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Volume 42 No 1 FEBRUARY 2015
Journal of the Australian Water Association
FINANCING WATER INFRASTRUCTURE: IS PRIVATE FUNDING THE SOLUTION? â€“ See page 42 PLUS > Integrated Catchment Management > Stormwater Treatment & Management > Energy Efficiency > National Cyanobacteria Workshop Report
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Contents regular features From the AWA President
The Times They Are A Changin’ Graham Dooley
From the AWA Chief Executive
Addressing Community Fears On Asset Sales Jonathan McKeown
Should Urban Water Utilities Be Privatised? Kerry Schott
Young Water Professionals
MANAGING EDITOR – Anne Lawton Tel: 02 9467 8434 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
CREATIVE DIRECTOR – Mike Wallace Email: email@example.com SALES & ADVERTISING MANAGER – Kirsty Muir Tel: 02 9467 8408 (Mob) 0412 077 964 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER – Jonathan McKeown
Hindsight Can Be A Cruel Mistress Justin Simonis
AWA International News
New Products And Services
TECHNICAL EDITOR – Chris Davis Email: email@example.com
My Point of View
EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT Email: firstname.lastname@example.org EDITORIAL BOARD Frank R Bishop (Chair); Dr Andrew Bath, Water Corporation; Michael Chapman, GHD; Dr Dharma Dharmabalan, TasWater; Wilf Finn, Norton Rose Fulbright; Robert Ford, Central Highlands Water (rtd); Ted Gardner (rtd); Antony Gibson, Orica Watercare; Dr David Halliwell, WaterRA; Sarah Herbert, Shelston IP; Dr Lionel Ho, AWQC, SA Water; Des Lord, National Water Commission; Dr Robbert van Oorschot, GHD; John Poon, CH2M Hill; David Power, BECA Consultants; Dr Ian Prosser, Bureau of Meteorology; Dr Ashok Sharma, CSIRO; Rodney Stewart, Griffith School of Engineering; Diane Wiesner, Jamadite Consulting. PUBLISH DATES Water Journal is published eight times per year: February, April, May, June, August, September, November and December. Please email email@example.com for a copy of our 2015 Editorial Calendar.
AWA signing a MoU with the Vietnam Water Supply and Sewerage Assocation.
conference & workshop reports AWA’s Water-Energy-Food Nexus Forum Report By Antonia Curcio
AWA’s National Operations Conference Report By Iain Fairbairn
What’s Green & Smells Worse Than A Frog In A Blender?
volume 42 no 1
Report On The 4th National Cyanobacteria Workshop Angela Gackle, Gayle Newcombe, Lee Bowling & Philip Orr
company profile Saint-Gobain Brings European Technology To Australia Applications For Ductile Iron Pipes Boom With PAM
feature articles Australia’s Water Infrastructure: The Case For Change
Good Infrastructure Is Critical To Our Productivity And Economy Lucia Cade
ICM And The Murray-Darling Basin Plan
Implications Of A Recent Review Of Victoria’s Water Laws Joseph Monaghan
cover How to fund our water infrastructure into the future is currently the subject of much debate among Australia’s water professionals.
• Technical Papers & Technical Features: Chris Davis, Technical Editor, email: firstname.lastname@example.org AND email@example.com 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: firstname.lastname@example.org • General Feature Articles, Industry News, Opinion Pieces & Media Releases: Anne Lawton, Managing Editor, email: email@example.com 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: firstname.lastname@example.org • Water Business & Product News: Kirsty Muir, Sales & Advertising Manager, email: KMuir@awa.asn.au
Bridging The Water Infrastructure Funding Gap Is There A Water Infrastructure Deficit In Australia? Mike Woolston
EDITORIAL SUBMISSIONS Acceptance of editorial submissions is at the discretion of the Editors and Editorial Board.
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: email@example.com, 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: firstname.lastname@example.org DISCLAIMER AWA assumes no responsibility for opinions or statements of fact expressed by contributors or advertisers. Mention of particular brands, products or processes does not constitute an endorsement.
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From the President
The Times They Are A-Changin’ Graham Dooley – AWA President Written and sung by Bob Dylan in the 1960s, this song became a symbol of that era and has been repeated by many others across the years. I’m not sure the “changin” will ever stop – it’s a fact of life that nothing stays the same forever, and just as happens in other aspects of life, organisations at times need to re-think what they are doing, how they are doing it and how they can provide more value. This is what AWA is currently doing to ensure our Association remains relevant to, and effective for, current members, as well as attracting new members. The role of membership associations across the board is changing, largely driven by the dramatically different forms of communication and networking that the digital age has spawned. The services and functions of associations continue to evolve as members’ needs respond to the changing environments within which they operate. AWA is refreshing its brand with a new visual identity to present a more contemporary and professional image. The Board has also approved some more substantive changes that build on our 52 years of experience and keep the organisation growing and relevant. However, it is important to stress: the benefits of being an AWA member will not be lost. These benefits include our State Branches, Specialist Networks, Young Water Professionals, the annual Ozwater Conference & Exhibition, regional conferences, technical and member events, Awards, Water Journal, the yearly Australian Water Directory, and regular newsletters. Most importantly, there’s the sense of belonging to a worthwhile network, and the connections and friendships that eventuate. To meet the challenges of our era (as opposed to Bob Dylan’s!) we will focus all of our activities under three headings that consolidate AWA‘s existing enterprises:
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Relevant Information: Making the vast amount of information we accumulate as accessible as possible to members. This includes our regular publications, policy development and advocacy work, and water research – all to be provided through an online Info Hub that is searchable, interactive and up to date. We want this Hub to be the ‘iTunes’ equivalent for water information, as well as having the best events and cross-sector communication. Professional Development: Supporting individual members as they develop throughout their careers by providing them with self-assessed opportunities to broaden their skills, enhance in-depth knowledge, have stronger engagement with issues and people, better mobility, greater enjoyment and greater reward for the effort they make. All of this is to be encapsulated within an optional AWA CPD logging scheme and recognised under a credentialing system that is supported by the water sector. Networks and Industry Development: Expanding opportunities for individual and corporate members through collaboration both in Australia and abroad. This is delivered via specific programs (innovation adoption, export markets, personnel exchanges, and the Australian New Zealand Biosolids Program), Ozwater and numerous Branch events. This process of change is all about empowering our members to shape the services and relevance that will maintain AWA as Australia’s most effective member organisation. There is a vast amount of consultation and discussion underway and not everything can be done simultaneously. But with the support of our members we can look back on this period and be proud to have been part of the changes that made AWA a more relevant, effective, up-to-date Association.
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From the CeO
Addressing CommuniTy FeArs on AsseT sAles Jonathan mcKeown – AWA chief executive The Federal Ministerial reshuffle in December saw Simon Birmingham promoted to Assistant Minister and Bob Baldwin appointed Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment with responsibility for water. Simon Birmingham proved himself to be a good advocate for the water sector both in Australia and overseas. One of his last tasks as Parliamentary Secretary was with the recent AWA Delegation to California, taking Australian water solutions from both the public and private sectors to the drought conditions afflicting millions of people there. We wish Simon well and look forward to working with the new Parliamentary Secretary. Craig Knowles AM has completed his term as Chair of the Murray-Darling Basin Authority after four years of strong, focused leadership. AWA has congratulated Neil Andrew on his appointment as the new Chair and we look forward to maintaining our working links with the Authority. The landscape of State Governments continues to change with first-term conservative governments swept from office in both Victoria and Queensland. The scale of the swing against the Queensland government has been attributed to a range of factors, but a common one identified by commentators was community fear about proposed asset sales. Public concerns about the regulatory regimes that will govern such assets – particularly in regards to pricing regulations designed to preserve the interests of consumers – must be addressed head-on. This community reaction does not auger well for the Commonwealth Government’s asset recycling incentive scheme (providing a 15% top-up on the sale price where proceeds are for reinvestment in infrastructure). Regardless of proposals being packaged as asset sales, leasebacks or other models of infrastructure reform, the benefits for consumers must be centre stage. The political fallout from Victoria and Queensland leaves a potential dilemma as to how state and territory governments will fill the investment void that was earmarked for private funding. Postponed investment in our water assets to subsequent political cycles carries real risks for the water sector and the community.
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How much community fear about private sector involvement is based on fact, rather than perception and misinformation? Is the community aware of the extent of private sector management of our publicly-owned water assets right now? More importantly, are they aware of the direct productivity benefits that have flowed to customer service levels and customer pricing structures through private sector involvement? I suspect not. There is a strong case for AWA to promote the facts to keep the community better aligned with the way our publicly-owned water assets are better delivering customer services. Such improvements are often the result of partnerships with the private sector. A community awareness campaign, together with some clear recommendations on the regulatory regime to underpin increased private sector involvement, may well dilute community fears around the perceived creeping privatisation. If Governments can show the improvements to be delivered without price increases, the community would be more open to increased private sector management. These are matters to be discussed at Ozwater’15 in May. To apply the best solutions to our water challenges we need to take the community with us. Challenges include increasing private sector involvement in the water sector, water recycling, stormwater harvesting, and integrated planning processes. They all need public education to unlock community support. The positive experience in WA in gaining public backing for water recycling and aquifer recharge has shown that converting community concern into active support takes time and effective communication. A national analysis of the views of our water customers is a good starting point to foster better community engagement. AWA is currently preparing to survey our water customers (in addition to water professionals) to ascertain their views and concerns and how to best address them. The results of the survey will determine which key issues deserve more focus in gaining better community understanding and support as we continue to encourage more sustainable water practices.
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My Point of View
Should Urban Water Utilities Be Privatised? Kerry Schott
Dr Kerry Schott is Chairman of the Moorebank Intermodal Company Ltd, a Director of NBN Co, a Director of TCorp Board in NSW, a Director of Infrastructure Australia, and a Director of the Whitlam Institute. Kerry was CEO at Sydney Water from 2006 to 2011. Currently she is advising NSW Treasury on the sale of the government-owned electricitygenerating plants following a similar role on the sale and lease of the Sydney desalination plant in 2012. The prospect of privatising urban water and wastewater services gets a mixed reception. Politicians regard it as a policy step too far. Government-owned water utilities have differing views. Unions are opposed. And the community has not been engaged. Given union opposition, it is perhaps contradictory that strong support for the privatisation of urban water utilities comes from superannuation funds, led by industry-based funds. These superannuation funds have a long history of investing in infrastructure, and they are knowledgeable. They are major investors in the UK water utilities and have been owners there for many years. They recognise the benefit of the stable cash flows that water utilities provide and the steady, if not spectacular, yields for their members. They are proud of the new investments they have funded in the industry and the customer benefits provided. Previous under-investment and poor customer service prior to the privatisation of the UK industry has been addressed. There are a number of issues to inform any debate about privatising the urban water and wastewater industries. These include:
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• What should be privatised? • Should there be restrictions on ownership? • What industry regulation would be required? • What benefits would arise from privatisation?
What should be privatised? The most attractive businesses for private investors are the large city-based utilities and some regional utilities with sufficient scale. Water and wastewater provision in other, more scattered and remote localities are not likely to be of interest to the private sector. The larger urban water utilities are structured differently and to some extent are involved in different parts of the business. For example, the WA water utility is one of the most vertically integrated and provides services across the entire state, including bulk water and wastewater services, treatment, distribution and retail. Other utilities operate in more confined areas and are not necessarily as vertically integrated. In many cases bulk water is provided by a separate utility to the core distribution and retail networks. In other cases water treatment, desalinated water, wastewater treatment and recycled water are provided by the private sector, through plants they own and/or operate, under contract to the distributor and retailer. In all these different structures there is already a high degree of private ownership and involvement. While each business may have a different structure the water treatment plants, desalination plants, recycled water plants and wastewater treatment
My Point of View • The standard of sewerage treatment and discharges; • Permitted service disruption intervals; • Biomass disposal requirements; • Levels of leakage; and • Metering requirements. The third category of regulation is economic. The regulator sets prices for water and sewerage services; these prices are set to cover a permitted return on assets, allowable operational costs, and capital expenditure that is considered by the regulator to be necessary.
plants are often privately owned and operated. Some large trunk pipelines are also privately owned. Commonly, the extensive core network of water and wastewater pipes is managed and operated centrally, and is government-owned along with the retail business of billing customers. These distribution and retail businesses of water and wastewater are attractive to superannuation funds. They generate a steady return and will grow along with the population growth in the major cities. Capital expenditure is required for maintenance (including any backlog) and to service new growth. The superannuation funds have the financial strength to be able to meet these demands. Private ownership of specific treatment plants and desalination plants is already evident. These are smaller investments compared to the network businesses and can be treated separately or together with the network. Where bulk water provision comes from dams there are typically requirements about catchment management, an environmental flow regime, and rules related to irrigation releases. These are complex matters to manage and often involve competing uses for water and conflicts between stakeholders. In these circumstances the government is arguably the preferred owner and the current ownership situation should often remain undisturbed.
Should there be restrictions on ownership? Water and wastewater services are critical for health and security. To the extent that these concerns are heightened by different ownership it is possible to put restrictions around the ownership of these utilities. However, imposing restrictions tends to lower the value of the business to investors, so such a step should be assessed carefully. The precise concern needs to be specified and the restriction set to address that matter alone. It is not unusual for companies to have restrictions on their ownership, although usually these restrictions are driven by market competition concerns. Foreign ownership has been restricted in some past privatisations, notably Qantas.
What industry regulation is required? Regulation of water and wastewater falls into three categories. The first is health based – drinking water standards are specified. This regulator is nationally based and scientifically focused. The second category concerns performance and environmental standards. For many utilities these standards are specified in an Operating License granted by the state-based regulator on behalf of the government. A large number of issues are covered, including such matters as:
Under government ownership the state-based regulators are not free of government influence or even overt interference. This influence can be evident in pressure to keep prices as low as possible, particularly just before elections. Influence can also be evident in License conditions that are set to prioritise development in an order that suits the government of the day, rather than a more balanced outcome or the commercial priorities of the business. A preliminary requirement for private ownership is truly independent regulation. Before billions of dollars are invested there must be certainty that the regulatory regime is going to follow the rules and procedures specified, and not be controlled by government or anyone else outside that regime. This means that before any privatisation of water utilities the regulatory system must become firmly independent. The regime must be clearly specified; an appeal or review mechanism should be allowed so that decisions can be openly examined. This is a similar regime to that in the electricity and gas sectors in Australia and in the water industry in the UK. It is not unusual. The implications of a truly independent regulator for the water utilities would be prices set to ensure adequate maintenance, new capital expenditure and efficient operating expenses. Under government ownership the temptation to delay maintenance to keep prices low is a short-term strategy that leads inevitably to lower performance standards and larger price increases in the future. Lower prices also distort the capital structure of the utility. Less debt can be serviced and the equity component is therefore larger than it would otherwise be. This equity receives a dividend return that is well below commercial levels and below what the government would earn on its capital in some other investment.
What benefits arise from privatisation? There are at least two advantages of privatisation. First, the government can recycle the asset to meet other policy requirements. State budgets are tightly constrained by demands for health, education and public transport services and by the limited capacity to raise revenue to meet these demands. An activity provided by government that can be provided by some other party, such as superannuation funds, for the same cost provides an opportunity for the government to raise billions of dollars in revenue by selling these assets and replacing them with others of higher priority. The second major advantage is greater efficiency for the utilities, particularly in their finances. While urban water utilities can always improve, a reduction in operating costs related to a change in ownership is not likely to be large. Over recent decades the utilities have made major cost savings in this area. What may make a significant difference is a truly independent regulator to review the maintenance and capital costs of the utility. For example, the maintenance budget will not suffer short-term cuts to artificially lower prices prior to an election; the pace and position of development may be established in a balanced way without political intervention; and the capital structure of the utility can be optimised to reduce costs.
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International The Australian Water Association and the Vietnam Water Supply and Sewerage Association (VWSA) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in Hanoi. The MOU outlines the Associations’ plans to work together in the areas of trade and business matching, education and training, as well as exploring joint projects to attract funding for the sustainable development of Vietnam’s water and wastewater infrastructure and services.
The World Economic Forum’s Insight Report: Global Risks 2015, 10th Edition has listed water crises as the greatest risk facing the world. Water security was judged more pressing than concerns about the rapid and massive spread of infectious diseases, weapons of mass destruction and the failure of climate change adaptation.
Only 20 per cent of global wastewater is currently being treated, leaving low-income countries hardest hit by contaminated water supplies and disease, according to a UN report that aims to encourage governments to see treated wastewater as a valuable resource. With urban populations estimated to double in the next four decades, and low-income countries possessing only eight per cent of the required capacity to treat wastewater effectively, ‘Wastewater Management, A UN-Water Analytical Brief’, produced by the World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and UN-Habitat on behalf of UN-Water, describes the damage being done to ecosystems and biodiversity as ‘dire’ and warns of the threat wastewater will increasingly pose to human health, economic activity, and water security if left unaddressed.
Water scarcity could lead to conflict between communities and nations as the world is still not fully aware of the water crisis many countries face as a result of climate change, the head of the UN panel of climate scientists has warned. The latest report from the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) predicts a rise in global temperature of between 0.3 and 4.8°C by the late 21st century.
Water Week Latin America will be held in Chile from 23–27 March 2015. The event will attract key stakeholders from across the region’s scientific, academic, political and corporate communities to exchange experiences and ideas related to water, its challenges and solutions. For those interested in Latin America as a market, Water Week represents an opportunity to obtain an understanding of the water challenges faced by the region. Austrade has a delegation of Australian water specialists confirmed for this year’s event. For further information contact Natalia.Gorrono@austrade.gov.au
Naturally occurring arsenic in private wells threatens people in many US states and parts of Canada, according to a collection of scientific papers being published in the journal Science of the Total Environment. The studies, focused mainly on New England but applicable elsewhere, say private wells present continuing risks due to almost non-existent regulation in most states, homeowner inaction and inadequate mitigation measures. The reports also shed new light on the geologic mechanisms behind the contamination.
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The studies come amid new evidence that even low doses of arsenic may reduce IQ in children, in addition to well-documented risks of heart disease, cancer and reduced lung function. The reports comprise a special section in the journal.
Worsening drought has led to over 80 per cent of water resources in Pakistan’s southern Tharparker district becoming unfit for drinking, a new study says. This has led to plans by the Sindh provincial government to invest 5.4 billion Pakistani rupees ($53 million) in installing 750 solar-powered reverse osmosis water purification plants across the sprawling desert district, to help get safe drinking water to the region’s over 1.5 million people. All of the facilities are expected to be set up and working by June this year. Residents living near the first plant, inaugurated in January in the Misri Shah area of Mithi, say it is transforming life in the parched region, where vanishing rain and drying groundwater supplies mean most available water is now saline or too high in fluoride.
National The Australian Government has announced Hon. Neil Andrew AO as the Chair of the Murray-Darling Basin Authority. Mr Andrew was born and lives in South Australia and has had a lifelong association with the irrigation industry, particularly irrigated horticulture and viticulture. “I am delighted that Mr Andrew, who has a long association with Murray-Darling Basin issues, has agreed to serve as the new Chair,” said Minister for the Environment, Greg Hunt. “Mr Andrew has considerable expertise in both public sector governance and irrigated agriculture and will make a valuable contribution as Chair of the Authority.”
The partnership approach to groundwater research has been strengthened with the Murray–Darling Basin Authority announcing $1 million to fund studies by the National Centre for Groundwater Research and Training. MDBA Chief Executive Dr Rhondda Dickson said the collaboration would provide important technical and scientific support for decision‐making in the Murray–Darling Basin.
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment, Bob Baldwin, and new Chair of the Murray-Darling Basin Authority, Neil Andrew, will tour towns along the Murray River speaking with stakeholders about their views on the Murray-Darling Basin Plan. The tour will take place in three parts over the coming months, visiting towns along the river in Victoria, NSW, South Australia and Queensland.
A new CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology report shows massive current and future climate impacts for Australia. The report highlights the need for ambitious post-2020 pollution reduction targets, a transition plan to decarbonise our economy and far greater integration of climate resilience in planning and assessment, the Climate Institute said. “This comprehensive report and interactive database from our premier scientific and weather agencies should reset the climate debate in Australia,” said CEO John Connor.
Victoria The Sunraysia Modernisation Project, jointly funded by the Australian Government and Victoria to modernise irrigation infrastucture in the Sunraysia region, has commenced major pipeline works. On completion, the project, which received government funding of over $100 million together with more than $17 million from Victoria through Lower Murray Water, will assist more than 1,900 irrigators across the region and deliver an annual average of seven billion litres of water for environmental use, including to internationally significant and locally important wetlands in the Mallee region.
Yarra Valley Water is trialling a new technology to help preserve as many trees as possible when carrying out pipe maintenance. Managing Director Pat McCafferty said that the water utility is keen to find an environmentally friendly option to preserve as many tree roots as possible growing in the vicinity of Yarra Valley Water pipes. Hydro-excavation technology uses water pressure to remove the dirt around the tree roots, causing minimum disturbance to the roots.
Queensland TRILITY has been selected by Unitywater to deliver the Design, Build, Operate and Maintain contract for the rehabilitation of the Redcliffe Sewage Treatment Plant in South-East Queensland. The contract includes the operation and maintenance of the plant through to 2022, and the delivery of a design and build phase for rehabilitation of the sewage treatment plant.
A plan to divert two Queensland rivers to supply water to Galilee Basin coal mines would cause significant environmental damage, the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) has warned. Galilee Water Pty Ltd wants to extract up to 700 gigalitres from two rivers and channel it to dams to service mining operations. ACF’s James Trezise said ACF’s submission set out a range of reasons why the Federal Government should reject the Galilee Water proposal. “We have serious concerns about the damage this plan would do to the ecology of the Cape and Campaspe rivers, as well as to threatened and migratory species downstream,” he said.
South Australia In September 2012, the Treasurer of South Australia referred to the Essential Services Commission (the Commission) an Inquiry into pricing reform for drinking water and sewerage retail services provided by SA Water. The Inquiry was referred to the Commission pursuant to section 35(1) of the Essential Services Commission Act 2002. The Commission has released its final Inquiry report to the Government for its consideration as it frames future policy in the water pricing area. The Final Inquiry Report takes account of an extensive stakeholder consultation process, which followed the release of the Draft Inquiry Report in July 2014.
An investment of $31.5 million has been confirmed between the Australian Government and the South Australian Murray-Darling Basin Natural Resources Management (SAMDB NRM) Board to fund 122 projects to modernise on-farm irrigation infrastructure and return water to the environment. The funding will be delivered through the SAMDB NRM Board across the southern connected system of the Murray-Darling Basin through Round Four of the On-Farm Irrigation Efficiency Program (OFIEP).
Adelaide Hills residents directly affected by recent bushfires will be eligible for a range of assistance from SA Water, including credit for higher than usual water use and free replacement of firedamaged water meters. Water Minister Ian Hunter said SA Water played a key role in working with agencies such as the Country Fire Service in supplying water during the fires. “Customers in the fire zone who used mains water to protect their properties from fire may be eligible for a reduction on their bill,” he said. Residents in the fire zone can also call SA Water’s Customer Service Centre if their water meter has been damaged by fire or they are experiencing supply problems.
Western Australia A trial at a south-west wastewater treatment plant has reduced phosphorus in the water by more than 50 per cent. The Peel-Harvey Catchment Council said the Waroona Wastewater Treatment Plant had shown significant improvements in water quality. The treated wastewater is used to irrigate a woodland before going down an agricultural drain. A trial of a 700-metre ‘swale’ drain has reduced phosphorus by nearly 60 per cent and nitrogen by more than 30 per cent. Chief Executive Jane O’Malley said results should improve the sustainability of nearby wetlands.
Construction of a nutrient-stripping wetland at Bayswater’s Eric Singleton Bird Sanctuary to improve water quality in the Swan River has begun. Environment Minister Albert Jacob said the $3 million project would reduce sediment, rubbish, phosphorus and nitrogen entering the river from the Bayswater Brook, while also restoring bird and animal habitat at the degraded sanctuary. This is the second wetland to be built by the Liberal-National Government in the past 12 months following construction of the $4.05 million Ellen Brook Wetland.
The 2014 Water, Sewerage and Irrigation Performance Report released by the Economic Regulation Authority (ERA) shows a statewide shift away from traditional sources of drinking water due to the drying climate. A Summary of Key Findings has also been published. The report compares the performance outcomes and performance trends of the water supply schemes licensed by the ERA. ERA Chairman, Dr Stephen King said: “Surface water lost its standing as the second largest source of drinking water both in Perth and in regional towns for the first time in 2013, and this trend continued into 2014. Between 2012 and 2014, the proportion of Perth’s drinking water sourced from surface water has fallen from 25.2 per cent to 16.5 per cent, while in regional towns the proportion has fallen from 21.9 per cent to 6.8 per cent. In Perth, desalinated water is the second source of drinking water, while in regional towns bulk (purchased) water is now the second source.
FEBRUARY 2015 water
CrossCurrent The Australian Government is delivering on its election commitment to improve the health of Western Australia’s Swan and Canning rivers with $1 million in funding. Minister for the
Environment, Greg Hunt, announced the funding boost during a visit to the iconic Western Australian river system with the Federal Member for Swan, Steve Irons. Perth Region Natural Resource Management Inc will manage the $1 million investment over two years, working in partnership with the local environmental community to deliver the Swan-Canning River Recovery Programme.
BHP Billiton Iron Ore (BHPBIO) has awarded Valoriza Agua, through its Australian subsidiary Valoriza Water Australia, the contract to design and construct the new Drinking Water Treatment Plant in Newman. The new facility will replace the decommissioned
AWA has provided a submission to the 2015 Independent Review of the Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards (WELS) Scheme. AWA supports the widespread adoption of water efficiency schemes such as WELS and Smart Approved WaterMark and advocates efficiency as an economically viable way to enhance water security. AWA’s three key recommendations for the scheme are: (1) that white goods are transferred to the E3 scheme; (2) that tapware is better integrated with WaterMark; and (3) that WELS increases engagement with other groups including utilities, councils, government and other relevant water efficiency schemes to promote the WELS scheme collaboratively.
and already demolished old softener plant and will be located at the same site. It will produce up to 16.5 ML/day of potable water. The plant is being designed to meet BHP Billiton specifications and Australian Drinking Water Guidelines in order to reliably deliver safe drinking water to Newman township and BHPBIO mining operations.
Tasmania AWA has issued a response to the review of the Tasmanian Economic Regulator. The review proposes three options to restructure the Tasmanian Regulator by reducing the membership. AWA notes that it is speculated that these arrangement will
Industry stalwart, Laurie Gleeson, who sadly passed away in January 2015, has been honoured with an OAM for his service to the Goulbourn Valley community. Laurie was Managing Director of Goulburn Valley Water for 28 years from 1980 to 2008. A keen advocate for reform, efficiency and high standards of customer service, Laurie played an active role in enhancing the performance of the water sector.
Mike Burgess has been appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his significant service to public administration in the Northern Territory. Mike commenced his professional career in the water sector in the Territory and served as an AWA Federal Councillor and AWA NT Branch President.
not affect the independence of the regulator. To read the full submission please go to the AWA website.
Australian Capital Territory John Knox has been appointed CEO of Icon Water Limited, which owns and operates the water and sewerage business in the ACT as ACTEW Water and is a 50 per cent owner of ActewAGL. The
Geoff Linke has been appointed Managing Director for Aurecon’s Infrastructure Market, which includes Transport and Water. Aurecon Global Chief Executive Officer Giam Swiegers, who joined the company in February 2015, has expanded the Executive Committee to 12 members, with four key executives promoted. Geoff commented: “I am very excited to be undertaking this role, leading Aurecon’s strong Transport and Water teams, who are delivering critical infrastructure for our clients and our communities.”
appointment follows an extensive national recruitment campaign over recent months. Icon Water Chairman Dr Michael Easson said: “Mr Knox has a thorough understanding of the current issues that Icon Water and its energy investment faces, and has shown that he is able to energetically lead a stable and focused team to progress
John Fountain, an economist, has joined the Sydney office of Balmoral Group Australia. John, formally of the NSW EPA and the Office of Environment and Heritage, can be contacted at email@example.com or +61 2 9247 8670.
our strategic objectives. This long-term vision will ultimately serve the Canberra community through the excellent products and services that we will continue to provide.”
A new urban renewal portfolio for ACT has been announced. The new ministerial portfolios will support jobs and urban renewal and see the state take a smarter approach to government, said ACT Chief Minister, Andrew Barr. “It will be my job as Chief Minister to drive the development of our economy and as part of this I will take on the new portfolio of Minister for Urban Renewal. This role will promote our garden suburbs and urban villages, bringing together infrastructure renewal with the promotion of social and cultural activity at a suburban level.”
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The Board of Cardno Limited (ASX:CDD) has announced that the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Michael Renshaw, has resigned. Graham Yerbury, currently Chief Financial Officer, has been appointed Acting CEO while a global search for a successor to Mr Renshaw is undertaken. John Marlay, Cardno’s Chairman, said “I wish to thank Michael for his contributions since joining Cardno in 2003 and in the past 10 months as Chief Executive Officer.” In his interim role, Graham will be assisted by Paul Gardiner, President Americas, on significant operational decisions. Mr Marlay confirmed Cardno’s business priorities to focus on improving EBITDA margins and returning to positive organic revenue growth, continuing a disciplined approach to a diversification strategy through M&A, and maintaining a healthy balance sheet.
Australia’s International Water Conference & Exhibition
Themed conference streams
• • • • • • • • •
asset management Future planning for liveable cities Waste and wastewater treatment Water recycling Water in rural, remote and regional communities climate change and water security industrial water management & technical innovation community engagement Utilising big data and analytics
international and national Keynote speakers • cathryn ross, chief Executive, Water services regulation authority (ofwat) (UK) • thierry Mallet, Director, innovation and Business Performance, suez Environnement (France)
• Bernard salt, social Editor/columnist, The australian (australia)
Keynote Panel session - shaping a customer driven organisation in an Engineering dominated industry. • John ringham, sa Water
• Pat Mccafferty, Yarra Valley Water
• Kevin young, sydney Water
12 - 14 May 2015 Adelaide Convention Centre
Early-Bird rEgistrations closE 30 March Visit www.ozwater.org for a detailed program and to register
your water knowledge
international business opportunities
and extend your networks
renowned keynote speakers
the 140+ international water exhibitors
NCEDA CEO NEIL PALMER VOTED NO 1 IN TOP 25 GLOBAL WATER LEADERS NCEDA CEO Neil Palmer has been voted No. 1 in a list of 25 top leaders in the global water industry. The list was voted on by global water/wastewater industry members and readers of US publication WaterWorld. On receiving news of the award Neil said: “I am very pleased that the Australian water industry, Professor Wendell Ella (left) and its advances in desalination in and NCEDA CEO Neil Palmer. particular, has been recognised internationally. It reinforces once again the worldwide recognition of the NCEDA, which has been established in just five years by the hard work of an outstanding team.” He also expressed particular appreciation to the retiring Chief Scientific Officer, Professor David Furukawa, who encouraged him to take on the role of CEO, and whose untiring efforts to build NCEDA’s capability have been a vital part of the Centre’s success. Looking to the future, Neil sees Australia – with its arid climate and challenging feed water quality – as the place people everywhere should naturally come to find water solutions, and believes that NCEDA will have a strong ongoing role to keep it on top of the game. NCEDA has also welcomed Professor Wendell Ela (pictured with Neil above) who commenced as Chair of Desalination and Water Treatment at Murdoch University, NCEDA’s administering organisation, earlier this month. Wendell comes from the University of Arizona, but brings a practical dimension to his research as his early career started as a professional fisherman in Australia and New Zealand.
WATER OPERATOR PARTNERSHIP OPPORTUNITIES The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has released a video about the Water Operator Partnership activities that Hunter H2O (formerly Hunter Water Australia) is carrying out in Yangon, Myanmar with the wastewater treatment division of the Yangon City Development Committee. Yangon (formerly Rangoon) is the largest city in Myanmar with a population of over five million. The central part of Yangon has a sewerage system serving about 800,000 people, put in about a century ago under British colonial rule. Sewerage flows to a more modern secondary treatment plant. Hunter H2O is working with managers, engineers and operators of the sewerage plant setting up a practical operations regime suited to the local situation. The video was made by the ADB as an example of how a Water Operator Partnership works in practice. Craig White and Clara Laydon from Hunter H2O feature in the clip, which was made in the middle of 2014. The video can be viewed on the ADB ‘Water for All’ channel at the following link: www.youtube.com/watch?v=s5L2RNkrij0 or on the United Nations website: www.gwopa.org/.
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Any utilities interested in taking up a Water Operator Partnership should contact Jim Keary (email: jim.keary@hunterh2o), who will be pleased to introduce you to the right people at ADB and share Hunter H2O’s experiences in the four countries where the company has undertaken this type of activity.
JOHN HOLLAND WINS SUNDROP FARMS EXPANSION CONTRACT John Holland has been awarded a contract worth more than $150 million to expand the Sundrop Farms arid climate agricultural operations located at Port Augusta in South Australia. John Holland will design and construct a climatecontrolled, 20-hectare state-of-the-art glasshouse facility that will produce truss tomatoes for supermarkets across Australia. The facility, when complete, will harness solar energy to desalinate seawater to produce freshwater for the crops, generate heat to maintain the correct glasshouse temperature, and produce electricity to power the operations. The project, which has eventuated from a 10-year contract between Sundrop Farms and Coles, is scheduled for completion in late 2016. Sundrop Farms CEO Philipp Saumweber said the facility was expected to create 100 jobs at Port Augusta during the construction phase and, once completed, nearly 200 farm jobs to cater to peak periods. The sustainable horticulture model will also receive funding from the State Government over the next three years.
ACADEMY WELCOMES REINSTATEMENT OF SCIENCE TO THE AUSTRALIAN CABINET The Australian Academy of Science has welcomed the Prime Minister’s announcement that Ian MacFarlane is now the Minister for Industry and Science. Academy President Professor Andrew Holmes said he hopes the move will be more than simply a change in title. “Having a Minister identifiably responsible for science is a significant forward step for this Government. We very much hope that this signifies that the Government is placing greater value on the importance of science and technology to all Australians,” Professor Holmes said. “We take this shift in the Ministry as a signal that many important issues which have effectively remained dormant for the last 18 months, while we’ve had no Minister with science in their title, will now have the additional horsepower they need to bring them back on to the agenda.” Professor Holmes also welcomed the appointment of Karen Andrews as Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Industry and Science, and the new Minister for Health, Sussan Ley.
NEW APPOINTMENT FOR AURECON
National infrastructure service provider, Zinfra Group, has announced Cameron Evans as its new General Manager, Strategy and Market Development Group. Cameron has a wealth of experience across the infrastructure services industry in the utilities, transport and water sectors. He has worked in a number of senior roles including Executive Manager Strategy Cameron Evans and Development Transfield Services, and his role prior to joining Zinfra Group was as General Manager Roads and Water Infrastructure, Australian and New Zealand Transfield Services. Previous to his time at Transfield Services, Cameron worked with organisations including Veolia and MWH in roles covering large-scale project development and delivery throughout Australia and the UK. “I’m thrilled to join Zinfra Group to fully establish and manage the new Strategy and Market Development Group,” said Cameron. “I’m looking forward to cementing our position in the market and building on our existing client base, developing new client relationships, and leveraging our strong capability and vast knowledge and experience in the market place.” Zinfra Managing Director, Steven MacDonald, said, “Cameron is a critical addition to our team and will play a key role in achieving our business growth objectives. Over the next two to three years we will be focused on expanding into new regions and markets, and pursuing bigger and more complex opportunities in the market place. Cameron and his team will be essential to driving this strategy.”
Geoff Linke has been appointed Managing Director for Aurecon’s Infrastructure Market, which includes Transport and Water. Aurecon Global Chief Executive Officer Giam Swiegers, who joined the company in early 2015, has expanded the Executive Committee to 12 members, with four key executives promoted to the role of Managing Director for each of Aurecon’s four key markets:
NEW GENERAL MANAGER FOR ZINFRA GROUP
Zinfra Group was launched in 2012 and delivers engineering, maintenance and construction services to the utility infrastructure sectors. The Zinfra brand delivers construction services in the utility infrastructure market, and ZNX delivers operations and maintenance services to utility network assets.
• Clive Ross, Managing Director, Advisory & Asset Management; • James Bennett, Managing Director, Built Environment; • Glenn Hooper, Managing Director, Energy & Resources; • Geoff Linke, Managing Director, Infrastructure. Geoff commented, “I am very excited to be undertaking this role, leading Aurecon’s very strong Transport and Water teams, who are delivering critical infrastructure for our clients and our communities. With our global reach and highly qualified, skilled and experienced specialists, we are able to respond to our clients’ needs across the infrastructure life cycle.” Geoff is a Fellow of Engineers Australia and has held senior roles in the public and private sectors, with over 20 years of experience as a practising engineer. Since joining Aurecon in 2013, Geoff has managed Aurecon’s Adelaide/Melbourne Delivery Centre, where he was responsible for optimising performance and driving growth. The new Managing Directors will join Aurecon’s four Regional Managing Directors as well as the Chief Financial Officer, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Business Development Officer on the Executive Committee.
SUPPORTING INDIGENOUS PROFESSIONALS OF THE FUTURE GHD has committed to a 10-year partnership with CareerTrackers, a program that connects Indigenous university students and private organisations to create career pathways through structured internships. The partnership extends GHD’s already established relationship with CareerTrackers, with Jill Hannaford, GHD’s Leader, Stakeholder Engagement and Social Sustainability, serving as a member of its Advisory Board.
Company leaders and interns on stage.
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THE HIDDEN WATER FOOTPRINT
GHD staff and interns at the Gala Dinner. Collectively, these companies have committed to engaging 3,500 interns over the next decade. The partnership was officially launched at a gala function attended by 1,400 guests in Sydney, including Indigenous interns and corporate partners. GHD has committed to providing at least 10 internships each year, with the goal of increasing this to 20. The interns undertake a 12-week vacation practice program at GHD while completing their degrees, with a view to progressing to full-time employment as part of the company’s Graduate Program. Phil Duthie, GHD’s General Manager – Australia, said: “As one of the leading supporters of CareerTrackers, GHD is proud to be investing in the development of these talented young leaders. One of the ways we can help ‘close the gap’ between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people is by creating opportunities that enhance economic development and participation. It is a privilege to assist Indigenous leaders to embark on careers in engineering, architecture, science and other disciplines.”
OSMOFLO MOVES INTO OMAN MARKET Osmoflo has secured the EPC contract to provide a 56,775m3/d (12.5MIGD) seawater reverse osmosis plant to ACWA Power Barka, which was awarded phase two of the Barka desalination project by the Oman Power & Water Procurement Company (OPWP). Located 60km north west of Muscat, the plant will be capable of delivering 12.5 million gallons of water per day and is part of a phase 2 expansion of ACWA Power’s operations in Barka, where it already runs a plant delivering 136,660m3 of water per day and 427MW of power. Pre-treatment will consist of a coagulant dosage prior to filtration with Pall MF membranes, and the high-pressure system will be equipped with Calder DWEER energy recovery devices. Taking its feed from the cooling section of the existing MSF units, the Osmoflo plant has MF pre-treatment followed by five trains of SWRO. Serving the city of Muscat and surrounding areas, the plant will address the increasing water demands of the region. “The Barka project is an important project for us as it demonstrates the international capabilities of Osmoflo,” said Managing Director Marc Fabig. “It reinforces our ongoing commitment to international growth by servicing the global market.” The system will be delivered in three phrases, the first of which is scheduled to be operational in August 2015.
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The Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) is urging coordinated action to reduce the amount of hidden water used in food and drink production, estimated at up to 1.8 million litres per person every year – equivalent to an Olympic-size swimming pool. Currently, says the institute, around 90 per cent of all freshwater is used by agriculture (70 per cent) and industry (20 per cent), leaving just 10 per cent for domestic use. However, as the population grows and more people move to a western-style diet, water extraction is estimated to increase by over 50 per cent to 6,900 billion m3 per year. By 2050, the overall impact will see around two-thirds of the world’s population living in ‘water scare’ areas, compared to just seven per cent at present. Andy Furlong, IChemE director of policy, said: “Chemical engineers provide many of the high-level skills needed to provide the water, food, medicines and energy to sustain our ever-growing population. “In recent years and decades, we have seen how difficult it has been to agree and set targets to manage issues like climate change. Population growth will throw up similar challenges and will have a direct impact on two of the building blocks for life – food and water. “Estimates suggest that we will need to produce 60 per cent more food by 2050. Agriculture will need around 19 per cent more water to produce that extra food. “It is clear that current production methods are unsustainable and there are genuine risks of food shortages, rising food prices, droughts and social unrest for future generations unless we make more efficient use of water.” A full analysis of the hidden water footprint in food and IChemE’s recommendations are available in a new policy report produced by IChemE called Water Management in the Food and Drink Industry.
MARINE VISITORS CALL UNDERWATER FLOWERPOTS HOME Sydney’s Blackwattle Bay has been transformed into a haven for sea life, with at least 28 new and unique marine species recorded in the harbour waters in the past year, thanks to marine flowerpots that have created new habitats. In a project led by Sydney University’s School of Biological Sciences, and with funding from a City of Sydney grant, 20 concrete flowerpots have been attached to the seawall along the Glebe foreshore walk, creating man-made rock pools.
Calling all Bright SparkS
2015 Water Innovation Forum
The Australian Water Association is holding its inaugural Innovation Forum in March, showcasing the best water innovations and technologies across the water, construction, food and beverage and agricultural industries and highlighting opportunities for water innovation across these sectors. The event will feature a conference, exhibition, training workshop, networking events, and innovation pitch sessions.
this is your chance to hear from some of australia’s leaders in innovation including: • • • •
Prof. Ian Chubb - Australia’s Chief Scientist Candice Quatermain - Program Director Circular Economy Australia Kevin Russo - Partner, Deloitte Consulting Jeremy Daunay - Innovation Leader, ijinus
The program also includes an optional four-hour Technology Commercialisation and Adoption Workshop. The Workshop will give innovators the opportunity to engage in a dynamic format and receive advice on the best way to present the value proposition of their solution. It will provide support by giving guidance in IP protection and customer insights, reviewing marketing pitches, and advice from experts who will share their experiences of success.
18-19 March, Royal Randwick Sydney
www.awa.asn.au/InnovationForum15 Proudly sponsored by:
Industry News “While noting that this is a draft report only, we are concerned about the basis and assumptions used by the Regulator for arriving at their revenue conclusions, and the potential future impacts on our ability to sustainably operate our business and fix ageing and underperforming assets.” TasWater’s projected profits are in line with the $27M reported in this year’s results, which supports funding its capital program and is providing a modest return to owners. “We now look forward to working through the Regulator’s proposal to understand how it supports us in achieving sustainable long-term outcomes for the Tasmanian community,” Mr Brewster said.
Marine ecologist and PHD student Rebecca Morris at the bay. After just one year, photographs captured by underwater cameras show that the scheme has attracted an abundance of algae, sea snails, star fish, crabs, sponges and small fish who now call the Blackwattle Bay pots home. Toadfish, yellow fin bream, leather jackets, blennies and mullet have all been caught on camera around the empty pots, while the recording of rock pool fish living in the pots has been a welcome surprise. Lord Mayor Clover Moore said data collated using the new underwater images would be shared with councils around Australia and internationally to help improve coastal biodiversity.
TASWATER TO REVIEW ECONOMIC REGULATOR’S DRAFT REPORT TasWater says it looks forward to reviewing the detail in the Economic Regulator’s Draft Report that has been published for public comment. “We are pleased that the Economic Regulator has acknowledged the importance of managing the complex price transition for customers to a level playing field, while balancing the need to invest in ageing and non-performing infrastructure across the State,” TasWater CEO Mike Brewster said. “As the regulator has stated, fully addressing the issues facing us across the state will require significant time and capital investment.” The Regulator’s consultants also acknowledge the significant capital expenditure challenge ahead to fix ageing and nonperforming assets. “Our submission to the Regulator at the end of August was focused on delivering equity and fairness through achieving a level playing field for all customers, and delivering better services and outcomes for Tasmanians for the long term,” Mr Brewster said. “We proposed an acceleration of the transition to equitable prices while managing customer impacts, and we are pleased that the Regulator has accepted the need for acceleration and our proposed methodology for managing price shocks. However, we need to test their amended proposal on how it might impact on the broader sustainability of the business and customers.
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MELBOURNE ENGINEER RECEIVES GLOBAL RECOGNITION Melbourne-based Engineer Michael Li has been recognised for his commitment to sustainability, being named by collaborative sustainability community 2degrees as one of 25 young professionals under 25 years transforming the world of sustainable business. Michael’s passion for innovation and capacity to make a mark in the Michael Li world of sustainable business were acknowledged in client and peer testimonials, seeing him join the Top 25 alongside young professionals, entrepreneurs, analysts, consultants and communications experts from around the world. 2degrees described Michael, an Environmentally Sustainable Development (ESD) Engineer, as “the one finding real solutions for sustainable buildings”, citing his work with the Green Building Council of Australia’s (GBCA) new Green Star rating tool for green buildings. It also applauded his efforts as part of AECOM’s Green Office (GO!) program, which identifies ways to make AECOM’s own office operations as sustainable as possible, while introducing initiatives to encourage team members to make sustainability a way of life. “Having a career in sustainability empowers me to make a contribution to tackling some of the world’s biggest issues,” said Michael. “I want to become an industry leader in sustainability, integrating sustainable principles so they become ‘business-as-usual’ standards for Australian society.” Michael said his position at AECOM allowed him to engage in a range of project stakeholders with sustainability issues. “I am passionate about sustainability because I believe the solution to climate change must involve small and commonsense contributions from everyone ranging from individuals to large corporations and governments,” he said. “The recognition from 2degrees and the opportunity to network with other young sustainability professionals globally gives me a solid platform to achieve my goals.”
$130 MILLION UPGRADE FOR BRISBANE’S 100-YEAR-OLD SEWER Queensland Urban Utilities has announced Brisbane’s oldest sewer pipe will receive a $130 million upgrade in one of the most unique sewer projects ever undertaken in Australia. The historic S1 Main Sewer, which turns 100 this year, will be rehabilitated in conjunction with the Kingsford Smith Drive Upgrade to minimise the impact on traffic and the community. Queensland Urban Utilities Chief Executive Officer, Louise Dudley, said it will be a challenging project due to the age, size and depth of the pipe. “The S1 Main Sewer carries 60 per cent of the city’s sewage, spans 1.5m in diameter and is buried eight storeys beneath the ground,” she said. “We’ll be using the latest trenchless technology to re-line the old concrete pipe with a new pipe made from polyethylene. It makes sense for Council and Queensland Urban Utilities to join forces on this project to minimise the impact of the sewer and road works on this busy corridor.” The project will involve re-lining a 5.7km section of the sewer from James St in Fortitude Valley to the Eagle Farm pump station in Bunya St. It will take place in several phases, with the first starting in early March between Hunt St and Riverview Tce, before the Kingsford Smith Drive Upgrade begins. “These essential works will extend the operational life of the pipe by at least another 50 years,” Ms Dudley said. “This is the next chapter in the S1 Main Sewer’s interesting history. Built by miners using traditional tunnelling methods, the pipe took three years to build and was a feat of engineering in its day.” The majority of the sewer works will be carried out between 8pm and 5am to minimise disruption to traffic.
TOWNSVILLE TAKES A LEAD IN DISASTER RESILIENCE Townsville is among the first cities globally to use a new United Nations’ Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) disaster resilience scorecard, developed jointly by global fully integrated infrastructure firm AECOM and IBM. Townsville is following pilot city Coimbatore, India, in using the scorecard, which helps cities mitigate against, and more quickly recover their infrastructure and services from, natural disasters. Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill said the scorecard would help build on Council’s ongoing disaster management and mitigation strategies. “As a city that is at high risk of cyclones, planning and preparedness is paramount in developing a resilient community that can bounce back from disaster events,” Cr Hill said. “Council has rolled out a number of initiatives to better protect the city’s infrastructure and is always considering new disaster mitigation opportunities though infrastructure renewal and development, capacity building and sustainability initiatives.” At a recent disaster resilience roundtable in Sydney hosted by AECOM and IBM, UNISDR Chief Margareta Wahlström said Australia’s approach to disaster management was among the world’s best, and is helping to save lives and reduce economic losses from disasters. Citing the response to Canberra’s 2003 bushfires, the dispatch of researchers into the field within five days of the 2009 ‘Black Saturday’ bushfires in Victoria, and Brisbane City Council’s updated FloodWise Property Report program in the aftermath of the 2011 floods, Ms Wahlström praised Australia’s “multi-hazard approach” to disaster risk, saying it was an example “the rest of the world is seeking to follow”. The roundtable brought together representatives from local, state and federal government and the private sector to discuss the adoption of best practice disaster resiliency measures across Australia.
NEW CHIEF EXECUTIVE ANNOUNCED FOR CO2CRC The Hon. Martin Ferguson AM, Chairman of the Board of the Cooperative Research Centre for Greenhouse Gas Technologies (CO2CRC), has announced the appointment of Tania Constable PSM as CO2CRC’s new chief executive. Ms Constable, who is currently a chief adviser in the Commonwealth Treasury, has extensive experience as a senior executive in the Australian Public Service, including more than 20 years in various industry and resources portfolio positions. Ms Constable said she was delighted to have the opportunity to lead a team that is working on a real solution to climate change. “The widespread and accelerated deployment of CCS is essential to reducing carbon emissions from fossil fuels if we are to achieve the International Energy Agency’s 2oC scenario,” Ms Constable said. “It is important work that to succeed will require ongoing international cooperation and collaboration and commitments from government and industry. I look forward to meeting this challenge.”
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Industry News Mr Ferguson thanked outgoing CEO Dr Richard Aldous for his leadership of CO2CRC over the past three years. “Richard leaves the organisation having secured funding for the next five years, which is a significant achievement indeed,” Mr Ferguson said. “He has successfully steered CO2CRC through some difficult and uncertain times, allowing the researchers to focus on enhancing CCS as an essential part of Australia¹s low-carbon future.”
WATER VAPOUR STUDY BOOSTS SEVERE WEATHER PREDICTION Research at RMIT University using four-dimensional GPS modelling to measure water vapour could improve predictions of severe weather, potentially reducing the impact of natural disasters. Although it is known that the dynamics of water vapour has a crucial effect on the formation and lifecycle of severe weather, the phenomenon is not well understood. The research is significantly important for Australia and the southern hemisphere, where other meteorological sensors are limited. Dr Toby Manning, from the RMIT SPACE Research Centre, investigated the use of continuously operating ground-based networks and space-borne GPS systems to reconstruct the 4D dynamics of water vapour in the atmosphere over time. “When introduced into numerical weather prediction models, this research has the ability to increase the accuracy of our severe weather prediction and improve our understanding of the role water vapour plays in climate studies,” he said. “Time is critical in disaster and emergency management and knowing more quickly and more accurately when a severe storm is due to hit will help authorities and the community plan and prepare.” Water vapour significantly influences many weather and climate processes such as cloud formation, water redistribution and temperature control in the lowest layer of Earth’s atmosphere. This correlates to the formation and lifecycle of severe storm and precipitation systems. GPS tomographic modelling has the potential to use the dense ground-based infrastructure in Australia to sense the movement of water vapour over space and time – a major leap forward in the innovative use of advanced Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) technology.
By reconstructing and examining 4D models of water vapour, Dr Manning was able to analyse their components and gain a better understanding of the key triggers in severe weather formation. Supervised by Professor Kefei Zhang and Dr David Silcock, the research has also broadly contributed to the RMIT SPACE Research Centre’s leading study in GPS radio occultation, which aims to provide Australia with space-based technology platforms suitable for generating a world-class high-resolution analysis of climate conditions.
BUILDING A MORE SECURE WATER FUTURE FOR QUEENSLAND Regional communities in Queensland will be given a boost by the State Government to develop collaborative approaches to solving water supply challenges. Speaking at the inaugural qldwater Urban Water Industry Innovation Forum, Water Supply Minister Mark McArdle announced $130,000 in funding to support the ongoing work of the Queensland Water Regional Alliance Program, known as QWRAP. Mr McArdle also released the 100-day plan from the Government’s Expert Water Panel. “In August I announced the formation of the Water Expert Panel to assist in the implementation of the Queensland Government’s strong 30-year plan for the water sector, WaterQ,” Mr McArdle said. “The expert panel includes some of Australia’s leading water experts including scientists, engineers, environmental planners and a futurist, and is undertaking a long-term advisory role in identifying and promoting innovative solutions that meet the needs of Queensland customers. “The panel’s 100-day plan, Smart Ideas and Innovations, outlines a series of recommendations to improve customer service, support emerging technologies and improve the skills of workers.” The recommendations are: • Help customers better manage their consumption and use • Promote innovative approaches to urban design • Prioritise solutions for remote and Indigenous communities • Assist service providers to make informed investment decisions • Develop skills • Manage nutrients.
THE CARBON REDUCTION INSTITUTE ANNOUNCES KEY APPOINTMENT
Dr Toby Manning
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The Carbon Reduction Institute (CRI) has announced the appointment of Global Sustainability Strategist and Professor of Sustainable Business Development, Dr Martin A Blake, as Strategic Advisor to the Board of Directors. CRI engages with organisations around the world, cost-effectively enabling them to manage and
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Industry News measure their carbon footprint through the NoCO2 Program encompassing technology solutions to reduce energy consumption.
KING ISLAND WATER UPGRADE GETS THE GREEN LIGHT King Island is set to benefit from a revamp of the island’s drinking
Martin will advise CRI’s team of carbon Global Sustainability Strategist, accounting experts, Dr Martin A Blake engineers and communications specialists all working to provide companies with fast, easy and effective ways to tackle climate change and add value to their business.
water supply by TasWater, with construction set to start in 2015.
Martin is a sustainability expert and visionary strategist in the sustainable development movement. He is internationally recognised as having designed and deployed one of the most successful energy conservation programs in the world, saving millions of pounds sterling annually and winning multiple national and international awards. He is the owner of Singapore-based Blake Advisory and
founder of Blue Australasia in Australia.
this year and locals expressed their support for the Grassy to Currie
Commenting on his appointment, Martin said, “As Strategic Advisor to the Board I look forward to assisting CRI with business development within its existing markets in Australia and South East Asia, with a focus on enabling the Institute to expand its already successful model into the Northern Hemisphere as well.”
pipeline option as the most efficient on the basis of both cost and
The $15 million project includes a new water treatment plant at Grassy and a 28km pipeline to Currie. The development will connect more than 600 island residents to a fully treated and more reliable water supply, bringing benefits to residents, businesses and the local tourism sector. The upgrade is part of TasWater’s current $90 million program of water and
Both Grassy and Currie’s water has at times failed to meet Australian Drinking Water Guidelines and Tasmanian Drinking Water Quality Guidelines. King Island’s community was consulted by TasWater earlier
health. Having completed the consultation process, TasWater is now in a position to advance this project for the benefit of King Island residents. Properties along the pipeline on Grassy Road will also have the opportunity to connect to the new water supply if they wish.
SELF CALIBRATING, SELF CLEANING AND CONTINUOUS MONITORING
Cu NH3 NO2 NO3 PO4
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Ni Cr CI2 Zn F
Fe Silica Sulphide Phenol Cyanide
Aluminium Manganese Boron Sodium
Young Water Professionals
HINDSIGHT CAN BE A CRUEL MISTRESS Justin Simonis – AWA YWP National Committee President
Regardless of the number of times we enter a new year we tend to lament the opportunities lost the year before and make resolutions to do it all differently, and better, in the year to come. As we enter 2015, rather than focus on the chances missed in the past, let’s instead look to the future and the prospects that it presents. The opportunities that AWA provides are many and varied … the small show of faith from a line manager to support the nomination of a young water professional (YWP) to join the local committee; the suggestion that a YWP present a paper at a state conference (or even at the Ozwater Conference & Exhibition); the recommendation that a YWP be given a seat at the branch dinner. Opportunities such as these can have a big bearing on the career of a YWP; they are critical to professional development and should be viewed as such by employers. As I have said on a number of occasions though, it is not just up to our employers to make these things happen; it is up to us as YWPs to build the case for our involvement. There are plenty of websites that will help you write a business case for your involvement, but first you need to clearly identify your business objectives and have a plan as to how you will implement them. This year AWA is making a number of major opportunities available, including the continued support of a YWP stream at Ozwater and discounted registration at other events, including the upcoming Innovation Forum, to be held March 18–19 at Royal Randwick, Sydney. AWA is offering YWPs a 10 per cent discount on
Attendees at the YWP Breakfast at last year’s Ozwater Conference in Brisbane. full registration. This event will provide a fantastic opportunity for YWPs to learn more about emerging technologies and make cross-sectorial connections that can provide the “fresh set of eyes” that lead to the introduction of new business efficiencies and effective problem solving. In May, at Ozwater’15 in Adelaide, the YWP workshop will cover megatrends and strategic directions for the water industry to 2025 and beyond. The session will drive discussion on the implications of certain megatrends and their commonalities and differences. Both of these events provide unparalleled opportunities for advancement in the industry and will contribute towards AWA’s Credentialing Program and Continuing Professional Development scheme. AWA has made a positive and clear commitment to the development of YWPs in the industry through their increased investment in, and number of, opportunities. The ball is now in the court of employers to invest in YWPs, just as it is in the court of YWPs to identify, earn and repay the investment. Don’t let hindsight be a cruel mistress in 2015.
FEBRUARY 2015 water
VALE LAURIE J GLEESON OAM (1948–2015) Victoria and the Goulburn Valley have lost a pioneering water industry leader. Laurie Gleeson died, aged 66, at his Shepparton home, on January 15 after a long battle with cancer. Laurie, a long-time AWA member, was Managing Director of Goulburn Valley Water (GVW) for 28 years from 1980 to 2008 and, during that time, held senior executive positions within the Victorian water industry. An accountant by profession, Laurie was a government auditor before entering the water industry at Shepparton in 1980.
In recent years, Laurie was active in the community fundraising for prostate cancer support. He led the Shepparton ‘Biggest Ever Blokes Lunch’ committee, which has generated $800 000 for this worthy cause to date. When health issues intervened, Laurie never lost his sense of humour, his love for his family or his passion for the Hawthorn Football Club. But great as all his achievements were, as much as anything we will miss his feisty but dedicated and passionate commitment to his organisations and his causes, and his generous and genuine friendship. Laurie will be remembered by all at AWA, the Goulburn Valley community and the entire Australian water industry. It is sad that Laurie’s highest honour, the Medal of the Order of Australia, was conferred on January 26, just nine days after his passing. Laurie is survived by his wife Lois and children Sandra, Jay and Kristian.
Friends remembered him as an astute businessman who worked hard, loved his job and had no time for petty-minded bureaucrats. Peers have described Mr Gleeson as an outstanding leader who had a passion for his organisation, his community and the water industry. “He had the ability to get to the nub of a problem and find a resolution. You never had any doubt about his commitment to the organisation, the community and his industry,” a former GVW Board Director said. Other water industry colleagues recalled Laurie as “a great friend and a genuine leader”. Laurie participated in and oversaw the dramatic rationalisation of the Victorian water industry at local, regional and state levels during his time with Goulburn Valley Water. He was a strong local leader and contributor to the economic development of the Goulburn Valley region, and a strenuous activist for structural reform, greater efficiency and high standards of customer service in the Victorian water industry. In his role as Managing Director, Laurie was an avid supporter of the Institute of Water Administration (IWA) and the role it plays in the professional development of the Victorian water industry. He was a Past President and Member of the Executive Council of IWA. In 2004, Laurie was awarded the Institute’s highest award, the Barry Leach Award, for his outstanding contribution to the Victorian water industry. It was in this role that Laurie also actively oversaw the development of the close association of IWA and AWA that has led to the strong and positive relationship that the organisations have today. Laurie was also a keen supporter of the Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA) and led the early participation of regionally based water authorities in that organisation. Laurie held a NonExecutive Director position in WSAA and actively promoted many state and national water agenda issues.
ARE AUSTRALIAN BUSINESSES TRULY INNOVATIVE? Each year the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) issues a survey to a random selection of businesses across the country to ask if they are engaged in ‘innovative activity’. Innovative activity is described by the ABS as “the introduction of a new or significantly improved good or service; operational process; organisational/managerial process; or marketing method”. Such a loose definition would, in theory, provide high results in the survey. However, in the 2014 report only 37.1% of businesses in the Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services sector, 35.1 % of businesses in Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing, and 30.6% of businesses in the Construction industries were deemed as engaging in some form of innovation. AWA’s upcoming Water Innovation Forum is a chance to promote and review the extent and transfer of water innovation across these sectors, as well as promote collaboration and sharing of ideas. The Forum will comprise an exhibition, conference, technology adoption and commercialisation training, along with myriad networking opportunities. By being part of this event you will hear from, and meet with, Australia’s greatest water innovators, some of whom are detailed below • Candice Quatermain, Program Director – Circular Economy Australia Candice has managed the future of innovation for a range of global enterprises and is now connecting industries and regenerative design through her organisation, Circular Economy Australia.
In recognition of Laurie’s long-term contribution to the development of the Victorian Water Industry and his support and contribution to the Institute of Water Administration, IWA has created a development award in his name.
Founded in 2010, Circular Economy Australia seeks to push the nation into innovation ‘superdrive’ and kick-start traditional businesses into Silicon Valley thinking, by moving away from the current ‘take-make-throwaway’ model towards one of ‘redesignreuse-regenerate’. Circular Economy Australia is pioneering how innovation can aid this transition.
Laurie was always available to give of his experience, particularly to younger members of the water industry. This was particularly important to Laurie, who strongly believed in fostering younger people as he saw that this was the way to strengthen and sustain the longer-term water industry.
In 2015, Candice will launch Deviate2Innovate, a platform that connects people, projects and possibilities in the Australian innovation landscape. Her goal is to set an international benchmark for collaborative knowledge sharing, in the process driving job creation and investment.
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AWA News • Kevin Russo, Partner – Deloitte Consulting Kevin is the lead Technology Consulting Partner in Queensland and also heads up Deloitte’s Cloud and Infrastructure Services practice in Australia nationally. Kevin has over 19 years of experience in the technology industry, with a core focus in the strategy development and implementation of emerging technology programs of work. He works with some of Australia’s most innovative companies in the FSI, Telecom, Public Sector, and Energy & Resources sectors. Prior to joining Deloitte, Kevin held global roles in both management consulting and software industries, and led account management of several large multi-national Clients. He was also involved in two technology start-up companies in the US. In addition, Kevin is a member of Deloitte’s innovation council, which is responsible for reviewing and mentoring fresh ideas from Deloitte employees. • Jeremy Daunay, Innovation Leader – Ijinus French entrepreneur Jeremy has been launching French innovations in the Oceania region since 2009. Jeremy represents French Innovative SMEs and specialises in niche products. Jeremy’s all-round set of commercial skills, strengthened by a strong analytical mind, allow him to address and work with a large number of stakeholders across a broad range of industries. During the Water Innovation Forum, we will learn how water networks are embarking on the ‘smart city’ revolution. Jeremy will present his strategic view of the Australian water industry through a case study conducted by IJINUS and SUEZ GROUP in France, illustrating how a partnership between a manufacturer of autonomous monitoring solutions and a water management company radically changed their approach towards sewer cleaning cycles. AWA’s Water innovation Forum will take place 18–19 March at Royal Randwick, Sydney. To register for the event please go to: www.awa.asn.au/innovationforum15
AWA PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND CREDENTIALS As part of AWA’s objective to further increase the support we can offer to our members, AWA is investigating the establishment of a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and Credentialing Program in 2015. These programs will raise the benchmarks of the water profession by providing a national standard of excellence for water practitioners, and will assist members in managing their professional development by providing a framework in which to monitor and track learning. AWA’s investment in these programs has developed from industry’s demand for a method to recognise and manage professional development in water-related industries. We are keen to continue with this industry-led approach in the development of these schemes and to ensure we build a program that the Australian water sector is able to endorse. We encourage ongoing industry contribution and feedback on the value and structure of the proposed programs. To find out more please go to: www.awa.asn.au/credentialing
KEYNOTE SPEAKERS FOR OZWATER’15 ANNOUNCED Registrations are now open for Ozwater’15, Australia’s largest water conference and exhibition. This comprehensive three-day event will feature inspirational international and national keynote speakers, numerous other invited speakers, scientific and technical papers from industry experts, case studies, workshops and more. The program, themed Water For Growth and Prosperity, has now been released. International and National Keynote Speakers include: • Cathryn Ross, Chief Executive, Water Services Regulation Authority (Ofwat) (UK); • Thierry Mallet, Director, Innovation and Business Performance, Suez Environnement (France); • Bernard Salt, Founder, KPMG Demographics (Australia). Ozwater’15 takes place 12–14 May 2015 in Adelaide. Check out www.ozwater.org for more information and to register.
COLLABORATE AND FACILITATE: MAKE THE MOST OF AWA’S NETWORK AWA Specialist Networks are coalitions of individual AWA members who work in water-related topics of common interest. The purpose is to allow members to network, share knowledge, information and skills, and make beneficial professional and business contacts across specific interest fields. Benefits of membership include: Networking Members can network via invitation-only LinkedIn sub-groups to expand their interaction and information exchange. Network members will be encouraged to use these groups as an opportunity to connect, share insights and build relationships. Once AWA transitions to our new website, we will move these groups into the information hub. To access your Specialist Network Linkedin Group, visit the Australian Water Association Group and view the sub-groups. Development of Technical Fact Sheets Each Specialist Network will have the opportunity to work with the Communications and Policy Team to develop Technical Fact Sheets on the specific areas covered by their network. Updates on key issues Networks can utilise AWA’s communication channels, including Water Journal, E-news and our upcoming Information Hub to more effectively provide updates on current issues faced by the networks. Policy analysis & advocacy Network members are encouraged to contribute their expertise to assist AWA in the development of policy positions, discussion papers and advocacy advice. Professional development There is opportunity for network members to provide content and guidance on AWA’s Professional Development Program and for national and international conferences.
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AWA News AWA’s Specialist Networks include:
• Water, Sanitation & Hygiene in Developing Communities
• Asset Management
• Young Water Professionals
Focus On: Water Management Law And Policy Specialist Network
• Catchment Management
Under the guidance of Chair, Jim Grayson, the Water Management Law and Policy Specialist Network has assisted the AWA National Office with policy submissions, fact sheets and position papers.
• Environmental Water Management • Membranes & Desalination • Operations • Rural Water • Small Water & Wastewater Systems • Source Management (Liquid Trade Waste) • Sustainability • Water Education Network • Water Efficiency • Water Management Law & Policy • Water in Mining • Water Quality Monitoring & Analysis • Water Recycling • Water Retail
The Committee has contributed to submissions on the Agricultural Competitiveness Green Paper, the Competition Policy Review (Harper Review), the Green Paper on Developing Northern Australia and the National Water Commission Abolition Bill. Committee members have also produced position papers on attracting investment into the water sector, harmonisation of economic regulation, planning in the water sector, changing structural arrangements in the water sector and water recycling. These valuable documents have contributed to AWA’s policy dialogue. AWA is working to make more policy information available on our website. As the two-year term comes to an end, AWA would like to thank the Committee Members for their contributions (see box, below).
SPECIAL Thanks to the 2013–2015 Members of the Water Management Law And Policy Specialist Network Committee Jim Grayson (Chair) has been CEO of Gladstone Area Water Board (GAWB) since early 2006. Prior to this Jim worked as a solicitor in private legal practice and with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. Jim is a Fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australia, a Director of Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA), Chair of WSAA Healthy Liveable Communities Committee, and a member of the advisory panel for the Gas Industry Social and Environmental Alliance. Erin Cini is a Senior Technical Analyst at the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal NSW. She has over 10 years of experience across policy, planning, regulation, design and construction of urban water infrastructure in NSW, Queensland, Victoria and ACT, and holds an honours degree in environmental engineering. Dale Chapman is a Partner with Norton Rose Fulbright Australia and a leading expert in water law and regulation. He leads the national water practice and has a clear understanding of Commonwealth and State Government water policies, overarching trends in the water sector, and the political, economic, social and legal environments. Dale is an advisor on water law and regulatory issues, including policy and law reform, for a broad range of water sector clients. Rod Williams is a Professional Engineer with Engineers Australia (NPR3), Queensland (RPEQ) and California USA. He has more than 20 years’ experience as a senior manager with major consulting firms, seven years as the Environmental Scientist and Manager Scientific Services with the Queensland Electricity Generating Board and five years as the Executive Officer of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority. His most recent appointment was Director, Water and Sewer, with Gosford City Council and the first Senior Officer of the Central Coast Water Corporation.
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Marco van Winden is a Civil Engineer with over 22 years’ experience in water. He recently completed the leadership and preparation of the Business Case for the $300M+ Cedar Grove Connector for LinkWater/ Seqwater and led the Water Grid Manager’s Disinfection Options Study. Marco routinely advises on infrastructure planning, risk management and reliability. He has been a committee member for four years and in this role supports the AWA Queensland Branch Strategy & Policy Subcommittee. Paul Yacobellis is a Research Economist for Balmoral Group – Australia. He is highly skilled in combining policy analysis with econometric and statistical modelling. In addition, Paul integrates geospatial techniques into policy impact assessments. His work provides clients with valuable economic insights regarding the policy outcomes of natural resource, water, environmental, and infrastructure planning decisions. Deanne McDonald is Managing Director at optamax. Deanne has more than 20 years’ experience working in the infrastructure industry. She has an in-depth understanding of the utilities and resources environments in Western Australia. Deanne has held senior roles in organisations including the Water Corporation, Transfield and AGL, where she has led the delivery of projects across the full range of asset life cycle elements, from development to construction, operation, maintenance and asset management. Professor Jennifer McKay has researched, taught and consulted on water resource management and law issues throughout Australia and in India and the USA, and is a part-time Commissioner of the SA Environment, Resources and Development Court. In 2008, she worked on the United Nations Expo 2008, and held a senior Fulbright at Berkeley. She has a BA Hons (Melbourne), LLB Adelaide, PhD (Melbourne) and Diploma in Human Rights Law from an American University in 2009.
AWA News We hope we will see some Committee Members return to the new Committee formed in February 2015. In particular, AWA would like to acknowledge the dedication and leadership of Jim Grayson in guiding the Committee. For more information on the Water Management Law and Policy Specialist Network please contact the network’s Staff Manager, Antonia Curcio, Policy Analyst, at Acurcio@awa.asn.au How Do I Join A Specialist Network? To join a Specialist Network you must be a current financial individual member of AWA. If you are in any doubt as to your membership status, please call 1300 361 426. You can join as many Specialist Networks as you wish. Simply update your preferences on your member profile on the AWA website.
9th IWA Symposium on Systems Analysis and Integrated Assessment
Anammox processes, resource recovery, uncertainties and risk analysis, and computational fluid dynamics. WATERMATEX 2015 offers an excellent forum for water system managers, practitioners, consultants and researchers to exchange knowledge. The synergistic interaction will be a catalyst for innovation and collaboration in systems analysis and integrated assessment. AWA is one of the organisers of the event, along with Advanced Water Management Centre, The University of Queensland and IWA. For more information pleasego to: www.watermatex.org/2015
CORRECTION In the paper titled ‘Optimisation Of Non-Ionic Polymer To Address Production Issues With High-Colour Low-Turbidity Raw Water’, which appeared in our December 2014 issue, the unit of UFRVs data (Unit Filter Run Volume) should be read as “ML per filter run” instead of m3/m2. There are five dual media filters with an area 26.42 m2 per filter. Apologies for any inconvenience.
WATERMATEX 2015 will take place 14–17 June 2015 at the Gold Coast, Australia. The symposium will focus on the application of a wide range of mathematical methods for solving water-related problems. Methodological approaches to be presented and discussed are thematically diverse, including not only the more conventional process and hydraulic modeling, but also sociotechnical and economic modelling.
Application areas are wide-ranging and encompass the total water cycle, including surface and groundwater, drinking water production and distribution, wastewater collection and treatment, and resource recovery. The Symposium will place great emphasis on the integration of all of these elements through the promotion and use of integrated modelling, ‘smart’ water systems, ‘big data’ management and life-cycle assessment. It will also address key challenges in modelling of the “Cities of the Future”.
Farewell and best wishes to our previous ACT/NSW Branch Manager, Peta Owsnett, who left AWA in October 2014. We have now welcomed Audrey Braun to her role as the new ACT/NSW State Manager. Audrey has worked across a range of sectors, including accounting, legal publishing, not-for-profit and public sector, in sales, account management, recruitment and, most recently, as NSW Relationship Manager for large corporate and professional services organisations. Audrey also recently worked at the Institute of Chartered Accountants, developing services for members, training and education, events management and developing a membership value proposition for NSW members. Please introduce yourself to her at our next branch event.
Keynote speakers include prominent figures Greg Allen and Dr Lina Belia, to inspire and ignite debate with fresh insights into addressing present and future water sector challenges. Greg Allen, Manager of Corporate Strategy, Sydney Water, manages the development and alignment of the corporation’s strategic plan including customer value, science, and research and development strategies. A key component of his current role is overseeing critical investment in Sydney Water’s modelling and analytics capability. Greg’s presentation will focus on how large utilities can reduce risks and costs while delivering better regulatory and customer outcomes through integrated and system-wide analysis and modelling. Dr Lina Belia is Principal at Primodal Inc., Canada. As Primodal’s Senior Engineer, Lina combines mathematical modelling skills with commissioning and design experience to solve complex optimisation problems for clients around the globe. As the Chair of a joint IWA/ WEF Task Group on Design and Operational Uncertainty (DOUT), she leads the drive to apply model uncertainty evaluation methods used in academic research to engineering practice, in particular for the explicit and size-appropriate design of wastewater treatment facilities. On Sunday 14 June, prior to the symposium, half-day and fullday workshops will be available at minimal cost, covering modelling topics such as integrated urban water management, sewer corrosion and odour management through modelling, main- and side-stream
AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY ACT and NSW welcome new State Manager
Debate on the Lake & Awards Night The ACT Debate on the Lake and Awards Night was held on 10 December 2014, fittingly on a boat on Lake Burley Griffin, rounding off a successful year of events for the ACT branch. The theme of the debate was: ‘Who should own the lake: ACT or the Federal Government?’ and was hotly contested by both sides of the debating teams. The following awards were presented: • Infrastructure Project Award: Gerard Brierley, AAT Alliance • Research Innovation Award: eWater Co-operative • Young Water Professional of the Year: Timothy Crockford, GHD Student Award Winners 2014 Undergraduate Water Prize: Declan Norrie ANU Postgraduate Water Prize: Neal Hughes ANU Postgraduate Water Prize: Noel Chan – Highly Commended. Thank you to ACTEW who sponsored the Student Awards.
FEBRUARY 2015 water
awa News NEW SOUTH WALES
This year’s NQ Regional Conference will explore what the industry is doing – and you can be a part of it in July at Cairns. The theme of the conference is “Driving Efficiency in Water Service Delivery”.
Legends of Water Dinner The Legends of Water Dinner was held on Wednesday 27 November 2014. Will Strachan hosted a Parkinson-style interview session with three ‘legends’ of the water industry – Daniella McKenzie (NSW Water Solutions), Annalisa Contos (Atom Consulting) and Cheryl Marvell (Sydney Water Corporation). The audience was kept entertained by fascinating stories of their first years in the water sector, their passion for the industry and career highlights to date. Special thanks to Veolia for sponsoring the dinner. The NSW Branch Gala Dinner and Branch Awards will be held on Friday 20 March 2015, so mark the date in your diary. Please visit the AWA website for more information.
The organising committee is urging contributors to submit papers that depict their own individual experiences. Papers can range from high-tech solutions down to minimalist ideas. As long as it makes us stop and think about what are the alternatives, that’s all that matters. Abstract submissions close Wednesday 25 February 2015.
TASMANIA 2014 Young Water Professional of the Year “Gary Ingram Memorial Award” The 2014 Young Water Professional of the Year Presentation was held in conjunction with the Galah Dinner and Debate at Wrest Point on Thursday 27 November 2014.
North Queensland Regional Conference 2015 – Call for Papers
Named in honour of AWA Committee stalwart, the late Gary Ingram, the award was presented to Daniel Ford from TasWater. The judges awarded a Highly Commended Certificate to Luc Richard, also from TasWater.
Are you a practitioner from a water service provider or a supporting private sector industry? Perhaps you are experiencing a change in spending focus from new capital to maintaining existing assets? Is innovation also becoming increasingly relevant?
Daniel graduated from the University of Tasmania and is now working as a mechanical engineer at TasWater in the North West. Daniel is working towards his goal of achieving his CPEng at the same time he has commenced his diploma in Project Management.
These areas have become a common focus across North Queensland in the past few years.
Daniel was presented his award by Tim Gardner, Executive Chairman of Stornoway, the Award Partner.
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New Members AWA welcomes the following new members since the most recent issue of Water Journal.
NEW CORPORATE MEMBERS
Australian Capital Territory
Kott Gunning Lawyers Moerk Water Solutions Asia Pacific Pty Ltd Water West
Galumph Group Australia Pty Ltd
New South Wales Corporate Bronze Alteck Industries Pty Ltd Flotech Controls Pty Ltd Infrastructure Technologies (Aust) Pty Ltd STAR Water Solutions Pty Ltd
NEW INDIVIDUAL MEMBERS Australian Capital Territory I Zhang,
I Frischnecht, H Hawke, V Pickrell, S Lee,
New South Wales R Martin, N Hvass,
J Briggs, M Axton, H Pretorius, S Antczak, G Haustorfer, B Levey, G Nisbet, C Rochfort, F Palatucci, C Pierce, P Plowman, H Jia, G Dixon, R Naisby, B Schulz, C Peterson, C Evans, S Kermode, C O’Rourke, Y-C Wang, M Bassenden, A Wilson Northern Territory S Papworth, Queensland L Owens, D Arnold, M La Forest, C Waterhouse, M Menikdiwela, A Bailey, A Petersingham, R McIlwraith, J Morris, D Macfarlane, K Markwell, S Hu, L Kirkwood, C Baxendell, Z Floyde Smith, M Kench, J Ciccotelli, P Mistry, R Hawkins, N Matthews, RB Clemente, S-M Wolkenhauer
Corporate Silver Suntrix Commercial
Victoria Corporate Silver Topure Group Pty Ltd
Corporate Bronze Andritz Pty Ltd Daemco Pty Ltd Delta Energy Systems (Australia) Ifm efector pty ltd Kenelec Scientific Pty Ltd Metaval Consolidated Pty Ltd
South Australia G Fussell, J Rishworth, Y Monrolin, C Trenorden, NPEJ Astutik, T Kent, M Sonnleitner Tasmania MH Cheng, F Chen, D Ford, Victoria M Moran, D Smith, S Clarke, A Hodgkinson, A Davies, A Favero, D Bolt, A Mackley, S Jennings, A Santoro, A Kennedy, A McDavitt, G Elsum, A Garland, A Tin, G Ryan, J Hawkes, R Seyedena, S Bourke, O Harris, P Tang, M Graymore, J Monaghan, D Maple, S Cook, M Sanchez, S Rooney, J Learmonth, P Kitney, J Lambert, M Krelle Western Australia A Ferguson, A Sommacal, N Ball, M Davies, M Bresger, L Illingworth, R Seth, P O’Leary, J Strahan, O Richards, S Bayne,
NEW OVERSEAS MEMBERS Corporate Silver ADI Systems Asia Pacific (New Zealand)
NEW STUDENT MEMBERS South Australia T Nguyen
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
February Wed, 18 Feb 2015
WA Information Session: Achieving Climate Resilience, Water Corporation, Leederville, WA
Wed, 18 Feb 2015
NT Ensuring Safe Drinking Water Workshop, Darwin, NT
Fri, 20 Feb 2015
IWES Sydney 2015, Sydney, NSW
Fri, 20 Feb – Sat, 21 Feb 2015
VIC YWP Regional Conference, Warrnambool, VIC
Thu, 26 Feb 2015
Integration of Spatial Technologies in the Water Sector, Launceston, TAS
Thu, 26 Feb 2015
ACT Technical Seminar 1 – Insights from the CEWH, Canberra, ACT
March Wed, 04 Mar 2015
SA Technical Event: Sampson Flat Bushfires, Adelaide, SA
Thu, 05 Mar 2015
Vic Mentor Program, Southbank, Melbourne
Wed, 11 Mar 2015
SA Technical Session: Water Sensitive Cities, Adelaide, SA
Wed, 11 Mar 2015
QLD – CSIRO: What Technology Will The Water Industry Be Buying Tomorrow? Brisbane, QLD
Wed, 18 Mar – Thu, 19 Mar 2015
Water Innovation Forum 2015, Sydney, NSW
Thu, 19 Mar 2015
QLD YWP Networking Event, South Brisbane, QLD
Fri, 20 Mar 2015
NSW Heads of Water Awards Gala Dinner 2015, Sydney, NSW
Sat, 21 Mar 2015
WA YWP Tour: Josh’s House, Perth, WA
Tue, 24 Mar 2015
Derwent Estuary Program 2014 Updates, Hobart, TAS
Tue, 24 Mar 2015
Victorian Water Futures Forum, Melbourne, VIC
Wed, 25 Mar 2015
SA YWP Technical Tour – Mystery Brewery, Adelaide, SA
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AUSTRALIAN WATER DELEGATION TO CALIFORNIA: DIALOGUE ON DROUGHT SOLUTIONS
Proposition 1: The Water Quality, Supply and Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2014 is a $7.545 billion general obligation bond measure approved by Californian voters in a November 2014 ballot.
By Paul Smith, Export & Market Access Manager, AWA
• $900 million for groundwater sustainability;
With California facing one of the most severe droughts on record, in January 2015 the state’s Governor, Jerry Brown, declared a drought state of emergency and directed state officials to take all necessary actions to prepare for water shortages.
The Bond includes: • $2.7 billion for water storage; • $1.495 billion for watershed protection and restoration projects; • $810 million for regional water reliability; • $725 million for water recycling; • $520 million for clean drinking water; • $395 million for flood management.
Rainfall in some of the most populous parts of the state has been all but non-existent; since July 1 2014, San Francisco has experienced about 35 per cent of its normal quota of rainfall, while Los Angeles has received less than 10 per cent of the average over the same period. Snowpack in the Sierra Nevada basin – the water bank for much of California – stands at less than half of the average. By all accounts, California is in the grip of a truly historic drought that will cost the state and the country billions of dollars.
Remember when the National Water Initiative was signed in 2004, or even when the National Competition Policy was agreed in 1994? The challenges, priorities and funding programs between Australia in 2004 and California in 2015 sound eerily similar. The difference is that Australia is already on the reform journey and achievements to date have been impressive.
In major cities such as LA, unprecedented capital investments are being launched, with US$20 billion of works in the pipeline. There is great uncertainty among California’s water professionals as to whether traditional snow, rainfall and runoff patterns will return, and what are the most efficient and effective reform options to consider.
Reform in Australia’s water sector has led to an increase in productivity of more than 50 per cent and water use efficiency that is among the best in the industrialised world. Water supplies have been diversified and desalination, recycled water, stormwater, groundwater, rainwater and water conservation programs are all part of the supply/demand mix.
Does all of this ring a bell?
The Australian agricultural sector has benefited from the development of open markets for water trading and the implementation of modern irrigation systems, helping farmers to consistently deliver high-quality produce across the globe at competitive prices. The mining sector is a world leader in the reuse of water, mine water use efficiency and in the securing of water supplies in remote, difficult-to-serve areas. Australia’s reform journey then, and the services and products that enabled it, constitutes a much sought after export commodity.
A parched California in January 2015. As the drought worsens in California, a major water conservation program with the slogan ‘Every Drop Counts’ is being ramped up in order to conserve the precious supplies left. Lady Gaga and Conan O’Brien are fronting the campaign and members of the public are pulling their weight – a target of a 30 per cent reduction has been set and punitive sanctions apply for non-compliance. All supply security options are on the radar – dams, desalination, indirect and direct potable re-use, managed aquifer recharge, stormwater – their merits being debated by politicians, professionals and the public. The irrigation sector in California, worth US$39 billion per annum in agricultural output to the US economy, is confronting a future of significant reductions in water availability, in addition to serious challenges in addressing over-allocation and return of surface and groundwater systems to sustainable levels of extraction. Water accounting, monitoring and compliance are limited, creating barriers to addressing over-allocation and the development of open water markets – a much-desired outcome in California. Governor Brown has taken leadership of the situation and enacted new legislation and funding accordingly.
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In response to an invitation from Governor Brown, AWA coordinated a delegation of Australian water professionals and companies to tour California in December 2014 to discuss lessons and innovative solutions for water reform. The delegation, co-led by AWA President Graham Dooley and the Hon Senator Birmingham, and supported by NSW Trade and Investment and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, departed on 1 December 2014 and included the following companies: • NICTA (www.nicta.com.au) • Frontier Economics Pty Ltd (www.frontier-economics.com.au ) • University of Technology Sydney/Institute for Sustainable Futures (www.isf.uts.edu.au) • SaltFree Desalination (www.saltfree.com.au) • GHD (www.ghd.com/australia) • Flovac (flovac.com) • Aerofloat (www.aerofloat.com.au) • STAR Water Solutions (www.starwater.com.au) • Hydrosmart (www.hydrosmart.com.au) • AWMA Water Control Solutions (www.awmawatercontrol.com.au) • NSW Trade and Investment
The delegates showcased their products and services to the Californian water market at conferences and trade exhibitions, met with government agencies and water experts during technical tours, dinner and breakfast functions and participated in business-tobusiness matching. Following is a brief rundown of the itinerary. San Diego (2–6 December 2014) The tour commenced at the Association of California Water Agencies 2014 Fall Conference & Exhibition in San Diego. Professor Stuart White from ISF opened the conference to a packed venue with his keynote address. Business meetings were held during the day at the AWA booth and at networking dinners and breakfasts. Delegates were taken on a guided tour of the Olivenhain Dam and Reservoir and the Lake Hodges Hydroelectric Facility by the San Diego Public Water Supply. The City of San Diego then provided a tour of its indirect potable re-use scheme and gave valuable insights into business opportunities for Australian companies. Los Angeles (6–8 December) The delegation then travelled to LA, where it was joined by the Hon. Senator Birmingham for breakfast and discussions on trade opportunities. The Senator accompanied the tour of the Orange County Indirect Potable Reuse scheme and heard about the treatment barriers and risk management systems in place to treat wastewater to drinking water standards. Business meetings were held with the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California and the City of Los Angeles. Sacramento (8–10 December) The final leg of the mission saw the delegates travel to Sacramento, the location of the ‘G’Day USA – Australia Dialogue on Drought Solutions’ event. High-level policy discussions were held between the Australian contingent and Governor Brown’s office before Australian delegates presented their reform experiences to a full auditorium. Tours and business meetings were held with the State Water Resources Control Board, the California Department for Water, The California EPA, the California Public Utilities Commission, the
Delegates sampling recycled water from the Orange County GWR scheme. City of Sacramento and the Sacramento Suburban Water District. Australian knowledge, technologies and experience were much sought after during the mission, with delegates making a number of promising business leads. The contribution Australia can offer California was particularly evident in the areas of: • Reforms to legislation, regulation and policy; • Implementing an entitlement, allocations and trading scheme, particularly: - Balancing between environmental and consumptive use - Water entitlements in various classes - Allocations based on water availability - Trading of entitlements and allocations; • Drought response at the macro (state and bulk) level: - Bulk water supply improvement and supply diversification - Metering of all irrigation water - Allocation between agriculture and cities - State-wide water conservation measures - Stormwater and Water-Sensitive Urban Design
GHD SHARES WATER KNOW-HOW IN THE AUSTRALIAN WATER DELEGATION TO CALIFORNIA GHD, one of the world’s leading engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services companies, was proud to be a part of the Australian Delegation to California on Drought Solutions, and welcomed the opportunity to share water know-how and strengthen connections with new and existing clients. Chris Hertle, Australian Market Leader – Water, says, “GHD’s participation reflects our position as a leader in the global water market and our extensive experience in providing sustainable solutions on both sides of the Pacific.” Chris took part in the California-Australia Dialogue on Drought Solutions in Sacramento, alongside other water industry leaders. Mark Donovan, Senior Process Engineer in GHD’s Irvine office, took part in delegation meetings with the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California and the City of Los Angeles. Chris says, “GHD has served our water sector clients in California for more than 65 years, with a particular focus on water resources, supply, reuse, integrated water management, water efficiency, desalination and drought management. During the Millennium Drought in Australia, GHD played a key role in supporting our clients in delivering critical infrastructure to secure water supplies. As California faces the challenge of one of the most severe droughts on record, we are delighted to offer clients a unique mix of local knowledge and global experience in drought mitigation strategies.” GHD is a global professional services companies operating in the markets of water, energy and resources, environment, property and buildings, and transportation. Privately owned, it delivers engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services to public and private sector clients across five continents and the Pacific region. GHD is committed to creating lasting community benefit, connecting the knowledge, skills and experience of its 8,500 people with innovative practices, technical capabilities and robust systems. For more information please go to: www.ghd.com
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AUSTRALIA AND VIETNAM SIGN A MOU FOR WATER By Paul Smith, Export & Market Access Manager, AWA
Meeting with the State Water Resources Control Board, the California Department for Water, The California EPA and the California Public Utilities Commission. - Large-scale reclamation in big cities - Desalination • Drought response at the micro (utility) level: - Water efficiency measures and water conservation campaigns - Pricing and price regulation - Leak reduction - Waste management - Asset management - Fit-for-use “right” water, purple pipes, greywater, etc - Urban stormwater, WSC, liveability. The extremes of climate that Australia has become accustomed to are now being felt in California. Australian knowledge, technologies and experience in providing innovative solutions in a volatile environment are much sought after. In light of this demand for Australia know-how, AWA will coordinate a delegation to the American Water Works Association Annual Conference & Exposition (ACE), ‘Uniting The World Of Water’, to be held in Anaheim, 7–11 June 2015. The mission will include: • A pre-event briefing and training on the USA market; • Full conference registration at the ACE conference and booth space at the Australian stand; • Customised technical tours and business meeting program with water professionals and senior officials; • Dinner and drinks with business and government; • Debriefing and follow-up session on return to Australia. To register your interest for the ACE conference please contact Paul Smith at email@example.com or call (02) 9467 8403. For more details go to: www.awwa.org/conferences-education/conferences/ annual-conference.aspx AWA, as part of its Export and Market Access Program, is rolling out a series of international events in 2015 to harness opportunities for Australian water companies to enter new markets. A 12-month calendar of events will be released in February 2015.
Delegates with the Hon. Senator Birmingham.
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Vietnam is currently going through a crucial period of rural development and urbanisation, and accordingly the Vietnam Government has placed strong emphasis on the sound management of water and wastewater systems. Vietnam’s shift from a centrally planned to a market economy has transformed the country. In recent years, the nation has risen to be a leading agricultural exporter and an attractive foreign investment destination. Enhanced public-private collaboration in Vietnam’s water sector is required more than ever. There is recognition that donor funding for water infrastructure will not be around forever, and significant pressure exists for increasing infrastructure needs and to reduce the widening of the infrastructure-funding gap. Australia has much to offer in this regard, and in fact has invested substantially since re-establishing diplomatic ties in the 1970s (2014/15 DFAT Budget for Vietnam: $141.3 million). A strong and prosperous Vietnam, with a population of over 90 million, will play an increasingly important role in the region. But challenges do exist in developing a sustainable water sector in Vietnam.
Navigating the way ahead Vietnam has made significant progress with increasing access to safe and secure water and wastewater management in the past 10 years – however, much remains to be done regarding consolidation of tariff reforms, development of public/private partnership arrangements, strategic planning, transparent and competent regulation, and water quality improvement. Further, the rise of sea levels and new extremes in drought and flood contribute additional challenges for the Vietnam water sector. In support of the Vietnam Government’s objectives for overcoming these challenges, AWA and the Vietnam Water Supply and Sewerage Association (VWSA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in Hanoi on 16 January 2015. The purpose of the MOU is to foster closer economic cooperation and assist the Vietnam water sector to navigate through new extremes in climate and the associated challenges in the provision of safe, secure, sustainable and efficient water management solutions. Strengthening Australia’s relationship with the Vietnamese water sector will provide many benefits to AWA members. Firstly, it will raise the profile of the Australian water sector’s skills and capabilities in Vietnam. Secondly, it will provide opportunities to individual and corporate members to gain valuable experience and new business opportunities in this fast-emerging market. Thirdly, it will raise the profile of Australian water expertise in the Australian Government’s drive for economic diplomacy across Asia. Finally, it will position the Vietnam/Australia branding as a leading exporter of water capabilities across the ASEAN region. AWA Chief Executive, Jonathan McKeown, said at the signing ceremony: “Australia’s water sector has much to offer Vietnam to enable sustainable urban growth and economic productivity. Our collaboration will support the institutional strengthening necessary for improved performance of water and wastewater services, and support government objectives for transitioning towards a more market-orientated water sector.”
AWA News The Associations, with the support of Austrade and Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, are now developing a program of pilot projects and twinning and exchange placements to support the Vietnam Government’s objectives in water. These are structured under the following three areas: Strengthening financial and investment structures This component will build capacity of provincial governments and utilities to plan, regulate and price water and wastewater services efficiently and effectively. Activities will include: • Strengthening data and knowledge management of the water and wastewater network in Vietnam, and supporting the formulation of a national system of utility performance benchmarking;
AWA Chief Executive, Jonathan McKeown, and Vice Chairman and General Secretary of VWSA, Tran Quang Hung, signing the MoU.
• Developing ‘Communities of Practice’ between Australian and Vietnamese water professionals to reduce leakages and achieve cost recovery pricing;
Vietnam: Water and Sanitation Snap Shot Population
90.5 million 82% of the rural population has access to hygienic water
Access to an improved water source
90% of schools equipped with water supply and sanitation facilities 92% of clinics equipped with water supply and sanitation facilities
Access to improved sanitation
60% of rural households have hygienic latrines.
Continuity of supply
21.6 hours per day on average in 68 cities (2009), often at low pressure
Average urban water use (litre/capita/day)
50 (2004 in small towns), 80−130 (2009 in towns and cities) 0.26 (2009)
Average urban water tariff (US$/m3)
Decree 117/2007 requires water supply tariffs to be set to full cost recovery and Decree 88/2007 requires sanitation to be charged through a surcharge of the water tariff at a minimum of 10% to achieve recovery of the operation and maintenance costs.
Share of household metering
9 6% in cities (2009)
Annual investment in water supply and sanitation
US$156 million per year (average 1998−2002), corresponding to less than $2 per capita per year
Sources of financing
ca. 60% external donors, ca. 25% internal public sources, ca. 15% by users
As of 2013 only 10% of municipal wastewater was treated
Institutions Utility management
At the provincial level
Responsibility for policy setting
Ministry of Construction (urban areas), Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (water supply in rural areas), Ministry of Health (sanitation in rural areas)
Number of urban service providers
68 Provincial Water Supply Companies and a number of Urban Environmental Companies in the largest cities for sewerage and wastewater treatment
Number of rural service providers
More than 4,433 (number from 2007 based on a survey in 39 of 58
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awa News • Strengthening regulatory frameworks that enable public/private partnerships and private investment in Vietnam’s water services Trade and business development This will focus on facilitating Australian-Vietnam trade in water and wastewater products and clarifying pre-conditions for joint ventures between Australian and Vietnamese water companies. It will include exchange placements and targeted project work in the following areas: • Compilation and exchange of relevant information between AWA and VWSA to support two-way trade – for example, emerging technology, institutional structures, policy directions, regulatory approval steps, capital works projects and donor funding opportunities. • A case study examining pre-conditions for joint ventures between Australian and Vietnamese water companies with an emphasis on including Australian water expertise in joint bids for Asian Development Bank and World Bank projects in Vietnam. improved service delivery and utility capacity This component will include personnel exchanges and twinning arrangements between AWA members and VWSA members to build capacity in: • Technology transfer: A series of case studies and pilot projects to validate the performance of innovation water treatment products in select rural and urban water utilities in Vietnam. This will include a cost-benefit assessment of the technology and guidance on operation and maintenance of the technology. • Implementation and regulation of risk management approaches contained within water quality safety plans for Vietnam utilities.
Australian Ambassador to Vietnam, Hugh Borrowman (left), AWA CEO Jonathan McKeown (centre) and Deputy Prime Minister of Vietnam, Hoang Trung Hai (right) at the networking dinner. The dinner was attended by representatives from the Vietnam Government, Austrade, Vietnam Water Supply and Sewerage Association (VWSA), Japan international Cooperation Agency (JiCA), German Federal Enterprise for international Cooperation (GiZ), AusAiD, Engineers without Borders, institute for Global Environmental Strategies, Department Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank. • Strengthening the framework for certification of water treatment operators.
WAnt to gEt involvEd? If you or your organisation are interested in getting involved in the AWA program in Vietnam please contact Paul Smith, AWA’s Export and Market Access Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org or +61 2 9467 8403.
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Briefing Seminar for Consultants 24 March 2015 The NSW Office of Water is holding a oneday seminar to brief consultants and other interested parties on the recently streamlined NSW Best-Practice Management (BPM) of Water Supply and Sewerage Framework. Venue:
Rydges Sydney Central, 28 Albion Street, Surry Hills NSW Time: 09:00 AM – 04:30 PM Seminar Fee: $390 Registration Form & Program: Available at www.water.nsw.gov.au Contact for more Information: Vince Barilla email@example.com (02) 9842 8516
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The joining of Clean TeQ Air and Aromatrix Australia, effective the 30th of October 2014, results in two of Australia’s most experienced air pollution control companies combining over 30 years of experience in biological, thermal, activated carbon, scrubbing and cyclone based particulate removal technologies. To obtain a brochure on the products and services now available to you, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org Clean TeQ Aromatrix Pty Ltd 296 Ferntree Gully Road, Notting Hill, Vic 3168, Australia p. +61 3 9797 6700 f. +61 3 9706 8344 e. email@example.com w. www.cleanteq.com
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FEBRUARY 2015 water
AWA’S WATER-ENERGYFOOD NEXUS FORUM Antonia Curcio reports on the recent AWA Water-Energy-Food Nexus In Practice Forums AWA hosted its Water-Energy-Food Nexus In Practice Forums in Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney on 25, 26 and 27 November 2014 respectively. Capturing the recent international policy momentum, the forums advocated for a more coherent approach to managing our water resources to develop solutions to the everincreasing demand on these resources across the energy, agricultural and urban water sectors. The forums were interactive and attracted participants from business, government, NGOs and academia with water, energy and food expertise.
Keynote speaker Dr Jamie Pittock at the Sydney Water-EnergyFood Nexus Forum. provided evidence of actual water and energy use at the utility/city scale, the household scale and the city-region scale. The aim was to understand water and energy connections in individual households, characterise “household types”, and understand city-district scale water-related energy use and greenhouse gas emissions to ultimately identify opportunities to reduce water-related energy. In one of the Research Group’s projects they define urban metabolism to give a complete picture of water use in cities. This data is critical to decision makers going forward. Michael Spencer from Australian Water Stewardship then outlined how water stewardship – which is defined as “The use of water that is socially equitable, environmentally sustainable and economically beneficial, achieved through a stakeholder-inclusive process that involves site and catchment-based actions” (AWS, 2011) – accounts for nexus considerations.
AWA National Manager, Communications and Policy, Amanda White opens the Sydney forum. The forum began with a keynote presentation from Dr Jamie Pittock, Senior Lecturer at the ANU and Director of International Programs for the UNESCO Chair in Water. Jamie’s presentation set the scene by exploring the growing global demands on resources resulting in a need for efficiency. This included a need to decouple resource consumption from growth. He discussed the existing governance arrangements of resources and how these could be improved to avoid decision-making that results in perverse outcomes, and optimise sustainable development as a whole in the future. He concluded his presentation by offering four solutions: information; technology; integrated markets; and governance. The presentation laid the groundwork for the practical solutions that were discussed by subsequent presenters. The sessions were split into three key themes: responsible governance of natural resources; collaborative policy and practice; and economic growth and the way forward.
RESPONSIBLE GOVERNANCE OF NATURAL RESOURCES Session One provided an introduction to the need for a nexus approach that reduced trade-offs and built synergies across sectors in order to reduce costs and increase benefits. The session began with a presentation from Dr Steven Kenway1, Research Group Leader, Water-Energy-Carbon from the University of Queensland, who presented his research on Quantifying Metabolism and WaterEnergy Links in Cities for Collaborative Management. The research 1
The session concluded with Professor Neil McIntyre from the Sustainable Minerals Institute, who outlined nexus issues for the mining sector and raised questions around the gaps in knowledge in the mining sector, such as what priority improvements in mine regional planning approaches and tools are needed.
Panel discussion with (from left) Michael Spencer from Water Stewardship Australia and Professor Neil McIntyre from the Sustainable Minerals Institute.
COLLABORATIVE POLICY AND PRACTICE Despite strong food, water, energy and environment linkages, practitioners and policymakers continue to approach developing programs and policies in the “silos” of their respective ministries or organisations. Mechanisms must be created to raise policymakers’ awareness of these issues and promote greater collaboration among ministries as well as communities, civil society and the private sector in policy design and implementation.
Dr Steven Kenway presented at the Melbourne and Brisbane forums. Dr Marguerite Renouf, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Chemical Engineering, presented the same research at the Sydney forum.
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Conference Report Julian Gray, CEO of Smart WaterMark, kicked off Session Two by discussing examples of how certification has enabled water efficiencies. He drew on a range of case studies including a program for efficiency labelling for glasswashers.
ECONOMIC GROWTH AND THE WAY FORWARD Even with moves towards ‘green growth’, BP estimates that global energy demand will increase by around 40 per cent over the next 20 years, with the overwhelming majority of this growth coming from emerging economies. However we choose to meet increased energy demand, there will be implications for food security and freshwater resources. Greg Appleby, Energy Specialist from Sydney Water, opened this session with a discussion of a water utility’s approach to the waterenergy nexus. He discussed the energy intensity of water supply and treatment and some of the barriers they face to the implementation of renewable energy.
Dr Darryl Low Choy, from the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities, discusses catchment scale landscape planning for watersensitive city regions in an age of climate change. Dr Darryl Low Choy from the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities then spoke on collaborative and integrated planning at the catchment scale for water-sensitive city regions, in which he described the necessity of a “joined-up” regional planning approach. In presenting his research he presented the fundamental challenge of how this approach could be delivered through statutory and non-statutory planning processes. 1
The second presenter, Doug McNicholl2 from the Australian Meat Processor Corporation, discussed the major sources of energy and water use in the industry and the research and innovation programs that have been implemented. The session concluded with a presentation from Ashley Trussler, Commercial Analysis Manager at Origin Energy, who outlined the main sources of water use for power generation then drew on case studies from the Eraring Power Station and Darling Downs Power Station to demonstrate how they have implemented water efficiency programs, such as wastewater reuse, air-cooled condensing and dry low-nox emission control. Download the full brochure at www.awa.asn.au/uploadedfiles/ AWA009_Nexus_Brochure_A4_DA1_20141103_FINAL_v5.pdf
oug McNicholl presented at the Sydney and Brisbane forums. Neil van Buren, Program Manager, Dairy Australia presented the same topic as Doug, of D practical nexus efficiencies in Melbourne but with a focus on the dairy industry.
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Volume 41 SEPTEMB no 6 ER 2014
AWA NATIONAL OPERATIONS CONFERENCE 2014
pressures on the environment and local infrastructure, including water and wastewater services. Bob spoke about the importance of tourism to the local economy and the need to balance industrial development to ensure that the region continues to be a major tourist destination for Australian and international visitors. Protection of the environment is central to this outcome.
Iain Fairbairn, Co-Chair of the Operations Specialist Network, filed this report on the recent National Operations Conference held in Far North Queensland.
We were honoured to welcome our first keynote speaker, Dr Glen Daigger of CH2M Hill in the US. Dr Daigger is also the President of the International Water Association, and his presentation focused on the core mission of all water industry professionals – to protect public health and the environment through the provision of safe drinking water and reliable wastewater treatment services.
The third AWA National Operations Conference was held in Cairns from 28–30 October 2014. The theme of the conference was ‘Affordability, Liveability, Sensitivity – Operations in the Twenty Teens’. Water professionals in operations are continually under pressure to reduce costs, but the focus of this conference was also on understanding the impact our operations have on the environment and the critical role that the water industry plays in protecting the environment for future generations. It was the current degraded state of the Great Barrier Reef that inspired the Operations Network Committee to host the 2014 Conference in Cairns. It is estimated that the Great Barrier Reef was formed around 500,000 years ago and that the structures that make up the reef today are between 6000 and 8000 years old. Coral reefs grow very slowly and a 2012 study showed that around half the coral cover on the reef has been lost since 1985 due to pollution, shipping and the crown-of-thorns starfish. It is clear that without swift and decisive action, the reef could be destroyed in our lifetime.
Workshop & Welcome Reception The event kicked off with a workshop on Risk Management and the Drinking Water Quality Guidelines, run by former AWA NSW Branch President Murray Thompson. Murray is a great asset to Australia’s water industry and it was fantastic for him to share his extensive knowledge with other water professionals. A special thanks to Cheryl Marvell (Founder, National Operations Network) and Richard Scott (Co-Chair, National Operations Network), who also provided their expertise. At the conclusion of the training session, a welcome reception was held at the magnificent Cairns Convention Centre, a great networking opportunity sponsored by Thales Australia. Drinks were required to cool down after an enjoyable day in the tropics and helped those with nimble fingers muster the courage to tackle the ‘Operators Challenge’ – brainchild of Richard Scott who devised the challenge in his Adelaide garage. With the help of his son, Richard perfected the apparatus that involved the assembly of flanges to secure a pipe and two elbows. A gold coin entrance fee was required for teams of two to participate and record a time, with all money being donated to WaterAid. Thank you to Konnect for sponsoring the challenge.
Day One The conference was opened by the Mayor of Cairns, Mr Bob Manning OAM. Bob spoke about his time growing up in Far North Queensland and reminded us how special this part of the country is. He also spoke about the increasing levels of development in the region, predominantly led by the mining and tourism sectors. While these industries bring prosperity to the region, they also place enormous
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Glen reminded us of the important role that engineers and operators play, and the responsibility that we have to prepare for the challenges that lie ahead; whether that be water security, economic pressures or climate change. He also spoke of the great opportunities on the horizon, with changes in technology and process options that are likely to revolutionise the water industry over the next 20 to 50 years. As water professionals, we embrace these changes and provide strong leadership to ensure that sound investments are made in water infrastructure. Following Glen was a fantastic presentation from our second keynote speaker, Professor Stuart Bunn, Director of the Australian River Institute at Griffith University in Brisbane. Stuart shared some of his extensive knowledge on the ecology of rivers and wetland systems, and how the water industry has changed the natural landscape through the clearing of riparian vegetation and the channelising of rivers with the intention of addressing flooding problems in some catchment areas.
Keynote speaker, Professor Stuart Bunn.
Fortunately, through the work undertaken by Stuart and his team, engineering decisions of the past are gradually being overturned through the introduction of water-sensitive urban design and the naturalisation of rivers where flows are attenuated and nutrient assimilation is promoted. Stuart highlighted some of the dramatic gains that were achieved in the Brisbane area by river modelling and management that has reduced the impact of nutrients from sewage treatment plant discharges and improved water quality in Moreton Bay. After these two inspiring keynote presentations, the rest of Day One was filled with fascinating talks on innovative ways to improve operational efficiencies, techniques to monitor and reduce the impacts of water/wastewater operations and important lessons from events where operations didn’t quite go as planned. Dinner that night was kindly sponsored by Aurecon and was held outside the convention centre to take advantage of the tropical weather and cooling sea breezes. The local entertainment was fantastic and the night offered great networking opportunities. The Operators Challenge also provided great entertainment, with some seriously fast times being recorded towards the end of the evening when competitors were loosened up and the judging panel were also becoming more relaxed with quality control surrounding the assembly of the pipework.
Conference Report Day Two Our keynote speaker on Day Two was Captain Timothy Rowe of the Australian Army. Captain Rowe spoke of his time leading combat engineering regiments in combat situations and in humanitarian and disaster relief operations within Australia and overseas. He spoke of the important role that military engineers play in the establishment of battlegrounds, and in particular the provision of safe drinking water to the troops on the ground.
Keynote speaker, Captain Timothy Rowe.
Captain Rowe spoke of the unique challenges faced by his teams in accessing and purifying water, particularly in natural disaster zones or in areas of conflict, where traditional water supplies were unavailable or polluted. The presentation certainly put some of our urban water challenges into perspective and allowed me to reflect on the fantastic quality of water and wastewater services in this country. We really are truly fortunate to live in Australia. The high standard of presentations continued on Day Two covering topics such as membrane filtration, instrumentation and control techniques, energy efficiency and drinking water supply management. At the conclusion of the day, the Operators Challenge had a flurry of last-minute entrants who had obviously put some thought into efficient strategies in the assembly of the pipework. Times smashed through the two-minute barrier and several teams recorded sub 1:50 times. In the end, Cheryl Marvell and Murray Thompson were declared the winners with a time of 1:42. Their strategy, communications and teamwork were clearly more effective than the other entrants’, making them the inaugural winners of this challenge. The standard of the presentations at the conference was outstanding, so the organising committee decided to award prizes to three winners:
From left: Tony O’Neill (CH2M Hill), Iain Fairbairn (Sydney Water), Sally Rewell (Sydney Water), Cheryl Marvell (Sydney Water), Murray Thompson (MTWS) and Richard Scott (SA Water). • Best Paper/Presentation – Jon Theobald, South East Water, Victoria. • Runner-up – Jennifer Dreyfus, Allwater, South Australia. • Highly Commended – Scott McPhee, Water Corporation, Western Australia. CH2M Hill, who have been an enduring supporter of the Operations Network and our conferences, generously sponsored the awards.
Technical Tours The conference wrapped up with some highly educational technical tours. One group took the opportunity to visit the Northern Wastewater Treatment Plant, providing an overview of wastewater and recycled water treatment and some of the particular challenges operators face in the tropical regions of Australia. A second group visited Mossman Gorge; they were escorted by local indigenous people who spoke about their unique connection to the land and the rainforest, and the importance that water plays in the rainforests and coastal areas of Far North Queensland.
Acknowledgements We would like to thank our sponsors: IBM, Aurecon, CH2M Hill and Konnect. We could not hold an event such as this without your support and it was gratefully received – we hope we will see you return again next time. AWA’s Operations Specialist Network Committee is made up of people who volunteer their time and effort to ensure the area of operations is profiled on the national water industry stage. The committee is comprised of Richard Scott (Co-Chair, SA Water), Cheryl Marvell (Founder, Sydney Water), Tony O’Neill (CH2M Hill), Matthew Bowman (Water Corporation), Sally Rewell (Sydney Water), Steven Little (Water Corporation) and Peter Vogelaar (Spirac). The success of the conference is due to the hard work of the committee members and the staff at AWA. In particular, I would like to thank current and former AWA staff Amy English, Kirsty Blades, Michael Seller, Laura Evanson and Kym Wuyts for organising this event and helping the committee over the last two years. I would also like to thank Murray Thompson for his support and wisdom.
Operators Challenge Winners, Cheryl Marvell and Murray Thompson.
It’s now time to begin preparations for the 2016 conference. We have had a fantastic run of conferences in Sydney (2010), Darwin (2012) and now in Cairns. Make sure you keep an eye out for the next one in 2016!
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WHAT’S GREEN, AND SMELLS WORSE THAN A FROG IN A BLENDER? Angela Gackle, Gayle Newcombe, Lee Bowling and Philip Orr wrote this report on the 4th National Cyanobacteria Workshop. There’s nothing like a crisis to get people motivated! Following extensive algal blooms in the Murray-Darling Basin in 2009, a number of cyanobacteria stalwarts, led by Lee Bowling of the NSW Office of Water, suggested that it would be useful to meet regularly to stay abreast of who’s doing what in the blue-green algae (BGA) space. The decision was made to convene the first National Cyanobacteria Workshop (NCW) with the specific aims of ensuring efficient knowledge exchange and, if needed, to mentor younger staff to ensure Australia remains at the forefront of cyanobacterial research and management. Water Research Australia (WaterRA) has made an ongoing commitment to support these workshops, with a modest funding arrangement plus assistance with logistics and organisation such as compiling and printing of abstract booklets, and maintaining webpages for each event. WaterRA also ensures that the workshop knowledge is shared by publishing on its website for public viewing relevant content, including presentations, from the event.
BACKGROUND ON THE NATIONAL CYANOBACTERIA WORKSHOPS The first National Cyanobacteria Workshop was hosted by the NSW Office of Water in Parramatta in 2009, while the second was held in Melbourne the following year and hosted by the Victorian Department of Sustainability and Environment and Department of Health. These first meetings included presentations from many key organisations on their issues and current challenges, and what researchers across Australia were up to. They were low-key and relied on word of mouth to spread the invitation to participate. Importantly the environment was relaxed, informal and noncommercial. Sometimes the research presented was “hot off the press”, so the workshops provided a safe and encouraging forum in which to discuss projects, technologies, ideas and questions of common or specific interest.
Michele Burford (Griffith University), Tim Malthus and Rod Oliver (CSIRO) enjoying a refreshment break during the fourth National Cyanobacteria Workshop (NCW).
THIS YEAR’S WORKSHOP Cyanobacteria are, of course, a concern for people in many segments of the water industry, as well as for the environment. This year’s participants comprised staff and researchers of state water and health departments, water utilities, universities, NGOs, CSIRO and analytical laboratories. The presentations reflected the diverse interests in cyanobacterial research of these participants, ranging from management strategies, control measures, taxonomy, ecology, potential impacts of climate change, genetics and molecular techniques for monitoring, problems in drinking water source waters and in wastewater treatment ponds, impacts of toxins on embryonic stem cells, remote sensing, and the operation of water treatment plants to optimise cyanobacterial cell and toxin removal. The workshop began with the Chair of the organising committee, Dr Gayle Newcombe, describing her efforts to identify and assess the benefits to the water industry of over 30 years of cyanobacteria research. The program of the workshop was aligned with Gayle’s thematic model of the research, which allocates research into three main “Research Themes” of Understanding, Measuring and Controlling. The presentations at the workshop fell nicely into the three themes, with the Understanding theme predominating in terms of numbers.
At the second meeting the consensus was that holding the workshop annually was too frequent, and every second year would work better in terms of time commitment and keeping pace with the progress of research projects. The third workshop was at CSIRO Black Mountain in Canberra (2012) and the fourth was recently held at the University of Adelaide (2014). Around 100 people attended each NCW event. This was a loosely imposed limit, for ease of management, and seems to be a sustainable number. The participants are diverse and presentations are widely relevant. A comment was made at the 2014 workshop that the trend is generally towards greater specialisation and less of a “helicopter view” of research. The NCW allows us to address this, by creating a think-tank to take advantage of the considerable brainpower and experience in the room.
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Thematic model of cyanobacteria research impact, from Cyanobacteria Impact Study, Gayle Newcombe (for WaterRA) 2013. Suzie Wood of the Cawthron Institute in New Zealand and Rod Oliver from CSIRO gave keynote talks. Suzie has attended most of the NCWs to date, and it’s great to have her input to the topic.
Workshop Report As a side note, the workshop was held in the Sprigg Room in the Mawson Building on the University of Adelaide Campus. For those who may not know, Reg Sprigg was a geologist and conservationist, and is probably best known for discovering Pre-Cambrian fossils at Ediacara Hills in South Australia, co-founding Santos and establishing the Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary in the Flinders Ranges.
He was a seriously driven man who built his own research vessel and, with a couple of others, carried out what was (and is to this day) the most extensive benthic survey of Gulf St Vincent (these days he’d never get OHS approval – and probably just as well).
The fourth NCW was held in the Sprigg Room at the University of Adelaide. A delegation of six from Shanghai (including the Deputy General Manager, Deputy Manager of Construction and Operation, Deputy Manager of Sewage from the Shanghai National Engineering Research Center of Urban Water Resources and Engineer from Shanghai Municipal Sewage) took part in the NCW this year. Mr Lu Ning, Deputy Manager R&D, gave a presentation on the problems and challenges that cyanobacteria pose in Qingcaosha Reservoir in Shanghai. Four students gave presentations, and it was reassuring to see the generally high level of collaboration and engagement between representatives from utilities, universities, local and state government agencies. Some “take-home” messages from the presentations were: • The understanding of toxin production, existence of unknown toxins and unequivocal species identification is far from complete; • On-line/in situ/rapid/remote methods for measuring cyanobacteria and metabolites are still high on the priority agenda of regulators and the water industry; • More “environmentally friendly” and effective processes for controlling cyanobacteria in source water and in the treatment plant are required to minimise costs and risk to the environment; • Cyanobacteria are fascinating and complex organisms and there is still much for us to learn. Plenty of time for discussion was built into the Program, and on day three groups got together to look more closely at four broad interest areas – genetics, modelling, management of cyanobacteria in drinking and wastewater treatment, and management and ecology of source water. Outputs from these groups are available from the Cyanobacteria Workshop pages on the WaterRA website, along with many of the presentations given on the day.
WHY THIS RESEARCH IS IMPORTANT TO AUSTRALIAN UTILITIES During one of the many spin-off discussions, the issue of the recent Microcystin detection in Toledo Ohio WTP was raised as an example of less than optimal management of a BGA incident. We’d like to think that such a response would not occur here, given the amount of expertise and engagement within industry, but you just never know. A number of speakers at the workshop gave examples of unusual or extraordinary circumstances surrounding blooms in Australia and further afield. I guess the lesson here is that we should not be complacent, particularly since it has now been shown that: 1) climate change is likely to result in changes in occurrence and detection of species; and 2) there is at least one unknown cyanobacteria toxin in Australia that has not been characterised.
But he was passionate about the environment, and was concerned about threats of climate change in the 50s. In one of his many letters to Sir Mark Oliphant, Reg wrote: “I see by an article in the latest journal that the CO2 greenhouse effect is not appearing so rapid – not until 2030 do they expect serious melting of the ice caps. Surely now is the time to take more drastic action before it’s too late. We seem determined to mortgage the future, making it easier for us right now – enjoy now, pay later.” Prescient words!
FIFTH NATIONAL CYANOBACTERIA WORKSHOP Michele Burford from Griffith University and Philip Orr – who recently retired from Seqwater and is now an Adjunct Senior Research Fellow at Griffith and Monash Universities – have volunteered to host the next NCW in Queensland in 2016. While it is early days yet, planning has already begun and over the next few weeks and months they will begin putting in place the framework for the next meeting including deciding on dates and venue. This is not an easy task given important international meetings that will take place that year including the 10th International Conference on Toxic Cyanobacteria in China. Tentative dates have been penciled in for the week of the mid-semester break from 26–30 September 2016. Actual dates will be advised as soon as they are finalised. One of the loud and clear messages from the Cyanobacteria Workshop is that we need to frame all research in a multi-faceted way – not just “research because it is useful and important”, but because it is vital to the water industry to stay ahead of the challenges we are already facing – from changes in species distribution, seasonality and severity, to more complex chemical, climatic and other operating environments.
THE AUTHORS Angela Gackle (email: Angela.Gackle@ waterra.com.au) is Manager, Marketing and Communications with Water Research Australia Limited (WaterRA) in South Australia. Dr Gayle Newcombe (email: Gayle. Newcombe@sawater.com.au) is Manager, Customer Value and Water Quality Research at SA Water.. Dr Lee Bowling (email: email@example.com. gov.au) is Principal Limnologist/State Algal Coordinator, Office of Water, NSW Department of Primary Industries. Philip Orr (email: firstname.lastname@example.org) is Adjunct Senior Research Fellow at Griffith and Monash Universities.
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Company Proﬁle: Saint-Gobain
N I A B O G T N I SA N A E P EURO
S G N I R Z B O O T Y G O L O AM N P s a H m C o o E b T pipes n o r t i e l i t c u for d alian marke s r Application es burst onto the Aust technologi
protection is effective in even very aggressive soils to the extent that LPS is not required in soils with resistivities down to 500Ωcm.
ntil recently, technologies driving the success of ductile iron water industry pipeline systems in Europe were literally a world away. Australia’s isolation, currency exchange and ﬂuctuations, and shipping lead times ex-Europe meant that ductile technologies remained relatively unknown in the Australian market. Now, with the arrival of Saint-Gobain PAM, European features and benefits can be realised in product applications in the Australian water industry.
HOW IT ALL BEGAN PAM (whose products originated in the village of Pont-a-Mousson in France – hence the acronym) is part of Saint-Gobain, a French multi-national company with a history in industrial manufacturing stretching back 350 years. Some of Saint-Gobain’s commonly recognised products include ﬂat plate glass, auto glass, abrasives and building products such as gypsum. With its strong emphasis on research and development, SaintGobain is continuously developing new products (in fact, 20 per cent of this market leader’s product portfolio did not exist five years ago).
For more aggressive soils, such as marine environments, where resistivities are well below 500Ω, the solution is a coextruded envelope of polyethylene or polyurethane coating (PUX). No longer are customers reliant on the pipe installer following correct practices applying LPS for corrosion protection – it comes inbuilt with the pipe with production control of protection quality. Two key new products featuring ZINALIUM technology are HYDROCLASS pipes, for potable and reuse water applications, and INTEGRAL pipes for sewage applications. Both these pipes satisfy AS/NZS 2280: 2014 and have been positively appraised by the Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA) in their report PA 14/18. Linings are another development that have allowed ductile iron pipeline systems to be deployed in non-traditional applications, such as gravity sewage where abrasion and low pH can make service conditions extremely aggressive. In Europe and now in Australia, the most commonly used lining is High Alumina Cement (HAC) with a brown/red epoxy or acrylic pore sealer. HAC chemical resistance is pH 4 to 12, covering most septic fermentation and occasional acid attacks. Solutions also exist for pH1 to pH14.
PAM itself is “only” 155 years old, but has a rich heritage of cast and ductile iron foundry products. In many respects PAM has led the way in the innovation of ductile iron, from its development in 1948 to its adoption in production in 1970. Today the company’s products lead the world in the areas of corrosion protection, lining materials and joint development, and have been used in 120 countries around the globe.
DEVELOPING TECHNOLOGIES External corrosion protection of ductile iron pipe is a particular area where Saint-Gobain PAM (SGP) products have led the world. Rather than relying on Loose Polyethylene Sleeving (LPS), which has several disadvantages, the PAM system features factory-applied protection incorporating a zinc or zinc alloy layer and synthetic top coat. ZINALIUM technology is the latest development in the Australian ductile iron armoury of protection, comprising 400g/m2 of zinc 85%/ aluminium 15% alloy and a synthetic pore sealing top-coat. The zinc/ aluminium alloy is applied via a wire-fed metal spray gun before the top-coat of synthetic pore sealing is applied. This technology controls the release of zinc in effecting galvanic protection and initiates the formation of an impermeable barrier of insoluble zinc salts over coating damage. The result is that
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Restrained yet ﬂexible joints make strings of ductile pipe a reality in horizontal directional drilling.
Spotlight on St Gobain
Where specialist sewerage fittings are required, ISO/EN598 outside diameter components are available, including saddle branches, swivel branches, angle branches, joints, connection sleeves, manhole connections, access hatches, cleaning tees, inspection covers, cleaning chambers and manholes. Pipe-joining technology is another area of significant development for SGP. Today’s ductile iron joints are a far cry from the bolted gland joint of 1860. A case in point is the 2015 UNIVERSAL Ve joint. This joint incorporates a sealing chamber, a locking chamber, a locking segment and a spigot with an anchoring weld bead. These components are integrated in the assembled joint to effect tensile anchorage and a restrained joint. The sealing chamber accommodates the EPDM elastomeric sealing ring, while the locking chamber accommodates the circular locking segment, which bears against the circumferential weld bead as the spigot is pushed out of the joint. The locking segment wedges against the locking chamber and the weld bead catches on the locking segment, preventing the spigot from being dislodged. This joint has the advantage of mechanical restraint while maintaining a high pressure where required. By anchoring the joints using the UNIVERSAL joint, a restrained joint pipeline can be established and all the associated benefits obtained, such as elimination of anchor blocks, slip-lining, horizontal directional drilling (HDD) and pipe cracking. The latter applications have recently been made more practicable, with coating systems that not only protect the pipe from aggressive environments, but that are also robust enough to withstand the abrasion associated with the drawthrough. Coatings such as coextruded polyethylene, solventless 2-pack polyurethane and fibre cement-coated pipes are all systems suited to HDD as well as pipe bursting and pulling into a sleeve. Note that these techniques reduce environmental damage, reduce accidents, reduce economic risk, reduce pollution and do not interfere with traffic or interrupt services. Pipeline designers and practitioners can expect more new ductile iron technologies and products from Saint-Gobain PAM as 2015 unfolds and the market continues to embrace innovation in water infrastructure systems.
Easily handled, easily transported, DN750 PN35 HYDROCLASS Zinalium pipes.
HDD (TRENCHLESS) CASE STUDY: STP PROJECT OF SHANXI YAOGUANG COAL POWER COMPANY, PINGYAO COUNTY, SHANXI PROVINCE, CHINA In 2013, Saint-Gobain PAM China provided materials for a pipeline for the sewage treatment plant (STP) project of the Shanxi Yaoguang Coal Power Company. The pipeline was built to transport the water after wastewater treatment from the STP to the power plant for industrial use. The geographical environment of this project was complex: • The level drop between the STP and the power plant was around 200m; and • The location of the project had a varied topography. This meant the operation pressure of the pipeline was high. Saint-Gobain PAM China provided pipe and anchored gasket for the project. As Pingyao County is a tourist city, excavation was not allowed in certain areas, so Saint-Gobain PAM China decided to apply trenchless technology to three sections of the total pipeline. The first section of the pipeline was 78m long, the second was 102m and the third was 564m. The pipeline needed to go through the lake of a park. 564 meters – the length of the third section in Pingyao project – set a record for the longest pipeline in a trenchless project in the domestic market. The project earned high praise and laid a good foundation for Saint-Gobain PAM’s development in trenchless projects. For more information please contact Hilton Terry, Marketing Manager, 0419 005 570. See www.saint-gobain-pam.co.uk. Authorised distributors Australia and New Zealand: PWS Water Systems Pty Ltd.
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Growing urban populations, particularly in capital cities, mean increased demand on water resources that will require different thinking about how the infrastructure to support sustainable liveability is created, operated and funded.
AUSTRALIA’S WATER INFRASTRUCTURE: THE CASE FOR CHANGE Good infrastructure is critical to our productivity, economic growth, standard of living and environmental protection. In this article Lucia Cade argues the case for fundamental reforms in how we plan, fund and deliver for the future.
ustralia has been well served by its water industry for over 100 years. We enjoy a relatively affordable, highquality and reliable water supply and an environment protected from wastewater pretty consistently across the nation. This is no mean feat for a land with one of the most variable climates in the world, where there can be a 2,000-fold difference in flows between a wet year and a dry year. As we face the next population boom, the spectre of climate change is exacerbating the natural variability of our climate. The community has ever-higher service and personal choice expectations. Governments have increasing burdens on the public purse. This continuously toughening environment means we need to be constantly focused on delivering urban infrastructure and services more efficiently and more effectively.
The focus needs to be on both how the infrastructure itself is conceived and planned, and how it will be procured, funded and operated. The last few years in Australia have seen a high level of interest in, and debate about, infrastructure at a government, investor and industry level. The conversation has focused largely on how to fund more infrastructure to support a productive and competitive economy, and to deliver a desired standard of living while protecting the natural environment, at the same time as governments have high levels of debt and many competing priorities. The role of the private sector in financing, owning and operating infrastructure is being explored at an unprecedented level. While water infrastructure has been in the background of this debate, with most attention on areas such as roads, ports, rail, electricity and telecommunications, there is significant value in examining how the private sector could effectively participate to a greater extent in water infrastructure. There is already private sector participation in the supply of services to the industry, in the operations of some assets, and a few examples of private finance through private schemes, asset sales and PPPs. It is now time to plan for the future and to develop the right governance, regulation, incentives and protections to ensure Australia continues to be well served by reliable, responsive high-quality water services at a price the community can afford – and to rethink the style of infrastructure and water services that will best meet our needs in the next 50 years. 1 2
Australia’s urban water growth challenge Australia is highly urbanised, with over 80 per cent of the population of 23 million people living in urban areas and two-thirds in capital cities alone. Based on medium growth projections from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, urban populations are projected to double in the next 50 years, with capital cities increasing from the current 15 million to 29 million people. The infrastructure and water resources required to accommodate this growing population will increase commensurately. In addition, urban population growth usually comes with higher expectations of standards of living and provision of services. The supply of naturally available water in our capital cities and other urban areas is already stretched. Climate-variable supplies have been augmented with desalination plants in most coastal capital cities to minimise future restrictions in times of drought. The 2011 Productivity Commission inquiry into urban water in Australia concluded that the scale and timing of some of these investments were not efficient. It also noted that not all solutions were contemplated due to policy bans in some jurisdictions and this potentially led to higher infrastructure costs. The inquiry also attempted to model the economic impact of restrictions, while acknowledging the difficulty in such calculations. Figures ranged from $209 million per annum for Stage 4 restrictions in Canberra, $275 million per annum due to restrictions in Sydney, and between $420 million and $1.5 billion over 10 years for Stage 3a restrictions in Melbourne2. The Commission’s conclusion regarding water supply security is that with such large cost impacts of drought and so few alternatives, large cities simply cannot be allowed to run out of water. The dichotomy between the level of service we wish for and what we can afford to pay means that in the future the community and industry as users must be an integral part of infrastructure planning. The level of service required, and willingness to pay for that service, is an essential guide to scaling and timing infrastructure efficiently. Technological innovation has the potential to dramatically change the impact of infrastructure. Infrastructure that is smart and connected, supported by targeted use of quality data, will improve the overall efficiency of infrastructure, improve the level of service and reduce cost to serve. It should be possible to do more with a lot less. The investment of the water industry in innovation and data must continue. There is potential for better integrated planning supported by new data and models, faster feedback of
3222.0 – Population Projections, Australia, 2012 (base) to 2101, Australian Bureau of Statistics. Productivity Commission Inquiry Report, Australia’s Urban Water Sector, Volume I, August 2011, Box 4, page 22.
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The 44 enlargement of Canberra’s Cotter Dam reflects the “insurance policy” approach that governments and water utilities have taken to securing important capital city water supplies to meet long-term needs in the face of increasing climate variability.
customer demands for more efficient operation of networks and more effective demand response, and smarter infrastructure that monitors itself and reduces the risk of inefficient renewal. The outcome is more efficient assets, higher levels of service, reduced spend and more customer choice. The modern water utility will be very different in the future. There is already an enormous amount of untapped or underutilised technology that could be implemented now to improve outcomes. The challenge for asset owners and managers is in understanding what is available and how to best employ it. Private sector service providers have an important role to play in this area. Asset owners and operators who engage them well, with a willingness to invest in innovation and technology, will reap significant benefits in terms of better levels of service and more efficient operations. Most infrastructure planning is done asset type by asset type. This has been true, too, in the water sector. We generally plan for and manage our water supply, sewerage and drainage separately. The assets are on separate layers of the GIS, the hydraulic models are separate, and often the expertise of our professionals is specialised to one discipline. Yet the water cycle is interconnected. Stormwater and wastewater are increasingly important options in the supply portfolio and can be applied where there is economic, environmental, regulatory or customer benefit. There is still widespread policy limitation on how such water can be used, but this is gradually coming into sensible public debate. Water for greening neighbourhoods is increasingly recognised for its broader health and wellbeing impact, which is changing the cost-benefit equation. The concept of “blue-green” infrastructure, supporting the creation of liveable cities in the face of population growth, urbanisation, climate change and scarce resources, is becoming more mainstream – how water is effectively used to green cities, improving health, wellness, liveability and, ultimately, urban value. The work of the CRC for Liveable Cities is important in articulating and quantifying these cross-benefits, for example the impact of green vegetation in reducing surface temperatures, dust suppression and the associated community health benefits. 3
Complex problems such as delivering water services for liveable, healthy cities in the future will require integrated and ‘big picture’ thinking to solve them. It will take vision, leadership and partnerships to drive the change supported by innovation in planning and technology, governance and community involvement. It cannot be done by working only within existing governance boundaries. Certainly the best solutions will not be developed by the government and public sector alone. The best solutions will come from integrated thinking across multiple relevant bodies/ disciplines/market segments that bring together the public and private sectors, the policy makers, the utilities, the large corporates and the public consumers. Rural water infrastructure requires a different approach again. Australia has a comparative advantage in agricultural production. The effectiveness and efficiency of how we manage water for irrigation, agribusiness and, indeed, to support the resources sector, will have a significant impact on future productivity and prosperity.
The Australian infrastructure agenda and the role of the private sector Infrastructure in Australia is enjoying its moment in the sun. It has the attention of all levels of government, the investment markets – and our best comic satirists in the brilliantly close-to-the-bone Utopia. The attention is likely to continue. At the Infrastructure Partnership Australia (IPA) Conference last September, Jim Miller, Head of Infrastructure, Utilities and Renewables at Macquarie Capital noted: “This is not a short-term change. This is a long-term secular trend.” It is so for good reason. Good infrastructure is critical to national productivity, economic growth, national competitiveness, our standard of living and the protection of the environment in which we want to live. Infrastructure Australia has estimated the so-called ‘infrastructure deficit’ at more than $80 billion3 as a starting point, just based on the number of unfunded economic infrastructure submissions received by them so far.
Submission to the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Public Infrastructure, Office of the National Infrastructure Coordinator, December 2013.
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financing infrastructure However, governments at all levels face considerable fiscal constraints, which impact on their capacity to invest in the required public infrastructure. This led the Federal Government to initiate an inquiry by the Productivity Commission to examine ways to encourage private financing and funding for major infrastructure projects. On the private sector side, funding available for unlisted infrastructure debt and equity in Australia has jumped to $320 billion from an estimated $250 billion in just two years. Jim Miller told the IPA conference last September: “There should be no doubt that there is not a shortage of capital, even for large-scale programs, both in terms of privatisation and other projects coming through.” Like many things, not all infrastructure is created equal. The aim of governments and the private sector is to invest in infrastructure that will increase productivity, increase production and/or improve standards of living. And then it has to be delivered well. The scorecard is mediocre in this regard. In its Public Infrastructure Inquiry, the Productivity Commission was asked to examine issues relating to the high cost and the long lead times associated with public infrastructure projects in Australia. In its submission to this enquiry, Infrastructure Australia estimated the wastage incurred in the delivery of both public and private infrastructure, at $30b per annum on a total spend of around $215b4. This was attributed mainly to project governance and management issues. It further noted that failures in planning could result in sub-optimal prioritisation of infrastructure separate to the losses incurred in delivery. Over the past few years much analysis has been undertaken and papers written on every aspect of infrastructure planning, funding and delivery: benchmarking; value for money; procurement models; project governance requirements; debt financing options; alternative financing models; infrastructure strategies for every mode of infrastructure; balance sheet impacts; land value growth and so on. Ultimately it is up to governments to set the governance and institutional arrangements that will deliver efficient infrastructure with clarity of objective, integrated planning, robust and transparent analysis and business cases. It is also up to governments to ensure procurement processes and alternative financing models maximise the involvement of users in decision-making and the private sector in provision and operation where there is demonstrable benefit to the community. This will be an evolving space.
What might this mean for water infrastructure? While most recent infrastructure commentary and attention has been on other sectors, the water industry has not escaped scrutiny. It is not exempt from a mixed scorecard on its delivery of infrastructure by the Productivity Commission, or its operational efficiency by the National Water Commission. There is continuing opportunity to both deliver and operate infrastructure and utilities better. To the credit of the industry, it remains a focus of most executives and their boards and shareholders. Last April, the National Water Commission released its 8th annual national performance report for urban water utilities5 (the Urban NPR). The high-level findings are that, overall, urban water utilities have improved their service levels, particularly in the areas of
Feature Article security of supply, service reliability, customer responsiveness and water quality. However, there has been a corresponding increase in residential water bills of on average 6.5% per annum, despite an industry-wide focus on efficiency in operations. This has led to policy concern at affordability and initiated a renewed focus on efficiency including benchmarking, increased private sector involvement, increased competition and, for some, divestment of assets. The Productivity Commission review of urban water in 2011 identified the potential for both market and government failures in the delivery of urban water services and made a strong recommendation for universal reforms. It advocated the need for clarity of policy and the role of government, reduction of duplication and cost in regulation, including the phasing out of price regulation, policy bans on various supply options which introduce inefficiency (something AWA has been advocating for many years), corporatisation of utilities and appointment of an independent skills-based board. The Productivity Commission further proposed a number of structural reform options that included vertically and horizontally separating water and wastewater services to introduce competition. This provides interesting opportunities for different private sector involvement in traditionally government-provided services. As institutional, governance and regulatory arrangements vary significantly across the country, the reform recommendations will resonate differently in different regions. Without the implementation of the recommendations by COAG and the expertise of independent bodies like the National Water Commission, progress will be voluntary and sporadic. In addition, there remain political and community sensitivities around privatisation of water utilities and their assets. Attention will continue to be focused on the urban water sector due to the relative attractiveness of urban water assets to long-term investors. Service demand is relatively reliable to predict, with growth linked to population growth and not exposed to the vagaries of global markets. In addition, the scale of parts of the sector is attractive. The total urban water sector asset base is somewhere in the vicinity of $140 billion6 and the industry invests $10–$15 billion annually in capital expenditure. All of this makes a strong case for governments, urban water utility boards and private sector proponents to continue to evaluate how best to provide water services and infrastructure for the next decades, and how private investment and operation might maximise the total benefit to the community. The focus is firmly on conceiving, delivering and operating the right water infrastructure for the future – providing reliable, high-quality water services for a growing number of people at a price we can afford. WJ
The Author Lucia Cade (email: email@example.com. au) is a company director and consultant, specialising in strategy and business growth across the infrastructure sector. Lucia is a past Director and President of AWA and is currently Chair on Western Water in Victoria.
Caravel Group, A Review of Project Governance Effectiveness in Australia, prepared for Infrastructure Australia March 2013. National Performance Report 2012–13: Urban Water Utilities. Published April 2014. National Water Commission. 6 Written down replacement cost of assets as defined by WSAA. 4 5
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BRIDGING THE WATER INFRASTRUCTURE FUNDING GAP Is there a water infrastructure deficit in Australia? Mike Woolston from Frontier Economics examines the issue of funding and queries whether private finance should play a bigger role in the Australian water industry.
n recent years considerable attention has been given to the question of how to finance government-owned infrastructure during times of significant pressures on public finances. Under these circumstances, there may be a role for private sector financing of public infrastructure. As noted by the World Economic Forum (2014): Enhanced public-private collaboration and understanding are required more than ever, as recent regulatory and market movements have slowed the flows of infrastructure finance. Heightened capital constraints, the implementation of Basel II requirements and a diminished market for structured debt instruments have put significant pressure on long-term infrastructure project lending by commercial banks and shortened the duration of loans provided. Moreover, a combination of stretched government budgets and increasing infrastructure needs is conspiring to ever widen the infrastructure-funding gap. In Australia, such concerns have led to advocacy of ‘capital recycling’ of existing infrastructure assets and other initiatives for greater access to private sources of finance. With some isolated exceptions, however, there has been little focus on how this might apply to the water industry.
Funding and financing water investments in Australia In examining this issue, it is helpful to distinguish between financing and funding: • Funding refers to who ultimately pays for the cost of constructing, maintaining and operating infrastructure – typically either users via charges, or the government from its budget; • Financing refers to the capital (debt and equity) invested in infrastructure to bridge the gap between the large upfront costs of the asset and the revenue that is expected to be earned over its lifetime. In the Australian water sector, funding is provided by a mixture of end users, government bodies and developers. Unlike with roads, for example, user charges are widely accepted in the water sector and most water service providers have now achieved full cost recovery, a key policy reform under the National Water Initiative. Many have their prices or revenues approved by independent economic regulators under a model that, in principle, enables recovery of the efficient costs of providing services. This includes an explicit allowance for the cost of (debt and equity) finance. Governments also provide funding for non-commercial activities (e.g. service provision in remote/regional areas), although crosssubsidisation of some groups of users by others (e.g. of users in regional areas by major city customers) is common. Developer
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charges in the form of contributed assets or upfront lump sums for the extension of networks to new growth areas are also widely used. As Australian water infrastructure is predominantly publicly owned, financing is largely provided by government. Finance generally occurs through retained earnings, government equity injections, government grants or borrowings, and debt issued by a central government borrowing authority – i.e. State Treasury Corporations. In recent years, government-owned water businesses have taken on more debt and increased their gearing. Developer charges have also played an important role in financing new growth assets. While there has been considerable private sector involvement, this has traditionally involved contracting out projects or aspects of service provision rather than private sector financing.
Is there a water infrastructure deficit’? As already noted, debates about infrastructure financing stem from a concern that poor access to finance results in gaps in the provision of public infrastructure. Does this apply to water in Australia? A major ‘gap’ that became apparent during the record low inflows experienced during the millennium drought was the inability of existing bulk water supply capacity to meet demands. This led to a spike in water security investments for our cities and towns, particularly desalination plants. Over the period 2007–2008 to 2012–2013, annual capital expenditure by water and sewage businesses peaked at over $8 billion in 2008–2009 but then fell to just over $3bn in 2012–2013. As a result, there is now significant spare capacity in bulk water supply systems in the major urban centres and thus limited need for augmentation of bulk water supply assets in the short- to medium-term. Investment will, however, be required in other areas. For example: • Distribution assets to service new growth areas: each of our five biggest capital cities is forecast to nearly double their populations by 2056; • Wastewater treatment assets to meet increasingly stringent environmental and health standards; • In some regional areas, investments to improve drinking water quality to acceptable standards; • Managing the potential impacts of climate change — for example, the need to augment stormwater infrastructure capacity to cope with more frequent and severe rainfall events; • In the rural water sector, there remains unfinished business with respect to irrigation infrastructure upgrades;
Feature Article • An ongoing requirement for replacement of ageing infrastructure. However, in general, there is little evidence of a looming ‘infrastructure funding gap’ in the water sector of the sort that is seen to characterise some other infrastructure sectors (e.g. roads). Infrastructure Australia, in its 2013 State Of Play report, concluded that Australia’s water infrastructure networks are broadly meeting aggregate needs. Pointedly, it indicated the key imperatives lie with institutional, planning and regulatory reforms in the sector. There is also little evidence of an inability to fund the investment that will be required. The widespread introduction of independent economic regulation and moves towards full cost recovery should theoretically enable water businesses to finance their ongoing activities. That said, the Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA, 2013) recently raised concerns about the impacts of some recent regulatory pricing decisions on the financial status of water authorities and their ability, over the longer term, to finance their activities.
Should private finance play a bigger role in the Australian water sector? The absence of a demonstrable ‘infrastructure gap’ might suggest little need to consider more private sector involvement or financing in the water industry. There are, however, other reasons why greater private sector financing of water investments may be beneficial. The first relates to broader public sector financing benefits via what has become known as ‘capital recycling’. Governments across Australia have significant capital tied up in water assets. This capital comes with its own opportunity cost. Infrastructure Australia (2013) estimated that the potential proceeds from the sale of public water assets might be valued at $54–$61 billion for bulk water assets and $32–$35 billion for distribution assets. The sale of existing assets has potential to free up public resources for allocation to other important activities. In addition, many of these infrastructure assets are associated with high levels of public sector debt. Their sale would remove a constraint on governments’ ability to raise debt to fund infrastructure investments in other sectors. However, as observed by the Productivity Commission (2014), the merits of such capital recycling initiatives depend critically on robust cost-benefit analyses of both the decision to divest the existing asset/s, and the decision to invest or otherwise use the proceeds as separate matters. The second – and arguably more compelling – argument for considering greater private sector financing is that private sector ownership can increase economic efficiency. More efficient investment and operation of infrastructure can generate savings that can be passed through to end users through lower prices and/or better services. What matters ultimately is that investments are made in the ‘right’ assets with appropriate returns to the community. Government ownership or control can lead to inefficient investment because of: • Funding uncertainty relating to governments holding down prices for political reasons; • Changed spending priorities or politically popular investments being prioritised rather than those that maximise efficiency; • A lack of strong incentives to rigorously evaluate and manage investments.
Both the Productivity Commission and the National Water Commission have questioned the robustness of government decisions to invest in water security assets (particularly the size of desalination capacity, much of which now lies mothballed). These investments still have to be funded by customers and/or taxpayers. In considering what drives these inefficient outcomes, perhaps the most common theme emerging from a succession of independent reviews of the water sector in recent years by the National Water Commission, the Productivity Commission, various State Commissions of Audit and others has been one of poor governance arrangements, largely stemming from government ownership. For example, the Productivity Commission (2011) concluded that: Conflicting objectives and unclear roles and responsibilities of governments, water utilities and regulators have led to inefficient allocation of water resources, misdirected investment, undue reliance on water restrictions and costly water conservation programs. To address these sorts of problems, the Productivity Commission placed considerable store on improving governance arrangements in the sector through establishing clear objectives, clarifying roles and responsibilities, and better monitoring performance. However, the experience to date suggests that the governance problems associated with government ownership of water businesses are intractable, and it is time to consider more far-reaching reforms involving direct private ownership of water assets.
Alternative sources of private financing and involvement There is a wide range of models for involving the private sector in public infrastructure. For example, the National Water Commission identified management contracts, affermage leases, leases, concessions, and divestiture (NWC, 2014). While the appropriate model is likely to vary depending on the circumstances, it would seem timely to consider approaches that go beyond contracting out. Despite many PPPs in the sector, which involve private financing, there are only isolated examples of brownfield assets being leased, sold or otherwise transferred to private owners. These include: • The privatisation of the Sydney desalination plant; • The transfer of irrigation systems in SA, NSW and, more recently, in Queensland to co-operatives; • The proposed long-term leasing of SunWater’s industrial and commercial water pipelines. To date in Australia, privatised water assets have generally been those that don’t provide services directly to ‘mum and dad’ customers. However, there is no in-principle reason why divestiture might not extend to large urban water supply networks (in conjunction with a carefully designed regulatory framework). The privatisation of the water industry in the UK in 1989 provides precedent. Under the regulatory framework in the UK the industry has attracted £100 billion of investment. Interestingly, two of the biggest water and sewerage businesses in the UK (Anglian Water and Thames Water) are owned by consortiums that include Australian investors. These investors include Australian superannuation funds, Colonial First State (the asset management arm of CBA) and IFM (owned by Australian Super funds). This suggests that Australian superannuation funds would invest in Australian water assets if the conditions to do so were right.
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Feature Article Another example of investors’ willingness to participate in the industry is the widespread use of water bonds in the US, which involves the issuing of debt to fund specific projects. The Californian water bond approved in November 2014 will provide US$7.5 billion in funding for water-related projects and programs throughout California.
arrangements (e.g. the potential disincentive for State Government to privatise water assets and forego dividends and payments received under the tax equivalent regime).
Last, but by no means least, is the need to challenge public perceptions and political resistance to privatisation of the Is it time to consider greater private financing of water infrastructure? The question then water industry: the arises as to what would be required to pursue such opportunities for notion that the supply of an ‘essential service’ cannot be entrusted greater private sector involvement. to private businesses. The contention that government ownership and control of water businesses automatically leads to better Prerequisites for greater outcomes for customers and the broader public needs to be private sector involvement subject to more rigorous scrutiny than it has been to date. Introducing a greater role for the private sector is not necessarily Conclusion straightforward. As observed by the Competition Policy Review Draft Report (2014): The current focus on how to fund public infrastructure under Well‐considered privatisation of remaining infrastructure assets is likely to drive further consumer benefits through lower prices flowing from greater discipline on privatised entities. Governments need to approach privatisation carefully, to ensure that impacts on competition and consumers are fully considered and addressed. Initiatives to facilitate greater private sector involvement will need to simultaneously: • Ensure that the interests of customers are protected (particularly where the supply of services involves market power) as well as broader public policy objectives (e.g. protection of public health and the environment); • Be sufficiently attractive to potential investors who assess infrastructure projects against a multitude of options in other asset classes and countries, and allow them to manage the risks associated with their investments. As recognised by WSAA (2013), there are a number of prerequisites that would need to be addressed to satisfy both of the above conditions. A fundamental one of these is the existence of a stable, transparent and independent framework of economic regulation. Such a model is outlined in WSAA’s 2014 report: Improving Economic Regulation of Urban Water, prepared by Frontier Economics. Well-developed regulatory frameworks to protect public health and the environment are also critical. Careful consideration should also be given to the need for associated pro-competitive structural reforms and related regulatory arrangements such as third party access and licensing regimes for new suppliers. Existing legal barriers (e.g. the provision in the Victorian Constitution enshrining public ownership of water businesses) also need to be addressed. Facilitating privatisation may require addressing disincentives inherent in current taxation and Commonwealth–State financial
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conditions of significant budgetary constraint provides a timely opportunity to reconsider whether it is necessary for governments to own and operate water assets. Given the significant potential benefits of greater private sector involvement, there is a pressing need to progress the detailed policy work to establish the necessary pre-conditions. WJ
References Business Council of Australia (2013): Infrastructure Funding and Financing. Commonwealth of Australia (2014): Competition Policy Review, Draft Report, September 2014. Frontier Economics (2014): Improving Economic Regulation of Urban Water. A report prepared for the Water Services Association of Australia. Infrastructure Australia (2013): 2013 State of Play Report: Australia’s Key Economic Infrastructure Sectors, December 2013. National Water Commission (2014): National Performance Report 2012–13: Urban Water Utilities, April 2014. National Water Commission (2014): Urban Water Futures 2014, NWC, Canberra. Productivity Commission (2011): Australia’s Urban Water Sector, Report No.55, Final Inquiry Report, Canberra. Productivity Commission (2014): Public Infrastructure, Inquiry Report No. 71, Canberra. Water Services Association of Australia (2013): The Future of the Urban Water Industry, Submission to the National Water Commission’s Triennial Assessment, December. World Economic Forum (2014): Infrastructure Investment Policy Blueprint, prepared in collaboration with Oliver Wyman, February.
The Author Mike Woolston (email: firstname.lastname@example.org) leads Frontier Economics’ Water practice. Mike has a comprehensive knowledge of the water industry, and specialises in microeconomic and regulatory reform.
ICM and the Murray-Darling Basin Plan: Victoria’s Water Laws Joseph Monaghan, Special Counsel with law firm Holding Redlich, considers the implications of a recent review of Victoria’s water laws and the change of Government in Victoria, and argues that it’s time to bring Victoria’s water laws into line with other Basin States.
he Basin Plan uses Integrated Catchment Management (ICM) to seek to achieve its stated goal of protecting and restoring the water-dependent ecosystems of the MurrayDarling Basin (MDB). The Basin Plan relies on Basin States preparing Water Resource Plans (WRPs) to achieve the Sustainable Diversion Limits (SDLs) specified in the Basin Plan, on a catchmentby-catchment basis. In contrast with other Basin States, Victoria does not currently have a single statutory instrument that would be defined as a WRP under National Water Initiative (NWI) criteria. This affects the integration of the Basin Plan with Victoria’s law and policy water management framework.
What is ICM? According to Nelson (2005, p 101), the basic goal of ICM is to improve and maintain the long-term condition of land and water resources by using the catchment unit. ICM applies integration at several levels. These include consideration of environmental, economic and social principles, administrative integration through inter-governmental and inter-agency cooperation, promoting stakeholder participation and recognising the physical interrelationships between land uses, surface water and groundwater. ICM provides a holistic and coordinated management framework, not constrained by, or confined to, artificial legal boundaries. According to Matthews (2014, p 385), ‘holistic governance models’ based on ICM are needed that use catchments as the base management unit, so as to respond to environmental problems caused by fragmentation between environmental, economic and planning agencies. According to Godden et al. (2010, p 306), ICM breaks down administrative barriers and communication gaps by seeking better administrative integration between agencies. Those at the coalface of water resource administration might view some of these principles as sound in theory, but difficult in practice. Nonetheless, the principles of ICM are sound ones, the problems ICM seeks to address are real, and in recent years, ICM has been a powerful driver of water law and policy reform, including the NWI. Those who are serious about environmental sustainability need to be serious about ICM.
ICM and the Basin Plan Fragmented administrative arrangements, failure to coordinate, and management based on legal boundaries, not catchments, aptly describes the historical management of the MDB. Accordingly, since federation, the direction of water law-related reforms in the MDB has tended towards a centralisation of power in the Commonwealth to provide greater co-ordination across the MDB. This ultimately culminated in the Water Act 2007 (Cth), and, on 22 November 2012, the adoption of the Basin Plan.
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The Basin Plan epitomises ICM. The Basin Plan’s core objectives include ‘to give effect to relevant international agreements through the integrated management of Basin water resources’: s 5.02(1)(a) of the Basin Plan. The Water Act 2007 (Cth) requires consultation for the preparation and implementation of the Basin Plan. The regime’s reason for being is to provide a more coordinated management framework. The Basin Plan’s core mechanism, the SDL, is catchment based.
ICM and Victoria’s water laws The Basin Plan sets a basin-wide SDL for surface water of 10,873GL, which means that 2,750GL must be taken out of consumptive surface water entitlement use for the benefit of the environment, from 1 July 2019 onwards. To achieve that goal, the Basin Plan relies on State WRPs. Through State WRPs, the SDLs under the Basin Plan are implemented at the State level. Section 22 of the Water Act 2007 and Chapter 9 of the Basin Plan provide that State WRPs must incorporate the SDLs under the Basin Plan. Basin State WRPs eventually need to be consistent with the Basin Plan, and accredited by the Federal Minister with assistance from the Murray-Darling Basin Authority. All of the Basin States, except Victoria, have now amended their respective Water Acts, or introduced Water Acts, that make provision for WRPs. With respect to Queensland, Part 3 of the Water Act 2000 (Qld) is specific to ‘water planning’. Division 2 of Part 3 of that Act makes provision for ‘water resource plans’. In South Australia, ‘water allocation plans’ are made under s 76 of the Natural Resources Management Act 2004 (SA). In the Australian Capital Territory, under s 16 of the Water Resources Act 2007 (ACT), the Minister must determine ‘water management areas’ for managing the water resources of the Territory. In New South Wales, ‘water sharing plans’ are made under the Water Management Act 2000 (NSW). In its recently published National Water Planning Report Card, the National Water Commission (NWC) (2013) reports that: • ‘Victoria does not have a single statutory instrument that would be defined as a water plan under NWI criteria’; • ‘The Victorian planning framework is complex and progress in some areas of planning is very slow’; • ‘The role of planning instruments [in Victoria] in addressing sustainable water strategies is unclear’. Why is Victoria seemingly out of step with other Basin States? Water plans have social, economic and environmental implications
Feature Article and require difficult choices to be made about the division of water between competing water users. The history of the 2010 Guide to the Proposed Basin Plan, the Basin Plan, and the numerous water plans in New South Wales that have been legally challenged by irrigators, highlight that water plans can be controversial. Understandably, Governments may prefer to avoid that kind of controversy. The former Coalition Victorian Government’s stated position, according to the then Victorian Government’s (2012) Response to the Proposed Basin Plan, is that the WRPs contemplated by the Basin Plan would undermine the security of Victorian water entitlements: ‘The Victorian Water Act sets out an entitlement framework under which rights to take water are akin to (though not amounting to) property rights … The arrangements under the Commonwealth Water Act impose the concept of a ‘water resource plan’ (WRP), which encompasses both an entitlement framework and the means by which entitlements can be adjusted by government in a directive manner. This approach directly contradicts arrangements in Victoria, where entitlement security fundamentally underpins investment in irrigated agriculture across the State. … The Victorian Water Act does not currently recognise the concept of a WRP or its equivalent...’ According to Gardner et al. (2009, p 355–356), of the numerous water planning mechanisms under the Water Act 1989, those that are the most relevant to consider relate to water supply protection areas under Division 3 of Part 3 of the Water Act 1989. The provisions do not expressly specify the definition of a consumptive pool. Victoria does not have an adequate mechanism that defines the consumptive pool of water available on a catchment-by-catchment basis so that water for consumptive use may be allocated after water for environmental needs has been determined. This is contrary to the spirit of the NWI and the principles of ICM because it undermines the integration between Victorian legislation and the Basin Plan.
Review of Victoria’s water laws In 2013/14 the former Victorian Government carried out a review of Victoria’s water laws. According to the Office of Living Victoria’s (2013) Overview of the Water Bill Exposure Draft, objectives of the review included to: • ‘Better align… with requirements of the Water Act 2007 (Cth) and Murray-Darling Basin Plan’; and • ‘Facilitate... Victoria’s compliance with the Murray-Darling Basin Plan while maintaining the integrity of Victoria’s entitlement regime.’ Following the review, the Water Bill 2014 (Vic) was prepared and in June 2014 had its first and second reading speeches in the Victorian Legislative Assembly. The Bill proposes to introduce Water Resource Management Orders (WRMO). According to the Bill’s second reading speech, WRMOs will consolidate the existing water management arrangements as a kind of umbrella under which all entitlements in an area will sit, helping to simplify Victoria’s comparatively complex system of water planning instruments. WRMOs embody many of the principles of ICM. According to the Bill’s second reading speech, 10 to 15 WRMOs will be needed to cover the entire State, which will be based on ‘natural boundaries and cover multiple river basins’. WRMOs are to first be prepared in draft, submissions sought from the community and authorities, before a WRMO comes into effect following publication in the Victoria Government Gazette.
To give effect to the requirements of the Basin Plan, specific provision is made for the incorporation of a ‘Basin Plan order’ in a WRMO. One anticipates that some of the WRMOs will be submitted for federal accreditation in accordance with the Water Act 2007 (Cth). WRMOs may also apply or adopt ‘any matter contained in any document’, which will presumably facilitate the use of some existing state instruments in WRMOs, thereby reducing some of the substantial work otherwise required by Victorian administrators in seeking to give effect to the Basin Plan. Proposed Regional Resource Assessments and Strategic Reviews will assess consumptive uses in particular regions, however, there is no proposed requirement that WRMOs or any other instruments must define the consumptive pool only after the environmental needs of the catchment are met.
Conclusion This article has shown that Victoria has been out of step with other Basin States in integrating its legislative and policy framework with the Basin Plan. Recent proposed changes seek to address these issues to a degree. Victoria’s proposed WRMOs implement many of the principles of ICM and address a clear need for Victoria to have an instrument that better aligns with the needs of the Basin Plan. However, where the Water Bill 2014 (Vic) still departs from NWI policy is that there is no proposed requirement that WRMOs must define the consumptive pool after the environmental needs of the catchment are met. The Water Bill 2014 (Vic) is not law yet, and its future with a new Victorian Government remains unclear. With a recent change of Government, it is timely for the new Victorian Government to continue the law reform process to bring Victoria’s water laws into line with other Basin States and give full effect to NWI policy and the principles of ICM. WJ
REFERENCES Nelson R (2005): Legislation for ICM: Advancing Water Resources Sustainability. 22 EPLJ 96. Matthews K (2014): Implementing Legislative and Governance Frameworks for Integrated Catchment Management: The Gap Between Theory and Practice. 31 EPLJ 385. Godden L & Peel J (2010): Environmental Law: Scientific Policy and Regulatory Dimensions, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne. National Water Commission (2013): The National Water Planning Report Card, released 30 June 2014, pp 207 and 211. Victorian Government (2012): Submission to the Proposed Basin Plan www. depi.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/176578/Basin-Plan-ProposalApril2012.pdf (accessed 19 December 2014), p63. Gardner A, Bartlett R & Gray J (2009): Australian Water Resources Law, LexisNexis Butterworths. Office of Living Victoria (2013): Overview of the Water Bill Exposure Draft, Information Sheet.
THE AUTHOR Joseph Monaghan (email joseph.monaghan@ holdingredlich.com) is Special Counsel at Holding Redlich, and practices extensively in water law. This article is drawn in part from his current doctoral thesis on law and policy of the Murray-Darling Basin.
FEBRUARY 2015 water
Integrated Catchment Management Managing Drinking Water Quality Risks From Acid Drainage Discharges To The Lower Murray
J Frizenschaf et al.
D Drapper & A Hornbuckle
Establishment of a targeted monitoring and assessment program
Updating ICM To Improve The Climate Resilience Of Water-Dependent Communities
A study to evaluate distributed water from two Western Australian drinking water sources
Stormwater Treatment & Management Field Monitoring Of A Stormwater Treatment Train With Pit Baskets And Filter Media Cartridges
A review of protocol criteria relating to a treatment train at a development in SE Queensland
Climate Change Impacts On Stormwater Harvesting Yields
A Hoban et al.
D Hagare et al.
F Pamminger et al.
Evaluating the impacts of climate change on urban water systems through simulation of a range of scenarios
Using Lakes In Urban Landscapes For Stormwater Management
A study of water quality at Wattle Grove Lake in western Sydney
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Energy Efficiency Viability Asessment Of A District Heating Scheme In Australia
A case study utilising large waste heat sources in Melbourne’s outer suburbs
Disclaimer: The papers in this section have been peer reviewed for relevance, clarity and contributing constructively to the sharing of knowledge about water. It is not intended that any conclusions drawn by authors may be used as validation of the performance of a process or product; AWA expressly refutes any suggestion that publication herein implies endorsement. Although reviewers consider the credibility of data presented, it is not possible for them to vouch for the accuracy of such data.
APRIL 2015: OZWATER ISSUE • INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY • WATER IN FOOD & AGRICULTURE • CLIMATE CHANGE & WATER • WATER R&D AND FUNDING • WATER TREATMENT
Direct application of hydrated lime slurry to drains.
• WATER GOVERNANCE & REGULATION • DISINFECTION & DISINFECTION BY-PRODUCTS
MANAGING DRINKING WATER QUALITY RISKS FROM ACID DRAINAGE DISCHARGES TO THE LOWER RIVER MURRAY WHILE PROTECTING FARMING ACTIVITIES Establishment of a targeted monitoring and assessment program to monitor drain water quality and flows J Frizenschaf, L Mosley, R Daly, D Palmer
During the extreme drought years in the Murray-Darling Basin (2007–2009), inflows to South Australia diminished significantly. As a result, the drop in water levels in the Lower River Murray (below Lock 1) exposed previously submerged soils and wetlands containing acid sulfate soil materials that subsequently oxidised and acidified (pH<4). Acidification affected approximately 5,230 hectares of flood-irrigated agricultural land (24 individual irrigation areas) in the Lower Murray Reclaimed Irrigation Area (LMRIA) in South Australia. In late 2010, with the return of normal water levels, acid sulfate soils in the LMRIA were re-submerged and the resultant acid drainage posed an unprecedented water quality challenge to both farmers and the South Australian Water Corporation (SA Water), the state’s drinking water utility. SA Water and the South Australian Environment Protection Authority (SA EPA) used monitoring, 3D hydrodynamic and water quality modelling for realtime risk assessments, identification of targeted management interventions and the development of contingency plans to balance agricultural, environmental and water security values. A targeted monitoring and assessment program was established to monitor drain water quality and flows, and the extent and composition of initially acidic plumes in the river. This data was used to develop an ELCOM–CAEDYM1 model to assess risks associated with the timing, nature 1
from 2003–2006 the State Government worked with irrigators on a $22 million Commonwealth-funded project to improve water and land management practices in the LMRIA. Unfortunately, at the conclusion of this project, drought conditions and long-term low inflows in the Murray-Darling system led to unprecedented low water levels below Lock 1 (Leyden et al., 2012).
and extent of water quality impacts due to irrigation drain pumping into the River Murray under different flow scenarios. An agreed contingency plan and close working relationship between the SA EPA, SA Water (and other SA Government departments) and the agricultural community (including irrigation trusts and an industry representative body, Dairy SA) was established. In addition, onfarm acidification mitigation trials were conducted, including targeted irrigation, and lime application and injection. Collectively these measures have resulted in a better understanding of acid drain discharge impacts on public water supply and enabled the development of targeted, and stakeholder-supported, contingency measures.
INTRODUCTION Historically, irrigation practices in the Lower Murray Reclaimed Irrigation Area (LMRIA), located close to the opening of the River Murray into the Lower Lakes and the Southern Ocean, returned large volumes of water enriched by salt, nutrients and pathogens to the River Murray (Mosley & Fleming, 2009). As a result of the risk to raw water for drinking water supply, recreation and aquatic ecosystems,
Extreme drought conditions, also known as the ‘millennium drought’, persisted in the Murray-Darling Basin from 2007–2009, with inflows into South Australia diminishing significantly (Dreverman, 2013) and water levels in the Lower Murray River (below Lock 1) falling from a normal pool level of +0.75 m AHD to a low of –1.05 m AHD in April 2009 (see Figure 1). Lock
Lock 1 Lake Alexandrin a
6 Water level (m AHD)
Extreme drought period 1920
Figure 1. Water levels at long-term monitoring stations in the River Murray weir pool below Lock 1 and the Lower Lakes. Large water level decreases below sea level (0m AHD) occurred during the extreme drought period (millennium drought).
ELCOM: Estuary, Lake and Coastal Ocean Model; CAEDYM: Computational Aquatic Ecosystem Dynamics Model.
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INTEGRATED CATCHMENT MANAGEMENT
Technical Papers Acid sulfate soils commonly occur in aquatic environments where the presence of sufficient organic matter, sulfate and iron minerals can facilitate natural sulfate reduction processes (Dent and Pons, 1995). This ultimately results in an accumulation of sulfide minerals such as pyrite, FeS2 and iron monosulfide, FeS. These minerals do not pose a hazard as long as they remain submerged (DEH, 2009). However, when re-oxidised through exposure to air they release dissolved iron, which is subsequently transformed Figure 2. Map of the LMRIA region showing into solid presence of acidic and neutral drains/swamps and SA Water offtakes. iron hydroxide, Fe (OH)3, also 1 is located approximately 198km producing sulfuric acid (Mosley, 2014a) upstream of Lake Alexandrina and as per the following generic equation: presents the last river lock before the regulated Lake Alexandrina (see Figure 2). The water body between Lock 1 and Lake Alexandrina is considered one consecutive weir pool. The decrease in water levels exposed previously submerged soils and wetlands containing acid sulfate soil materials, which subsequently oxidised and acidified (pH<4; MDBA, 2011).
FeS2 + 15/4 O2 + 7/2 H2O g Fe(OH)3 (1) + 2SO42- + 4H+ The low pH generated by this process also dissolves other soil minerals, releasing a broad range of metals such as iron, manganese, aluminium, nickel, zinc and arsenic. When the oxidised and acidified soils are subsequently re-wet
(e.g. re-flooding of previously driedout wetlands, rainfall infiltration, etc) dissolved H+ and metals can be mobilised into receiving water bodies (Mosley et al., 2014b). The combination of low river levels, the lack of irrigation (due to reduced water allocations and inability to deliver water) and subsequent groundwater depth decline in the LMRIA by 1â€“1.5m resulted in drying and cracking of the alluvial clay subsoils (see Mosley et al., 2014a, Figure 3). A total of 13 floodplains (approximately 3,300 ha) were affected (Leyden et al., 2012). A large amount of the acidity in the deeply cracked, contaminated soil layers was in available form in pore water, which made it prone to mobilisation once water infiltration to these depths and groundwater flows resumed. This occurred in the Lower Murray in 2010 when the drought broke in the Murray-Darling Basin and river; groundwater levels recovered and wetlands were resubmerged. The rapid raising of surface and groundwater levels mobilised acidity in acid sulfate soil profiles to the floodplain drainage channels. In addition to the natural recovery of flows, irrigators started applying water to their fields again, which meant that the original salt drains within the irrigated wetlands had to be pumped out to the main stem of the river (Figure 4), to ultimately keep water levels, salt levels, and now acidity levels, below the productive root zone. The discharge of significant volumes of low pH (2â€“5) acidic water (up to 25 ML/day at times from specific irrigation areas, total load of 2,311 t of acidity as CaCO3 equivalent)/year (Leyden et al., 2012)) containing high levels of dissolved metals into the main stem of the River Murray posed unprecedented challenges to water quality. Foremost was the uncertainty in regard to potential impact
Figure 3. Conceptual model of acid sulfate soil development during drought and post-drought in the LMRIA. The inset shows cracked acidified clay soils on an irrigation bay during drought (Source: Kathryn Rothe, used with permission), and other infrastructure damage (e.g. irrigation pipe cracking due to soil movement, pipe and pump corrosion due to low pH) also occurred.
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MONITORING, MODELLING AND ASSESSMENT OF ACID DRAIN DISCHARGES TO RIVER MURRAY WATER QUALITY
In order to make informed decisions about the magnitude of the acid sulfate soil-induced water quality challenges in the Lower Murray, water quality across the entire LMRIA (a total of 27 salt drains) was examined. Figure 2 illustrates that 14 drains had turned acidic, with pH levels ranging from 2.6 to 5.9. Metals analyses of drain water revealed that median concentrations of most metals (except the metalloid Arsenic) exceeded Australian Drinking Water Guidelines values (ADWG, 2011). However, pH neutralisation and metal precipitation reactions (see Simpson et al., 2013) in the river discharge zone result in large reductions in dissolved metal concentrations (Table 1).
Figure 4. One of 14 acid drain discharges to the lower River Murray showing localised water quality impacts (brown iron oxide precipitation) and proximity to main stem of river. on raw water at offtakes of the main water supplier in the area, the South Australian Water Corporation (SA Water). In providing water services to the 1.5 million population of South Australia, SA Water utilises 18 raw water offtakes along the River Murray, five of which are located between Mannum and Wellington in the LMRIA. Dissolved metals flushed to the river with drain discharges were thought to potentially pose a challenge to the water treatment plants in this area. Dissolved manganese and nickel in particular were closely observed. Dissolved manganese can sometimes create aesthetic effects, including ‘dirty laundry’, caused by staining from manganese oxide (MnO2). The aim of this paper is to describe how drinking water supplies were protected, while also ensuring that the farming community could continue to irrigate and sustainably manage their farms by preventing acidic, shallow groundwater reaching the root zone of their crops. The approach in terms of scientific assessment and response to a new water quality threat, and working with catchment stakeholders, is applicable to other locations and emerging issues.
APPROACH AND METHODS One of the key uncertainties in relation to acid drain discharges to the River Murray was the lack of knowledge about in-river hydrodynamics of introduced dissolved metals from the drains and the potential of a cumulative effect if several drains were being pumped out simultaneously.
In addition, the actual total acidity store in subsurface soils, its persistence into the future, and potential for natural remediation were unknown. Three issues in relation to acid drain pump-outs were at the forefront of the challenge, namely to (1) maintain raw water quality (for drinking water supply) at acceptable levels; (2) minimise impacts on ecosystem health; and (3) enable continued sustainability of irrigated farms. An inter-government working group was formed in 2011 to determine the most appropriate approach for the issue at hand. Government members representing health, environment, farming and water supply developed the following multi-pronged approach.
Given the complexity of instream dynamics due to varying river flows, non-homogeneous dilution within the body of the river and, last but not least, the variable pumping regime of acidified discharge water into the main stem of the river by irrigators, it became evident that more sophisticated assessment tools were needed. If a modelling tool could incorporate the above information and provide more accurate concentration estimates at the water treatment plants, more realistic assessments of raw water quality at the offtake could be made and acid drain discharges to the river may not have to be curtailed, which would help farmers maintain their production adequately. The main questions were:
Table 1. Summary statistics (median, interquartile range = IQR) for total (tot.) and dissolved (diss.) metals/metalloids (Aluminium, Al; Arsenic, As; Iron, Fe; Manganese, Mn; Nickel, Ni) and pH concentrations in drains (all locations, n= 286) and river discharge zones (all locations, n=37) sites in the LMRIA (refer to Figure 1 for locations). The Australian Drinking Water Guidelines (ADWG, 2011) are shown for reference and median values that exceed these guidelines highlighted in bold. The guideline for Mn contains the aesthetic (0.1) and health-related values from the ADWG (2011). Parameter
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INTEGRATED CATCHMENT MANAGEMENT
INTEGRATED CATCHMENT MANAGEMENT
Technical Papers 1.
What are the in-stream dynamics that influence the fate and transport of metals once acid drain water is discharged into the river channel?
What are the water quality (concentration) thresholds that would create increased risk to water treatment? and
Can acid drain discharges be maintained at the current level without impacting on other uses?
Monitoring of the nature and extent of the acidic drainage plumes once they entered the river was undertaken. A coupled three-dimensional (3D) hydrodynamic and water quality model (ELCOM-CAEDYM) was constructed to simulate the cumulative effects of simultaneous acidic irrigation drain discharges, using detailed water quality analysis results from the drains. The 3D hydrodynamic model ELCOM (Estuary, Lake and Coastal Ocean Model) was used to predict velocity, temperature and salinity (or tracer) distribution in the River Murray, subject to external environmental forcing such as inflows, wind stress, and surface heating or cooling. ELCOM was used to simulate the conservative mixing and dilution of acidic plumes under hypothetical drainage pumping scenarios. The Computational Aquatic Ecosystem Dynamics Model (CAEDYM) was coupled to ELCOM to simulate numerous biogeochemical processes, including the equations for acid-base chemistry, dissolved metal speciation, and mineral precipitation (Hipsey, 2013). This degree of sophistication was required for the LMRIA acid drainage context due to multiple acid drainage inputs and potential for cumulative inputs along the river channel (Mosley and Fleming, 2010), the plumes from each drainage discharge being detectable a few kms downstream (incomplete horizontal and vertical mixing), and the non-conservative nature of geochemical processes involving acid neutralisation and metal precipitation. To parameterise the Lower Murray ELCOM-CAEDYM model, a combination of metered drain discharge volumes and weekly/fortnightly drain water quality analyses were used in the model to estimate the acid loadings. The river water quality measured by SA Water at Mannum was used with flow over Lock 1 as the upstream boundary condition. Wind speed and direction,
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air temperature and rainfall were used as meteorological input parameters for the ELCOM hydrodynamic model. The model was validated using in-stream water quality data and plume monitoring and gave satisfactory results (r2=0.8–0.9 for salinity, dissolved Mn, alkalinity and major ions; r2=0.2 for pH but Root Mean Square Error was only 0.6 pH units (Mosley and Daly, 2014). Several drain pumpout and flow scenarios were modelled, producing a probabilistic understanding of the likelihood of particular metal concentrations at raw water offtakes. CONTINGENCY PLANNING
While modelling results may provide some reassurance about potential major water supply impacts, there was also an understanding by all stakeholders that the establishment of a contingency plan would assist in undertaking early mitigation actions, should this be necessary. The contingency plan was developed as a ‘living document’, ensuring that it could be updated as new information came to light. The plan encompassed four ‘alert levels’ from green (no exceedance of guidelines or management triggers), yellow (elevated concentrations of relevant water quality parameters from ambient conditions and/or exceedance of SA Water treatment plant operation triggers), amber (exceedance of aesthetic guidelines from ADWG 2011 or ecosystem guidelines from ANZECC 2000), or red (exceedance of health guidelines from ADWG 2011 and/or widespread and severe water quality impacts). The plan primarily served as a risk management and communication tool among key government stakeholders. It articulated the various actions by different stakeholders should water quality concentration thresholds (defined alert levels) be exceeded (e.g. cessation of drainage pumping, additional communication activities, additional treatment processes such as pre-chlorination). REMEDIATION TRIALS
A review of options available for rehabilitation of waterways containing acid sulfate soils in inland waterways has been undertaken by experts in the field (Baldwin and Fraser, 2009). These options have been incorporated into national guidance documents on managing acid sulfate soils in inland aquatic ecosystems (EPHC and NRMMC, 2011). However, the mitigation and recovery of deep
agricultural subsoils such as the acidified soils identified in the LMRIA posed new challenges to natural resource managers and farmers. An initial desktop evaluation of mitigation methods included enhanced irrigation to flush out acidity; addition of neutralising agents to soils, subsoils or acid drains (e.g., lime); and the installation of permeable reactive barriers. Three actions in particular were promising based on their practical feasibility and their effectiveness. In order to further evaluate the feasibility and practicality of remediation actions on the ground and test their potential for success in the LMRIA, the following three remediation techniques were trialled (Palmer et al., 2013): • Paddock-scale intensive irrigation and limestone spreading trial (Long Flat irrigation area); • In-situ salt drain neutralisation (Jervois irrigation area); • Sub-surface injection of a hydrated lime and limestone slurry via a mole plough (Mobilong, retired irrigation area now owned by SA Water). A first set of trials involved intensive irrigation and, separately, the direct spreading of fine agricultural limestone (CaCO3) onto paddocks, followed by irrigation at the Long Flat irrigation trial site (see Figure 5). Shallow piezometers at 0.5, 1 and 2.75m below ground surface were used to monitor the response of pH and dissolved metals in shallow groundwater to the management intervention. A second trial involved the direct application of hydrated lime (CaOH2) to acid drains at Jervois (near Tailem Bend) for seven days in June 2012 (see Figure 6). The trial aimed at treating water in the salt drains in situ to alleviate immediate impacts from drainage water being pumped to the River Murray, and subsequently any potential risks to the Murray Bridge and Tailem Bend drinking water supply offtakes. The water treatment trial involved the application of hydrated lime mixed into a slurry solution along the length of the acidified salt drain, using a mobile truck-mounted reagent dosing system and a 5–10 wt% hydrated lime slurry (Palmer et al., 2013). A third trial involved a novel mitigation option to initially enhance the growth conditions for beneficial sulfate-reducing
Figure 5. Limestone spreading at Long Flat (left) and multi-level groundwater piezometers (right). bacteria via the targeted addition of a hydrated lime slurry through deep subsoil ripping. It is recognised that one of the key limitations for the natural recovery of acidified soils is the fact that the survival and activity of sulfur-reducing bacteria is hampered by low pH (<5, Jong and Parry, 2006). An experimental design was conceptualised and implemented by the EPA on one of the SA Water landholdings in the LMRIA, the Mobilong site. The concept development included an estimate of required lime to neutralise a portion of the subsurface soil just above the shallow groundwater table, to allow slow pH improvements near the water table. Lime was dissolved into a lime slurry, to provide neutralisation capacity in the immediate subsoil environment. The concept further assumed that deep injection of lime near the shallow groundwater table would facilitate the spread of neutralised pore water and enable more conducive (pH>5) conditions for sulfate reducing bacteria, enhancing the overall rehabilitation success over time. The application design and in-field application are illustrated in Figure 7.
Figure 6. Direct application of hydrated lime slurry to drains.
A key component throughout the post-drought activities was proactive interaction with the farming community. Due to the unprecedented circumstances of post-drought water quality challenges for SA Water, SA Government agencies and LMRIA irrigators, it was quite clear that collaboration and sharing of observations and learnings would be mutually beneficial. The interagency government team was, therefore, supportive of (and on occasion involved in) industry initiatives that sought alternative, more acid and saltâ€“tolerant species, or undertook on-farm improvement trials. Farm field days were organised by industry groups and presentations shared at regular industry meetings.
Figure 7. Hydrated lime application via deep soil ripping (top), and using customised mole plough (bottom).
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Dilution of Mntot from Acidic LMRIA Drains at Tailem Bend Effect of River Murray Flow
0.5 Mn Health Guideline Average Annual Pump Rate (mass balance model)
Mn Aesthetic Guideline Hydrodynamic Modelling Results
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Flow conditions below 10,000 ML/ day were subsequently simulated and highlighted an increased risk for dissolved Mn at lower flows (<2,500 ML/day), consistent with the original conservative modelling results. However, these potential Mn exceedances are currently considered manageable for Mn using existing treatment options (e.g. pre-chlorination, available at the SA Water treatment plants).
2011 to April 2012. The model provided satisfactory results against measured parameters at the Tailem Bend water offtake and adequately represented the range of metal and major ion concentration fluctuations (Mosley & Daly, 2014). The model was also validated using the behaviour of a localised plume, which was tracked in the field.
7000 9000 River Flow (Ml/day)
Figure 8. Comparison of ELCOM total Mn modelling results for a Typical Summer Scenario (box and whisker) against basic mass balance model. Predictions resulted in Mn health guideline value (0.5 mg/L) to not be exceeded under conditions tested; and in aesthetic Mn guideline (0.1 mg/L, ADWG 2011) to potentially be reached when flows <2500 ML/day.
KEY FINDINGS Monitoring results showed that the acid drainage issue in the LMRIA has persisted from 2011 to the present (Mosley et al., 2014a and recent EPA unpublished data). However, the acid drainage water was observed to be quickly diluted and neutralised (pH>6.5) in the localised mixing zone (20–40m) before entering the main river channel. Dissolved metals were also precipitated as solid phases (e.g. Fe and Al oxides) in this zone due to the increases in pH and redox potential (Simpson et al., 2013; Mosley et al., 2014c). However, detectable impacts from the acid drains occurred several km downstream from each acid drain and, given the potential for more widespread impacts under lower flows (Mosley and Fleming, 2010), the modelling focused on the river reach scale. The key question was whether low-flow conditions (not currently experienced, but potentially occurring in summer) could lead to metal concentrations near aesthetic or health guideline values in those river sections that are close to drinking water offtakes. Figure 8 illustrates the results of the initial ELCOM conservative tracer modelling approach applied to a number of different pumping and flow scenarios. The box and whisker plots show median, 25th and 75th quartile and minimum and maximum modelled values. The ’typical
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summer pumping’ discharges used in the model were obtained from true, metered pump-out information from irrigators. Pumping occurred in a startstop manner, either based on irrigator preference or according to set schedules. This type of pumping behaviour resulted in peaks and troughs in the downstream water quality depending on how the discharges from each site overlapped with each other in downstream direction. In comparison to a basic modelling approach, some of the peaks were higher because pump rates were faster than the annual average, but pumps were only in operation for some of the time, and peaks would occur when discharges from multiple sites overlapped. However, for >75% of the time water quality was predicted to be better than would have been (originally) expected under the worst-case assumption of continuous pumping. Based on this type of scenario, health guidelines in the untreated raw river water would not be exceeded for anticipated river flows greater than 2,500 ML/day. However, there was a possibility that the ADWG (ADWG, 2011) and SA Water treatment aesthetic guideline of 0.1 mg/L for Mn could be exceeded at very low flows (<2,500 ML/day) at Tailem Bend (Figure 8). Full geochemical simulations were undertaken to assess the ELCOM–CAEDYM model’s performance over a five-month period from November
The irrigation and limestone application trial on actively farmed irrigation land found that while temporary improvements in groundwater pH occurred at the time of irrigation (vertical lines), there was only slow improvement over time (Figure 9). Nevertheless, these results suggested that continued irrigation and limestone application could improve groundwater pH over time, although coating of limestone with gypsum and Fe oxides may reduce its longer-term reactivity. Direct hydrated lime application to acid drains had the effect of increasing the pH in the drain, resulting in markedly improved water quality in the river discharge zone (Figure 10). The third major mitigation trial involved lime application conducted on a retired pasture site, a landholding at Mobilong. Mixed outcomes were observed. On the one hand, it was a successful trial, confirming that lime injection, through deep subsoil ripping, could be achieved in a technically manageable manner by farmers themselves, using their own slightly modified equipment. However, while short-term improvements of acidity in groundwater in the treatment paddock were notable at first, especially just after the lime injection, acidity levels bounced back a few weeks later (Palmer et al., 2013). Nonetheless, the slight overall improvement indicated that slow natural rehabilitation could be possible over time. One of the reasons for the slow improvement was identified to be the potential lack of bioavailable carbon at depth in the soil profile, which could potentially inhibit the activity of sulfate reducing bacteria.
Limestone & Irrigation
Pre− lime dosing treatment in drains Post− lime dosing treatment in drains
Figure 9. Changes in groundwater pH pre-and post-limestone and irrigation applications.
LEARNINGS The unprecedented water quality issue and the potential impact of LMRIA acid drain discharges to the River Murray on major drinking water supplies required the timely development of strategies and potential actions, and the collaboration of all stakeholders involved. Key learnings of this interaction between farmers, government agencies, scientists and the water supplier included: 1. Recognition of the importance of science to underpin decision making, especially in light of decisions that can affect the livelihood of farming enterprises and affect drinking water supplies. • Targeted scientific investigations led to the understanding of the nature, extent and persistence of the acid sulfate soil – induced water quality issues in the (former) salt drains, turned acid drains. • Plume tracking demonstrated that overall impacts of the LMRIA acid drainage discharges on regional water quality have remained minor, with little notable change from background water quality between Mannum and Tailem Bend of key parameters such as Mn, Ni and alkalinity. • Modelling of the actual dilution, neutralisation and transport dynamics in-stream assisted in firming up the actual risks associated with acid drain pump-outs. Modelling, combined
Figure 10. River (immediate mixing zone) pH pre- and post-treatment with hydrated lime. Sampling location is at the boundary with the main river channel (approximately 20m from the drainage pump discharge via a submerged pipe near river bank). River flow was approximately 17,000 ML/day and drainage pump flow approximately 0.5m3/s.
with plume monitoring, resulted in a relatively confident assessment that drain discharges to the river, which were essential to keep farming viable, were not expected to increase metal concentrations in the river water near SA Water’s supply offtakes above aesthetic water quality guidelines at river flows above 2,500 ML/d. • Acidification mitigation trials provided additional evidence of the type of mitigation measures that were potentially promising in delivering improvements over time. While costly and having mixed initial results, the three trials (paddockscale irrigation/lime application trial; direct application of neutralising agents to acidic drains; and deep injection of lime using mole ploughs) illustrated that shortterm improvements of pH changes could be observed in deeper soil and groundwater layers. Given the expected persistence of acid stores in deeper soil and groundwater profiles, there is room for investigating further improvement actions, building on these trials. 2. Recognition that proactive engagement between government and the farming communities is an essential component to ensuring mitigation decisions are understood within the political and financial context of all involved, hence enabling their implementation to be widely supported.
• Early engagement within government and with the irrigation farming community allowed the mutual sharing of scientific knowledge and on-farm experience, especially in regards to acid drain pump-out schedules and responses of paddocks to changes in management (irrigation, liming, crop choices). • Based on close interactions with government and researchers, industry groups were able to fill research or investigation gaps (e.g. PIRSA, Dairy SA) to address the specific needs of the farming community, in addition to the research undertaken by government. • Contingency and action planning provided government agencies and key stakeholders a transparent and endorsed way in which mitigation actions could be undertaken if certain water quality trigger levels were reached.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The support of the Murray-Darling Basin Authority is gratefully acknowledged, as are the efforts of the SA LMRIA Acid Drainage Interagency Working Group. We also thank the local irrigators who enabled access to various sites for sampling and their cooperation with managing drainage pump operations. Last but not least, we would like to thank AWA’s technical editor and reviewers for their constructive comments on this paper.
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Technical Papers THE AUTHORS Jacqueline Frizenschaf (email: Jacqueline. Frizenschaf@sawater.com. au) is Manager Natural Assets (Catchments and Land) at SA Water. Jacqueline has been in the water resources and water quality business for over 20 years. Jacqueline worked as an Environmental and Groundwater Engineering Consultant with CH2M HILL in the US for 10 years, followed by a role with the South Australian Environment Protection Authority. Over the past years, she has been SA Water’s representative on an inter-agency working group finding solutions to the post-drought Lower Murray Reclaimed Irrigation Area (LMRIA) acidification and water quality issues. Dr Luke Mosley (email: luke.mosley@ waterqualityscience.org) is Principal Scientist, Water Quality Science. Luke worked for the EPA on River Murray water quality and environmental management issues from 2004–2014. Luke’s work for the EPA initially involved a major River Murray risk assessment, and managing environmental improvements and assessing water quality impacts arising from flood-irrigation drainage discharges to the Lower Murray during a $25M infrastructure rehabilitation project. Over the last four years Luke led the Lower Murray Reclaimed Irrigation Area acid drainage project, which has successfully managed risks to river water quality, ecosystems and drinking water supplies while enabling a droughtaffected farming industry to re-establish their operations and productivity. Dr Rob Daly (email: rob. email@example.com) is Senior Scientist at SA Water. Rob has worked for 12 years in the water industry on a range of research projects relating to source water quality and treatment. Rob has experience in modelling the dynamics of lakes, reservoirs and rivers including hydrodynamics, pollutant fate and transport, nutrient loads, algal growth and sediment chemistry. During the drought, Rob investigated the effect of record low flows on processes in the River Murray such as temperature stratification and salt water intrusion from Lake Alexandrina. The results of these investigations were used to develop
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a water quality model for the Lower River Murray and inform drinking water risk assessments and scenario/ contingency planning. David Palmer (email: david. firstname.lastname@example.org) is Senior Environment Officer at the South Australian Environment Protection Authority. In this role, David is widely considered as a key community liaison contact for the Lower River Murray region. David has also driven and directed various environmental management projects including the LMRIA Salt Drain Acidification and Air and Water Quality Monitoring in the Lower Lakes programs. David collaborates closely with other government agencies, community working groups and the private sector.
REFERENCES ADWG (2011): Australian Drinking Water Guidelines Paper 6. National Water Quality Management Strategy. National Health and Medical Research Council, Natural Resources Management Ministerial Council. Commonwealth of Australia. Canberra. Baldwin DS & Fraser M (2009): Rehabilitation Options for Inland Waterways Impacted by Sulfidic Sediments – A Synthesis. Journal of Environmental Management, 91, 2, November–December 2009, pp 311–319. DEH (2009): Department for Environment and Heritage, 2009. Management of Acid Sulfate Soils in the Lower Murray Lakes. Technical Fact Sheet. April 2009. Dent DL & Pons, LJ (1995): A World Perspective on Acid Sulphate Soils. Geoderma, 67, pp 263–276. Dreverman D (2013): Responding to Extreme Drought in the Murray Darling Basin, Australia. Chapter 24 in K Schwabe, J Albiac, J Connor, R Hassan, L Meza-Gonzalez (eds). Drought in Arid and Semi-Arid Environments: A MultiDisciplinary and Cross-Country Perspective. Heidelberg: Springer. EPA (2014): Lower Murray Reclaimed Irrigation Area (LMRIA) Acid Drainage Project: Final Summary Report. Environment Protection Authority, South Australia. Available at: www. epa.sa.gov.au/xstd_files/Water/Report/lmria_ drainage_report.pdf EPHC and NRMMC (2011): National Guidance on Acid Sulfate Soils: National Guidance for the Management of Acid Sulfate Soils in Inland Aquatic Ecosystems. Environment Protection and Heritage Council and the Natural Resource Management Ministerial Council. Canberra, ACT. Hipsey MR (2013): Computational Aquatic Ecosystem Dynamics Model: CAEDYM v3.3 User Guide. Centre for Water Research, University of Western Australia.
Jong T & Parry DL (2006): Microbial Sulfate Reduction Under Sequentially Acidic Conditions in an Upflow Anaerobic Packed Bed Bioreactor. Water Research, 40, 13, pp 2561–2571. Leyden E, Palmer D, Scott P, Zammit B & Mosley LM (2012): Lower Murray Reclaimed Irrigation Area Acidification Risk Project – Preliminary Monitoring Report 2011/2012. Published by Environment Protection Authority. Available at: www.epa.sa.gov.au/xstd_files/Water/Report/ Preliminary%20Report_LMRIA_Final.pdf MDBA (2011): Acid Sulfate Soils in the Murray Darling Basin. Published by the Murray-Darling Basin Authority. May 2011. Mosley L & Fleming N (2009): Reductions in Water Use Following Rehabilitation of a FloodIrrigated Area on the Murray River in South Australia. Agricultural Water Management, 96, pp 1679–1682. Mosley LM, Zammit B, Leyden E, Heneker TM, Hipsey MR, Skinner D & Aldridge KT (2012): The Impact of Extreme Low Flows on the Water Quality of the Lower Murray River and Lakes (South Australia). Water Resources Management, 26, pp 3923–3946. Mosley LM, Palmer D, Leyden E, Cook F, Zammit B, Shand P, Baker A & Fitzpatrick RW (2014a): Acidification of Floodplains Due to River Level Decline During Drought. Journal of Contaminant Hydrology, 161, 10–23. Elsevier. Mosley LM, Zammit B, Jolley A & Barnett L (2014b): Acidification of Lake Water Due to Drought. Journal of Hydrology, 511, pp 484–493. Mosley LM, Palmer D, Leyden E, Fitzpatrick R & Shand P (2014c): Changes in Acidity and Metal Geochemistry in Soils, Groundwater, Drain and River Water in the Lower Murray River After a Severe Drought. Science of the Total Environment, 485–486, pp 281–291. Mosley LM & Daly R (2014): LMRIA Acidification Project – Modelling of Acid Drainage Discharges to the Lower River Murray. Environment Protection Authority and SA Water, South Australia. Available at: www.epa.sa.gov.au/xstd_files/Water/Report/ lmria_acid_modelling.pdf Palmer D, Leyden E, Fogg M, Mettam P & Mosley LM (2013): Lower Murray Reclaimed Irrigation Area Acidification Risk Project – Scoping and Trialling Management Options. September 2013. Published by Environment Protection Authority. Available at: www.epa. sa.gov.au/xstd_files/Water/Report/lmria_acid_ scoping.pdf Simpson SL, Vardanega CR, Jarolimek C, Jolley DF, Angel BM & Mosley LM (2013): Metal Speciation and Bioavailability Changes During Discharge and Neutralisation of Acidic Drainage Water. Chemosphere, 103, pp 172–180.
UPDATING INTEGRATED CATCHMENT MANAGEMENT TO IMPROVE THE CLIMATE RESILIENCE OF WATERDEPENDENT COMMUNITIES A review of the benefits of combining Adaptive Co-Management and Integrated Catchment Management to provide more effective, enduring and sustainable water management G Edeson
ABSTRACT The current and predicted impacts of climate change indicate significant pressures on water availability. This will create wide-ranging pressures on the agricultural and water sectors, as well as water-dependent communities. Dealing effectively with these pressures will require the ability to respond adaptively through experimentation, learning, innovation and evolution. Current policy models do not encourage learning and adaptation. Integrated Catchment Management provides a strong avenue for channelling external scientific evidence into a management system, but as a model it is less successful at integrating local knowledge and practice. Another model for water management, Adaptive CoManagement (ACM), has been shown to be highly effective at incorporating local knowledge and practice, and delivering effective water management that is enduring and socially sustainable. Social innovation and learning are key factors in the climate resilience of resource-dependent communities. Combining the social strengths of ACM with the scientific rigour of ICM to reflect the dynamics of the social, environmental and economic drivers of community impacts on water presents an opportunity to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of water management, as well as creating a forum for social innovation and learning.
CLIMATE AND WATER Climate change is altering the spatial and temporal availability of water as well as changing the demands and expectations of it as a critical resource.
In Australia, significant changes to the water cycle are expected to accompany rising temperatures. These changes will be felt through increased variability in the intensity and frequency of precipitation, with both more floods and more droughts (Hughes, 2003). These changes in rainfall frequency and distribution will have environmental, economic and social impacts. The season-to-season experience of climate change will be felt through greater extremes and variability, putting pressure on people whose responses are constrained by rigid management structures. Significant problems, therefore, arise for both traditional and scientific knowledge systems’ ability to forecast and respond to weather and climate variability (Agrawala et al., 2001; David & Marshall, 2008; Gupta et al., 2010). In agriculture, the most commonly discussed adaptive responses to seasonal climate variability are increasing water storage infrastructure or selecting different types of crops. As well as these options, there are also significant benefits to improving the adaptability and responsiveness of water management. The drivers of global change, and the associated pressures on limited water resources, are outside the capability of any one catchment to control (Kerr & John, 2007; Chapagain & Hoekstra, 2008). However, there is significant scope, and need, to develop responses to these pressures at a catchment level as that is the level at which water can most effectively be managed (Engle et al., 2011). These management responses need to be socially, environmentally
and economically sustainable, and to be sustainable they need to reflect the social, environmental and economic dynamics of the catchment. The dynamic nature of catchments creates significant problems for water management policy. Catchments are complex adaptive systems – they have dynamic interrelationships between social, ecological and economic factors (Morton & Padgitt, 2005). This complexity can lead to unintended and unforeseeable consequences from management interventions. Developing management systems at a catchment level depends on more than just the biophysical characteristics of the catchment and its resources. Water management is a social intervention that relies on social processes to achieve its aims. Other determinants include power relations within the catchment, the values and priorities given to water (Röling & Maarleveld, 1999; MeinzenDick & Bakker, 2001), and the extent to which stakeholders are able to act collaboratively and to learn and adapt as a group (Maarleveld & Dabgbégnon, 1999; Mostert et al., 2007).
MANAGING WATER Views on water management are constantly changing. Globally, there has been a philosophical shift away from command and control to decentralised, integrated and adaptive management (Gleick, 2000; Engle et al., 2011), and from the ‘hard path’ of infrastructure building to the ‘soft path’ of community involvement (Gleick, 2003). The approach to water management on the ground, however, has remained very much centralised and hierarchically organised.
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A dam in the Ringarooma catchment. The current period of environmental regulation relies strongly on top-down water management, with central governments amassing expertise and resources to develop policy to seek equitable and sustainable access to resources. The centralised nature of policy development has led to the adoption of panaceas, or solutions believed to provide the universal solution to the identified problems of the day. However, “today’s solutions are tomorrow’s problems” (Senge, 2006). It is important for any governance structure to be able to recognise where its mental models and underlying assumptions do not accord with reality and then adapt them (Pahl-Wostl, 2009). A catchment is more than the sum of its water, community and industry. Catchments are complex systems with unique physical, environmental, economic and social drivers (Morton & Padgitt, 2005). This complexity means that an attempt to develop a single model through which to manage a multiplicity of catchments won’t succeed unless it has the flexibility to reflect local circumstances, incorporate tacit and explicit system knowledge, and learn and evolve from experience (PahlWostl et al., 2008). Top-down interventions using “idealised design principles based on institutional and technological panaceas” (Pahl Wostl et al., 2012, p. 25) were applied to water management without the monitoring, evaluation and improvement
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structures that would have led to earlier recognition of, and response to, failure (Gleick, 2003; Meinzen-Dick, 2007; PahlWostl et al., 2012). A dominant concept in environmental management is Hardin’s ‘Tragedy of the Commons’, which posits that communities will inevitably, through self-interest and an incomplete understanding of their impacts, degrade their common resources through over-exploitation (Hardin, 1968). However, humans are not purely self-interested. Hardin’s view of humans as flawed individuals who act only in self-interest and, thus, cannot manage resources without government intervention is flawed. It captures only one aspect of humanity, missing our ability to collaborate to achieve a common goal (Röling & Maarleveld, 1999). While there are numerous historical instances of greed, conflict and resource degradation, a defining feature of humans is the ability to collaborate and strategise. Throughout history, there have been few violent conflicts over water (Allouche, 2011), and where there has been the potential for conflict people have usually cooperated to manage their water and avoid conflict (Stetter et al., 2011). It remains to be seen whether this preference for cooperation continues to hold true through the concurrent and growing human, climatic, economic and biophysical pressures of global change.
Recognition of the ability to collaborate to avoid the Tragedy of the Commons led researchers to seek to understand how it is that some communities had irrigation systems that had been operating for hundreds and even thousands of years (Axelrod, 2010). At the forefront of this was Elinor Ostrom, who developed a framework called Institutional Analysis for Development (IAD) to analyse catchments that had long-enduring irrigation systems (Ostrom, 1993). Using this framework she was able to identify eight principles for managing water in a bounded catchment (Ostrom, 2011). These were later extended to all common pool resources. A common pool resource is “a natural resource system, often characterised by two attributes: (1) excludability – it is very difficult to exclude a beneficiary from deriving a benefit from the resource, and (2) subtractability – once the beneficiary derives the benefit it becomes unavailable to other potential beneficiaries (Sarker et al., 2008). Ostrom’s eight principles are (Ostrom, 1993): 1.
Define clear group boundaries;
Match rules governing use of common goods to local needs and conditions;
Ensure that those affected by the rules can participate in modifying the rules;
Make sure the rule-making rights of community members are respected by outside authorities;
Develop a system, carried out by community members, for monitoring members’ behaviour;
Use graduated sanctions for rule violators;
Provide accessible, low-cost means for dispute resolution;
Build responsibility for governing the common resource in nested tiers from the lowest level up to the entire interconnected system.
The development of these principles and Ostrom’s work on community-led management of common pool resources saw her awarded the Nobel Prize in economics in 2009. The IAD framework identified core structures that are essential to enduring resource management institutions in communities. Studies of water management using the IAD framework then identified the dynamic factors that underpin the resilience of these structures. Key among these is the concept of social learning – the ability of a community or group to learn collectively and use that learning to alter its behaviour to suit changing circumstances (Maarleveld & Dabgbégnon, 1999). Social learning revolves around “processes of multi-actor interactions, embedded in a specific societal and environmental structural context and leading to specific outcomes” (PahlWostl et al., 2012, p. 574). The way in which social learning occurs, and the extent to which it is an effective tool for change, is a product of power relations (Lebel et al., 2010), the ability to publicly deliberate (Fey et al., 2008) and the agency of individuals and the group (Pahl-Wostl et al., 2008; Lebel et al., 2010). Empirical analyses have shown that key impediments to social learning are centralised political systems, rigid bureaucracy, secrecy, poor public access to information and centralised economic systems (Mostert et al., 2007). Social learning occurs within a group and leads to societal learning, or change at a level broader than the original learning community, by modifying the institutional, structural and societal context (Pahl-Wostl et al., 2008). Studies of social learning in water management underscore the need for applied understanding and practical
uses of information, rather than just the provision of information, as this creates an environment for reflection, experimentation and evolution. This learning can be understood and evaluated using the triple-loop concept (Hargrove, 2002) to understand the extent of learning and the extent to which it has changed practice. Single-loop learning is adjusting action incrementally, without deep analysis or questioning underlying assumptions. Double-loop learning involves questioning cause-effect relationships and assumptions, but without addressing the values and beliefs that create and justify those assumptions. Triple-loop learning sees people questioning and adjusting their world views where they do not reflect the outside world (Pahl-Wostl, 2009).
WATER MANAGEMENT MODELS Water management is a social process. Resource users have day-to-day interactions with those resources and often have a life-long association with the catchment, giving them an in-depth understanding of its dynamics. It therefore makes sense to place human agency at the centre of any management framework or theory. There are currently two dominant approaches to managing human impacts on water, Adaptive Co-Management and Integrated Catchment Management. Adaptive Co-Management (ACM) is explicitly based on experimentation and learning to manage uncertainty and complexity. It is a bottom-up, community-led model of resource management, which places resource users and their knowledge at the centre of resource management. ACM is “a continuous problem-solving process, rather than a fixed state, involving extensive deliberation, negotiation and joint learning within problem-solving networks” (Carlsson & Berkes, 2005, p. 65). In this way, power sharing and community involvement are the result of the process, rather than its starting point (Carlsson & Berkes, 2005). In ACM, stakeholders are seen as partners or leaders in the implementation of water management policy. The other major model for managing water is Integrated Catchment Management (ICM), which the Global Water Partnership describes as “a process which promotes the coordinated development and management of water, land, and related resources, in order to
maximise the resultant economic and social welfare in an equitable manner without compromising the sustainability of vital ecosystems” (GWP, 2010). Its roots can be traced to the 1977 United Nations Water Conference and seeks to refocus management from centralised bureaucratic structures to the catchment level (Biswas, 2004). This refocussing sought to capture and accommodate the complexity of the interactions between the socioeconomic, ecological and hydrological aspects of the water resource. IWRM has a strong focus on stakeholder involvement and is an attempt to move beyond centralised governance. However, it retains many elements of top-down resource management (McDonnell, 2008; Engle et al., 2011). As ICM is practised in Australia, consultation is seen as a step in policy development, where a series of documents are presented to the community, feedback is sought on select questions and then medium-term policy is written, identifying the conditions under which the resource can be accessed and how that is to be enforced. The view of stakeholders in ICM is that they are another resource to be managed, alongside ecosystem function and services, economic objectives and central policy objectives, and it is still a process that is done to a catchment by an external body (McDonnell, 2008). Both ICM and ACM aim to incorporate learning and adaptability into their framework, although they have different starting points and different ideas about who does the learning and adapting, and how. According to Engle et al. (2011) they have comparable goals, as they both seek to “combine different institutions and mechanisms that aim to broadly: (1) increase effectiveness through integration across social, ecological, and hydrological systems; (2) add legitimacy and promote public acceptance through stakeholder participation, cooperation, decentralisation and democratic decisionmaking; (3) incorporate technical expertise through inclusion of different forms of knowledge and promotion of social learning; and (4) promote flexibility and adaptability through experimentation and learning in managing water resources” (Engle et al., 2011). Despite having similar objectives, ACM and ICM have very different underlying assumptions. ICM is an outcomesoriented approach, which assumes
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Technical Papers that at some point it is possible to fully understand a catchment and then to develop a management response that takes the catchment towards a desired, static end-state. ACM is a processfocused approach that sees a catchment as a poorly definable set of complex relationships, where changes in one part have flow-through effects for the whole catchment, and where many relationships are not obvious until after a change in behaviour. In ACM approaches, this complexity means that management never ends, but rather that management happens by influencing the social and ecological dynamics of the resource system to foster resilience and behaviour that is sustainable. The extent to which either model can promote enduring water use patterns in catchments depends very much on the characteristics of each catchment. Catchments that fit, or can be supported in order to fit, Ostrom’s eight principles are not ubiquitous (Kerr & John, 2007). Where resource use is non-excludable, where appropriate social mechanisms cannot function, or where power relations are too skewed, it is not realistic to establish full co-management. Largescale, multi-state catchments are ill-suited to a purely bottom-up management style, due to the need for political negotiation among stakeholders; yet purely topdown approaches will miss stakeholders’ system knowledge and motivators, which can lead to regulatory failure or unfair, socially unsustainable circumstances. In many catchments it is necessary to combine ACM and ICM.
CASE STUDY: COMBINING ICM AND ACM Recently the focus of water research, and to a lesser extent policy, has been on combining aspects of ICM and ACM to develop water management methods that are viable and relevant at a catchment level. This is the search for an approach that is “at once adaptive and integrated, and reflects the need for a better way to solve the overlapping structural and procedural problems … which ICM and ACM originally intended to consider, albeit separately” (Engle et al., 2011). A practical example of a combined model comes from the Ringarooma catchment in north-eastern Tasmania. The Ringarooma catchment has a large number of dairy operations that rely on irrigation from the river to maintain productivity. The demands for dairy irrigation water rise as temperatures
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increase and rainfalls drop off towards the end of summer, which places high pressure on the river’s water levels at the same time as inflows decrease.
of innovative ideas being put forward to address water security issues that are broader than just avoiding the cease-to-take trigger.
To maintain economic function and protect the river, the state government’s Department of Primary Industry, Parks, Water and Environment works with irrigators to strategically coordinate releases of privately stored irrigation water. These releases are timed to mitigate low flows in the river, avoiding cease-to-take orders and protecting environmental values set by water management policy. This is supported by a sensor network deployed by Sense-T, CSIRO and the University of Tasmania, which gives realtime information on river status from a range of points around the catchment to support monitoring and evaluation of the process’s impacts.
Using Hargroves’ triple-loop learning concept, the catchment community has moved from single-loop learning (a yes/ no approach to compliance with policy) to double-loop learning (re-imagining the cause-effect relationships in water policy and finding new ways to work with them), and there are signs of triple-loop learning (re-defining their role in water management from their impacts on water levels to look more broadly and holistically at their catchment and community).
This process is an example of experimentation by the community and the Department to find ways to achieve the policy targets while optimising the concurrent social, economic and environmental outcomes for the catchment. Water releases coordinated by the Department have successfully avoided cease-to-take triggers over the past two irrigation seasons. As well as providing a sophisticated and collaborative management response that achieves policy goals, the use of this model has created an ongoing forum between the community, government and researchers on water management. This forum brings these stakeholders together regularly to discuss ideas on river health, water management and water security. There is already evidence in the forum
The upper Ringarooma.
CONCLUSIONS The design and implementation of water policy has ramifications, not only for how people use water but also for the viability of industries, and people’s and communities’ willingness to experiment, innovate and share knowledge. At a national level, water policy is going through a period of significant change, with the future landscape still unclear. As the consequences of this change flow through to industry and water-dependent communities, it is important for water management bodies, the water sector and the community to consider how the changes can be leveraged to achieve positive social, economic and environmental outcomes. Policy development and implementation needs to look for avenues to recreate the conditions of Ostrom’s eight principles and look for ways to foster a community’s ability to manage its resources and innovate. At the design phase it is important to work to understand and
integrate local knowledge and practice into the goals and delivery of policy, while during the implementation phase it is important to have the flexibility to allow for rapid responses to emerging issues, as well as the ability to test and evaluate innovative ideas that help achieve the goals of the policy. Experiences from around the world show that not only do water-dependent communities fare better when they have a greater say in the day-to-day management of their resource, but the resource is also sustainably managed. ICM has significant strengths, especially around the establishment of scientific targets, but it does not explicitly foster social learning and innovation, which are critical to the long-term sustainability of water management. This can be incrementally improved by integrating the social learning processes from ACM and combining them with the strengths of ICM. As the pressures of climate change increasingly affect waterdependent communities, water policy will need to allow for more and more experimentation and rapid response to emerging conditions.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The Author would like to thank Ringarooma Water Users Group and the Tasmanian Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment for their time and knowledge, as well as Sense-T for funding research into water management in the Ringarooma catchment.
THE AUTHOR Greg Edeson (email: Gregor.Edeson@utas.edu. au) is a doctoral candidate in the School of Land and Food at the University of Tasmania. The comanagement scheme is relatively new and the Author is happy to discuss it with anyone who is interested.
REFERENCES Agrawala S, Broad K & Guston DH (2001): Integrating Climate Forecasts and Societal Decision Making: Challenges to an Emergent Boundary Organization. Science, Technology & Human Values, 26, 4, pp 454-477. Allouche J (2011): The Sustainability and Resilience of Global Water and Food Systems: Political Analysis of the Interplay Between Security, Resource Scarcity, Political Systems and Global Trade. Food Policy, 36, SUPPL. 1, pp S3–S8.
Axelrod R (2010): Beyond the Tragedy of the Commons: A Discussion of Governing the Commons: The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action. Perspectives on Politics, 8, 2, pp 580–582. Biswas AK (2004): Integrated Water Resources Management: A Reassessment. Water International, 29, 2, pp 248–256. Carlsson L & Berkes F (2005): Co-Management: Concepts and Methodological Implications. Journal of Environmental Management, 75, 1, pp 65–76. Chapagain AK & Hoekstra AY (2008): The Global Component of Freshwater Demand and Supply: An Assessment of Virtual Water Flows Between Nations as a Result of Trade in Agricultural and Industrial Products. Water International, 33, 1, pp 19–32. David BL & Marshall BB (2008): Why Are Agricultural Impacts of Climate Change So Uncertain? The Importance of Temperature Relative to Precipitation. Environmental Research Letters, 3, 3, p 034007. Engle N, Nathan LE, Owen RJ, Maria Carmen L & Donald RN (2011): Integrated and Adaptive Management of Water Resources: Tensions, Legacies, and the Next Best Thing. Ecology and Society, 16, 1, p 654. Fey S, Susan F, Corry B & Cornelia F (2008): The Measurement of Community Capitals through Research. Online Journal of Rural Research and Policy, 1, 1. Gleick PH (2000): A Look at Twenty-First Century Water Resources Development. Water International, 25, 1, pp 127–138. Gleick PH (2003): Global Freshwater Resources: Soft-Path Solutions for the 21st Century. Science, 302, 5650, pp 1524–1528. Gupta J, Termeer C, Klostermann J, Meijerink S, van den Brink M, Jong P, Nooteboom S & Bergsma E (2010): The Adaptive Capacity Wheel: A Method to Assess the Inherent Characteristics of Institutions to Enable the Adaptive Capacity of Society. Environmental Science & Policy, 13, 6, pp 459–471. GWP (2010): What is IWRM? Global Water Partnership, viewed 8/10/2013 2013, www. gwp.org/en/The-Challenge/What-is-IWRM/. Hardin G (1968): The Tragedy of the Commons. Science, 162, 3859, pp 1243–1248. Hughes L (2003): Climate Change and Australia: Trends, Projections and Impacts. Austral Ecology, 28, 4, pp 423–443. Kerr J & John K (2007): Watershed Management: Lessons from Common Property Theory. International Journal of the Commons, 1, 1, pp 89–110. Lebel L, Grothmann T & Siebenhüner B (2010): The Role of Social Learning in Adaptiveness: Insights from Water Management. International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, 10, 4, pp 333–353.
Maarleveld M & Dabgbégnon C (1999): Managing Natural Resources: A Social Learning Perspective. Agriculture and Human Values, 16, 3, pp 267–280. McDonnell RA (2008): Challenges for Integrated Water Resources Management: How Do We Provide the Knowledge to Support Truly Integrated Thinking? International Journal of Water Resources Development, 24, 1, pp 131–143. Meinzen-Dick R (2007): Beyond Panaceas in Water Institutions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States. 104, pp 15200–15205. Meinzen-Dick R & Bakker M (2001): Water Rights and Multiple Water Uses – Framework and Application to Kirindi Oya Irrigation System Sri Lanka. Irrigation and Drainage Systems, 15, 2, pp 129–148. Morton L & Padgitt S (2005): Selecting SocioEconomic Metrics for Watershed Management. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, 103, 1–3, pp 83–98. Mostert E, Erik M, Claudia P-W, Yvonne R & Brad S (2007): Social Learning in European RiverBasin Management: Barriers and Fostering Mechanisms from 10 River Basins. Ecology and Society, 12, 1, p 10. Ostrom E (1993): Design Principles in LongEnduring Irrigation Institutions. Water Resources Research, 29, 7, pp 1907–1912. Ostrom E (2011): Background on the Institutional Analysis and Development Framework. Policy Studies Journal, 39, 1, pp 7–27. Pahl-Wostl C (2009): A Conceptual Framework for Analysing Adaptive Capacity and Multi-Level Learning Processes in Resource Governance Regimes. Global Environmental Change, 19, 3, pp 354–365. Pahl-Wostl C, Lebel L, Knieper C & Nikitina E (2012): From Applying Panaceas to Mastering Complexity: Toward Adaptive Water Governance in River Basins. Environmental Science & Policy, 23, 0, pp 24–34. Pahl-Wostl C, Tàbara D, Bouwen R, Craps M, Dewulf A, Mostert E, Ridder D & Taillieu T (2008): The Importance of Social Learning and Culture for Sustainable Water Management. Ecological Economics, 64, 3, pp 484–495. Röling N & Maarleveld M (1999): Facing Strategic Narratives: In Which We Argue Interactive Effectiveness. Agriculture and Human Values, 16, 3, pp 295–308. Sarker A, Ross H & Shrestha K (2008): Interdependence of Common-Pool Resources: Lessons from a Set of Nested Catchments in Australia. Human Ecology, 36, 6, pp 821–834. Senge PM (2006): The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization. Random House, London, Sydney. Stetter S, Herschinger E, Teichler T & Albert M (2011): Conflicts About Water: Securitizations in a Global Context. Cooperation and Conflict, 46, 4, pp 441–459.
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FIELD MONITORING OF A STORMWATER TREATMENT TRAIN WITH PIT BASKETS AND FILTER MEDIA CARTRIDGES A review of protocol criteria relating to a treatment train at a townhouse development in South-East Queensland D Drapper, A Hornbuckle
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ABSTRACT Field monitoring of a stormwater treatment train commenced in late 2013 at a townhouse development located at Ormiston in South-East Queensland. The research was undertaken to evaluate the effectiveness of a 200-micron mesh pit basket and a media filtration cartridge system for removing suspended solids and nutrients from stormwater runoff. Monitoring is being undertaken on all events, including bypass events. The monitoring protocol was developed with Queensland University of Technology (QUT), reflecting the Auckland Regional Council Proprietary Device Evaluation Protocol (PDEP) with some minor improvements reflecting local conditions. The applied protocol is presented for discussion and variations from the PDEP described. Many of the applied protocol criteria are drafted in accordance with the Stormwater Australia draft national protocol released in December 2014. Monitoring is still underway to comply with the agreed protocol of 15 events. In keeping with a commitment to advise industry of the results after the one year of testing, the authors can report an observed Efficiency Ratio (ER) of 38% TSS, 20% for TP and 31% TN for the pit basket, and an Efficiency Ratio of 90% TSS, 54% TP and 36% TN for the cartridge filter. Keywords: stormwater, monitoring, protocols, suspended solids, nitrogen, phosphorus, filters.
INTRODUCTION The release of the Queensland State Planning Policy (SPP) requires local planning schemes to integrate the state’s interest in water quality by
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applying stormwater management objectives relevant to the climatic region, or demonstrating current best practice environmental management for urban developments. The SPP seeks to facilitate innovative and locally appropriate solutions to achieve the stormwater management design objectives (Qld Government, 2013). Several documents have been released over the past decade providing guidance on the design, modelling, construction, implementation and maintenance of stormwater quality management measures to achieve these objectives (Water by Design, 2010; Melbourne Water, 2010; Mackay Regional Council, 2008). These guidelines have typically focused on the constructed “natural” treatment measures including swales, biofiltration and wetlands. Some of the guidelines include sections for demonstrating the performance of other types of stormwater treatment solutions. However, when compared with international evaluation protocols, it is apparent that the necessary detail to demonstrate performance to local conditions is omitted. This paper reviews these protocols, develops a protocol suitable for local conditions, and applies it to testing an innovative stormwater treatment train.
INTERNATIONAL PROTOCOLS In the United States, there is a variety of assessment and verification programs. The New Jersey Center for Advanced Technologies (NJCAT) and Washington Department of Ecology (WasDoE) are
generally the most recognised and the longest-operating programs. The NJCAT assessment protocols (2003) include both laboratory and field-testing; however, they focus on total suspended solids (TSS). The Stormwater Equipment Manufacturer’s Association (SWEMA, 2013) improved on the NJCAT protocol by further refining the laboratory testing protocols to address hydrodynamic separators and filtration technologies. These protocols focused on defining the test procedures for TSS and Suspended Sediment Concentration (SSC), Particle Size Distribution (PSD), scour/re-suspension and maintenance. Some protocols are moving away from TSS tests towards SSC testing due to the potential for the sub-sampling methodology to bias the results, especially when larger-diameter, more dense particles are present in the sample. The key difference between the two methods is that the TSS method extracts a sub-sample from the full composite, whereas the SSC method uses all of the composite sample (APHA, 2005). The use of the SSC method is well accepted by the scientific community as being the more accurate measure of suspended sediment (SWEMA, 2010). The New Jersey Department of Environment Protection (NJDEP) developed a Tier II stormwater field monitoring protocol under the Technology Acceptance and Reciprocity Partnership between New Jersey and the member states (2006). This protocol requires the items detailed in Table 1. The Washington Department of Ecology (WasDoE) has developed two field test
Technical Papers LOCAL FIELD TESTING SITE DETAILS
protocols for (manufactured) stormwater treatment devices that include short-residence time systems (e.g. Gross Pollutant Traps) and longresidence time measures, such as wetlands and biofilters. The protocol for the short-residence time measures is also summarised in Table 1.
The stormwater treatment train includes rainwater tanks for roof water, pit baskets with a 200 micron mesh bag in each of the three gully pits, and at the end of the pipe drainage network,
The pit baskets are designed to capture the gross pollutants and coarse sediment leaving the pervious and impervious ground surfaces. The cartridge filters utilise a perlite, zeolite and activated alumina media to provide physical filtration and adsorption of stormwater pollutants, including
Table 1. International protocols requirements for testing the efficacy of stormwater quality treatment devices. Parameter Device
Auto-samplers, flow-weighted or discrete samples composited later
Mean TSS influent concentrations
Mean particle size
Number of storm events tested
Minimum 15, preferred 20 events
15 events, may require more if statistical significance not demonstrated
At least 3 events
At least 3 events
To be provided – not specified
Permitted outside NJ area providing influent TSS concentrations and PSD criteria are satisfied
Washington State sites preferred
Auckland sites preferred
Particle size distribution analysis Test sites
To be provided – not specified
Minimum storm duration
Maximum storm duration
Minimum rainfall volume per event
6 hours with less than 1mm rain
6 hours (72 hours)
Minimum inter-event period Minimum hydrograph sampling
Goal – 100%, minimum first 60% by volume
For storms < 24 hours – 75% of the hydrograph by volume, For storms > 24 hours – at least 75% of the first 24 hours of the hydrograph by volume Minimum 10 influent and 10 effluent samples for each event. As few as 7 may be accepted subject to justification
At least the first 50% rising limb of the hydrograph
Minimum number of water sub-samples collected
Minimum 6 influent and 6 effluent samples for each event. Goal – 10 subsamples.
Testing to maximum Treatable Flow Rate (TFR)
> 2 events must exceed 75% of TFR
At least 3 events should exceed 75% of the water quality volume/ treatment flow rates of the design & 1 event greater than TFR
Total Suspended Solids (TSS) & Suspended Solids Concentration (SSC)
Test using both methods
Minimum 8 influent and 8 effluent samples for each event
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Auckland Regional Council (ARC) published a Proprietary Devices Evaluation Protocol (PDEP) for Stormwater Quality Treatment Devices (2012). As stated in its preamble, the protocol was developed to assist ARC in evaluating alternate devices, and to provide clarity to vendors offering them. To satisfy the requirements of the PDEP, testing for the Local Pilot Trial (LPT) route must meet the requirements detailed in Table 1. ARC discontinued this program in 2014 due to lack of funding.
Testing has been underway for more than 12 months at a new townhouse complex at Ormiston, about 28 kilometres east of the Brisbane CBD. Runoff from the site enters the local drainage network via grated inlets and is transported to an underground chamber for further treatment and detention prior to its discharge into the Council network. The site has a total area of 2,028m2, with approximately 1,140m2 of roof area (56%), 500m2 of impervious driveway (25%) and the balance, 388m2 (19%) of pervious area.
an underground vault with two media cartridge filters. The surface runoff from the site drains through the pit baskets into the pipe network, whereas the roof water overflow from the rainwater tanks enters the pipe network beneath the pit baskets. This configuration is a typical stormwater treatment train for a medium- to high-density residential development in South-East Queensland. The site is also representative of typical applications for the pit basket and media filter treatment train.
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Figure 2. Schematic of runoff pathways for Ormiston. Red arrows indicate stormwater entering StormSack pit baskets. Excess rainfall (blue lines) enters the central drainage pipe then passes into the filter vault.
Figure 3. Schematic cross-section of filter vault with stormwater treatment system. Water sampling locations indicated by red dots.
LOCAL FIELD TESTING METHODOLOGY Figure 1. Townhouse development at Ormiston, Queensland, showing part of the impervious driveway area, landscaping and filter cartridge ready for installation. nutrients. Overflow from the small (3kL per dwelling) rainwater tanks enters the pipe drainage network beneath the pit baskets, and hence will provide significant dilution to the stormwater water quality exiting the pit baskets. Figure 1 is a photograph of the monitoring site. Figure 2 is a schematic of the catchment, and Figure 3 is a schematic cross-section of the filter vault and monitoring installation. Runoff samples are collected by 4 ISCO GLS auto-samplers at the locations shown in Figure 3. Runoff is sampled as it leaves the driveway surface and enters the StormSack pit basket. A second sampler collects filtered water from a tray beneath the pit basket. As the roof water enters the pipe drainage network beneath the pit baskets and provides dilution to the surface runoff, it was necessary to include a third sampler to determine the water quality of runoff in the conveyance pipe. A fourth sampler collects water from the outlet pipe of the cartridge SPEL filters, which are located upstream of the baffle wall in the detention chamber.
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Due to the lack of formalised testing protocols in Australia, the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC), Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Griffith University (GU) and SPEL have formulated testing protocols based on an amalgam of the PDEP, WashDoE and SWEMA protocols. The protocols have been formalised to deliver a robust, scientifically defensible outcome. Even so, the protocols developed at the initiation stage have needed refinement once actual site data was observed, which was influenced by local hydrological conditions and equipment constraints. The protocol applied at the Ormiston test location and monitored by QUT is detailed in Table 2. Many of these protocol criteria appear in the Stormwater Quality Improvement Device Evaluation Protocol released as a consultation draft by Stormwater Australia (December 2014). The sampling program listed in Table 2 is triggered by two criteria. Firstly, > 2mm of rainfall over a rolling 30-minute window must occur, based on field experience. This was programmed into the datalogger to ensure sufficient runoff was available in the pipe to collect samples. Rainfall is measured onsite by a 0.2mm Waterlog tipping bucket rain
gauge. The second criterion is flow volume, where a sample is initiated after 1,000L of stormwater discharge passes each of the two pipe sampling points shown in Figure 3. Flow rate/ volume was measured by two Starflow ultrasonic probes installed at the inlet and outlet pipes of the concrete chamber shown in Figure 3. For the pit basket, where flow measurement was impracticable, sample intervals were triggered at 0.5mm rainfall intervals. As the basket effectively has zero residence time, the inlet and outlet samples were triggered simultaneously. Ultrasonic probes were selected for flow measurement due to a reported accuracy of ±2% for flow and ±0.25% for depth (Unidata, 2008). This accuracy is comparable to flumes and weirs, but without the associated interference with water quality, especially TSS, observed with the latter. A 1,000L volume of water was chosen as the sampling interval, as this is 50% of the cartridge treatment device volume. This volume also corresponded to 0.5mm of runoff over the site, assuming zero losses. Analysis of a smaller flow volume trigger indicated that it could challenge the physical limitations of the samplers’ purge/collection cycle (about a 90-second cycle). All the sub-samples collected during a runoff event were composited within the sampler in a 9L bottle. Each sub-sample was 200mL to ensure that
Table 2. QUT-SPEL Field Testing Protocol Requirements for the StormSack filter and SPELFilter treatment devices. Bainbridge St, Ormiston
Minimum storm duration
Medium density townhouse property
Stormwater treatment device type
Full scale – 200 micron mesh pit basket and radially-wound media filter combination
Target number of storm events tested
Minimum rainfall depth per event
Minimum inter-event period
Minimum hydrograph sampling
First 60% of hydrograph
Flow rates tested
At least 3 events >75% of the treatable flow rate (TFR) with 1 exceeding the TFR.
Minimum number of water sub-samples collected per event
Minimum 8 influent and 8 effluent subsamples for each event (each sub-sample is 200mL)
Auto-sampler, flow-weighted in 1,000L intervals (pipe network) and 0.5mm rainfall for pit basket samples
Campbell Scientific CR800 Data Logger with Ethernet Modem
PSD analysis via laser diffraction
Continuously stirred, without chemical dispersion or sonication
Total Suspended Solids (TSS)
APHA (2005) 2540 D
Total Nitrogen & species (water samples only)
APHA (2005) 4500 N, APHA (2005) 4500 NH3, APHA (2005) 4500 NO3
Total Phosphorus & Orthophosphate (water samples only)
APHA (2005) 4500 P
pH & EC
Handheld probe, calibrated to manufacturer’s specifications
a total volume of > 1.5L was collected from the mandatory eight sub-samples to ensure sufficient volume was available for the suite of subsequent chemical analyses (listed in Table 2). This flowweighted sampling protocol provides an Event Mean Concentration (EMC). As has been noted previously (Kelly, 2014) the physical limitations of the equipment and analysis process can subsequently affect the protocol. Therefore any nominated protocol needs flexibility to respond to these potential constraints. For example, to collect eight sub-samples practically restricts the minimum time for a “qualifying” storm to greater than 12 minutes, even though flow may occur earlier. Hence, for this site, a storm event of less than 10 minutes’ duration is unlikely to provide sufficient time to collect eight 200mL aliquots, even if sufficient volume were present. On the other hand, a maximum number of sub-samples can be collected before the container is full and, therefore, an analysis of the likelihood of rainfall events exceeding the maximum capacity of the containers was undertaken to identify the likely upper event size. As the ISCO
sampler can collect a maximum of 9L of sample, 45 sub-samples, each of 200mL, are possible. For Ormiston, this equates to approximately 22.5mm total runoff. Statistical analysis of rainfall events for Brisbane between July 2000 and July 2010 (assuming no runoff losses) indicates that this 9L capacity would allow capture of >90% of the daily runoff events. The inter-event period (antecedent duration) was set in the protocol to 72 hours between rainfall events, as previous QUT research into pollutant build-up and wash-off on urban surfaces indicated that this was the optimal point at which pollutants reach a detectable level in runoff (Liu, 2011; Parker, 2010). This research has shown that low-intensity, lowvolume events do not produce detectable concentrations for antecedent periods less than 72 hours. The minimum rainfall depth for a qualifying storm will vary between monitoring sites, depending on the catchment characteristics. For the medium-density Ormiston townhouse site with a high fraction of impervious area, the minimum daily rainfall for monitoring has been set to 5mm, as this is the level at which observable runoff
The draft national protocol also requires a minimum of three flow events > 75% of the maximum treatable flow rate (TFR), with at least one event greater than the TFR (Stormwater Australia, December 2014). It should be noted that a requirement that all events be at the TFR, or > 75% of the TFR, may be rarely met. For example, an evaluation of the hydrology for the Ormiston site across 10 years of historical data indicates that this may be achieved less than three times annually. Hence, to achieve 15 qualifying events at the TFR would require at least five years of sampling. The monitoring equipment and sample collection were independently undertaken by staff from QUT and analysed in NATA registered laboratories. Reports on the findings were prepared by the University research partners (Goonetilleke and Egodawatta, 2014). This maintains independence and integrity of the sampling, collection and analysis process.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION An interim report on the first 12 months of monitoring has been received from QUT (Goonetilleke and Egodawatta, 2014). Of seven possible rainfall events > 5mm, only four events qualify due to a combination of insufficient antecedent dry period, insufficient water collected for full chemical analyses, and equipment failures. As there is a range of possible metrics used to assess performance data, this paper presents several of them. Where the results have been less than the limits of detection (LOD), they have been shown as 50% of the LOD. All events reported in this paper had event flows greater than 75% of the TFR, with one event exceeding the TFR. Average Concentration Removal Efficiency (CRE) is calculated from the function:
Efficiency Ratio (ER) is calculated from the function:
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can be measured. Other monitored sites with larger, more pervious catchments will require more rainfall to produce sufficient runoff for sampling. Therefore, we caution against setting a rigid minimum rainfall volume for qualifying storms in monitoring protocols, as this is inherently site-specific.
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To briefly summarise, the CRE is the average of the removal ratios for every event, whereas the ER is the ratio of the average inflow and outflow concentrations for all events. The ER weights EMCs (flow-weighted concentrations) from all storms equally, regardless of the pollutant concentration or runoff volume, and minimises the potential impacts of smaller, cleaner events on performance calculations. The ER can, however, be influenced by a small number of high-influent concentration events that skew average concentration results. Therefore, other metrics, including Average CRE, should also be considered (Geosyntec and Wright Water Engineer, 2009). The Average CRE quantifies the per cent removal for each event, and calculates an average value of the percentages, allowing the smaller, cleaner events to have greater influence on the average CRE and, hence, minimise the influence of the few large influent concentrations. Table 5 presents the water quality data observed at the StormSack basket filter and shows influent concentrations for TSS similar to those reported as typical by guidelines for urban residential catchments, whereas the TN and TP concentrations are mostly below guideline figures (see Table 7). The preliminary results indicate that the relatively simple 200-micron filter bag removes about 40% of the suspended solids and about 30% and 20% of the TN and TP loads based on the ER metric. Even better performance is indicated by the CRE metric, except for TP – here the average value is strongly influenced by the storm event on 23/8/14, where the (low) outflow concentration is greater than the lower inflow concentration, generating a negative ratio. Water quality data from the SPELFilter samples is presented in Table 6. It can be seen that the pollutant concentrations observed in the pipe inflow (inlet to the filters) is significantly smaller than the StormSack outflow concentrations shown in Table 5. It is likely that this is a direct result of stormwater dilution by overflow from the rainwater tanks entering the network beneath the StormSacks. Nonetheless the data indicates that the filters are removing TSS, TN and TP, even at very low concentrations with mean ERs of 90%, 35% and 55% for TSS, TN and TP respectively. Of particular note, the outflow TSS concentrations from the SPELFilter are consistently below detection limits (<5mg/L), regardless
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Table 5. StormSack pit basket water quality results. Parameter
LOD (mg/L)2 In (mg/L)
Efficiency Ratio (Avg) Average CRE
Efficiency Ratio (Median)
As outflow samples were not collected (NC) from this event, it has been excluded from the calculations. LOD = Limits of Detection of the analytical method.
Table 6. SPELFilter media filter cartridge water quality results. Parameter
LOD (mg/L)1 Event
Out (mg/L) 0.005
Efficiency Ratio (Avg)
Efficiency Ratio (Median)
LOD = Limits of Detection of the analytical method
of the inflow concentration. Similarly the outflow TP concentrations are very close to the level of (analytical) detection.
Table 7. Comparison of Mean Ormiston Water Quality Results with Brisbane MUSIC Guidelines for urban residential areas.
Sampling TSS TN TP As can be seen in Tables 5 and 6, Location (mg/L) (mg/L) (mg/L) the ER and CRE metrics vary, although StormSack inlet 159 1.2 0.25 both use the same concentration data. 1 This is the result of the two methods 25 0.5 0.04 SPELFilter inlet using different mathematical logic. For MUSIC guidelines example, the StormSack result for TP (urban residential) 151 1.8 0.34 on 23/8/14 indicates a CRE of -200%, 1 This location includes roof water and rainwater that subsequently causes the average tank overflow CRE to be negative, even although all the other events show positive CRE by 0.3mg/L for TN and 0.02mg/L for values. Anomalous results, or results TP, and result in a “theoretical export” near the limits of detection, such as that of pollutants of ~200% for these very for 23/8/14, can skew the Average CRE low influent concentrations. This large metric. A recorded inflow concentration negative per cent removal then has a of 0.01mg/L, for example, and an outflow knock-on effect on the average CRE concentration of 0.02mg/L, will provide value, and so we suggest CRE is not an individual CRE of -100% and influence an appropriate metric for this dataset. the Average CRE, yet be a result of Therefore, we suggest that ER is analytical error. Results on duplicate the better metric for evaluation of this samples from Ormiston (data not presented) have been observed to differ dataset. However, in the instances that
Technical Papers high concentration influent outliers are recorded (for example, above the Water by Design MUSIC modelling guidelines, 2010) as the dataset grows, we suggest that Average CRE, Comparison of Medians, and statistical analyses should all be used to validate performance.
The Auckland PDEP also indicates that where the median and the mean of the performance metric (e.g. ER) vary by more than 10%, additional sampling events are recommended. The median concentrations presented in Table 5 and 6, when used to calculate an Efficiency Ratio, result in a difference of more than 10% when compared with a Mean Efficiency Ratio. This suggests, as is being implemented, that further events must be analysed. To comply with the protocol requirement of 15 events, monitoring is still underway, and therefore statistical evaluation of the data has yet to be completed. It is still early in the monitoring program and more data is required to allow conclusive statements about the performance of the treatment system. Even so, given the data available, it would appear that this new treatment train has the potential for treating stormwater to Queensland SPP water quality objectives.
SUMMARY Evaluation of alternate stormwater treatment devices has been underway for decades internationally and, after recent events in Queensland, appears to be gaining acceptance in Australia. While a number of existing guidelines stipulate that performance of alternate stormwater treatment devices must be demonstrated for local and regional conditions, the guidelines generally do not define how this should be accomplished. USC, QUT, GU and SPEL have worked together to adapt international protocols to suit
This paper details the protocol being implemented on one of the monitoring sites at Ormiston, SouthEast Queensland. An interim report has been received from QUT on monitored events at the site. In keeping with SPEL’s commitment to share the lessons learnt to date, and to inform the industry of the first 12 months of data, while further testing is continuing our preliminary results indicate Efficiency Ratios of 38% TSS, 20% TP and 31% TN for the StormSack Pit basket, and 90% TSS, 54% TP and 36% TN for the radially-wound multi-media SPELFilter cartridge.
THE AUTHORS Darren Drapper (email: email@example.com. au) is an Environmental Engineer with 18 years of experience in the stormwater field. He has a Bachelor Degree and Doctorate in Environmental Engineering and postgraduate qualifications in WHS, and an MBA. Darren’s experience includes State Government, research organisations, consulting and manufacturing. He has researched, designed, constructed and monitored WSUD stormwater treatment measures across Australia and internationally. Andy Hornbuckle is the National Manager of SPEL Environmental, an Australian and New Zealand manufacturer of a range of internationally proven stormwater treatment systems. Andy has nine years of experience in the stormwater field and has led SPEL through a journey of innovation and revitalisation, expanding their range from hard engineered solutions to include modular and floating wetlands systems and packaged bioretention. He is responsible for the extensive commitment by SPEL to field-testing multiple SQIDs.
REFERENCES APHA (2005): Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater, 21st Edition. Auckland Regional Council (2012): Proprietary Devices Evaluation Protocol (PDEP) for Stormwater Quality Treatment Devices, Version 03, December 2012. Geosyntec Consultants and Wright Water Engineers, Inc (2009): Urban Stormwater BMP Performance Monitoring, October 2009.
Goonetilleke A & Egodawatta P (2014): Evaluation of Treatment Performance of the StormSack and SPELFilter Installations at Ormiston, Interim Report, 19 November 2014. Gulliver JS, Erickson AJ & Weiss PT (editors) (2010): Stormwater Treatment: Assessment and Maintenance. University of Minnesota, St Anthony Falls Laboratory. Minneapolis, MN. stormwaterbook.safl.umn.edu Kelly C (2014): Equipment, Set-up and Water Quality Analyses for Proprietary Stormwater Quality Improvement Device (SQID) Field Testing, Stormwater Australia Bulletin, February 2014. Liu A (2011): Influence of Rainfall and Catchment Characteristics on Urban Stormwater Quality, PhD Thesis, Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering, Queensland University of Technology. Mackay Regional Council (2008): Mackay Regional Council MUSIC Guidelines, Version 1.1, September 2008. Melbourne Water (December 2010): MUSIC Guidelines; Recommended Input Parameters and Modelling Approaches for MUSIC Users, State Government of Victoria. New Jersey Center for Advanced Technologies (2006): New Jersey Tier II Stormwater Test Requirements – Amendments to TARP Tier II Protocol. Parker N (2010): Assessing the Effectiveness of Water Sensitive Urban Design in Southeast Queensland, M.Eng Thesis, Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering, Queensland University of Technology. State of Queensland, Department of State Development, Infrastructure and Planning (December 2013): State Planning Policy. Stormwater Australia (2014): Stormwater Quality Improvement Device Evaluation Protocol (SQIDEP). www.stormwater.asn.au/news/120sqid-consultation-open-for-comment SWEMA – Stormwater Equipment Manufacturer’s Association (2010): Evaluation of Hydrodynamic Separators, September 2010. Unidata (2008): Manual Starflow Ultrasonic Doppler Instrument with Micrologger, Model 6526, O’Connor, Western Australia. Washington Department of Ecology (2011): Technical Guidance Manual for Evaluating Emerging Stormwater Treatment Technologies; Technology Assessment Protocol – Ecology (TAPE), Publication No. 02-10-037, August 2011. Washington Department of Ecology (2008): Guidance for Evaluating Emerging Stormwater Treatment Technologies; Technology Assessment Protocol – Ecology (TAPE), Draft Version; Modification: Evaluating Stormwater Treatment Technologies with Long Detention Times, November 2008. Water by Design (2010): MUSIC Modelling Guidelines, SEQ Healthy Waterways Partnership, Brisbane, Queensland. ISBN 978-0-9806278-4-8.
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In the dataset presented in this paper, there are no outliers based on the Water by Design MUSIC Modelling Guidelines for storm concentrations from an urban residential catchment (2010). In fact, the observed concentrations at Ormiston are low in comparison with the guideline values, as shown in Table 7, and therefore we maintain that ER is the suitable metric to be used at this point in time, for this site. Significant debate continues as to the “best” method to calculate device performance. Statistical validation (Paired t-test) of the dataset is also recommended to confirm significant differences between the influent and effluent sample sets (ARC, 2010).
local and regional conditions on a variety of sites and treatment measures in SouthEast Queensland.
CLIMATE CHANGE IMPACTS ON STORMWATER HARVESTING YIELDS Evaluating the impacts of climate change on urban water systems through simulation of a range of climate change scenarios A Hoban, K Mills, C Tanner, D Hamlyn-Harris
Climate change is expected to result in increased climate variability, including droughts, which reduces the reliability of inflows into dams. This has led many policy makers to seek a reduced reliance on climate-dependent sources of water. The role of stormwater harvesting in this context is unclear and is often misunderstood. While yields from stormwater harvesting schemes are somewhat rainfall dependent, they are also heavily influenced by demands, which tend to increase with lower rainfall. Large-scale stormwater harvesting projects in Brisbane have been adopted as case studies. These schemes harvest water from 200 ha urban catchments for sports field irrigation. An ensemble of climate change scenarios, developed by the Queensland Climate Change Centre of Excellence from downscaled global climate models, have been coupled with MEDLI (Model for Effluent Disposal using Land Irrigation) to assess the impact of climate change on irrigation demands. A catchment runoff is also estimated, and the combined impact on yields is evaluated. The results help better understand the climate resilience of stormwater harvesting schemes. Hypothesis: That climate change is unlikely to have a significant impact on the yields of stormwater harvesting schemes.
INTRODUCTION Stormwater harvesting has significant potential as an alternative water supply, because stormwater is relatively abundant, is often available in close
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proximity to urban demands, and causes environmental harm to waterways if it is not harvested, through increased pollution loads and altered hydrology of urban streams.
managed to a level that is sufficient for safe potable supply. However fewer respondents still believe that it is a cost-effective source of potable water for Australian cities (65%).
Harvested stormwater is primarily used for non-potable purposes, especially irrigation and, in some instances, as a dual-reticulated supply for non-potable domestic use. Support for stormwater use as a water supply appears to be increasing in Australia, according to the 2014 State of the Water Sector Report (AWA/Deloitte 2014), which found: Most respondents (92%) strongly agree, agree or somewhat agree that urban stormwater can provide a sustainable source of non-potable water for municipal and industrial use. This figure drops only slightly to around 79% of respondents who also believe that urban stormwater can be treated and
Climate change is expected to result in increased climate variability including droughts, which reduces the reliability of inflows to dams. This has led many policy makers to seek a reduced reliance on climate-dependent sources of water. The role of stormwater harvesting in this context is unclear and often misunderstood. Inflows to stormwater harvesting schemes are clearly rainfall dependent, although urban runoff is less influenced by antecedent dry periods than runoff into dams, due to increased impervious surfaces. Water demands (for irrigation purposes) are also climate dependent, and tend to increase with lower rainfall and higher temperatures.
Model Projections for A1B Emission Scenarios -27.4778_153.0306
2.2 Change in Annual Mean Temperature (C)
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ABSTRACT Stormwater harvesting has significant potential as an alternative water supply, because: a) it is relatively abundant; (b) it is often available in close proximity to urban demands; and (c) it causes environmental harm if not harvested.
2.0 1.8 1.6 1.4 1.2 1.0 0.8 0.6 –20 2013-03-20
–10 –5 0 % Change in Annual Mean Rainfall Base Period: 1960_2010
10th(L) and 90th(H) % Model (M) Average
Figure 1. Predicted changes in temperature and rainfall for A1B emissions scenario from a range of models. Most predict lower mean annual rainfall at higher temperatures, but also show significant variability. Source: Consistent Climate Scenarios, DSITIA Qld.
Technical Papers The combined impact of changes on the supply of water to, and demand of water from, stormwater-harvesting schemes is complex. Analysis of climate change impacts is confounded by several factors: • There are different possible trajectories for global CO2 emissions; • There are many different general circulation models (GCMs) that produce different estimates of how the emissions trajectories affect climate (see Figure 1, for example); • Global climate models have tended to have low resolution and be less useful for understanding local scale impacts;
Simplistic estimates of climate change impacts can be derived by scaling historical rainfall data by a nominal factor (say up or down 10%). While this shifts the mean annual runoff, it maintains the historical patterns of rainfall, and that is likely to be a significant deficiency when estimating the performance of stormwater harvesting schemes. Another simplified approach is to transpose rainfall records from another region (for example, adopting a rainfall record from the dry tropics for use in the subtropics). These methods are both subjective and generally lacking a sound theoretical basis. Recognising that researchers conducting studies of climate change impacts on primary industries have previously not had access to a consistent set of climate change projections in a suitable format for use in biophysical models, the Queensland Government established the Consistent Climate Scenarios Project (CCSP) (Burgess et al., 2012). CCSP has produced a consistent set of model-ready 2030 and 2050 Australia-wide climate change projections data, via the Climate Change Projections web portal. These are downscaled climate scenarios at a local (20km) resolution. While developed for primary industries, these climate change scenarios provide a means of evaluating the impacts of climate change on urban water systems.
Figure 2. Global CO2 emission scenarios. In this paper, the A1F1, A1B and B1 scenarios have been adopted for analysis. Source: IPCC, 2000.
METHODOLOGY METHODOLOGY OVERVIEW
The overall approach used in this analysis is to simulate the performance of two stormwater harvesting schemes in Brisbane under a large number of possible climate change scenarios that have been derived from credible emissions scenarios and general circulation models. The resulting dataset is considered a population of equally probable outcomes, similar to a Monte-Carlo simulation. CLIMATE DATA
Three climate change carbon dioxide emission scenarios have been considered, based on the IPCC Special Report on Emission Scenarios (SRES): A1F1, A2 and A1B scenarios for the year 2050 (IPCC, 2000). These scenarios tend to sit in the mid-to-upper range of emissions scenarios (see Figure 2), spanning a range of potential narratives about future global population, economic, technological and political developments, and according to the IPCC should all be considered equally sound. Lower emission scenarios (such as A1T and B1) were not analysed due to a combination of time constraints (significant data processing is involved in this analysis), and because the intention of this paper is to test stormwater harvesting schemes under quite different climates. Downscaled climate time series for temperature (max and min), vapour pressure, radiation, pan evaporation and rainfall for Brisbane (latitude -27.4778 longitude 153.0306) were obtained from the Consistent Climate Scenarios Project (CCSP), derived from 21 different
general circulation models/model variants (GCMs) representing a range of different institutions and modelling approaches (Burgess et al., 2012). This produces 63 synthetic climate scenarios (three emission scenarios each processed through 21 climate models). Each time series is for a 50-year period to ensure adequate reflection of the stochastic variability of each model, and assumes static emissions during that period (i.e. there is no additional climate forcing within a scenario and emissions are fixed at the corresponding 2050 SRES level). A base case climate scenario was also tested using daily climate data from the Bureau of Meteorology station 40214 (Brisbane Regional Office) for the 50-year period 1960–2010. MUSIC (Model for Urban Stormwater Improvement Conceptualisation, eWater 2014) was used to simulate the performance of the stormwater harvesting schemes, due to its flexibility and accessibility. MUSIC was configured to reflect two stormwater harvesting schemes which were recently designed in Brisbane, although the MUSIC models were simplified, for the purposes of this analysis, to be straightforward catchment-to-tank to end-use schemes when, in reality, the schemes have complex pumped diversion arrangements and multiple storages. The purpose of this analysis was to assess the general impact of climate change on harvesting yields rather than to precisely assess the impacts on those particular schemes.
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• Stormwater harvesting yields are generally a function of catchment runoff (affected by climatic parameters of rainfall and evaporation) and catchment parameters such as the impervious fraction, and demand (affected by climatic parameters of rainfall, evaporation, radiation and temperature).
Technical Papers Scheme A has a 213.5 ha urban catchment that is 37% impervious (measured from aerial imagery), draining to a 3ML storage, and supplying 16ha of sports fields. This represents a scheme where yield is storage-limited. Scheme B is similar to Scheme A except that it has a 10ML storage, and yield is more limited by demand.
General Circulation Models (21) Consistent Climate Scenarios (3 x 21) Location specific climate data (P, Et, Tmax, Tmin, Rad)
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MUSIC climate input files were produced for each climate scenario (based on rainfall and evaporation from the CCSP). For each scenario, an irrigation demand series was produced using MEDLI (CRCWMPC, DNR, DPI, 2003). While primarily developed for effluent disposal, MEDLI has an irrigation module that calculates an irrigation demand based on soil water condition and crop water requirements, and is therefore well suited to the task of estimating an irrigation demand from the synthetic climate data (Tmax, Tmin, Rad, Evap and Rainfall). MUSIC was run on a daily time-step reflecting the time-step of the CCSP data. A shorter time-step would have more accurately reflected the hydrology of the catchment, but would have significantly increased the processing time and volume of data. A comparison of scheme performance using historical rainfall data (1960–2010) at 30-minute
Data processing to create MEDLI input files
Data processing to create irrigation demand series
Data processing to create rainfall and evaporation series
Figure 3. Schematic overview of the adopted models and processes. and daily time-steps was found to provide yields within 5%, so this was not considered a major limitation. The rainfall runoff parameters in MUSIC were configured in accordance with Water by Design (2010). In addition to these steps, custom Visual Basic code was written to transform and transpose the data to convert it into the various formats required by the adopted models to make the process more efficient and, therefore, more suited to wider application.
An overview of the models and processes employed is shown in Figure 3.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION For the range of climate scenarios analysed, mean annual runoff from the 200ha catchment ranged from 680 to 1280 ML/yr, compared with 982 ML/ yr based on historical climate data. The potential for greatly reduced catchment runoff is notable for an urban catchment with moderate levels of imperviousness (37%) and has significance for runoff into dams from rural/forested catchments.
EMISSION SCENARIOS EXPLAINED • A1. The A1 storyline and scenario family describes a future world of very rapid economic growth, global population that peaks in mid-century and declines thereafter, and the rapid introduction of new and more efficient technologies. Major underlying themes are convergence among regions, capacity building and increased cultural and social interactions, with a substantial reduction in regional differences in per capita income. The A1 scenario family develops into three groups that describe alternative directions of technological change in the energy system. The three A1 groups are distinguished by their technological emphasis: fossil-intensive (A1FI); non-fossil energy sources (A1T); or a balance across all sources (A1B) (where balanced is defined as not relying too heavily on one particular energy source, on the assumption that similar improvement rates apply to all energy supply and end use technologies). • A2. The A2 storyline and scenario family describes a very heterogeneous world. The underlying theme is self-reliance and preservation of local identities. Fertility patterns across regions converge very slowly, which results in continuously increasing population. Economic development is primarily regionally oriented and per capita economic growth and technological change more fragmented and slower than other storylines. • B1. The B1 storyline and scenario family describes a convergent world with the same global population, that peaks in mid-century and declines thereafter, as in the A1 storyline, but with rapid change in economic structures towards a service and information economy, with reductions in material intensity and the introduction of clean and resource-efficient technologies. The emphasis is on global solutions to economic, social and environmental sustainability, including improved equity, but without additional climate initiatives. • B2. The B2 storyline and scenario family describes a world in which the emphasis is on local solutions to economic, social and environmental sustainability. It is a world with continuously increasing global population, at a rate lower than A2, intermediate levels of economic development, and less rapid and more diverse technological change than in the B1 and A1 storylines. While the scenario is also oriented towards environmental protection and social equity, it focuses on local and regional levels.
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Table 1. Summary of results. Synthetic climate scenarios
Base case 1960–2010
3ML Storage Reuse supplied
% Reuse demand met
10ML Storage Reuse supplied
% Reuse demand met The demand ranged from 149 to 187 ML/ yr, compared with 153 ML/yr based on historical climate data, as shown in Table 1.
The reliability of the schemes, defined as the percentage of the reuse demand met, was higher for the larger 10 ML storage (74%) than the 3ML storage (40%), and there was quite low variability in reliability across a wide range of runoff scenarios (see Figure 5). For the 10ML scheme, the variability in reliability (Cv = 0.032) was less than a quarter of the variability in runoff (Cv = 0.147).
a significant role as part of a portfolio of water supply options under a changing climate.
Note that most stormwater harvesting schemes are designed as complementary water supplies to a broader water supply network, where the design intent is to produce a cost-effective scheme that reduces but does not eliminate demand on that network.
There are potentially other ways in which the merits of stormwater harvesting schemes may be affected by climate change scenarios that have not been explored in this paper. For example:
Each of the schemes was marginally more reliable than when modelled under an historical climate (1960–2010): 42% reliability for a 3ML storage compared with a mean of 40% for the climate change scenarios, and 77% reliability for a 10 ML storage compared with a mean of 74% for the climate change scenarios.
• The cost of providing major supply augmentations to centralised supplies is rising, while the costs of stormwater harvesting are anticipated to remain relatively stable; • Aquatic ecosystems would be under increased stress, and so society may place a greater value on reducing stormwater pollution into those ecosystems;
The results show that under a range of possible climate change scenarios, the long-term yields and reliability of schemes that harvest stormwater for irrigation purposes are likely to be relatively stable even though catchment runoff is likely to vary significantly.
• Many of the SRES scenarios incorporate significant population growth and so, in an increasingly resource-constrained world, alternative sources of water will likely be of increased value;
So, while inflows are highly climate dependent, yields from stormwater harvesting schemes are much more insensitive to climate, and it appears that stormwater harvesting can play
• A further benefit of using harvested stormwater for irrigation is that plants
% of Demand Met
60 50 40 30 10 ML storage
3 ML storage
Catchment runoff (ML/yr)
Catchment runoff (ML/yr)
Figure 4. Modelled relationship between catchment runoff and demand.
Figure 5. Modelled relationship between catchment runoff and percentage of demand met.
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As would be expected, there is a relatively strong negative correlation between runoff and demand, with drier climate scenarios tending to have higher irrigation demands and wetter climate scenarios tending to have lower irrigation demands, as shown in Figure 4. However, of interest was the finding that the overall variability in demands (Cv = 0.046) was less than a third of the variability in runoff (Cv = 0.147), so that irrigation demands were relatively stable even under particularly wet or dry climate scenarios.
Technical Papers irrigated with stormwater have been found to grow about twice as fast as those irrigated with an equivalent amount of tap water (Denman, 2011). LIMITATIONS AND FURTHER WORK
Each datum point shown on the graphs in Figure 4 and Figure 5 represent the long-term average of a 50-year simulation. Within each of these simulations there is likely to be significant inter-annual variability, with potentially severe droughts and wet periods (Cai et al., 2012). The analysis of such interannual variation for each of the scenarios is a significant computational exercise and beyond the scope of this paper, but may yield important insights into how a portfolio of water supplies (dams, recycling, roof water, stormwater and desalination), might provide best overall resilience in a given area. Further work in this area could also consider alternative demands profiles, such as would arise from non-potable and potable end uses in addition to irrigation. In areas other than Brisbane, different climatic patterns may lead to different relationships between climate, runoff, demand and yield.
CONCLUSIONS • Datasets from downscaled general circulation models are becoming available and provide the ability to assess potential impacts of climate change on urban water systems; • The potential impacts of climate change on stormwater harvesting yields in Brisbane have been assessed;
• 63 synthetic climate change scenarios in 2050 have been analysed, based on three emission scenarios (A1, A1B and B1) and 21 General Circulation Models; • Five climatic variables are accounted for to estimate the combined effect on irrigation demands and catchment runoff; • The results show that, while long-term catchment runoff has the potential to vary quite significantly, yields from the scheme remain relatively constant; • Yields from stormwater harvesting schemes (for irrigation purposes in SEQ) are likely to be quite resilient (insensitive) to changes in climate over the next 50 years.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The Authors gratefully acknowledge the assistance provided by Don Begbie, Brisbane City Council and staff from the former Queensland Government Office of Climate Change.
THE AUTHORS Alan Hoban (email: alan. firstname.lastname@example.org. au) advises government and developers on how to better manage water in urban environments. Karina Mills (email: Karina.mills@blightanner. com.au) is a water engineer who has played a key role in the delivery of several major stormwater harvesting schemes.
Chris Tanner (email: Chris.tanner@blightanner. com.au) has over 30 years’ experience in sustainable land development and integrated water management, and has recently been assisting clients in Indonesia overcome complex water issues. David Hamlyn-Harris (email: David.hamlyn. email@example.com) has 34 years’ professional experience in the Australian water industry across all aspects of municipal water supply and wastewater engineering, with a particular interest in local alternative water management systems.
REFERENCES Burgess S, Ricketts J, Panjkov A, Carter J & Day K (2012): Consistent Climate Scenarios Project Draft User Guide, Version 2.1 23 August 2012. Cai W, van Rensch P, Cowan T, Kent D & Nguyen K (2012): Climate and Water in South East Queensland: Past and Future. Urban Water Security Research Alliance. Denman EC, May PB & Moore GA (2011): The Use of Trees in Urban Stormwater Management. 12th National Street Tree Symposium. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) (2000): IPCC Special Report Emissions Scenarios Summary for Policymakers ISBN: 92-9169-113-5. MEDLI (V2.0) (2003): CRC for Waste Management and Pollution Control, Queensland Department of Natural Resources & Queensland Department of Primary Industries. Water by Design (2010): MUSIC Modelling Guidelines V 1.0, Healthy Waterways Ltd. ISBN 978-0-9806278-4-8.
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USING LAKES IN URBAN LANDSCAPES FOR STORMWATER MANAGEMENT A study of water quality of Wattle Grove Lake in western Sydney and an overview of recreational and other value benefits to the local community D Hagare, B Maheshwari, S Natarajan, M Kaur, J Daniels
Lakes in urban landscapes are often constructed for the dual purpose of stormwater management and provision for non-contact recreational activities by local communities. Wattle Grove Lake, in the Liverpool City Council jurisdiction in Western Sydney, was studied to understand its effectiveness to manage stormwater; in particular, the study focused on water quality and the benefits it provides to local residents in terms of aesthetics and other values.
Wetlands and lakes are increasingly being used to manage stormwater from urban developments. Some local governments are developing designs for urban lakes that include parkland surrounding the lake, for use for noncontact water activities. To provide for these dual purposes, urban lakes need to be designed appropriately.
The study involved water quality monitoring of the lake over a sevenmonth period to evaluate the changes in water quality, as well as assessing community understanding of the benefits it would provide to local residents. The study indicated that the water quality in terms of physical characteristics (turbidity, suspended solids and oxygen levels) generally meets ANZECC guidelines. However, the chemical characteristics of water quality, particularly the nutrient concentrations, did not meet recommended guideline values. Turbidity and nutrient levels indicated the presence of algal blooms in the lake during summer, which was the reason for high biological activity and lower dissolved oxygen levels. Monitoring also indicated that the summer months are the critical time period as far as the water quality of the lake is concerned. In a community survey most respondents indicated that the lake has provided substantial community benefits in terms of providing a place for mixed recreation. Evidence collected suggested that the value of properties adjacent to the lake was between 15% and 40% higher than for those located 100–300m away.
One of the challenges is managing water quality so that the lake’s aesthetically pleasing appearance is maintained throughout the year. Stormwater runoff from urban areas contains pollutants such as floating debris, nutrients, bacteria, synthetic chemicals, oil and sediments (Liu, Goonetilleke and Egodawatta, 2012; Tsihrintzis and Hamid, 1998; Liu et al., 2012). In terms of water quality, several studies have examined the effectiveness and benefits of wetland systems in urban landscapes, e.g. Greenway (2010) and Hathaway and Hunt (2010). However, not many studies have investigated the overall water quality of lakes that are constructed to manage urban stormwater. Morris et al. (2003) reported the effects on an urban lake due to macrophyte harvesting and nutrient enrichment. This study focused on the nutrient levels and their impact on the aquatic vegetation in the lake, but did not investigate the water quality in the lake with respect to other physicochemical parameters. Urban lakes that are constructed to manage stormwater appeal to the general public if maintained at a satisfactory level, enabling recreational activities such as walking, exercising, picnicking and bird watching. If these lakes efficiently perform the task of storing stormwater and improving its water quality, there are also environmental benefits. Water harvesting schemes can be implemented for uses
such as irrigation. In addition, healthy water promotes the proliferation of flora and fauna, which on the whole improves the aesthetics of the lake (Sundaravadivel and Vigneswaran, 2001). Urban lakes constructed to manage stormwater are different from wetland systems in terms of the treatment processes involved in removal of pollutants. In lakes, suspended solids are removed mainly by sedimentation and phytoplankton dominate nutrient uptake (Greenway, 2010). In wetland systems, both filtration and sedimentation processes are involved in the removal of solids and nutrients are removed/ modulated predominantly by macrophytes. There are no previous studies that evaluate the beneficial impacts of an urban lake that has been designed to meet both water quality objectives and space for leisure activities. This paper describes a study of such an urban lake system at Wattle Grove that is intended to satisfy the dual purposes of water quality improvement and community amenity. The results should find general application.
WATTLE GROVE LAKE The lake is located in Wattle Grove, a residential suburb south-west of Sydney (Figure 1), and comes under the jurisdiction of Liverpool City Council (LCC). The catchment area for the lake (Figure 2) was constructed during 1992–1993 when the area was developed for housing (GHD, 2013). An aerial photo of Wattle Grove Lake is shown in Figure 3; its approximate area is 2.4 hectares, including the lake and parkland. The catchment area is 95 hectares with 1,022 homes. The catchment boundary is shown in red, while the blue outline identifies the lake boundary. The lake spillway overflows to Anzac Creek (point 4) and the lake has a maximum depth of 1.9m.
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Technical Papers DESIGN FEATURES OF WATTLE GROVE LAKE
STORMWATER TREATMENT & MANAGEMENT
The lake was primarily designed to hold stormwater from the catchment area so that sediments and nutrients are removed before discharge into Anzac Creek. To improve the amenity of the lake for the surrounding community, parkland was created and landscaped to encourage recreational use. The park is also equipped with exercise equipment (Figure 4). The area is used prominently for exercising and walking. A playground was installed to encourage younger visitors (Figure 5).
Figure 1. Map of Greater Sydney. The lake is located in the Wattle Grove area south-east of Liverpool city. Source: Google Maps, 2014.
Figure 4. Exercise equipment in the park area. To enhance water quality, Liverpool City Council has installed three aerators (Aqua & Co Force 7.2 diffused aerators; each have a rated power of 1.1 kW and air supply of 2.4 m3/h). These aerators are operated 12 hours a day (7amâ€“7pm), seven days a week. There are plans to install a fountain to boost dissolved oxygen (DO) levels, promote mixing and enhance the lakeâ€™s aesthetics. Figure 2. Wattle Grove catchment area. The blue line indicates the lake boundary; the red line indicates the catchment area. Source: Liverpool City Council, 2003.
Figure 3. Wattle Grove Lake. The numerals 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 indicate the points at which samples were taken. The inlet is at Point 2 and the outlet at Point 4. Source: Google Maps, 2014.
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WATER QUALITY To assess water quality, a systematic sampling procedure was developed comprising a collection of samples from multiple locations within the lake. The samples were analysed for various water quality parameters including electrical conductivity, pH, dissolved oxygen (DO), turbidity and nutrients. The monitoring program included weekly collection and analysis, starting from 29/1/2014 and finishing on 16/10/2014. It should be noted, however, that some of the parameters, such as total nitrogen and total phosphorus, were not monitored for the entire period. The water samples were taken from five different points around the perimeter of the lake (Figure 3). However, as there was not much variation in the quality of the water between the points,
Technical Papers DISSOLVED OXYGEN
Figure 5. A children’s playground encourages younger visitors.
Figure 6 shows the variation of dissolved oxygen (DO) levels in the lake. ANZECC (2000) guidelines recommend that the DO of the natural water be maintained in the range of 8–10 mg/L. As shown in Figure 6, initially (in the summer months), the DO levels were below the recommended range. However, later, the DO levels improved significantly and were maintained within the desired range. The reason for the improved DO levels appears to be related to increased rainfall in the area, algal activity and the continuous operation of three aerators. Figure 6 also shows the rainfall pattern monitored at Holsworthy Aerodrome, which is about 1.9km from the lake.
Figure 6. Temporal variation of dissolved oxygen concentration and saturation, and temperature.
Figure 7. Temperature vs. dissolved oxygen with polynomial trend line. only points 2, 4 and 5 were sampled from July 2014 onwards. Similarly, as there was little variation in the values of water quality parameters between points, the measures obtained for each of the sampling dates were averaged and presented as single values in the following sections. Minimal variation between the points shows that there
is little or no spatial bias. This can be attributed to the fact that the water in the lake is maintained in completely mixed conditions due to the operation of aerators. Details of the sampling and analysis procedure are published elsewhere (Natarajan, 2014).
Figure 6 shows the DO saturation, which generally stayed in the range of 90–110%, except at the start of sampling in January/February, when the DO saturation was relatively low. This could be due to the higher temperatures during the summer months, which promote higher bacterial activity and suppress oxygen solubility. This is evident in Figure 7, which shows DO levels reducing with the increase in the water temperature. This is further reinforced when the relationship between dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and temperature is examined. As shown in Figure 8, there is a significant increase in the DOC with the increase in the water temperature. Overall, it appears that the DO levels within the lake are well maintained, which can be attributed to both timely rainfall and continuous operation of aerators. However, the DO levels in summer appear to be lower, which may be improved by installation of additional aeration capacity. TEMPERATURE, ELECTRICAL CONDUCTIVITY AND TURBIDITY
Variations of water temperature, electrical conductivity and turbidity are shown in Figure 9. The water temperature was steady around the value of 24°C during the months of February and March 2014.
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As can be seen in Figure 6, a number of rainfall events occurred during the middle of February 2014, around the same time the DO levels in the lake started increasing. The fresh stormwater input into the lake appears to have triggered the improvement in the DO levels. Similar trends were noticed in a study conducted by Gereta et al. (2005) in Africa, which found that dissolved oxygen levels in lakes increased with inflow of stormwater.
STORMWATER TREATMENT & MANAGEMENT
However, in April and May 2014, the water temperature fell to around 18°C. On the other hand, the electrical conductivity (EC) showed a U-shaped variation. It is expected that during the rainy season, the EC levels are maintained at low levels due to flushing. This, along with evaporation, appears to control EC levels in the lake. However, it should be noted that the current EC levels are not expected to cause any major impacts on the aquatic flora and fauna. With respect to turbidity, the values initially increased and then gradually reduced to less than 50 NTU. These variations may be attributed to the flushing effect of stormwater. The spike in turbidity in late February could be due to algal growth. This is also reinforced by the fact that the turbidity increased exponentially with temperature (Figure 10). Figure 8. Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) vs. temperature with exponential trend line.
Figure 9. Temporal variation of temperature, EC, turbidity and TSS.
It can be seen in Figure 9 that the turbidity was very high during the beginning of the analysis, decreased over autumn and winter, and increased again at the start of spring (September– November). Turbidity can be increased by carp disturbing the benthic layer (Cahoon, 1953). Carp were removed during late summer and this seemed to make an improvement in the clarity of the water as in previous research conducted regarding carp removal (Lougheed, Crosbie and Chow-Fraser, 1998; Cahoon, 1953; Pinto et al., 2005). During winter, it can be seen that extended periods of dryness decreased the turbidity of the water. Sudden rainfall after the dry periods gave a slight spike in the turbidity values. ANZECC (2000) guidelines require turbidity to be between 0–20 NTU. In Wattle Grove Lake the turbidity was generally above that range; this could be mainly due to algal growth. Comparing the turbidity of the lake water with typical stormwater values (Table 1), it is apparent that the turbidity is reduced because of retention and sedimentation.
Figure 10. Turbidity vs. temperature and the exponential trend line.
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In this study, total solids (TS), total suspended solids (TSS) and total dissolved solids (TDS) were also measured. The ranges and the mean values for these parameters are given in Table 1. Total suspended solids (TSS) followed a similar trend to turbidity (Figure 9) and decreased dramatically during autumn and winter. On the other hand, TDS appears to increase during drier months, which is again consistent with the increases observed with respect to EC values (Figure 9). As explained earlier, this may be due to the continuous loss of water from the lake due to evaporation during the drier months.
Table 1. Summary of water quality parameters measured. No. of samples
Mean ± Standard Deviation
ANZECC (2000) guideline value+
Expected stormwater quality*
6.8 – 8.3
7.55 ± 0.26
6.5 – 8.0
11 – 26.8
18.2 ± 4.9
Electrical conductivity, µS/cm
76 – 212
135 ± 35
20 – 30
Dissolved oxygen, mg/L
6.96 – 11.61
9.6 ± 1.3
8.2 – 10.0
18 – 126
54 ± 31
1 – 20
87 – 498
201 ± 98
7 – 128
45 ± 34
31 – 431
157 ± 87
4.2 – 12.8
7.2 ± 2.2
NH3 – N, mg/L
0.03 – 0.58
0.23 ± 0.11
0.15 – 0.51
0.29 ± 0.09
Total nitrogen (TN), mg/L
1.28 – 1.70
1.59 ± 0.56
0.34 – 0.98
0.49 ± 0.19
0.02 – 0.27
0.07 ± 0.05
E. coli, #/100 mL
490 – 1500
712 ± 389
1.6 – 4.3
2.7 ± 0.8
+ ANZECC (2000) trigger values for slightly disturbed lakes and reservoirs systems in south-east Australia (Tables 3.3.2 and 3.3.3). * Adopted from Australian Runoff Quality (2006). These are the mean values for the runoff generated from residential areas.
Extreme rainfalls during summer months appear to have increased the TDS values dramatically (5/03/2014). This trend was also observed in a study conducted by Greenway (2010). Comparing the TSS concentrations in the lake water with that of typical stormwater (Table 1), it is apparent that TSS in the lake water is lower. It thus seems likely that settlement over time contributes to lower TSS and turbidity. NUTRIENTS
Figure 11 shows the temporal variation of nutrients (NH3–N; NOx–N; PO43--P). These concentrations are generally very low. The observed concentrations for the nutrients are compared with ANZECC (2000) guideline values in Table 1. As can be seen in the table, the observed concentrations are significantly higher than the guideline values recommended by ANZECC (2000). This could be the reason for higher levels of blue-green algae observed in the lake during the summer months (at this stage only visual inspection of blue-green algae has been done). This could be the reason for the exponential relationship observed between temperature and turbidity (Figure 10). A similar observation was made by GHD (2013). Figure 12 illustrates various relationships between different water quality parameters. Although the
Figure 11. Temporal variation of nutrients concentrations. relationships appear to be weak, there are definite trends between various parameters. Figures 12 (a) and (b) show the trends of nitrate-nitrogen and ammonia-nitrogen with temperature, respectively. Decline in nitrate-nitrogen concentration with temperature (Figure 12 (a)) could be due to consumption of nitrate by the algal biomass during warmer conditions. This again highlights the presence of blue-green algae during the summer months. This is consistent with the previous observation. On the other hand Figure 12 (b) shows increase of ammonianitrogen with respect to temperature. This means that there could higher bacterial activity during the summer
months. This is further substantiated by the increase of ammonia-nitrogen with dissolved organic carbon (DOC), as shown in Figure 12 (c). As shown in Figure 12 (d), there is an inverse relationship between nitrate-nitrogen and ammonia-nitrogen. This is expected, as in summer the algal bloom has resulted in higher levels of DOC, which in turn has resulted in higher bacterial activity. Higher bacterial activity typically accompanies higher ammonia-nitrogen concentrations. The results appear to indicate that the water quality in the summer months can deteriorate due to higher temperatures in the water. The water quality in the lake can further worsen under low rainfall conditions.
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Total phosphorus (TP), mg/L PO43— - P, mg/L
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Technical Papers Again as shown in Table 1, both TP and TN are significantly higher than ANZECC (2000) guideline values as well as the values observed by Wiegand et al. (2013). Further investigations are required to identify the origin and fate of nutrients within the lake.
wading and fishing, where there is less frequent body contact with the water (NHRMC, 2008). However, in this case the water is not used for boating, wading or fishing. As such, it can be concluded that the E. coli quality of the lake water is acceptable.
As stated earlier, the presence of blue-green algae (particularly in summer) has been visually observed and the lake also contains some macrophytes. The dominant macrophytes in the lake are: Typha orientalis, Phragmites australis and Persicaria sp. Based on the results, it may be difficult to classify the lake as a clear water or turbid water system as suggested by Water by Design (2012). It is more likely that the lake may assume an intermediate state, where the nutrients are taken up by both blue-green algae and macrophytes.
Similarly, a few samples were analysed for BOD5, and the observed range is shown in Table 1. As shown, the BOD5 of the lake water was significantly lower than the typical BOD5 concentrations expected in stormwater. It is likely that a combination of settlement, retention and aeration process is removing dissolved organic materials.
ESCHERICHIA COLI AND BOD5
A few samples were analysed for Escherichia coli (E. coli) to assess the microbiological quality of the water. Not enough analysis has been conducted to observe any trends or relationships in the E. coli concentrations. However, as shown in Table 1, the E. coli concentrations are generally within ANZECC (2000) secondary contact guideline values for recreational waters, except on a few occasions. Secondary contact includes boating,
COMMUNITY FEEDBACK To better understand the public’s opinion of the lake and the surrounding parkland, a survey questionnaire was prepared and distributed to community members who visited the lake and parkland during the last week of March 2014. The questionnaire mainly included questions related to the water quality in the lake, maintenance of the parkland, impact on the surrounding properties, and other suggestions to improve the quality of the parkland and the lake. The survey questionnaires were completed at the site over a two-day period. About 50 people who were approached at random agreed to be interviewed.
Figure 12. Relationships/trends between nutrients and other parameters.
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Figure 13 shows the results of the community survey. Some conclusions that can be drawn from the survey include: • Generally, community members are satisfied with the lake and the parkland. Those who were not satisfied mainly wanted the Council to install additional facilities that would enhance the aesthetic value of the lake, e.g. a fountain. • About 92% of the community members who were interviewed agree that the lake adds value to properties located around the lake. • A majority of the participants who were interviewed were happy with the current maintenance of both the lake and the parkland. However, a significant number of interviewees (about a third) wanted to see improvements in the lake and parkland maintenance program. The survey also indicated that the lake and surrounding parkland are used frequently by the public. About 92% of the surveyed visitors to the lake area come for exercise. Only 4% of the visitors use the parkland twice a day, 44% visit the park once a day, 50% use the area two to three times a week, and 2% use the parkland once a week. When asked whether they would like additional water-related features or activities, 48% liked the idea of having a fountain in the lake, 24% were interested in continuous inflow and outflow of water, and 20% would like to see waterharvesting schemes. The remaining respondents recommended an increase in aquatic life, such as fish, as well as better lighting.
4% 4% 8%
8% 32% 50% 42%
2% 4% 22%
About 92% of the surveyed local community members were happy with the landscaping of the parkland. Others commented that there should be more swings, bubblers, toilets and a garden. Some specific suggestions and comments made included: more aeration for improvement in aquatic life; ongoing maintenance of the lake; provision of shaded areas; signs to discourage feeding of birds/ducks; more tables and chairs; and overall maintenance of aesthetics of the lake area. Overall the general public believes that the lake and the surrounding parkland add value to the community and property prices and that Wattle Grove Lake is an asset.
IMPACT OF THE LAKE ON PROPERTY PRICES To quantify the increase in the property values close to the lake, prices of 11 properties sold in the period 2009 to 2014 were collected, using a publicly available website (Sold Properties, 2014). The records were all for four-bedroom detached houses with two bathrooms and two car spaces, divided into two categories: those adjacent to the lake; and those located 100–300m away. Table 2 shows that the sale price of properties adjacent to the lake was, on average, 40% higher than those sited further away. Table 2. Variation in property prices. Source: Sold Properties (2014) website. Category of property
Adjacent to the lake
About 100–300m away $541,000
To test this finding, local real estate agencies were approached for expert opinion on the price differences due to proximity to the lake. Only one agreed to participate in the interview and suggested that the properties directly adjacent to the lake generally had values more than $70,000 to $100,000 higher than similar properties in locations opposite or one street away (Attapallil, 2014); this translates to about a 15%–20% increase. In general, analysis of property prices collected in the study indicates that the value of those adjacent to the lake can be anywhere from 15%–40% higher than those located between 100 and 300m away.
CONCLUSIONS This study suggests that it is possible to move towards meeting the dual objectives of a stormwater lake in an urban context; namely, stormwater management and providing an amenable location for the local community for recreational activities. In this study, recreational activities mean non-contact, water-related leisure activities. The study indicated that a well-equipped landscaped parkland, with exercise machines and a children’s playground, around a lake with aquatic flora and fauna, attracts a significant number of visitors. The water quality in the lake, in terms of physical characteristics, generally appears to be satisfactory. However, the water quality failed to meet the ANZECC (2000) guideline values, due to a high concentration of some nutrients. Comparison with typical urban stormwater quality revealed that the lake appears to be efficient in
Inadequate removal of nutrients in the lake appears to be causing algal blooms in the summer months, which in turn result in greater bacterial activity. This has resulted in lower DO levels in summer. Therefore, it appears that the maintenance of appropriate water quality during the summer months is critical to enhance the aesthetic value of the lake to the surrounding communities. Operation of three aerators appears to have helped in maintaining good water quality in Wattle Grove Lake, except in summer. It may be possible to improve the water quality in summer by adding additional aeration capacity. Liverpool City Council is currently in the process of adding an additional aerator or a fountain. A large majority of the users of the lake area are satisfied with the lake and agree that it increases property values in the vicinity. The results of a preliminary survey indicated that prices for properties adjacent to the lake are 15–40% higher than those of properties located 100–300m away. Thus an urban lake that is designed, constructed and maintained properly can, in addition to improving stormwater quality, contribute to community benefits. Also, in the case of Wattle Grove Lake, Liverpool City Council has allocated significant resources for effective maintenance and operation of the lake, which has helped to maintain good physical water quality. This paper is part of an exploratory study on the water quality and community benefits of urban lakes constructed to manage stormwater. Further long-term investigations are required to confirm the findings of this study, particularly the effects of urban lakes on local property values and stormwater treatment potential.
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Figure 13. Community survey results.
removing suspended solids and reducing turbidity. However, nutrients are not being effectively removed. Similar observations were made by Greenway (2010) for a pond system in Victoria. This is to be expected as the lake does not have extensive vegetation (macrophytes), which can help to remove nutrients. To meet ANZECC guidelines, either additional pre- or post-treatment needs to take place, or modifications made to the design of the lake. Incorporating a wetland as part of the lake may be one such solution.
Technical Papers ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS This paper is a result of a project supported by Liverpool City Council. The financial and in-kind support provided by Liverpool City Council is greatly appreciated. The Authors express their sincere thanks to Arvind Lal of SquareLink Pty Ltd. for initiating the project and Upeka Kuruppu, Kiran Kc, Lalantha Senevirathna and Joycelyn Applebee for their assistance in various ways during the study.
DISCLAIMER Any opinions expressed in this paper are those of the authors and do not in any way reflect the opinion of any of the organisations mentioned in this paper.
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THE AUTHORS Dr Dharma Hagare (email: firstname.lastname@example.org) is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics, University of Western Sydney (UWS). He has over 20 years of academic and industrial experience in wide-ranging areas of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Currently, he is working in the areas of water supply and demand, water and wastewater treatment, recycled water and stormwater management, and risk assessment and management.
Mandeep Kaur (email: email@example.com. edu.au) has a Bachelor of Engineering Degree with a Major in Environmental Engineering from University of Western Sydney. Her area of interest is wetlands and stormwater management. Joel Daniels (email: bwmo@liverpool. nsw.gov.au) is Bushland & Weed Management Officer at Liverpool City Council and his interests include operation and maintenance of wetland and urban lakes for stormwater management.
REFERENCES ANZECC (2000): Australian and New Zealand Guidelines for Fresh and Marine Water Quality. National Water Quality Management Strategy Paper No 4, Australian and New Zealand Environment and Conservation Council & Agriculture and Resource Management Council of Australia and New Zealand ANZECC/ARMCANZ, Canberra. Attapallil (2014): Coldwell Banker Real Estate, Wattle Grove. Personal communication. Australian Runoff Quality (2006): A Guide to Water Sensitive Urban Design. Engineers Australia. Cahoon WG (1953): Commercial Carp Removal at Lake Mattamuskeet, North Carolina. The Journal of Wildlife Management, 17, 3, pp 312–317. Academic Search Complete Database, DOI: 10.2307/3797113.
Professor Basant Maheshwari (email: firstname.lastname@example.org. au) has wide-ranging research experience in urban and peri-urban water management and planning. Over the years his work has involved a transdisciplinary approach to water research focusing on understanding how water, landscape and people at the interface of urban and rural fringe (peri-urban) interact and influence the environment and sustainability. His work in recent years has focused on modelling and analysing the water cycle for long-term water resource planning at regional level, and examining the implications of social, economic, cultural, policy and institutional aspects of water cycle management.
Gereta E, Meing’ataki GEO, Mduma S & Wolanski E (2004): The Role of Wetlands in Wildlife Migration in the Tarangire Ecosystem, Tanzania. Wetlands Ecology and Management, 2004, 12, pp 285–299.
Sai Kiran Natarajan (email: 17202389@ student.uws.edu.au) has a Bachelor of Engineering (Environmental (Hons)) Degree from the University of Western Sydney. Her area of interest is urban lakes and stormwater management.
Liu A, Egodawatta P & Goonetilleke A (2012): Inherent Errors in Pollutant Build-Up Estimation in Considering Urban Land Use as a Lumped Parameter. Journal of Environmental Quality, 41, pp 1690–1694. Academic Search Complete Database, DOI: 10.2134/ jeq2011.0419.
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GHD (2013): Wattle Grove Lake – Water Quality Risk Analysis. Liverpool City Council. Greenway M (2010): Wetlands and Ponds for Stormwater Treatment in Subtropical Australia: Their Effectiveness in Enhancing Biodiversity and Improving Water Quality? Journal of Contemporary Water Research & Education, 2010, 146, 1, pp 22–38. Academic Search Complete Database, DOI: 10.1111/j.1936704X.2010.00389.x. Hathaway JM & Hunt WF (2010): Evaluation of Storm-Water Wetlands in Series in Piedmont North Carolina. Journal of Environmental Engineering, 136, 1, pp 140–146. Academic Search Complete Database, DOI: 10.1061/_ ASCE_EE.1943-7870.0000130.
Liu A, Egodawatta P, Guan Y & Goonetilleke A (2012): Influence of Rainfall and Catchment Characteristics on Urban Stormwater Quality.
Science of the Total Environment, 444, pp 255– 262. Academic Search Complete Database, DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2012.11.053. Lougheed VL, Crosbie B & Chow-Fraser P (1998): Predictions on the Effect of Common Carp (Cyprinus carpio) Exclusion on Water Quality, Zooplankton, and Submergent Macrophytes in a Great Lakes Wetland. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, 55, 5, pp 1189–1197. Morris K, Bailey PC, Boon PI & Hughes L (2003): Alternative Stable States in the Aquatic Vegetation of Shallow Urban Lakes. I. Effects of Plant Harvesting and Low-Level Nutrient Enrichment. Marine and Freshwater Research, 54, pp 185–200. Natarajan SK (2014): Wetland Systems to Create Better Living in the Suburbs. BE Honours Thesis, University of Western Sydney. NHRMC (2008): Guidelines for Managing Risks in Recreational Water. National Health and Medical Research Council, Canberra, www. nhmrc.gov.au/_files_nhmrc/publications/ attachments/eh38.pdf Pinto L, Chandrasena N, Pera J, Hawkins P, Eccles D & Sim R (2005): Managing Invasive Carp (Cyprinus carpio L.) for Habitat Enhancement at Botany Wetlands, Australia. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 15, 5, pp 447–462. Academic Search Complete Database, DOI: 10.1002/ aqc.684. Sold Properties (2014): www.realestate.com.au/ sold/in-wattle+grove%2c+nsw+2173%3b/list1. Accessed in September 2014. Sundaravadivel M & Vigneswaran S (2001): Constructed Wetlands for Wastewater Treatment. Critical Reviews in Environmental Science and Technology, 31, 4, pp 351–409. Academic Search Complete Database, DOI: 10.1080/20016491089253. Tsihrintzis VA & Hamid R (1998): Runoff Quality Prediction from Small Urban Catchments Using SWMM. Hydrological Processes, 12, 2, pp 311–329. Academic Search Complete Database, DOI: 10.1002/ (SICI)1099-1085(199802)12:2<311::AIDHYP579>3.0.CO;2-R. USEPA (2000): Guiding Principles for Constructed Treatment Wetlands: Providing for Water Quality and Wildlife Habitat. United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA). water.epa.gov/type/wetlands/constructed/ upload/guiding-principles.pdf Water by Design (2012): Urban Lakes Discussion Paper. Managing the Risk of Cyanobacterial Blooms. Healthy Waterways Limited. Wiegand AN, Walker C, Duncan PF, Roiko A & Tindale N (2013): A Systematic Approach for Modelling Quantitative Lake Ecosystem Data to Facilitate Proactive Urban Management. Environmental Systems Research, 2, 3, pp 1–12, www.environmentalsystemsresearch. com/content/2/1/3
VIABILITY ASSESSMENT OF A DISTRICT HEATING SCHEME IN AUSTRALIA A case study utilising large waste heat sources in Melbourne’s outer suburbs F Pamminger, J Prendergast, N Shashkoff, E Boermans
ABSTRACT This study has been undertaken to gain insights into the characteristics that would be required for a District Heating Scheme to be viable in Australia. District Heating is common in many cities around the world, but is still rare in Australia. At a time when our existing energy costs are increasing, one wonders why it couldn’t be used here as well. The study has been undertaken at a greenfield suburban residential development in Melbourne, adjacent to a potential 1000MW waste heat source, conceptually adopting features that are considered to give a District Heating Scheme the best chance of success. Heating energy demand was synthesised for a typical development in the region, and the District Heating option was compared against using a conventional gas supply system. The optimal configuration to begin a District Heating Scheme is to start with a few large heat energy customers; however, analysing similar existing density development, it was considered unlikely that we would get the demand required to make this viable on its own. We therefore had to include residential demand to get the critical mass for the optimal financial conditions, and this started to asymptote out with about 3,000 homes.
Firstly, we would need gas prices to rise from $24/GJ to $30/GJ. Alternatively, this project would need capital costs of a $110m project to be reduced by $24m, operating costs to
District Heating has significant merit and does provide many benefits, such as avoiding the need to build air- or water-cooling systems to remove heat from industries that produce a lot of heat, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and provide renewable energy. The hypothesis still to be tested is what these benefits equate to in financial terms, and whether a potential District Heating Scheme offers a lower total cost economic solution to any adjacent stakeholders.
District Heating is a globally mature technology, particularly in Northern Europe where heating energy accounts for over 30% of all energy consumption. Denmark has over 400 District Heating systems, all owned by their local municipalities. District Heating Schemes also operate in Sweden, Canada, the Netherlands, Finland, Japan and Korea, and many states within the US. Yet to Australia, they are still relatively novel. At the most basic level, a District Heating Scheme consists of heat exchangers to collect the heat, pipes to convey the heat energy via hot water, and heat exchangers to extract and make the heat energy available for use. By initiating this investigation, we highlight that one management model could be for a water company to manage the hot pipe infrastructure, because there is very little difference to what the water industry presently does, which is managing cold water infrastructure. This study was undertaken to determine what would be required before such a scheme could become viable in an Australian environment, especially when
District Heating has so many potential attractive attributes, such as: • Use of renewable energy; • Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions; • Utilisation of waste heat. When thinking about alternative heating sources it is important to recognise the change that has occurred over a relatively short period of time. For example, over the past 50 years, Australian homes have shifted from obtained heating sources, such as wood and briquettes, to oil, electricity and gas. By nature, Australians typically source alternative economical and efficient heating. So why not District Heating? Access to a reliable large heat source is fundamental to the viability of a District Heating Scheme. This study considers utilising waste heat from a potential site that will need to discharge 1,000MW of waste heat, which is planned to be constructed within the next 10 years in the outer suburbs of Melbourne. DESCRIPTION OF DISTRICT HEATING
A District Heating Scheme centralises the generation and distribution of heat energy. District Heating Schemes buy and sell heat, which is transferred by an underground-insulated thermal pipe network from suppliers to customers. District Heating Schemes are most feasible when supply is optimally balanced with demand. In Europe, they are generally operated together with other heating sources, for example utilising electricity when cheap in winter, and gas when cheap in summer. This enables energy retailers to optimise efficiency and technology to reduce the cost of providing energy. In Melbourne, District Heating Schemes could supply approximately
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At today’s gas prices, however, a District Heating Scheme was not financially viable at this location. To achieve financial viability requires a number of changes, which are not totally inconceivable at either this potential site or at other sites around Australia within the next 10 years.
be reduced by $1m, or a rate of return of 8.3% adopted (rather than the typical water industry discretionary rate of 11.7% presently used in Melbourne).
Technical Papers network to provide heat when the above sources cannot meet demand; however, the District Heating system has become so efficient at balancing loads that the gas-fired boilers are only needed for 1% of the heating supply each year.
Figure 1. Breakdown of household energy costs. 50% of household energy, as shown in Figure 1 (Sustainability Victoria, 2013). While it is possible to use heat exchangers to provide cooling, heating far exceeds the cooling requirements in a typical Melbourne domestic home. Beyond Zero Emissions et al. (2013) estimates that Melbourne households use approximately 70 times more energy each year to heat their homes than to cool them (80 Petajoules vs. 1.1 PJ). Ground Source and Air Source Heat Pumps supplied to hydronic systems are generally switched to heating from April to October in Melbourne, which is used every day, whereas air-conditioning systems are generally used on an average of the 10 hottest days of the summer.
EXAMPLE OF A DISTRICT HEATING SCHEME
The City of Aalborg, in the north-east of Denmark, has a population of 110,000 residents, and has been using District Heating for approximately 40 years. Today, 98.2% of the City is connected to the municipal system. Waste heat from local gas-fired electricity generation provides over 65 per cent of the heat required. A municipal waste to energy plant and two cement factories provide another 15% each of their waste heat. The remainder is provided from a variety of smaller sources – remarkably, including the local crematorium. All of these sources are utilising heat that would otherwise be wasted into the air via exhausts and flues. Aalborg has three gas-fired heating plants around the
Heating is supplied to properties via a closed loop (flow and return pipes) carrying hot water at 80–90°C. The water comes in hot, heats the property, returns back to heating sources 10–20°C cooler where it is brought back up to 80–90°C. The 1,416 kilometres of insulated underground pipework is owned by the Aalborg District Heating Company. This company is 100% owned by the local municipality, which operates as a not-for-profit organisation. “Off-the shelf” digital metering measures the thermal energy use at each property. For a local resident, there is a connection charge of approximately $600. A connecting resident can expect a payback period of two years, based on reduced heating bills, compared to gas heating. THE AUSTRALIAN EXPERIENCE
Compared to international adoption rates, District Heating Schemes are still relatively new to Australia. Examples of where District Heating Schemes already exist are summarised in Table 1. Although District Heating Schemes are relatively new to Australia, the components of insulated pipes and fittings to deliver such a project are now readily available here.
Table 1. Examples of existing District Heating Schemes in Australia. Development
Places Victoria consolidated 160 low-density properties to form 24 new mixed-use medium- to high-density land parcels for development. A two-stage 6MW precinct wide co-generation system was delivered with Stage 1 (2MW currently in operation) to generate and distribute low-carbon electricity and thermal energy via 1.1km of underground insulated pipework.
Glenfield ‘Vision Estate’
A “pilot” program saw the connection of 20 houses to an underground network of heating, cooling, electricity and tri-generation chambers. This included bespoke appliances (e.g. washing machines, dryers) made to receive heat energy directly. Because of its size, it was decommissioned two years later because a suitable asset owner and operator could not be found.
Central Park (Sydney)
Installation of a central plant to provide approximately 15MW of heating and cooling for new high-density residential development, including 2MW of tri-generation in Stage 1.
Barangaroo will be serviced by a District Cooling system, using free cooling from Sydney Harbour, and centralised heating. The overall development will achieve zero net missions through energy efficiency and investment in an offsite regional solar thermal power station, paid for by a levy on tenant space ($/m2).
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Technical Papers would spend approximately $1,100/y on gas. This is expected to increase to approximately $1,400 in 2015 due to a rise in wholesale gas prices.
Table 2. Comparative cost per unit of energy consumed. Heating Source
Assuming 80% efficiency
Assuming 100% efficiency
Electric heat pump
Assuming Coefficient of Performance of 4
Table 3. Cost of conventional heating and District Heating. Equipment
Current conventional heating scenario ($/annum)
District Heating scenario ($/annum)
Hot water tank and gas burner
Central ducted system
DHW and HHW delivery set
Upfront heating household budget COST OF ENERGY
Energy options are intimately linked to the cost of energy. The cost per unit of heating energy consumed, using different methods of conversion to heat, is shown in Table 2. This relative cost difference between gas and electricity has translated into most homes choosing to use gas for heating ahead of electricity over the last few decades.
New residential developments in the study area would typically connect to a reticulated natural gas network to meet hot water and space heating needs. For comparison purposes the establishment and operational costs of a District Heating Scheme were compared to a reticulated gas network. HOUSEHOLD HEATING BUDGET
The feasibility assessment estimated that a typical three-bedroom house that uses gas heating and domestic hot water
The feasibility assessment has assumed that, in both cases, the dwelling would utilise ducted air conditioning for cooling; however, in some cases, dwellings may be serviced with split airconditioning systems to service several rooms. The comparative cost between residential dwellings serviced by a gas system and a District Heating Scheme is summarised in Table 3. DEVELOPMENT AND OPERATION OF A DISTRICT HEATING SCHEME
A District Heating Scheme is a full service system that must meet the heating requirements of connected customers throughout the year. District Heating Schemes are at their most efficient, and commercially feasible, when the supply and demand of heat are well balanced. Realistically, this would take approximately 10–20 years to connect new residential, commercial and industrial customers and then find suitable and economic sources of free and/or cheap heat. Figure 2 illustrates the concept of how a District Heating Scheme would service household and business space heating (HHW) and domestic hot water (DHW) demand. Figure 2 illustrates the heating for 30-minute intervals over a year, from
Energy prices were once relatively stable in Australia; however, this is changing and prices have been steadily rising over the past few years. Gas, on the other hand, will begin to rise post2014 now that the Australian east coast gas supply is scheduled to be linked to international prices with the completion of the Gladstone liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facility in 2015. Wholesale gas prices are expected to rise from $3– $4/GJ to $8–$9/GJ (Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics, 2014). The impact of this has been significant, with the Alternative Technology Association (2014) now concluding that it is no longer cost-effective to connect a new home to mains gas when efficient electric appliances are an option.
dwellings and businesses at less cost than alternative options. District Heating Schemes rely on servicing most customers within a defined precinct. Therefore, any investment would require certainty that customers would connect to and continue to use the District Heating Scheme.
Compared to a District Heating Scheme, a gas system requires different equipment to provide hot water and space heating. New dwellings connecting to gas usually require a hot water tank and gas burner, gas heater and central ducted system throughout the house, while new dwellings connecting to a District Heating Scheme require a heat exchanger to heat the hot water tank, and a hydronic heating system of coils to be installed under the floor to heat the home.
METHODOLOGY For District Heating to be viable in this context, it would need to meet the heating requirements of residential
Figure 2. Heating demand over a year.
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Technical Papers 1 January to 31 December. The heating demand is for space heating and hot water. The figure shows that heating for hot water is quite constant over a year, but heating demand for space heating peaks in winter. The figure also illustrates how a large capacity of heating generation is required to meet peak demands that go unutilised for much of the year. A wellbalanced and efficient system is required, possibly with storage, to meet all heating requirements and be economically viable. While the purpose of this study is to include waste heat from a large electricity power plant, the District Heating Scheme would have to be serviced or supplemented by a variety of alternative sources during the following periods: • Prior to the power plant being commissioned (if customers have already connected); • During operational maintenance; • When District Heating demand exceeds available waste heat.
Peak heating demand; winter peak (kW)
Annual heating consumption (MWh pa)
% of use of Stage 1 100MW annual waste heat
1 Aged care facility
0.25 Aquatic Centre1
5,000m2 commercial offices
80,000 (Diversified2) (80MW)
160,000 (Rounded for other demands not specified)
Annual Heating Revenue
10,000 Detached homes
Notes: 1 One Aquatic Centre is allowed for per 40,000 homes, therefore, 0.25 per 10,000 homes 2 ‘Diversified’ allows for peak loads that are unlikely to occur at the same time for all customers. In this case, a diversity of 0.8 is applied
Table 5. Summary of capital costs.
Because the study area has not been developed, for the purpose of this study we have synthesised the potential demand for this analysis.
4km of 600mm diameter pipe
Suburban developments include more than just new homes. They include enabling infrastructure, public open space, community centres, businesses, shops and facilities such as Aquatic Centres. For this study, these factors are taken into consideration to estimate heating demand, heating energy consumption (over a calendar year), thermal pipe sizes and pipe lengths. The assumptions used to synthesise a typical demand at this location are summarised below: • Study development of similar nature: 100 ha;
Table 4. Synthesised demand for potential future growth.
Double house block 5x1MW gas condenser boiler Substation
10x500kW heat pump
• Standard block size: 512m2; • Medium block size: 300m ; 2
• Length of 30–60mm diameter (excluding insulation) pipe required per house: 16m; • Approximate winter heating demand of a three-bedroom detached house: 8–10kWh; • Annual heating consumption of a threebedroom detached house: 15MWh;
10MW heat exchanger Internal pipework and connections Heating storage
Table 6. Summary of annual operating costs. Item
Management costs Energy input
• Developable land: 88 ha;
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• Average residential cost of gas (Victoria Suburban Residential – 2013): $19/GJ; • Estimated residential cost of gas (Victoria Suburban Residential – 2015): $24/GJ. By adopting these assumptions the study was able to generate a typical heating demand for the site as shown in Table 4.
Cost estimates for the project have been compiled considering the required upfront capital investments of a transmission network from the proposed power plant, distribution reticulation network and substation (Table 5), together with ongoing annual operating costs for management and energy, as shown in Table 6. The costs were also annualised using the Yarra Valley Water discretion rate of
Table 7. Summary of annualised costs. Item
Capital cost $
Annualised cost (Using 11.7% required IRR)
Item cost ($/GJ)
Management Energy input TOTAL
that the existing price that gas is sold at ($24/GJ) is lower than what could be recovered from the sale of heating energy from a District Heat Scheme at ($28/GJ). This comparison possibly reflects why District Heating Schemes have not yet been fully embraced and ultimately delivered. Additionally, our analysis has not only considered final capital and operating costs; it has also considered the staging of construction against a background of changing energy prices, and what type of change would be required for a District Heating Scheme to become viable. STAGING OF DEVELOPMENT
A District Heating Scheme requires a thermal network. This would be completed as part of the residential development infrastructure enabling works. Houses would be connected as they are built. During the early stages of the development (until there is critical mass), the houses would be serviced by small thermal substations. Most District Heating Schemes rely on fossil fuels to meet early demands, which could consist of gas hot water heaters and heat pumps.
Figure 3. Comparative gas prices required to recover all the costs for a District Heating Scheme.
Generally speaking there is no reason why a District Heating Scheme canâ€™t be built incrementally. Small substations can give way to larger generation sites, achieving greater cost and energy efficiency. Thermal networks are built with long lead times prior to all customers coming online, due to the requirement to build streets prior to houses.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION RESULTS
are estimated to be approximately $24/ GJ. This is shown in Table 7.
District Heating would, therefore, need to be able to deliver the substations, transmission pipelines from the waste heat sources, and reticulated distribution network, while covering all annual management and operating costs at a competitive rate.
In its simplistic form, capital and operating cost assessment demonstrates
The cost to deliver a District Heating Scheme in Melbourne, utilising waste
Figure 4. Impact on comparative gas prices required to recover all the costs for a District Heating Scheme if the capital costs can be reduced by $24m, operating costs reduced by $1m pa, and a 8.3% IRR adopted. return of 11.7%, which was converted into the equivalent of Gigajoules. This allowed the costs to be compared against existing Melbourne residential gas prices, which
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Current market analysis suggests that the gas tariff is expected to be approximately $24 per GJ for residential customers by 2015. Therefore, for a District Heating Scheme to be viable, the cost of heat energy must be lower than the equivalent heat produced at a gas cost of $24 per GJ. To satisfy stakeholders and to attract funds into such an investment, it is considered that District Heating would need to be at least 10% cheaper per GJ than gas.
Technical Papers The analysis did, however, highlight key variables that, if changed, would make such a project viable. Firstly, retail gas prices would need to rise to $30/GJ, a rise of 58% in comparison to an expected rise of 26%. There is a high level of uncertainty with future gas prices, so it is difficult to predict if and when this could possibly occur.
Figure 5. Net cumulative non-discounted cash flow. heat from a large waste heat source, is shown in Figure 3. It is assumed in the base case that utilising the waste heat for District Heating provides no cost saving to the waste heat source. Figure 3 includes a variety of connected house numbers to capture the benefit of spreading large fixed capital costs, mainly waste heat transmission over more customers.
Figure 3 highlights that District Heating would not be cheaper than gas for residential customers, independent of house numbers connected. Under these conditions, a District Heating Scheme would not be viable, as it would not be able to compete and acquire committed customers. Parallel to Figure 3, a number of scenarios were analysed to assess their sensitivity. For District Heating to be attractive to households (at present gas prices) required the capital costs to be reduced by $24m; operating costs to be reduced by $1m due to avoiding water costs for heat rejection, and an internal rate of return of 8.3% applied (rather than the typical water industry discretionary rate of 11.7% presently used in Melbourne). The results for this scenario are shown in Figure 4. District Heating Schemes, put simply, buy and sell heat. The scheme is at its most efficient and viable when the supply and demand of heat is optimally balanced. Power plants are capable of generating large volumes of waste heat and, therefore, for waste heat to be used to supply district heating, a customer base of some scale will need to be in place ready for use.
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For a District Heating Scheme to be a viable alternative for heat rejection, a large customer base would need to be built up in preparation, ahead of when the plant would become operational. Hence, a large investment would need to be made in advance of being connected to the heat supply from the power plant. This would have a significant impact on a potential investorâ€™s cash flow. The financial impact on the cash flow is shown in Figure 5. This shows that it would take in the order of 15 years before a positive cash flow could be achieved. Figure 5 assumes that the distribution network and substations are built during the first four years, which includes heating generation, hence the negative cash flow over that period. It is only when 3,000 customers are connected that the scheme sees an operating profit of $1.7m per annum. This would be the stage to also consider whether it was worth investing more to service a larger customer base, considering customer satisfaction and profitability. DISCUSSION
For a District Heating Scheme to be of material benefit to the waste heat source it would need to be able to potentially offset a significant amount of cooling that it would need to undertake. This study found that the typical commercial and industrial development for such a greenfield site could at best only offset in the order of 1MW of heat energy, and it was only when residential development was included that material gain could be achieved. For example, with 10,000 homes, about 60MW of heat could be utilised, hence removing the requirement for cooling this heat energy (see Figure 4).
Alternatively, external funding or value capture would be needed to support the project. External funding could only ever be found if an external body saw benefits for the broader community exceeding this cost. One possibility could be to establish or attract businesses with the excess waste heat sources that could supply heat to the District Heating Scheme â€“ particularly if the disposal of heat energy provides the energy generator an opportunity to downsize its cooling plant, energy and water costs. A key point of the study also touched on the difference between electricity and gas prices. If gas was at the same price as electricity then a District Heating Scheme would be viable (Pamminger et al., 2013). Or, if gas supply was not available, a District Heating Scheme would be an attractive option.
COMMERCIAL CONSIDERATIONS Beyond economic analysis, there are many commercial issues to be considered to establish the viability of a District Heating Scheme. DISTRICT HEATING VS RETICULATED GAS
A District Heating Scheme would rely on capturing a large portion (>90%) of customers in a new residential development to achieve the required return on installed pipework in streets. In Europe, new housing developments historically have decided between District Heating and reticulated gas. In recent decades, District Heating has become more popular for economic and environmental reasons, so most new housing developments choose District Heating.
CONCLUSION District Heating Schemes are common in Europe, but are not yet considered a viable option in Australia. A case study analysing the potential heat supply from a 1000MW waste heat source adjacent to a new growth zone in Melbourne was assessed to determine what would need to change before such a scheme was viable.
Technical Papers Even at what could be considered such a favourable location, at existing gas prices a District Heating Scheme would need some external financial assistance or value capture to become viable. For a District Heating Scheme to be viable at this greenfield site adjacent to a potential 1000MW waste heat source would require an external capital contribution or value capture of at least $20 million, and annual operating contribution in the order of $1 million per year. Alternatively, it would require the application of a lower Internal Rate of Return of 8.3%. Such funding assistance may be possible in some cases, where there is a large need for heat rejection requiring a large capital and operating investment to construct an air- or water-cooling system. This avoided cost could be captured and used to partly fund the District Heating Scheme, making it viable. District Heating Schemes have multiple benefits, including utilising renewable energy, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, using waste heat and providing improved thermal comfort. Therein exist other potential externalities
Nick Shashkoff (email: email@example.com) is the Director of Durmac Management, an infrastructure project management consultancy.
that, if monetised, could well provide a different financing mechanism at another site to make a District Heating Scheme viable. No doubt having access to relatively cheap gas prices is a key variable. It was found that, should the time arrive where household retail gas prices exceeded $30/GJ, District Heating would also be a viable option at any site with similar characteristics to this Melbourne location.
THE AUTHORS Francis Pamminger (email: Francis.Pamminger@yvw. com.au) is the Manager of Research & Innovation at Yarra Valley Water, Melbourne. Jonathan Prendergast (email: jonathan@ prendergastprojects. com.au) is the Director of Prendergast Projects, an energy efficiency and renewable energy project development and investment consultancy.
Erwin Boermans (email: Erwin@comfortid.com) is the Director of Comfort ID, an energy efficiency and District Energy consultancy.
REFERENCES Alternative Technology Association (2014): Are We Still Cooking with Gas? Report for the Consumer Advocacy Panel. Beyond Zero Emissions (2013): Melbourne Energy Institute, The University of Melbourne. Zero Carbon Australia Buildings Plan. Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics (2014): Gas Market Report. November 2014. Pamminger F, Aye L, Scott D & Jelbert R (2013): Heat Energy Recovery Potential from Sewers in Melbourne. A Study to Determine Whether Heat Extraction from Sewers is Technically and Financially Viable. AWA Water Journal, 40, 7. November 2013, pp 68–73. ST
Sustainability Victoria (2013): Victorian Households Energy Report.
Water Journal is seeking quality, well-researched technical papers for the May 2015 issue. Topics for this issue include:
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water business ENSURING SAFETY OF BIOGAS PRODUCTION WITH MICHELL’S THERMO-PARAMAGNETIC OXYGEN ANALYSER A major Scandinavian producer of biogas has selected Michell Instruments’ XTP601 oxygen analysers to monitor O2 levels for safety and quality at two sites in Sweden. The XTP601 Oxygen Analyser is used to continuously provide readings of the levels of O2 in the process. In general, the lower level of oxygen in these applications should be no more than 0.5%, with a danger level of 4%. The XTP601 has alarms to shut down the plant if oxygen levels approach the danger level to ensure safety. One plant produces biogas from sewage while the other uses food and garden waste; however, the biogas from both plants is used as a transport fuel. Despite the different feedstocks, the process of upgrading the gas for use is the same. The biogas must be upgraded to 95% methane, which will give it a high enough calorific value to produce the energy required for transport fuel. It will also make it highly flammable,
which is why it is important to keep levels of oxygen low during the process. The XTP601 provides stable, accurate readings and is capable of measuring oxygen from 0–1% up to 0–50%, as well as suppressed zero ranges, such as 90–100%. There are three options for configuration: a transmitter; a transmitter with status LEDs; or a full display version. All of these options may be rated for either safe or hazardous area use, with hazardous area classifications available for ATEX, IECEx and CSA. The full display version of the XTP601 has a touch screen interface to enable easy operation without needing to remove the lid. This means that users can calibrate, change settings and interrogate the instrument in the hazardous area without the need for a ‘hot permit’ or permission to carry out work. Menus allow easy access to information on oxygen concentration, analyser status, a graph showing oxygen trends over a user-defined time period, alarm history, minimum and maximum concentrations, and other parameters to aid diagnosis of plant conditions. For more information please email: sales@ ams-ic.com.au or visit www.ams-ic.com.au
CLEAN TEQ AND AROMATRIX MERGER CREATES AIR TREATMENT POWERHOUSE Two Australian businesses have merged to create a new entity, to be known as Clean TeQ Aromatrix Pty Ltd. The move is good news for those in the market for air treatment technologies and related consulting services. The merger will bring together the best of both Clean TeQ and Aromatrix Australia’s capabilities and create a business of significant scale in Australia, while also providing a platform for growth throughout Asia. The merger also means a greater range of products, services and combined in-house expertise. Consolidating these two businesses opens channels for procurement and fabrication that will allow the new company to build on their reputations for high quality and competitiveness. Clean TeQ Aromatrix offers technologies in biological, thermal and carbon filtration, as well as cyclone and air-stripping treatments to remove both odour and airborne contaminants. The merger adds capabilities in consultancy services such as FEED, option studies, sewer/sulphide analysis and modelling, and atmospheric dispersion modelling. “This transaction provides the air business with the freedom and size to expand into exciting new and challenging geographies, while at the same time consolidating its delivery model for our Australian client base,” said Matthew Lakey, General Manager, Clean TeQ Aromatrix Pty Ltd. Gary Finke, Technical Director, Clean TeQ Aromatrix Pty Ltd, added: ”By consolidating our expertise and rationalising our supply chains, Clean TeQ Aromatrix will offer our clients a higher level of service and performance with a focus on an economical outcome.” The range of air treatment technologies and services offered include: • Biotrickling filters • Biofilters • Activated carbon filters
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Water Business • Thermal oxidation • Chemical scrubbers • Dust/particulate filters • Consultancy services (e.g. treatment option studies, sewer/sulphide and atmospheric dispersion modelling, field sampling and analysis studies). For more information, please visit www.cleanteq.com
VICTAULIC EXPANDS ITS FAMILY OF INSTALLATIONREADY™ STYLE 107 QUICKVIC® RIGID COUPLINGS Victaulic, manufacturer of mechanical pipe-joining systems, has released Style 107 QuickVic® rigid couplings in 10–12in/250–300mm sizes. The additional sizes will give contractors, engineers and owners more opportunities to maximise efficiency by reducing installation time and increasing safety. The Style 107 family of couplings expedites project construction by reducing installation steps and requires only standard hand tools for assembly. Installation-Ready™ technology from Victaulic features no loose parts and no need to disassemble before installation. The coupling is simply pushed onto the pipe-end as a fully assembled unit, joined by a second pipe-end and tightened. Installation is completed twice as fast as standard grooved couplings, and up to 10 times faster than welding and flanging, while offering the same high-performance capabilities. No flame or heat is required for installation, improving jobsite safety.
VERSATILE BEARING PUSHERS OPTIMISE PLANT MAINTENANCE TASKS When servicing large machinery, the importance of correct bearing installation is paramount. According to bearing manufacturers, incorrect installation is directly the cause of 16% of all failures. The use of hydraulic bearing pushers provides a precise, safe and time-saving method of removing and replacing bearings in plants widespread in the mining and energy, materials handling and ports facilities, oil and gas, and manufacturing and primary processing sectors. The bearing pushers also have wide usage in marine applications such as driveshaft, rudder and propeller maintenance. Technofast EziTite® bearing pushers, in stock sizes from M60 to M400 with capacities from 230kN to 1800kN (23 to 180 tons force), offer the ideal means of mounting or dismounting rolling element bearings and other components in Australian and international applications. Such bearings are widely employed in machinery such as conveyor drives, crushers, ball mills, stacker reclaimers, milling and rolling equipment, gearboxes, turbines, drilling equipment, and pumps, fans, blowers and marine applications. Rather than relying on heat or oil injection processes, the EziTite® Bearing Pusher uses high-pressure hydraulic oil (typically at 700 bar) to precisely drive the bearing onto the shaft’s bearing seat.
Use of the EziTite® Bearing Pusher is simple, with the assembly screwed into place and energised with a suitable pressure pump. The internal pressure thus generated acts on an annular piston to press against the bearing’s inner race, driving the bearing onto the shaft. Once the bearing has been driven into place, the pressure is released and the EziTite® Bearing Setter is removed. A standard locking nut and washer are then used to prevent the bearing from moving from its seat during operation and maintain correct operating preload. “The principle of the EziTite® Bearing Pusher’s operation is similar in operation to the standard Technofast EziTite® Hydraulic Nuts (without the mechanical locking ring), which are used in missioncritical applications globally where speed, precision and avoidance of downtime are paramount,” says Technofast CEO Mr John Bucknell. “The EziTite® Bearing Pusher does not require the mechanical lock ring feature as it is used as a tool rather than a tensioning device, making it simpler and cost-efficient. We can also typically produce these specialised hydraulic nuts in as little as two weeks, or about half the time typically taken in Australia for such a nut, further reducing potential downtime.” For further information, please visit www.technofast.com
The rigid design of the coupling, which does not accommodate expansion, contraction or angular deflection, meets industry standards for support. Support and hanging requirements correspond to ASME B31.1 Power Piping Code and ASME B31.9 Building Services Piping Code. Ideal for HVAC, utility, process and mine piping applications, Style 107 rigid couplings are available in sizes ranging from 2–12in (50– 300mm), and join standard roll-grooved and cut-grooved steel pipe. The Style 107 family accommodates pressures ranging from full vacuum up to 750 psi (5170 kPa), depending on pipe diameter and wall thickness. Couplings are supplied with a grade “EHP” EPDM gasket, which features a temperature range of -30 to +250°F (-34 to 121°C). Grade “T” nitrile gaskets are also available. To learn more about the Style 107 QuickVic rigid coupling family and other solutions for a range of industries, please visit www.victaulic.com
FEBRUARY 2015 water
Water Business NOV MONO EASES PRESSURE ON SEWERAGE SERVICES IN TASMANIA Reliability, cost effectiveness, ease of use and simple maintenance were among the key reasons why Southern Water chose an innovative pressure sewer system (PSS) from NOV Mono, to replace ageing septic tanks for over 900 houses in the community of Lauderdale in Tasmania. Mono has secured the long-term supply and design agreement with Southern Water, and has now successfully installed its InviziQ PSS system in over 270 of the properties, with more set to be added in the near future. The high water table and flat, sandy terrain that characterise the Lauderdale area meant that a traditional gravity-fed sewerage system was unsuitable. A pressure system was preferred for its ease of construction and ability to restrict ground water infiltration. “InviziQ is an intelligent, practical and reliable alternative to conventional gravity-
operated options,” says Richard Pacholek, Mono’s Industrial Segment Manager for Pressure Sewer Systems. “Because it does not need gravity to operate, it offers the freedom to install sewers in any area, irrespective of the terrain, slope, environmental sensitivity or topography, and that is ideal for the Lauderdale area. “We have worked with Southern Water in the past, and they were keen to use a Mono solution as we are very much a local Australian manufacturer. In return, the installation of the InviziQ units has really provided a boost to this community by delivering a reliable and well-proven solution to its sewering requirements, and there is scope to add many more units in future.” The InviziQ PSS system can be installed either in narrow trenches or via directional drilling. This gives virtually unlimited freedom in the design and layout of a sewage network, which can then be sized to meet the specific needs of the individual project. The InviziQ system has a storage
tank of 900 litres, a Progressing Cavity (PC) pump incorporating a macerator, and an automatic electronic controller that regulates the flow, monitors fluid levels and protects the pump. It can also support twoway telemetry for remote monitoring. InviziQ features a revolutionary ‘dry well’, which keeps the pump motor, fluid level sensor and electrical systems separate from the fluid being pumped. This uses a vertically mounted pump cassette inserted into the tank through a hole in the dry well, and ensures that the pump is suspended without the need for a foot, which can cause ragging. From an operational health and safety perspective, this also makes accessing the system for servicing a far easier and safer process that involves no contact with the sewage. For more details visit www.monopumps. com.au or call 1800 333 138.
FREE CHLORINE SENSORS FOR WATER TREATMENT AND DISINFECTION Sensorex’s FCL Series free chlorine sensors use amperometric measurement technology to provide highly accurate monitoring of free chlorine in process applications. FCL sensors are ideal for use in drinking water disinfection and distribution applications, and are compliant with EPA method 334.0 for measuring drinking water. They are also well suited for providing accurate free chlorine monitoring in cooling tower water, an important application for industrial water treatment system providers. With three models available covering the 0–2ppm, 0–5ppm and 0–10ppm ranges, the FCL Series meets a broad range of performance
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Water Business requirements. Its membrane design features a mesh reinforcement clamp for increased stability and added durability. The integral 4-20mA isolated signal output is enhanced to eliminate ground loop errors, reduce noise, and block high-voltage transient surges. For real-time free chlorine monitoring, FCL Series sensors interface directly with PLC, SCADA and other process control systems via the standard 4-20mA output. A large electrolyte reservoir with an easy-to-replace membrane cap and electrolyte solution reduces maintenance intervals and maximises sensor life. A specialised acrylic flow cell (FC72) is available to provide a controlled flow environment for measurement stability. For more information, please visit www.sensorex.com.
ENERGY-EFFICIENT TURNKEY BLOWER SYSTEMS Kaeser Compressors Australia has just announced the launch of the EBS series screw blowers. Exceptionally energy efficient, these cost-effective, quiet and user-friendly turnkey blower systems are ideal for low-pressure applications requiring air flow up to 35.8m3/min. The new EBS series from Kaeser presents a highly energy-efficient screw blower system solution that uses up to 35% less energy than conventional rotary blowers, as well as delivering significant energy savings compared with many screw blowers currently available on the market. A blower air-end with high efficiency Kaeser Sigma Profile rotors, flow-optimised components, efficient power transmission and drive components ensure exceptional performance. The high-efficiency blower air-ends combine a wide control range with near constant specific power. Equipped with the world-renowned Kaeser Sigma Profile rotors, the air-ends found in the EBS series screw blowers ensure maximum air delivery while keeping power consumption to a minimum. In addition, the rotors are not coated,
which means that efficiency essentially remains consistent even after many years of operation. The EBS series screw blowers from Kaeser come with an integrated Sigma Control 2 as standard. This intuitive controller ensures comprehensive and efficient blower control and system monitoring. For additional optimisation, these blowers can be supplied with a Sigma Air Manager (SAM) master control system. Thanks to its high level of data integration and multiple interface options, SAM can be easily integrated into advanced production, building management and energy management systems. The EBS series of screw blowers from Kaeser will meet the demanding requirements of a wide range of applications, from wastewater treatment, pneumatic conveying systems and energy production to the food and beverage sector, and the pharmaceutical and chemical sector. Exceptionally durable the EBS series screw blowers from Kaeser are simple to install and have been designed for dependable, continuous operation. Thanks to a logical component layout, these versatile blower systems can be installed next to a wall, or even side by side, making maintenance a breeze. Kaeser EBS series screw blowers are available with motor power 22 to 75 kW and maximum free air delivery up to 35.8m3/min. For more information visit www.kaeser.com. au or phone 1800 640 611.
AUSTRALIAN ENGINEERS LAUNCH CROWD-FUNDING CAMPAIGN TO ERADICATE TOXIC WATER POLLUTION Three engineers at Queensland firm Global Aquatica are crowd-funding to raise money to remove acid and heavy metal pollution from water at a pilot site in Australia. According to Global Aquatica it is the only company that can totally remove acid mine drainage (AMD) pollution at an affordable price, using the technology that these engineers developed. Now they want to clean up water pollution worldwide and need financial help to make it happen. The Australian Government estimates there are more than 18,000 active sites in Australia polluting our rivers and drinking water supplies with acid and heavy metals, with hundreds of thousands more sites in the US and probably millions around the world. The American EPA estimates there are more than 16,000km of polluted rivers in the US alone.
“There have been no practical or cost-effective methods of treating this pollution previously. So many pollution sites are centuries old, and still contaminating our drinking water and rivers with heavy metals,” Global Aquatica managing director Sam Costin explained. Acid mine drainage (AMD) forms when rainwater is turned into sulphuric acid after coming into contact with common sulphide rock. The resulting acid contaminates surrounding rivers and drinking water supplies. The revolutionary pollution removal process was developed by the Global Aquatica engineers in conjunction with leading global mining companies and Australian universities. Water from the process is sprayed onto the sulphide rocks to stop acid forming from rainwater. This process results in high-quality water that is then suitable for agriculture and industry and replaces current drinking water. Contaminants collected during the treatment process are converted into recyclable products that are valuable to industry. In addition to treating the water, the process also reduces the rainwater contamination by up to 90%, ensuring it no longer reaches rivers. The process does not import chemicals, produces no stored wastes and uses recycled greenwaste from rubbish tips to feed the bacteria used in the process. “The mining industry had a hand in designing this decontamination process and it is a real game changer for them, particularly due to its very low operating costs,” Mr Costin said. Global Aquatica was formed by engineers Sam Costin, Eric Longamn and Harry Windsor after their coal industry parent company went out of business. They have continued with their valuable work because they wanted to continue cleaning up our rivers and drinking water. “We are currently raising funds to restart operations and the response to our Indiegogo campaign has been fantastic,” said Mr Costin. “The global community, including EPAs, mining companies and environmental groups, is coming together to support Global Aquatica›s engineers to ensure this water pollution is permanently eradicated.” If you would like to donate please go to: www.indiegogo.com/projects/healing-ourplanet-of-acid-mine-drainage-pollution
FEBRUARY 2015 water
Water Business SCHNEIDER ELECTRIC RANKS 9TH IN 2015 GLOBAL 100 MOST SUSTAINABLE CORPORATIONS Schneider Electric, a global specialist in energy management, has announced that it ranks 9th in the 2015 Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World (“Global 100”) Index. The index was released by Corporate Knights, a Toronto-based media and investment advisory company, in January. Companies ranked in the Global 100 index are the top sustainability performers in their respective industrial sectors, selected from 4,609 listed companies with a market capitalisation greater than US$2 billion. The Global 100 is determined using 12 quantitative sustainability indicators, including the amount of revenue companies generate per unit of energy consumed and lost-time injury rate. “The Global 100 represents the corporate trailblazers who are forging new ways to make more with less,” said Toby Heaps, CEO of Corporate Knights. “Schneider Electric ranks in the top 10 for the second consecutive year,” said Jean-Pascal Tricoire, Chairman and CEO of Schneider Electric. “This is a strong recognition of our continued commitment to sustainability. On a daily basis, Schneider Electric seeks to prove that economic, environmental and social interests are convergent. To have a significant impact and initiate lasting change, a performance measure is required. That is why Schneider Electric has defined specific objectives and measures its results each quarter using the Planet & Society barometer.” Schneider Electric has been building its Planet & Society barometer for 10 years to measure its sustainability performance. The Planet & Society barometer has been the group sustainability scorecard since 2005, with objectives defined for a threeyear period and quarterly results for its key performance indicators. With each company program, the group defines a new Planet & Society barometer. The barometer rates overall progress using a scoring scale of 10. The final result of the Planet & Society barometer for the 2012–2014 program will be published in February. However, the barometer had already exceeded its three-year target of 8/10, and achieved 9.20 (out of a maximum possible 10) in Q3 2014. To find out more about the Planet & Society barometer, please visit www. schneider-electric.com/barometer. For the full Global 100 rankings go to www. corporateknights.com/reports/global-100
water FEBRUARY 2015
WATER PROJECT GRANT RECIPIENTS ANNOUNCED Sixteen schools and community groups from across Australia will be a little greener, less thirsty and growing a lot more fresh local produce this year thanks to a national initiative supporting water-related projects. The Philmac Project was established by Australian manufacturer, Philmac, to provide cash grants of up to $5,000 to community organisations in rural and regional Australia. Now in its third round, the scheme received a record number of applications with more than 100 organisations submitting ideas to save water and improve water quality in their local communities. A judging panel selected 12 recipients from short-lists determined by public voting. The panel also awarded four special grants for 2015 as part of a new Bluey Award, open to any applicant. Announcing the recipients, Philmac Managing Director Mark Nykiel said he was impressed by the number, quality and scope of applications received in the latest round, particularly from smaller and more isolated rural communities. “The Philmac Project is obviously meeting a considerable need for cash to help bring to life often small-scale projects that will make a big difference to local communities and at the same time benefit the environment,” he said. “The latest round of grants will enable more people to learn how to grow fresh fruit and vegetables, create greener spaces for children to play in and safer playing surfaces for local sporting clubs, and provide clean drinking water for people and livestock. “These projects will help communities capture rainwater, reduce water use and maximise water efficiency, and they will also save many hours of labour for over-stretched volunteers. Working with local organisations to make these differences is exactly what we set out to do when we established the Philmac Project. It is our way of saying thank you to regional and rural communities that have made it possible for us to continue manufacturing in this country.” In selecting the recipients, the judges were looking for projects that would make a genuine difference to their local community, and have the potential to reduce water use, improve water quality or benefit the environment in some way. In the Bluey Awards, the aim was to broaden opportunities for groups that might be considered ‘underdogs’ compared
with applicants from organisations that could draw on more supporters in the voting round. The award is named after Philmac’s brand ambassador, Bluey, an Australian Blue Heeler. Apart from handing out cash grants, the Philmac Project will also provide free Philmac products to eight projects this year. The 2015 recipients are: • New South Wales: Orange East Public School – $3,500 to help water a renovated playground; Parkes Skate Park and Youth Recreational Group – $1,500 to supply drinking water; Canowindra Public School Parents & Citizens Association – $1,000 worth of Philmac products to improve the school’s vegetable garden; Dirnaseer Memorial Hall and Community Church – a Bluey Award of $500 worth of Philmac products to install a watering system. • Queensland: Millen Farm at Samford – $3,000 to set up an irrigation system; Kin Kin School – $2,000 to install a new rainwater tank and divert greywater to a kitchen garden; Redlynch State College Parent and Citizens Association – $1,000 worth of Philmac products to install a reticulation system on the school oval; Whitsunday Catchment Landcare Community Nursery, Proserpine – a Bluey Award of $3,000 to install a new irrigation system. • South Australia: Curramulka Community Club – $5,000 to install an automated irrigation system at the oval; Nuriootpa Primary School – $1,000 worth of Philmac products to improve the school gardens; Waikerie Men’s Shed – a Bluey Award of $500 in Philmac products to help supply rainwater to its gardens and toilets. • Victoria/Tasmania: Upper Plenty Primary School – $5,000 to establish an aquaponics system and expand the garden program; Okines Community House, Dodges Ferry – $1,000 worth of Philmac products for their community garden; Nhill Agricultural and Pastoral Society and the Hindmarsh Equestrian Club – a Bluey Award of $1,500 worth of Philmac products to upgrade and extend watering systems at Nhill showground. • Western Australia: Paraburdoo Primary School – $5,000 to install a reticulation system on the school oval; Condingup Primary School Parents and Citizens Association – $1,000 worth of Philmac products to help install a reticulated watering system in a new native and edible garden area. For more information please visit www.philmacproject.com.au.
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Our cover theme this issue is on Financing Water Infrastructure – and the authors of our feature articles focus on the question of funding a...
Published on Feb 24, 2015
Our cover theme this issue is on Financing Water Infrastructure – and the authors of our feature articles focus on the question of funding a...