Department of Health Western Australia, undated).

While unlikely, the potential for accidental or deliberate contamination of water with harmful chemical, biological

The purpose of a DWQMP is to address the management actions required to maintain drinking water quality during construction, operation and decommissioning. The DWQMP should follow the ADWG approach of supplying safe drinking water by managing and addressing risk rather than by simply supplying water that meets a set of guidelines. As a consequence, the DWQMP should outline the systems, procedures and monitoring that will be used for the management of drinking water quality, and identify the specific risks and mitigation measures relevant to the provision of safe drinking water.

Often the biggest risk in remote pastoral areas is the unprotected catchment with, for example, roaming cattle and flooding rains, which can introduce microbiological contaminants into the water supply (see Figure 2). However, mining activities with their attendant use of fuel and explosives can also potentially threaten the quality of water supplies.

or radiological agents at all stages of the water supply system, including water storage tanks, needs to be recognised and addressed. Care also needs to be taken to ensure that wastewater treatment facilities, including any wastewater disposal infrastructure, are not located in the catchment of the water source. Another requirement that needs to be addressed is the need for scour or flushing points, both at the base of tanks and in reticulation networks. This is frequently not recognised because mining camps are often small, temporary and constructed without consideration of water quality.

PHYSICAL BARRIERS TO PREVENT CONTAMINATION OF WATER SOURCES AND SUPPLIES • Fencing around bores to prevent unauthorised access or entry by stock. • Wellhead protection zone with a minimum radius of 300m to exclude potentially contaminating activities such as fuel storage, wastewater disposal, residential accommodation and mining activities. • Bores surrounded by a 1m x 1m sloping concrete pad to prevent surface water inflow into the bore annulus. • Sealed bore casing and concrete-filled bore annulus, to prevent ingress of potentially contaminating stormwater. • Adequate and appropriately bunded hardstand bore diesel fuel tank unloading area. • Screened Whirlibirds on overflow and pressure balancing vents on water storage tanks to prevent ingress of vermin (insects, frogs, mice, etc). • Double check valve/backflow prevention device on inlets and outlets of water tankers or on water storage tanks to prevent cross-contamination. • Water treatment plants and drinking water storage facilities are fenced with lockable entry points.

MINING WATER MANAGEMENT

RISK ASSESSMENT AND HAZARD PREVENTION A list needs to be compiled of all the potential hazards related to each element of the drinking water supply system i.e. water abstraction, treatment and distribution. This list may be compiled

Figure 2. Free-ranging cattle in rangelands are a major potential source of pathogenic organisms in drinking water.

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Figure 3. Using clean utensils rather than dirty personal containers to obtain ice is critical to maintaining clean drinking water.


103

Technical Features • Storage tank integrity, including inspection and maintenance procedures;

Commitment to Drinking Water Quality Management

System Analysis and Management Assessment of the drinking water supply system Preventive measures for drinking water quality management

• Water treatment, including operation, maintenance and monitoring procedures;

Supporting Requirements Employee awareness and training Community involvement and awareness Research and development

Review

Documentation and reporting

Evaluation and audit

Operational procedures and process control

Review and continual improvement

• Distribution and reticulation system integrity, including monitoring, inspection and maintenance; • Consumer outlet integrity and hygienic water use procedures;

Verification of drinking water quality Management of incidents and emergencies

• Waste disposal location, including separation.

Figure 4. The ADWG framework for management of drinking water quality (NHMRC, NRMMC, 2011) defines the system to safely manage drinking water.

Although it is important to maintain effective operation of all barriers, the advantage of multiple barriers is that short-term reductions in performance of one barrier should be compensated for by the performance of other barriers. Should one of the barriers fail, a corrective response should be triggered and the remaining barriers should ensure adequate water quality in the short term. Despite the presence of multiple barriers, prevention of contamination provides greater surety than removal of contaminants by treatment, so the most effective barrier is protection of source waters to the maximum degree practical.

Figure 5. Securely fencing drinking water infrastructure such as bores is essential to prevent accidental or deliberate contamination. Treatment plant failure is not common, but does occur and can potentially be serious. The often remote location of the site may delay repair or replacement of parts, and the relative inexperience or multi-tasked nature of many plant operators may mean they are illequipped to undertake the repair.

MULTIPLE BARRIER APPROACH The ADWG (NHMRC NRMMC, 2011) defines a framework and protocols for protecting drinking water quality from source to consumer, utilising the concept of multiple water quality protection barriers (see Figure 4). The multiple barrier approach is universally recognised as the

Typical water quality protection barriers include the following: • Groundwater catchment protection, including exclusion of potentially contaminating activities such as livestock and fuel storage facilities; • Production bore protection, including correct construction, inspection and maintenance to prevent vermin (insects, frogs, mice, etc) and stock faecal matter from entering and contaminating the drinking water source at the bore; • Raw water quality control, including monitoring and response procedures;

CRITICAL CONTROL POINTS Critical Control Points are described in the ADWG as an activity, procedure or process at which control can be applied and which is essential to prevent a hazard or reduce it to an acceptable level. The ADWG outlines how Critical Control Points can be established through the use of the Critical Control Point Decision Tree (see Figure 6). Typically, Critical Control Points are established at one of the water quality protection barriers such as at the end of water treatment unit processes where a contaminant is removed or a chemical is added. Consequently, Critical Limits and Target Criteria, which are measurable or observable parameters, are set at Critical Control Points to identify whether the water quality protection barrier is operating successfully. Non-compliance with a Target Criterion indicates one or more preventative measures have failed and action is required. Non-compliance

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MINING WATER MANAGEMENT

Another often unrecognised risk is consumer hygiene. This is potentially a serious issue at ice dispensing units in hot environments where good habits, such as clean hands and using clean containers, are critical to maintaining the safety of drinking water (see Figure 3).

foundation for ensuring safe drinking water. No single barrier is effective against all conceivable sources of contamination, is effective 100% of the time or constantly functions at maximum efficiency. Robust barriers are those that can handle a relatively wide range of challenges with close to maximum performance and without suffering major failure.

Barriers may be physical attributes, such as fences (see Figure 5) and water treatment unit processes, but they may also be practices and procedures such as inspection and monitoring.


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Technical Features CCP Decision Tree Table 1. Do preventive measures exist at this step or subsequent steps for the identified hazard? Modify step, No process or product

Yes

Yes 2. Does this step eliminate or reduce the likely occurrence of a hazard to an acceptable level?

Is control at this step necessary for safety?

No 3. Could contamination with identified hazards occur in excess of acceptable levels or could these increase to unacceptable levels? Yes Yes

4. Will a subsequent step eliminate identified hazards or reduce the likely occurrence to an acceptable level?

No No Yes

No

Critical Control Point

STOP

Not a Critical Control Point

Figure 6. Critical Control Point decision tree (FDA, 1999).

with a Critical Limit is more critical and indicates that there has been substantial breach of a barrier or failure of a process so that corrective actions need to be instituted immediately to regain control of the process.

tankers) used to service non-drinking needs (see Figure 7). Tankers carting drinking water need to be disinfected periodically and water carriers need to maintain a Drinking Water Cartage Log Book to record source, volume and time of water delivery. Backflow prevention systems and devices need to be installed on tanker inlet and discharge lines to prevent cross-contamination and these need to comply with the medium hazard rating of AS 3500.1-1992.

DIVIDED RESPONSIBILITY Problems with respect to responsibility can arise where the owner of a minesite sub-contracts any element of the operation, such as actual mining, to a third party who owns and operates drinking water infrastructure such as tanks and taps. Where contractors receive drinking water from either the mine owner or another supplier and are responsible for providing drinking water using their own assets, the supplier needs to provide clean, safe and fit-for-purpose water to the contractor and into the contractor’s assets. Further, the contractor needs to be advised of (and accept, via a written agreement) the hand-over of

water quality responsibilities from the supplier, and where that hand-over occurs. This is to ensure that in the case of non-compliance with any water quality requirements, responsibility can be appropriately assigned.

INFORMATION AND DATA REQUIREMENTS In preparing a DWQMP and, indeed, in appropriately managing a drinking water supply system, a significant amount of information and data is required. This includes the following: • Map of site and water supply sources; • Water supply source details such as specific location, bore name/code; • Water supply source characteristics, such as bore logs, bore extraction licence details and annual licensed abstraction quantity; • Per capita and total water use; • Water treatment plant capacity; • Raw and treated water storage capacity and location; • Raw water chemical analyses including the standard pH, turbidity, salinity and major cations/anions, but also

Typical Critical Control Points are shown in Table 1.

SATELLITE SITES

MINING WATER MANAGEMENT

Large mining operations typically have satellite sites to which drinking water produced at the main site is delivered. They may be either occupied continuously or temporarily, such as during the day. These satellite sites may include crushers, workshops, offices or lunch rooms. Water may be delivered by reticulated pipework, but in many instances drinking water is delivered by truck and stored in on-site tanks before use. It is extremely important that every effort is made to protect the quality of the drinking water during delivery and storage. This includes the use of dedicated, labelled drinking water tankers and tanks, with separate equipment (i.e. pumps, tanks and

Figure 7. Drinking water tankers need to be dedicated to delivering drinking water and need back-flow prevention devices to prevent accidental cross-contamination.

Table 1. Water Supply System Critical Control Points and Objectives. Critical Control Point

Critical Control Parameter

Target Criterion

Critical Limit

Water extraction

E. coli in production bore

Bore head protected from contamination

E. coli absent from water

Filtration

Turbidity at outlet of treated water storage tank

<0.5 NTU

1 NTU

Chlorination

Free chlorine in recirculating chlorination system

Free chlorine >0.7 mg/L

Free chlorine 0.5 mg/L

WATER AUGUST 2013


105

Technical Features dissolved iron, manganese and other trace metals, silica, radioactivity, nutrients (especially ammonia and nitrate), fluoride, iodide, pesticides, Eschericia coli and thermotolerant coliforms; • Treated water chemical analyses, related to the parameters of concern that are addressed by treatment; • Map of sampling locations; • Location of wastewater treatment plant facilities; • Nature and location of water treatment plant residuals and treated domestic wastewater disposal.

MONITORING The assessment of water quality data is an important step in understanding how the water supply system is affected over time and by significant events such as flooding or prolonged drought. It can aid in the identification of hazards and aspects of the water supply system that require improvement. Monitoring of a consolidated range of raw water quality parameters should be undertaken on a regular basis to identify changes in source water quality. More comprehensive analyses should be undertaken at least annually to identify the need for additional source protection or remediation works. Values above the guideline levels in raw water are not necessarily cause for alarm as long as results are constant and treatment can reduce the levels to below guideline levels. However, if results from monitoring indicate a large deviation from the norm, actions need to be taken to identify the cause and remedy the problem.

Monitoring of distributed water allows the operator to assess the condition of the distribution system and ensure the maintenance of water quality reaching

In very remote areas, arrangements for taking samples and delivering them to certified laboratories within specified holding times, especially for microbiological analysis, can be very challenging. Innovative arrangements between samplers, transport service providers and laboratories may be able to overcome these logistical issues.

INCIDENT MANAGEMENT, CORRECTIVE ACTIONS AND EMERGENCY RESPONSE Despite safeguards and preventative maintenance, the water supply system may be disrupted by, for example, extreme weather or equipment failure. The most likely and significant events, such as pipeline bursts or chlorinator failures, should be identified and appropriate responses to such incidents formulated.

equipment, tanks or piping, or flushing and scouring pipelines. In some cases, new water sources may be required. In the event that normal corrective actions fail to rectify water quality issues, pre-prepared Emergency Response Procedures need to be invoked. This may include shutting down the water supply system or restricting water use to nonconsumptive uses. Depending on the cause of the problem (and the likely time to rectify it), alternate safe drinking water may need to be sourced or a ‘boil water’ alert issued. If this is not possible, bottled water may need to be provided. To cater for these situations, particularly if the water supply system shutdown is caused by adverse weather events such as cyclones or floods, remote sites should have bottled water available for distribution. Naegleria fowleri may proliferate in water that is warmer than 42ºC and may be an issue in mine sites located in the Goldfields, Pilbara or Kimberley regions of Western Australia. A specific amoeba response protocol is required (in addition to standard emergency response procedures) in the event that thermophilic Naegleria are identified at distribution and/ or consumer points within the drinking water supply system.

TRAINING Trained and experienced drinking water supply system operators are generally in short supply at mine sites. Typically, employees and sub-contractors responsible for water are trained on the job by more experienced water treatment plant operators, senior personnel, equipment suppliers or consultants.

In the event that monitoring indicates that results do not meet guidelines, Critical Limits or Target Criteria, investigation and corrective action(s) need to be implemented. In addition, the Department of Health needs to be notified of such occurrences in accordance with its Exception Protocol, which categorises noncompliance events into two levels, depending upon the severity of the incident. The more severe the event, the more swift the notification and the more senior the contact within the Department of Health needs to be. Responses to incidents and non-compliances may include cleaning, Figure 8. Distribution system samples must be taken from sample points that can be sterilised. repairing or replacing

AUGUST 2013 WATER

MINING WATER MANAGEMENT

Monitoring of water post-treatment is an essential element in determining whether the water supply is safe and whether the treatment system is operating satisfactorily. A change in a parameter value post-treatment compared to normal, or above the relevant criterion, indicates that the system is not operating correctly. In this event, an investigation of the potential problems is required. If the concentration of the parameter exceeds the Critical Limit, immediate investigation of the problem is required.

the consumer. Samples should be taken from representative locations within the distribution system that include critical areas, such as food preparation areas, areas frequented by staff and dead ends (if any are present). Samples should be taken from each sample location on a rotational basis so that samples are taken from at least 1–2 locations in the distribution system on a weekly basis. Samples should be taken from locked sampling boxes, equipped with copper piping to enable the sample port to be sterilised with a flame or ethanol for the purposes of microbiological sampling (see Figure 8).


106

Technical Features

POTENTIAL PARTIAL CONTENTS OF A DRINKING WATER QUALITY MANAGEMENT IMPROVEMENT PLAN • Mark wellhead protection zone with 300m diameter around production bores on Geographic Information Systems (GIS), erect post(s) at boundaries and relocate non-compliant activities; • Take samples from production bores and analyse for comprehensive suite of analytes, including radioactivity; • Prepare procedure and checklist for inspection of production bore catchment and headworks; • Install water meters to measure consumption; • Install low-level alarms on raw and treated water storage tanks; • Monitor chlorine residual automatically at outlet of treated water storage tanks and install automatic alarm (routed to mobile phone or other contact point) if levels fall below Critical Limit; • Lock access stairs and/or hatches to water storage tanks; • Install scour valves and pipes that enable water storage tanks to be drained if required; • Prepare pipe burst repair, hygiene and disinfection procedure; • Ensure water tanker drivers maintain a drinking water cartage log book; • Ensure water tanker drivers clean tankers at least once every three months; • Erect signage at ice-dispensing units and toilets at each work location to remind employees to have clean hands and use clean containers when taking ice; • Erect signage where appropriate to indicate water is not drinkable. Formal training is available through three-month full time traineeships in Water Operations (Level II) at the Challenger Institute of Technology (and other TAFEs), which awards the operator a Certificate II

in Water Operations. The Australian Water Association (AWA), with joint venture partner Opus International Consultants, runs the Water Industry Training Institute (WITI), which delivers nationally recognised water industry training in partnership with The Learning Collaborative (RTO No. 32350).

MINING WATER MANAGEMENT

WITI delivers NWP20107 Certificate II and NWP30107 Certificate III in Water Operations across all states and territories. Currently WITI trainers are delivering Certificate III in Water Operations to mining industry employees in the Pilbara via face to face delivery which is supported by distance learning delivered via an electronic classroom. By working closely with some employers, AWA and Opus have designed a training and assessment delivery methodology that can cater for the unique needs of a Fly-In-FlyOut (FIFO) workforce.

Figure 9. Upgrading chlorinators to automatically monitor chlorine residuals and send an automatic alarm to a mobile phone or other contact point if levels fall below Critical Limit would improve response to equipment breakdowns or loss of disinfectant residual.

WATER AUGUST 2013

A potential difficulty in implementing such a training regime is that some mining companies may be reluctant to support employees in undertaking formal training for a number of reasons, including the high turnover and risk of losing recently trained staff, and the rotation of duties in a FIFO roster, which requires two staff members to be trained.

REPORTING Distribution system water quality monitoring results need to be reported to DoH in accordance with the “Small Community Model Assessable Sampling Grid” and “Systems Compliance and Routine Reporting Requirements for Minesites and Exploration Camps”. Reports are required quarterly covering March, June, September and December and there is also a requirement for an annual report. These reports are due within four weeks of the end of the respective period, though DoH has some flexibility in reporting timeframes in the initial stages of setting up a water quality management framework. To assist in the preparation and lodgement of the required quarterly and annual reports, the DoH has prepared a template that addresses microbiological (thermotolerant coliforms, thermophilic Naegleria and Naegleria fowleri), chemical (health and aesthetic) and radiological parameters.

AUDITING AND CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT The ADWG describes auditing as a systematic evaluation of activities and processes to confirm that objectives are being met. Auditing provides valuable information on those aspects of the water supply system that are effective, as well as identifying opportunities


107

Technical Features for improvement of poor operational practices. Audits of the water supply system and implementation of the Drinking Water Quality Management Plan should cover all aspects of the system, including water sources, treatment, operations, maintenance, monitoring and reporting, and should be undertaken at least annually. Continual improvement of the processes and elements contained in the drinking water supply system is important. It may include changes or additions to the treatment process to address newly recognised water quality issues such as additional contaminants of health or aesthetic concern. It may include better protection of the water source, such as through fencing or signage. There may also be improvements in monitoring, warning and alarm systems that result in more rapid response to equipment breakdowns or loss of disinfectant residual. Employee awareness programs may be introduced to reduce water consumption or improve hygiene practices.

Identification of any desirable changes or improvements in the drinking water supply system should be documented in a Drinking Water Quality Management Improvement Plan that lists the proposed actions with a schedule for implementation. Once implemented, these changes should be reflected in a revised Drinking Water Quality Management Plan.

THE AUTHOR Dr Eddy Wajon (email: Eddy.Wajon@pdcgroup. com) is Principal Scientist at PDC Design in Perth. He has 38 years’ experience in water quality monitoring and assessment, water and wastewater treatment, with specialist skills in the chemistry of oxidants, and in the nature, analysis and control of natural organic matter and odours in water and air. He has prepared water quality management plans for drinking water supplies for a number of mine sites in the Pilbara.

REFERENCES Department of Health Western Australia (2008): Model Drinking Water Quality Management Plan. Environmental Health Directorate, Government of Western Australia, Perth, WA. Department of Health Western Australia (2009): Minesites and Exploration Camps Drinking Water Quality Monitoring Requirements. Environmental Health Directorate, Government of Western Australia, Perth, WA. Department of Health Western Australia (2010): Systems Compliance and Routine Reporting Requirements for Minesites and Exploration Camps. Environmental Health Directorate, Government of Western Australia, Perth, WA. Department of Health Western Australia (undated): Small Community Model Assessable Sampling Grid. Environmental Health Directorate, Government of Western Australia, Perth, WA. FDA (1999): Food Code – Annex 5: HACCP Guidelines. US Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Food and Drug Administration. NHMRC, NRMMC (2011): Australian Drinking Water Guidelines, Paper 6, National Water Quality Management Strategy. National Health and Medical Research Council, National Resource Management Ministerial Council, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra.

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Water Journal is always seeking quality, well-researched technical papers on a range of key and regularly addressed topics. Contributions from suitably qualified individuals are always welcome on these and other relevant topics of interest. Upcoming topics for the September, November and December 2013 issues include:

November 2013 (includes WaterWorks) • Asset Management • Water Sanitation & Health • Pipes & Pipeline Maintenance • Biosolids & Source Management

December 2013 • Water Pricing • Demand Management • Customer Service • Resource Recovery & Management • Disinfection

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Send your abstracts and/or technical paper submissions to our Technical Editor, Chris Davis, at: cdavis@awa.asn.au AND journal@awa.asn.au.

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September 2013 • Membranes & Desalination • Water Recycling • Industrial Treatment • Community Engagement

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108

Technical Features

DIFFUSER SELECTION FOR FOUL AIR TREATMENT IN AN ACTIVATED SLUDGE PLANT Results of ongoing energy efficiency trials at SA Water’s Bolivar WWTP J Krampe, W Rau, T Qiu, P Wootton, T Lawson

ABSTRACT SA Water’s main treatment facility at Bolivar WWTP was commissioned in 2001 and has four large aeration tanks in a step-feed configuration, treating a current AAF of 145ML/d. These are equipped with blade-type silicone membrane diffusers, and are supplied with air by single-stage centrifugal blowers. Foul air from the preliminary and primary treatment section is fed to the blower intakes to reduce local odour nuisance, but this arrangement seems to have contributed to reduced diffuser efficiencies and life.

AERATION EFFICIENCY

Over the past four years SA Water has managed to reduce the energy consumption for the aeration at Bolivar by approximately 450MWh/month, and current trials with alternative diffusers have shown the potential for further power savings of 250MWh/month.

This will allow SA Water to achieve its benchmark specific energy consumption target of 10kWh/PEBOD60/y. These ongoing trials are the subject of this paper.

BACKGROUND Bolivar WWTP is SA Water’s largest wastewater treatment facility and currently has a connected load of about one million PEBOD60 (population equivalent based on a specific load of 60g BOD5/PE/d). The biological treatment consists of four two-stage, step-feed activated sludge reactors (ASRs) with fine bubble aeration. The aeration is used for foul air treatment by feeding foul air from covered preaeration, aerated grit removal and primary sedimentation tanks to the blower intakes. This method is regarded as an effective and cost-efficient method for foul air treatment in activated sludge plants.

Although treatment performance has been good, diffuser lifetimes between replacements have been unexpectedly short, in the range of three years, and aeration capacity was reduced by about 25% compared to the design capacity of the plant. As the same method of foul air treatment is applied at SA Water’s Heathfield activated sludge plant without notable effects on the diffusers’ performance and lifetime, a detailed review of the situation at Bolivar was prepared. The diffuser problems, which may have been exacerbated by internal fouling, have included torn membranes, failed non-return valves, detached fastenings and twisting of light-gauge plastic support pipes. These have led to uneven air distribution and reduced oxygen transfer efficiencies. Figure 1 shows a comparison of a tank appearance after some years of operation compared to a newly fitted tank. Increased bubble size has had a negative impact on aeration efficiency. The surface ‘boils’ seen are usually associated with significant diffuser defects. SA Water has adopted a two-stage approach to remedying current diffuser problems. Firstly, the supporting Class 6 pipework has been progressively replaced with stiffer Class 9 pipes with each recent diffuser renewal. At the same time the diffusers were more accurately levelled and bubble tested for even bubble distribution in the partly filled reactor. Secondly, half of one tank has now been retrofitted with disc-type diffusers with EPDM membranes for long-term comparative trials.

Figure 1. Comparison of the aeration pattern of newly installed (left) and three-year-old blade diffusers.

WATER AUGUST 2013

Over the last four years all four activated sludge reactors (ASRs) have been fitted with new pipework and new silicone blade diffusers that are accurately levelled. The effect of this measure on the monthly energy consumption for the aeration is summarised in Figure 2.


109

Technical Features Measurements were performed collecting data of the following:

2000 1800

18.9 kWh/(PE a)

DO setpoints in ASR 2 increased

• Dissolved oxygen concentration in the activated sludge;

monthly power consumption (MWh/month)

1600 13.3 kWh/(PE a)

1400 1200 1000

ASR 1 operating with new diffusers

ASR 4 operating with new diffusers

ASR 1 operating with new diffusers ASR 2 operating with new diffusers

600 400

• Relative air flow rate through the diffusers.

ASR 3 operating with new diffusers

800

monthly power consumption monthly power consumption (median)

200 0

Figure 2. Monthly power consumption for the aeration. With the measures just described, the energy consumption dropped by approximately 450MWh/month. For a better comparison the specific energy consumption in kWh/PEBOD60/y has been calculated as well, according to the benchmarking methodology applied within SA Water (Krampe, 2013), and this dropped from 18.9 to 13.3kWh/ PEBOD60/y. According to Baumann and Roth (2008) the target number for fine bubble aeration systems is 10kWh/ PEBOD60/y, which indicates that there is potential for further improvement of the efficiency.

TESTED DIFFUSER AND TEST METHOD

The diffusers selected for the trial are 9” EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer) disc diffusers with internal non-return valves. These diffusers can be acid dosed and for the purpose of this trial two different diffuser slit sizes (1.5mm and 2mm) have been selected

for direct comparison. The existing 835 silicone diffusers in one pass were replaced by 835 EPDM assemblies consisting essentially of modules of six membrane disc diffusers fitted on a pipe. This arrangement provides an effective surface area about 10% greater than the silicone blade diffusers. The main purpose of the trial was to compare the EPDM disc diffusers in one pass of one tank (ASR 2) with silicone blade diffusers in another tank (ASR 4). In addition, the effectiveness of chemical (formic acid vapour) membrane cleaning was tested for two diffuser grids with EPDM diffusers as well as the effect of the different EPDM membrane slit sizes. The comparative diffuser trials extended over a three-year period, and involved backpressure and off-gas measurements approximately every nine months, as well as trial acid vapour dosing of two EPDM diffuser grids. These trials were conducted chiefly by Aqua-Audit, assisted by Allwater and SA Water staff. Off-gas tests are performed for longterm evaluation of the oxygen transfer efficiencies of both diffuser types. The indicator used for organic (fouling) or inorganic (scaling) clogging is the measurement of the backpressure. The αSSOTR (specific standard oxygen transfer rate in activated sludge) was measured using the off-gas test method, based on the ASCE Guideline of In-Process Oxygen Transfer Testing (ASCE 18-96), as well as DWA M-209 (DWA, 2007); for the off-gas tests a 1m2 transportable floating gas hood on the activated sludge surface was used to collect the off-gas from the basin.

The off-gas testing is subject to several areas of uncertainty. One major factor is the concentration of dissolved oxygen (DO) in the mixed liquor. In addition to DO, other important parameters include salinity, pH and the suspended solids concentration in the mixed liquor as they all influence oxygen transfer and absorption (DWA, 2007). Each grid has a measurement station next to the tested grids and is equipped with a handrail-mounted connector panel with small diameter stainless steel tubing, as shown in Figure 3. Annubar flow sensors have been installed in the downcomer pipework of selected grids. For the trials, a portable measurement panel (see Figure 3) was used, which incorporated two digital manometers and further valving. The facilities and arrangements of the measurement station essentially consist of: • Annubar flow sensor with connecting lines; • Pressure connection; • Bubbler tube; • Handrail-mounted connecting panel.

Figure 3. Gas hood and davit (top) and connector panel for measurements (bottom).

AUGUST 2013 WATER

AERATION EFFICIENCY

The original diffusers at Bolivar WWTP are blade type diffusers with silicone membranes on an anodised aluminium base plate. Their recommended normal operation flow rate is 15Nm3/h/diffuser. The current coverage density in the aeration tanks averages 10.2%, based on 841 to 835 diffusers installed in each pass with an area of 1,848m2 (excluding anoxic zones). The supplier specification does not allow for chemical cleaning of the diffusers. The supplier strongly recommends against acid vapour cleaning because of concerns of potential corrosion of the aluminium base plates and steel spring check valves.

• Oxygen concentration in the off-gas collected in gas hood; and


110

Technical Features such as DO. To present all the data and still show the variability of results a stock chart diagram was used (see Figure 4). As all diffusers were tested within a similar range of airflow rates the test results can be directly compared.

8

24.00

median

average

22.00

20.00

18.00

6

14.00

12.00

4

10.00

alphaSSOTE in %/m

alphaSSOTR in gO2/Nm3/m

16.00

8.00

6.00

2

4.00

2.00

EPDM 1.5mm

EPDM 1.5 mm

Grid 9

Grid 14

EPDM 1.5 mm

EPDM 1.5 mm

Grid 12 pre-dose Grid 12 post-dose

EPDM 2 mm

EPDM 2 mm

Grid 10

EPDM 2 mm

Oct-11

Jun-12

Mar-10

Silicone blade

Grid 11 pre-dose Grid 11 post-dose

Dec-10

Oct-11

Jun-12

Mar-10

Dec-10

Oct-11

Jun-12

Dec-10

Oct-11

Jun-12

Dec-10

Oct-11

Jun-12

Dec-10

Oct-11

Jun-12

Dec-10

Oct-11

Jun-12

Dec-10

Oct-11

Jun-12

Dec-10

Oct-11

Jun-12

0 Dec-10

0.00

Silicone blade

Grid 9

Grid 14

ASR2

ASR4

Figure 4. αSSOTR results of the off-gas tests at Bolivar WWTP. 9.00

median

average

8.00

6.00

Backpressure in kPa

The oxygen transfer rate of the silicone blades was generally lower than the EPDM disc assemblies. Average performance results (from after chemical cleaning) are presented in Table 1. On average the silicone blade efficiency is 2.7gO2/Nm3/m lower than the 1.5mm EPDM disc diffuser efficiency. The difference between 1.5mm and 2mm EDI membrane performance was found to be smaller than expected. Based on a t-test the difference between the two datasets is not significant.

7.00

5.00

4.00

3.00

2.00

1.00

EPDM 1.5mm

EPDM 1.5 mm

EPDM 1.5 mm

EPDM 1.5 mm

EPDM 2 mm

EPDM 2 mm

EPDM 2 mm

Silicone blade

Grid 9

Grid 14

Grid 12 pre-dose

Grid 12 post-dose

Grid 10

Grid 11 pre-dose

Grid 11 post-dose

Grid 9

ASR2

Jun-12

Oct-11

Dec-10

Jun-12

Mar-10

Oct-11

Dec-10

Jun-12

Mar-10

Oct-11

Jun-12

Dec-10

Oct-11

Dec-10

Jun-12

Oct-11

Dec-10

Jun-12

Oct-11

Dec-10

Jun-12

Oct-11

Dec-10

Jun-12

Oct-11

Dec-10

Jun-12

Oct-11

Dec-10

0.00

Grid 14

αSSOTR

1.5mm EPDM disc*

2mm EPDM disc*

Silicone blade

15.6mg O2/Nm /m

15.0mg O2/Nm /m

12.9mg O2/Nm3/m

OXYGEN TRANSFER

Again the results were obtained for different airflow rates, which is the main reason for the high variability of the results. The green bars in Figure 5 show the standard deviation, while the black lines show the highest and the lowest data point. The black crosses show the median and the red lines show the average of all results for each grid and test day.

The specific standard oxygen transfer rate in activated sludge (αSSOTR) of each grid was measured over the full operating airflow of the diffusers. The tests were conducted as off-gas tests, which usually show a higher variability of the results due to changes in the sewage composition (α-factor), but also other operating factors

The results indicate that backpressure generally increases with time, as expected. In particular, results from grids 9 and 14 of ASR4 in the October 2011 test deviate from the generally observed trend. It is very likely that this is due to minor faults in some individual bubble tubes. Nevertheless, the data is sufficient

3

* Where applicable the data before acid dosing were excluded for the calculation.

Airflow rates were calculated from annubar differential pressures using the formula obtained from the annubar manual. Direct measurements of diffuser backpressure were taken by measuring the difference between air supply pressure and the backpressure from bubbler tubes set with their openings at the same immersion depth as the diffusers. These measurements were taken at varying airflow rates for each grid in order to get operation-relevant data. Therefore the airflow to the other grids was manually throttled to increase the airflow to the

WATER AUGUST 2013

BACKPRESSURE

A similar approach to that used for evaluating aeration efficiency is applied to backpressure results.

Table 1. Average oxygen transfer rate for different diffusers. 3

In general the oxygen transfer rates deteriorated over time in both EPDM discs and silicone blades, which is consistent with Rosso et al. (2007). Overall, the oxygen transfer of all tested diffuser types was excellent, as all diffusers are performing within their typical efficiency ranges according to DWA (2012).

Silicone blade

ASR4

Figure 5. Comparison of backpressures for each diffuser type.

AERATION EFFICIENCY

The yellow bars in Figure 4 show the standard deviation, while the black lines show the highest and the lowest data point. The red crosses show the average and the green lines show the median of all results for each grid and test day. The yellow shaded area represents the expected efficiency of a fine bubble aeration system in activated sludge, according to DWA (2012).

test grid. Then the downcomer valve of the test grid was regulated to decrease airflows towards zero.

RESULTS


111

Technical Features

Table 2. Diffuser and system backpressures (average of all data). 1.5mm EPDM disc

2mm EPDM disc

Silicone blade

Diffuser Backpressure

4.55 kPa

2.02 kPa

4.99 kPa

System Backpressure*

47.8 kPa

45.2 kPa

48.2 kPa

* Calculated with backpressure based on 4.2m diffuser depth (4.2m*9.81m/s2 = 41.2 kPa) and 2 kPa backpressure from the pipes.

Table 3. Potential energy savings for the different diffusers. Parameter

Diffuser type

Potential saving

Oxygen Transfer Efficiency

Silicone blade

0%

1.5mm EPDM disc

22.1%

2mm EPDM disc

15.5%

Backpressure

Silicone blade

0%

1.5mm EPDM disc

0.9%

2mm EPDM disc

6.2%

Total Savings

Silicone blade

0%

1.5 mm EPDM disc

23.1%

2 mm EPDM disc

21.6%

to compare the diffuser performance. The green shaded area shows the typical pressure loss of 3.5 kPa± 10 % for new disc diffusers (Frey, 2005). The data for the 1.5mm EPDM disc diffusers indicates a general increase in backpressure for the pre-dose data, whereas the backpressure across the 2.0mm discs appears to be more stable. The 2.0mm EPDM membranes show a significantly lower backpressure than the 1.5mm slit EPDM membranes and the silicone membranes. The 1.5mm EPDM and silicone show a similar performance in terms of diffuser backpressure. The 2mm EPDM backpressure is below the benchmark, which is a clear indicator that the benchmarks were derived from diffusers with 1.5mm slits. All results are also summarised in Table 2 and compared to the system backpressure. The difference in system backpressure between the 2mm EPDM disc and the silicone blade equates to 6.2 per cent. The 1.5mm EPDM disc and the silicone blades perform with a difference in system backpressure of 0.9 per cent. All differences are statistically significant based on a t-test. The data also points to acid cleaning giving performance advantage the more

membranes age. Measurements were taken in December 2010, October 2011 and June 2012 on grids 11 and 12 of ASR2. In December 2010 the cleaning had little impact on backpressure as the diffusers had just been commissioned a few months before. For the 1.5mm EPDM membranes acid dosing is not as effective as expected. The effect on the 2mm EPDM discs is difficult to interpret, as the backpressure of grid 11 was lower than for the grid 10 trial. At this stage more data is required to gain a better understanding of the long-term trends and the efficiency of the chemical cleaning.

COMPARISON The energy comparison of the oxygen transfer was done by calculating the percentage savings for each diffuser type based on a silicone blade performance of 100 per cent. The backpressure component of the energy comparison is based on the fact that the reduction in backpressure is directly proportional to a reduction in energy consumption (Frey, 2005). The averaged initial backpressures and their associated system pressures are shown in Table 2. Based on the silicone blade system pressure set as 100%, the percentile energy savings of the EPDM disc diffusers were calculated.

Blower power consumption (MWh/month) Silicone Blade

1153*

The overall performance of the 1.5mm EPDM discs and the 2mm EPDM disc is very similar. Both EPDM diffusers would consume approximately 250MWh/month less than the current silicone blades. In the context of energy benchmarking with international plants, Baumann and Roth (2008) suggest a target energy consumption of 10kWh/PE/a for fine bubble aeration. Table 5 shows the energy consumption for the different diffuser types based on the average energy consumption and the appropriate averaged BOD5 of the year 2010/11. The target value for the energy consumption of aeration systems can almost be achieved by changing over to the EPDM disc diffusers, while the silicone blades have a higher specific energy consumption.

CONCLUSIONS This paper summarises the performance of the aeration system at Bolivar WWTP over a period of several years and provides an evaluation of aeration diffusers trials conducted over a period of two years. This period includes four tests of silicone blade diffusers in ASR4 and three tests of the EPDM disc diffusers in ASR2. The report also highlights the success of changing to stiffer diffuser pipework and the diffuser levelling. The changes so far have clearly made a big difference in the overall system performance, as aeration energy consumption has reduced by approximately 450MWh/month and major diffuser failures have been prevented. During the first two years of the diffuser trial, both EPDM diffusers trialled showed significantly better aeration efficiency than the silicone blades. As a result, less air is required for aeration, which not only saves energy, but also frees up blower capacity. It was also found that the 2.0mm EPDM

Table 5. Estimated specific energy consumption for the aeration system. Diffuser Type

Energy consumption per PE and year 13.3 kWh/PE/a

1.5mm EPDM Disc

890

Silicone Blade

2mm EPDM Disc

908

1.5mm EPDM Disc

10.3 kWh/PE/a

2mm EPDM Disc

10.5 kWh/PE/a

* Average of the year 2010/11 from monthly power generation report.

AUGUST 2013 WATER

AERATION EFFICIENCY

Table 4. Estimated monthly power consumption.

Based on the blowers’ monthly power consumption at Bolivar in the year 2010/11 the possible power consumption according to the diffusers’ overall performance was calculated. Table 4 shows the calculated specific monthly power consumption of the blowers.


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Technical Features disc diffusers experience a significantly lower backpressure than the silicone blades and the 1.5mm EPDM disc diffusers. This lower backpressure also contributes to the energy savings. Based on their performance in these tests, changing from the current silicone blades to EPDM disc diffusers has the potential to save an additional 250MWh/month in energy, with comparable capital outlay on diffusers. The tested EPDM assemblies have the advantage that they can be easily retrofitted and handle higher airflow rates, which is an additional benefit when considering plans to increase the size of denitrification zones and reduce nitrification volume (Krampe and Leak, 2012). The 1.5mm EPDM disc diffusers were found to be slightly more efficient than the 2.0mm diffusers. Given that the amount of foul air will significantly reduce as a result of works on the preliminary treatment stage (abandoning preaeration stage and replacing aerated grit removal with vortex grit removal), and the membranes are interchangeable, it is recommended to initially select the 2.0mm EPDM discs and change to the 1.5mm EPDM disc with higher efficiency once the foul air has reduced and the diffuser membranes need replacement. The data available from these trials can be used as a baseline in regard to oxygen transfer efficiency and backpressure to trigger the need for future diffuser replacements. The recommendation to select EPDM disc diffusers is consistent with the experience at the Heathfield WWTP, where this type of diffuser has been used for foul air treatment over years with no issues reported so far.

THE AUTHORS

REFERENCES

Dr Joerg Krampe (email: jkrampe@iwag.tuwien. ac.at) was the Principal Wastewater Treatment Engineer at SA Water during the course of this project. He has recently relocated to Austria and is now Professor for Water Quality at the Vienna University of Technology.

ASCE (1997): Standard Guidelines for In-Process

Walter Rau (email: walterrau@posteo.de) worked with SA Water as a vocational student in 2012 as part of his university studies. He is currently studying Environmental Engineering at Stuttgart University, Germany. Teresa Qiu (email: teresa. qiu@allwater.net.au) is Site Engineer at Bolivar Wastewater Treatment Plant, Allwater/SA Water Corporation. Phil Wootton (email: phil. wootton@allwater.net.au) is the Plant Manager for the Bolivar WWTPs in Adelaide, SA, with Allwater JV. Tom Lawson (email: tom. lawson@aqua-audit.com. au) is Principal Engineer of the engineering consultancy Aqua-Audit, and also a Director of Aer-Force Pty Ltd. He has had over 25 years of experience in the design and testing of diffused air aeration systems.

Oxygen Transfer Testing, ASCE Standard 1896, American Society of Civil Engineers. Baumann P & Roth P (2008): Senkung des Stromverbrauchs auf Kläranlagen, Leitfaden für das Betriebspersonal (Reduction of the Energy Consumption of WWTPs – Manual for Operators), Heft 4, DWA Landesverband Baden-Württemberg, 2008. DWA (2012): DWA Merkblatt M 229, Systeme zur Belüftung und Durchmischung von Belebungsanlagen (Systems for Aeration and Mixing of Activated Sludge Plants), February 2012. DWA (2007): DWA Merkblatt M 209, Messung der Sauerstoffzufuhr von Belüftungseinrichtungen in Belebungsanlagen in Reinwasser und in belebtem Schlamm (Measurement of the Oxygen Transfer in Activated Sludge Aeration Tanks with Clean Water and in Mixed Liquor), April 2007. Frey W (2005): Druckanstieg bei Belüftungssystemen – Ergebnisse weiterführender Untersuchungen (Increased Pressure Loss of Aeration Systems – Results of Further Surveys), KAN, Folge 13, 2005. Krampe J & Leak M (2012): Strategic Planning Approach for Optimising Investment at WWTPs, Water Practice and Technology, Vol 7, No 2, doi:10.2166/WPT.2012.030. Krampe J (2013): Energy Benchmarking of South Australian WWTPs, accepted for publication in Water Science and Technology, doi:10.2166/ wst.2013.090. Rosso D, Shao-Yuan LB & Stenstrom MK (2007): Energy-Conservation in Fine Pore Diffuser Installations in Activated Sludge Processes, Final Report 2005–2007, University of California, Los Angeles.

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Water Business

water business NECESSITY THE MOTHER OF INNOVATION Waterform Technologies is demonstrating the benefits of technology leadership, with new practices that can even challenge some text book ‘rules’ in cost effectively advancing the use of recycling and reusing water from many challenging sources. While currently undertaking specialist potable water supplementation projects with some of the most rigorous treatment steps and strictest controls being implemented, it is the individual technologies that are part of the Waterform product portfolio that are so impressive. nextSand is one innovative product that should be part of any project where media filtration is needed – as can be seen in a recent installation at Batemans Bay in NSW. With a Stage One peak flow of 160L/sec, this tertiary water recycling plant consisting of nextSand, UV and chlorine treats water for irrigating community sporting facilities. The advantage of nextSand, a single layer media, is its filtration velocities, which are 25m3/m2/HR – 35m3/m2/HR. This means the pressure vessels or gravity tanks holding the media can be drastically downsized. At Batemans Bay, this resulted in the multimedia design concrete slab size of 18.0m x 20.0m being reduced to 13.0m x 14.0m. This saving in civil works, along with reduced sized filtration equipment, resulted in a significant equipment CAPEX reduction of approximately 55% from the budgeted ~1.5 Million. nextSand is delivering excellent filtration performance, with conformance to the <2NTU filtrate 95%tile target (typical 0.8-1.3NTU), despite influent turbidities ranging from 10 – 70NTU. Filtering to 3-5miron, and with a basic composition of porous opal (opaline silica), nextSand is very hard and resistant to attrition. Waterform’s dedication to innovative products is also seen in the UV Disinfection systems installed at Batemans Bay. These powerful UV Strike LPHO reactors use fewer lamps than the industry average with a high-wattage lamp, but more importantly contain a key advancement in UV Technology – ‘soft starting’ of the LPHO lamps, which prevents electrode degradation within the lamp, and has resulted in the Germanmade UV Strike units having limitations removed on switchings per 24 hours, and a site-proven life span of over 21,000 hours. The Barrier Ultrafiltration system incorporating the inge UF membrane is another example of innovation. The system has a unique capillary structure of 7-into-1, known as the Multibore. This gives the inge UF very high structural strength and cleanability. With fibre breaks a thing of the past, and no air scour required for cleaning the membrane, efficiencies are maximised. This structural strength allows a high flux backwash of 230l/m2/HR, where the ‘annular gap’ backwash ensures every cm2 of membrane surface area receives equal cleaning velocity, meaning chemical requirements are minimised and air scour is deleted. The inge UF module is also incorporated into the innovative T-Rack pipe manifolding system where the top and bottom distribution pipework is contained within the width of the membrane module/s, saving valuable space.

SpongePak is another innovative product from Waterform to consider, used as a primary step for removal of hydrocarbons (fuel, oil and grease) from water. In today’s economic climate it is crucial to maximise return on complex water infrastructure investment with innovative technologies, and Waterform Technologies is demonstrating the benefits of this approach in practice. Please go to www.waterform. com.au for more information.

OZONE PIPELINE DISINFECTION SYSTEM Under Water Management Plans, water utilities in NSW require many newly installed residential pipelines to be disinfected prior to being placed into service. For these pipelines the usual method is to first flush and then super-chlorinate before biological testing to confirm that the process has been effective. In NSW, this is usually carried out by the water utility itself. The use of concentrated chlorine in this process leads to a number of hazards: • Storage of concentrated chlorine liquid presents problems; • Workers are exposed to the fumes and risk skin contact with chlorine;

All the right connections for the water industry. Whether it’s for drinking, irrigation or industry, Australia’s climate and reliance on water has produced some of the world’s most innovative suppliers of water products and services. Now there’s an online tool that brings all these suppliers together in one central location. ICN’s Water Directory is a pivotal connection point for project and procurement managers looking for the best water industry suppliers in our region. This comprehensive directory has a powerful search function that allows you to find suppliers with capabilities that exactly match your needs. Combine this with the experience and knowledge of ICN’s consultants and you can be sure you’ll never miss an opportunity to find the perfect partner. Start exploring Australia’s ICN Water Directory today at water.icn.org.au

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water Business • Workers’ clothing is damaged by contact with chlorine; • Chlorine is slow-acting and the process can take two days to complete; • There is the possibility of the superchlorinated water being supplied to residents; • Super-chlorinated water presents a disposal problem. In February 2011, Oxyzone and Sydney Water undertook to develop a mobile ozone system to perform this disinfection process. Prototypes were completed and a production product was delivered in February 2012. This first system has now been in service for more than a year. All testing was carried out by Sydney Water over this period. Ozone offers the following advantages over chlorine: • There are no storage requirements; • There is no risk from skin contact and any gas exposure risk is remote and tightly monitored; • Clothing is not damaged by ozonated water; • Ozone is faster-acting than chlorine and it normally requires less than two hours to complete the process; • Ozonated water quickly decays and presents no danger to residents, and is environmentally safe for disposal. The key components of the Pipeline Disinfection System are: • Rugged 120gm/hr air-cooled ozone generator; • Cylinder oxygen supply configured in two banks of cylinders with automatic changeover; • Ozone injection module with PRV for inlet

water august 2013

pressure, booster pump with VSD (variable speed drive), ozone injection, mixing and off gas separation with destruct; • Rugged, galvanised open trailer with water inlet and outlet, automatic flow control and flow monitoring; • Modern, reliable Yanmar diesel 7.6kw inverter generator; • Ozone safety monitor and ORP monitor; • Canvas covers, low-voltage warning lights and flood lights; • Electrical box containing 3 x RCDs, VSD for the injection system, plus electrical distribution and backup 12V battery; • Optional diesel-powered inlet pump to allow the processing of low-pressure or even groundwater. The Pipeline Disinfection System has an Australian Innovation Patent Pending. Oxyzone has commenced marketing the product Australiawide. For more information phone 02 4341 4858 or visit www.oxyzone.com.au.

100 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE SIPOS Aktorik has been independently active in the market since 1999. Arising from Siemens actuator division, SIPOS has access to 100 years of experience in this field. With focus placed on quality, product performance and customer-orientated services, SIPOS Aktorik has established expertise in the development, design and construction of electric actuators, and is the leading manufacturer of variable speed actuators. Over a number of years there has been an increasing trend in process automation to distribute control system functionality away from central control to actual field devices close to point of application. SIPOS 5 flash actuators are setting the standard in pioneering product development that supports this change. The SIPOS 5 flash

is extremely adaptable to the respective control system and is able to be used with both conventional and fieldbus systems. The modularity of the unit means the electronics can be quickly and easily mounted separately from the gear unit. This has benefits where extreme vibrations or ambient temperatures are experienced, if there are space constraints, or when local operator control is not possible. Rapidly closing valves can cause pressure transients in pipelines, known as water hammer. Valve closure can result in pressures well over the steady state values. Water hammer has been known to pull pipe supports from their mounts, rupture piping and cause pipe whip. The SIPOS 5 actuator has the unique capability to change output speed subject to its position of travel. This advanced flexibility can produce linearisation of valve characteristics, allowing simpler valve selection, or to significantly reduce water hammer when closing valves The electric actuator ‘SIPOS 5 HiMod’ was developed to operate in conditions where the highest quality of control is an absolute


115

water Business prerequisite. High-quality components, together with SIPOS’ proven manufacturing and service track record, ensure the success of HiMod actuators deployment in situations where continuous high-demand and longterm usage is required. Recognising that intelligence saves resources, tailored software is a key to the success of the performance of the SIPOS 5 flash solution. The company’s diverse intelligent solutions support an extensive range of process requirements. At SIPOS, our components and modules are manufactured by qualified suppliers to our high design and quality levels.

COST-EFFECTIVE WATER TREATMENT AND WATER RECYCLING SOLUTIONS

and energy conservation through its state-

HYDRASYST® is an innovative water technology company focusing on costeffective and sustainable water treatment and water recycling solutions, through extensive technical innovation programs in Australia and Singapore. From its origins in Australia, HYDRASYST® reaches globally with its proprietary technology and across Australia and Oceania through its alliance partner, HYFLUX® Technologies, which it represents.

commercial laundry operators to consistently

BARRON GJM is the Australian representative of SIPOS and is able to assist in the selection of appropriate actuators for your specific applications. The focus of our after-sales support is meeting the individual customer’s requirements. Our goal is creation of a partnership that will help to minimise downtime and ensure economic operation. Our comprehensive after-sales support package reduces risk to a minimum and facilitates the smooth operation of the plant.

The impact and breadth of the HYDRASYST®/HYFLUX® products and services is poised to change the water treatment market in Australia and beyond. With a suite of bespoke solutions available, HYDRASYST® activities range from installation of containerised desalination plants for remote communities in Australia, to applying its game-changing water treatment technology to a laundry in Singapore, to partnerships with major channel players in providing superior membrane solutions in the local municipal water treatment market.

For more information please email: shane.moosdyk@barron.com.au

HYDRASYT® established its market leadership in commercial laundry water

of-the-art GREY BOX™ technology. The GREY BOX™ technology has enabled achieve high-quality permeate for safe reuse and increase their sustainability through significant savings in utilities. More recently, the company has launched its new

Wastewater recycling plant for mine heavy vehicle-wash operation.

HYDROVAR, the modern variable speed pump drive is taking pumping to a new level of flexibility and efficiency. Call us to discuss your applications: Melbourne 03 9793 9999 Sydney 02 9671 3666 Brisbane 07 3200 6488 Email: info@brownbros.com.au Web: www.brownbros.com.au DELIVERING PUMPING SOLUTIONS

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Water Business innovation, KERAWASH™, with technical advancement to deliver chemicals savings in addition to water reclamation and energy recovery in water-intensive industries. With its successful introduction and trials in Europe, KERAWASH™ has recently been independently nominated for Dutch water and sustainability awards. The HYDRASYST® suite of water solutions also extends to water treatment applications for vehicle and facility wash down, commercial and residential high-rise building and a suite of industrial applications. HYDRASYST® technologies also incorporate advanced analytics providing real-time visibility into plant operations for consistent operational performance. Through the R&D commitment of its Technical Innovation Team, HYDRASYST® delivers customised water treatment and recycling solutions from conceptualisation to plant operation. In early 2013, global membrane innovator HYFLUX® appointed HYDRASYT® as a sole distributor of HYFLUX® membranes and packaged water solutions in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. HYFLUX® membranes and their place in innovative systems allows HYDRASYST® to offer winning solutions for seawater and brackish water desalination, modularised desalination and wastewater treatment plants for dewatering on large mine sites and remote communities, and membrane-based solutions for municipal and industrial wastewater treatment. It also provides membrane-based water treatment of black and greywater in commercial and residential buildings, potable water delivery and production of ultra-pure water for food and beverages and other industrial applications HYDRASYST® is headquartered in Brisbane and has offices in Singapore and Sydney. For more information pleas email Sharon Mak at sharon@hydrasyst.com.

NEW ENERGY-EFFICIENT MULTI-STAGE PUMP In Europe, Xylem has launched the Lowara e-HM series; a new range of stainless steel, horizontal, multi-stage pumps designed for commercial, industrial and residential applications. The new e-HM pump is based on the same innovative hydraulic design as the popular vertical multistage e-SV series and boasts the ability to improve energy efficiency in applications by 15–20%, lowering lifecycle costs and increasing energy savings. The modularity of Xylem’s new e-HM range will be of huge benefit to the industrial end-user as well as original equipment manufacturers and residential users due to the range of configurations available to customers.

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pump means that it is perfectly positioned to meet requirements across a wide range of industries. It provides long-lasting solutions for industrial use for leading manufacturers and suppliers in all sectors, from food processing and farming to cleaning and water treatment. When combined with Xylem Hydrovar, the e-HM pump can offer further energy savings compared to previous models.

The many configurations available mean the pump can be adapted to meet an extensive range of applications such as chillers, heating, air conditioning units, washing and cleaning, water treatment, water supply, hot and cold liquid circulation, pressure boosting and aggressive liquids. The e-HM pump is available in two designs. The one-piece e-HM pump requires no welding and is ideal for low pressure and flow. The sleeve design version is ideal for high flow and pressure. The e-HM pump also provides end users with an improved ‘total cost of ownership’ as it has an average operational time of at least 20,000 hours in normal conditions. The pump has a flow of up to 29m3/h and can perform to a maximum pressure of 16 bars. Olivier Lamarie, Global Product Manager Multistage of Xylem, said: “The unique hydraulic design and versatility of our e-HM

“The e-HM pump range is assembled on a global platform which ensures customers can receive the product in full and on time, whenever they need it.” The e-HM pump can be tailored for numerous industrial applications. It is available in a range of material options such as SS AISI 304 and SS AISI 316 and electro-polished and passivated AISI 316 stainless steel. The e-HM pump can also be fitted with EPDM rubber, FPM rubber and Karlez® O-rings; as well as carbon, ceramic and silicon carbide mechanical seals. The new Lowara e-HM pump is available with variable speed option allowing the speed of the pump to be adjusted in relation to requirement, noticeably reducing energy consumption and/or to regulate their systems through an external signal. The new e-HM range is due to be released in Australia and New Zealand in late 2013. For more information please visit www. lowara.com.au/e-hm or call Xylem Applied Water Systems on 03 9551 7333.

Advertisers Index Advanced Pipes 51 Aquatec-Maxcon 21 Aurecon 19 AWMA 22 Barron GJM Pty Ltd 35 Barthauer Software GmbH 18 Brown Brothers 115 Comdain 9 DCM Process Control 34 Franklin Electric BC Georg Fischer 15 Hach Pacific 17 Hydrasyst 33 ICN – International Capability Network 113 International Water Centre 89 Invensys 23 ITS Trenchless 11 James Cummings 72 KCES 25

McConnell Dowell IFC Merck 37 Midcoast Water 78 Nacap 60 OneStone Consulting 29 Oxyzone 41 Pentair 7 Projex Group 115 Quantum Filtration Medium 114 RPC Technologies 49 Schneider Electric 31 Sydney Water 24 Tenix 20 UGL – United Group Infrastructure 45 Waterform Technologies 50 Water Infrastructure Group 6 Weidmuller 13 Xylem 27 Zetco IBC


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Water Journal August 2013  

One of this issue's primary themes, and our cover focus, is the controversial issue of Coal Seam Gas Mining in Australia. Click through to p...

Water Journal August 2013  

One of this issue's primary themes, and our cover focus, is the controversial issue of Coal Seam Gas Mining in Australia. Click through to p...