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Volume 41 No 6 SEPTEMBER 2014
Journal of the Australian Water Association
RECOGNISING THE VALUE OF URBAN WATER PLANNING â€“ See page 31
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Contents regular features From the AWA President
Do We Want To Continue To Be Smart About Water? Graham Dooley
From the AWA Chief Executive
Call For A New National Water Strategy Jonathan McKeown
My Point of View
Beyond Liveability: Regenerative, Restorative, Net-Positive Infrastructure Cynthia Mitchell 6
Industry News Young Water Professionals Why Persistence Pays Off Justin Simonis
New Products And Services
water journal ISSN 0310-0367
MANAGING EDITOR – Anne Lawton Tel: 02 9467 8434 Email: email@example.com TECHNICAL EDITOR – Chris Davis 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 EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT – Michelle Demos Email: email@example.com EDITORIAL BOARD Frank R Bishop (Chair); Dr Andrew Bath, Water Corporation; Michael Chapman, GHD; Wilf Finn, Norton Rose Fulbright; Robert Ford, Central Highlands Water (rtd); Ted Gardner (rtd); Antony Gibson, Orica Watercare; Dr Lionel Ho, AWQC, SA Water; Dr Robbert van Oorschot, GHD; John Poon, CH2M Hill; David Power, BECA Consultants; Dr Ashok Sharma, CSIRO. PUBLISH DATES Water Journal is published eight times per year: February, April, May, June, August, September, November and December. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for a copy of our 2014 Editorial Calendar.
EDITORIAL SUBMISSIONS Acceptance of editorial submissions is at the discretion of the Editors and Editorial Board. • Technical Papers & Technical Features: Chris Davis, Technical Editor, email: email@example.com AND firstname.lastname@example.org
Recognised WSUD best practice in Mandurah, WA.
Community Engagement: What’s The Best Approach?
Communications Consultant Rachael de Zylva Shares Her Tips
volume 41 no 6
feature articles There Is Real Value In Urban Water Planning: Why Can’t We See It?
Challenges Of Implementing Better Urban Water Management In WA Shelley Shepherd 31
Crumbling Sewers Linked To Drinking Water Treatment Republished From The Conversation Zhiguo Yuan & Jurg Keller
Taiwan Puts On A Show
Michael Seller On A Pre-Exhibition Tour For Aqua Taiwan
conference report IWA Conference On Pre-Treatment Of Water & Wastewater An Overview Of This Two-Day Event Held In Shanghai Mitch Laginestra
cover Better urban water design starts with preliminary planning.
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: email@example.com • General Feature Articles, Industry News, Opinion Pieces & Media Releases: Anne Lawton, Managing Editor, email: firstname.lastname@example.org 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: email@example.com • Water Business & Product News: Kirsty Muir, Sales & Advertising Manager, email: KMuir@awa.asn.au ADVERTISING Advertisements are included as an information service to readers and are reviewed before publication to ensure relevance to the water sector and the objectives of AWA. PUBLISHER Australian Water Association (AWA) Publishing, Level 6, 655 Pacific Hwy, PO Box 222, St Leonards NSW 1590; Tel: +61 2 9436 0055 or 1300 361 426, Fax: +61 2 9436 0155, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, 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: email@example.com 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.
SEPTEMBER 2014 water
From the President
DO WE WANT TO CONTINUE TO BE SMART ABOUT WATER? Graham Dooley – AWA President
Australia has always had a magnificent record for being knowledgeable, skilful, creative and ingenious when it comes to managing our water. We have been consistently at or near the top internationally in the science of this essential resource, both in the furthering of knowledge of water and in the application of science and technology to all aspects of water treatment, and the technical regulation that applies to each water cycle. Since the 1880s we have also been international pioneers of a number of commercial, legal and regulatory initiatives. We have been a smart industry indeed! Do we want this to continue? I would think so. Over the past few decades, funding for water R&D in all its forms (not just the science) has come from an uncoordinated combination of the major water utilities, directly from the Commonwealth and State Governments, indirectly from the Commonwealth through the various university funding channels, and from companies who participate in the CRCs and Centres of Excellence. All this is about to change over the next few years with the simultaneous end of a number of funding streams. The new Federal Government has cut CRC programs dramatically and the two Centres of Excellence are coming to the end of their funding cycles. All other funding is likely to be more competitively allocated, with a general contraction in “discretionary” funding at all of the utility, State and Commonwealth levels. Economic regulators in State jurisdictions are not convinced about R&D being part of the regulated cost base of water utilities because they can’t see the direct value for customers.
WATER SEPTEMBER 2014
I note with considerable interest the way in which, since the 1980s, rural industries have organised their R&D through a set of highly focused R&D corporations run by industry for the benefit of the industry and its customers. Funding is continuous and is principally from industry levies (compulsory and typically around 0.75%) and matching Commonwealth funding. I note that just one of these R&D corporations, one that deals with red meat, spends over $150M pa. Another, which deals with wine, has over 100 scientists on its “payroll”, scattered among various universities and the CSIRO! With that sort of horsepower, there is no wonder that good agricultural outcomes are generated. By comparison, in the water industry there is no overarching R&D body and the amount we spend is far less than for any one of these other rural R&D bodies. AWA is concerned that water R&D funding is declining when there is so much ability to focus on it in our universities and other research organisations. Potential R&D from these various sources needs to be better coordinated, promoted and adopted across our water industry. The AWA Board supports and is working towards a single, national, industry-led body to focus our water R&D on what benefits the industry and its consumers, not just because it is interesting for its own sake – and we ought to fund it in a reliable manner. Other countries’ water sectors do this, as do Australian rural industries – and so should we!
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From the CEO
CALL FOR A NEW NATIONAL WATER STRATEGY Jonathan McKeown – AWA Chief Executive
Australia’s development is at a crossroads, and whichever way we turn the sustainable management of water will determine the path ahead. Recommendations on the development of Northern Australia have been released this month, the push to double our agricultural productivity to increase exports to Asia is being widely canvassed, and we are establishing the largest energy and mining projects in the country’s history. In the urban context Australia’s population is predicted to grow to 35 million over the next 20 years. So where is the country’s vision and strategic plan for water to enable these targets? The level of strategic thinking and debate about the options for managing Australia’s water needs to become a national priority. As Australia’s Chief Scientist Professor Ian Chubb said at the AWA Water Leaders Dinner in Canberra earlier this month, water is one of our major assets and we need to prioritise it in our national planning. Between 2001 and 2011 Australia experienced the harshest drought in recorded history. Major cities faced serious water shortages and stringent demand management measures were employed to restrict usage, impinging on the economic viability of many users. Between 2011 and 2013, this pattern flipped resulting in the wettest period in history. Significant floods were experienced in many urban areas on the east coast, most notably in Brisbane in 2012. These floods forced the evacuation of thousands of people from towns and cities. Damage has been initially estimated at $2.38 billion, with a predicted reduction in Australia’s GDP about A$30 billion. In contrast, Perth remains largely in drought and inflows into its dams have remained at record lows. Without desalination, Perth would have run dry.
WATER SEPTEMBER 2014
Extreme variability, over time and space, is now the norm for our water sector and the industries and communities they serve; operating parameters have changed and new water management skills have been required. The need to diversify our urban water supplies has brought about fundamental changes to the institutional and regulatory environment for urban water – but further reform is required to meet the long-term requirements of our customers. Water prices are rising, urban centres are growing – and consequently water-planning assumptions are continually changing – and new risks are emerging from an increasingly interconnected urban water cycle. The water sector is now adopting new strategies to enhance climate change resilience, improve water use efficiencies, protect urban waterways and ensure greater customer focus. Much progress has been made and the National Water Initiative has driven fundamental reform to our urban and rural water management practices. This progress needs to continue for Australia to reap the full economic benefits from this period of reform. Climate variability directly affects our agribusiness and mining industries and indirectly affects many others. We need to work with all these sectors to ensure Australia has a sound national water strategy capable of delivering future growth and prosperity for all. AWA is hosting a National Water Summit in Sydney on Wednesday 15 October to debate the requirements of a national water strategy and to hear from some of our water users in other sectors. From this Summit AWA, in association with consulting company Accenture, will prepare a Discussion Paper on a new national strategy with a strong industry perspective. I urge you to participate in the process and join us at the Summit in October.
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My Point of View
BEYOND LIVEABILITY: REGENERATIVE, RESTORATIVE, NET-POSITIVE INFRASTRUCTURE Cynthia Mitchell – UTS Institute for Sustainable Futures Cynthia Mitchell is Professor of Sustainability and Deputy Director at UTS Institute for Sustainable Futures. She is the recipient of national and international awards from industry and academia, a Fellow of Engineers Australia, and a Fellow of the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. Cynthia ‘fell’ into sewage treatment in the early ’90s and says she never really recovered from all the bad joke possibilities. She is passionate about improving the economic, ecological and social sustainability of our water and sanitation systems, through bringing together diverse disciplines, diverse organisations and civil society.
WHAT DOES NET-POSITIVE INFRASTRUCTURE MEAN – AND WHY DO WE NEED IT? Across the globe, most of us now live in cities, and the way we live in cities is mostly unsustainable. We didn’t set out to be unsustainable – our intentions are generally to do the right thing. It’s just that working out what is the right thing to do is a genuinely difficult task that gets more complex the more we learn about the connected nature of things. Functional water, stormwater and sewage services are fundamental to functional people and functional cities. And, what ‘functional’ means has always reflected our expanding understanding of the world around us: historically, our function (or goal) was first to protect public health – and at the lowest cost – and then to reduce harm to the environment. In recent years, liveability has emerged as the new goal.
WATER SEPTEMBER 2014
NEXT-GENERATION THINKING One way to think about the idea presented here is as the next generation: beyond liveability. However, this idea is revolutionary rather than evolutionary: a ‘restorative’ or ‘regenerative’ system seeks to ‘do more good’ rather than to ‘do less bad’. And the reasoning is deceptively simple: doing less bad will not, indeed cannot, deliver a world where we can all live well. What we need instead is a net-positive approach. The impact of this kind of thinking has been profound in the product and green building spaces: “Net Zero Energy and Net Zero Water buildings have rapidly captured the public imagination, and are transforming expectations for the pace of change in the built environment.” (livingfuture.org/netpositive) Net Positive Energy + Water Building Conference, February 4-5, 2014, San Francisco. In ‘Cradle to Cradle’, McDonough and Braungart tell the story of how a ‘do less harm’ approach can lead to book designers choosing maximum recycled content for the paper as a trade-off between minimising the use of chlorine as a bleaching agent and minimising the use of virgin forest materials, thereby reducing the options for further recycling because of reductions in fibre length each time paper is recycled. A ‘do more good’ approach, if it chose to keep the traditional form of a book, might instead choose, as McDonough and Braungart did: a polymer-based material that is designed to be durable, for infinite cycles at the same quality; to
My Point of View be compatible with non-toxic inks so that those inks can be removed in a process that uses only heat and water; and so forth.
HOW MIGHT THIS HAPPEN? What we are talking about here is that the scale of transformation that economists have recognised only occurs every few generations – the end of one economic ‘long wave’ and the emergence of another enabled by the combination of creative capital and technological innovation (for example, steam trains) that drive socio-political change. This time, it’s the circular economy (see McKinsey’s report, launched at the World Economic Forum www.ellenmacarthurfoundation.org/business/ce100). What might this mean for water service provision? It would mean gradually transforming and diversifying just about everything. Some potentially heretical ideas follow – read on at your own risk! For example, our environmental regulation system might enable sewage service providers to ‘separate’ upstream, so that recovery of valuable or dangerous materials is facilitated at the scale and location that make most sense. We might engage the public in a well-informed deliberative process to come to new agreements about what level of risk, security and price are acceptable. Our economic regulators might underwrite an expansive approach to assessing value, including externalities, that facilitates real return on investment, creative capital, community and private sector investment, new forms of business, diversified products, and all of this in ways that give preference to long-term value over short-term dividend or profit. All this would enable substantial diversity and breakthroughs in our technological systems and scales.
Is all this pie in the sky? Maybe not. In the USA, Harvard University combined forces with the American Society of Civil Engineers, the American Public Works Association and the American Council of Engineering Companies to form the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI). While it was under construction (pardon the pun) at the same time as our own Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia (ISCA), ISI has gone further. Guess what’s the highest level of performance in ISI’s infrastructure rating tool? Restorative. While what ISI has laid out now may not be everything I’ve laid out here, it is certainly heading in the same direction – towards net-positive infrastructure.
SO WHAT NOW? I think the time is right, now, for a broader conversation about what it would mean to embrace this idea – to begin the seriously challenging work to identify what this would mean in practice, what initial moves we should make, and to prepare ourselves to be okay with learning from failure. I first pitched this idea of restorative infrastructure back in 2006 – initially to Yarra Valley Water (where it helped define their ‘new’ objective of providing services within the carrying capacity of nature), then to the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority where it transformed what people thought was possible for Barangaroo at a building and precinct scale, then to ISCA, which eschewed it as a bridge too far at the time. I said earlier that it’s revolutionary, and it is. I don’t expect it to be easy – it will mean scrutinising things we hold dear that have served us well... but we know more now, so it’s time for our definition of ‘functional’ to expand. I reckon we are ready for it. Do you?
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National The Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA) has published its report, Improving Economic Regulation of Urban Water. The report, which was released by Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment, Senator Simon Birmingham, highlights opportunities to improve efficiency in the water sector. “This publication is an example of why Australia has become a world leader in water management, but demonstrates that there remains room for improvement,” Senator Birmingham said.
Interested parties are invited to give their feedback on a draft long-term strategy for environmental watering in the Murray-Darling Basin. MDBA spokeswoman Jody Swirepik says that, once finalised, the strategy will help guide watering activities across the Basin so the best environmental outcomes can be achieved. The strategy is a key component of work under the Basin Plan and will be up for public comment until the end of September.
The Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development’s updated review of activities is now available electronically. Please go to the committee’s website at www.iesc.environment.gov.au for an overview of its activities from December 2012 to June 2014.
Queensland Irrigators in the Burnett Basin will have more water to support their businesses with the release of a new plan by the Queensland Government. Queensland Minister for Natural Resources and Mines, Andrew Cripps, says the Burnett Basin Water Resource Plan 2014 delivers a balanced and responsible approach to managing water in the region.
Queensland Natural Resources Minister, Andrew Cripps, has announced the launch of the interactive online Water for Queensland map and invited project backers to register their interest in accessing the unallocated water. The initiative is flagged to strengthen the Queensland economy and create jobs, with the potential release of billions of litres of unallocated water reserves for regional developments.
Northern Territory Power and Water Corporation is partnering with water treatment specialist Degrémont and construction company Goodline to provide improved drinking water outcomes for the rural township of Adelaide River, says Water Services General Manager Neil Rickard. The new system will service the population of around 300 residents, supplying up to 1.1 megalitres of improved drinking water per day in peak demand.
South Australia The Essential Services Commission of South Australia has made its Draft Decision on the introduction of a Water Metering Code regarding regulation of meter service provision in the retail water industry in South Australia. In arriving at its Draft Decision, the Commission reviewed submissions received in response to an Issues Paper on the matter, released in May 2014.
A $220 million upgrade to the Christies Beach Wastewater Treatment Plant is scheduled to be completed shortly. The plant at O’Sullivan Beach receives and treats wastewater from Adelaide’s southern suburbs. Water and the River Murray Minister, Ian Hunter, says the plant was commissioned in the early 1970s, and in 2006 SA Water began to increase its treatment capacity by 50 per cent. This upgrade was in order to service anticipated local population growth as well as to further reduce the plant’s environmental impact.
Victoria A panel of water experts has been appointed by the Queensland Government to help develop solutions to improve service delivery as part of WaterQ: A 30-year Strategy for Queensland’s Water Sector. The Water Expert Panel has an advisory role and will provide recommendations to the Strategic Advisory Committee that oversees the implementation of WaterQ. The panel, chaired by Mark Pascoe, Chief Executive of the International WaterCentre, will be responsible for identifying water sector innovation, research and development priorities and to prepare a work program including a 100-day plan.
The peak advocacy body for the resources sector in Queensland has welcomed a Fitzroy River health report that shows most reporting areas improved or remained stable over a 12-month period. Chief Executive of the Queensland Resources Council (QRC), Michael Roche, says the Council is a proud member of the Fitzroy Partnership for River Health, which assesses waterway health for the Nogoa, Isaac, Connors, Dawson and Mackenzie river systems, the Fitzroy River estuary and the Keppel Bay marine environment.
water SEPTEMBER 2014
Victorian Minister for Water, Peter Walsh, has announced the appointment of Sarah Scales as the new Chair and Marg O’Rourke as new Director of the Goulburn-Murray Water (GMW) board. Ms Scales is the first woman to be appointed as Chair, while Ms O’Rourke has extensive governance and commercial business experience in the utility sector.
The Victorian Government has released the consultation document of the Metropolitan Whole-of-Water-Cycle Strategic Framework (Metro Framework). Victorian Minister for Water, Peter Walsh, says the Government’s urban water reform policy, Melbourne’s Water Future, is focused on making smarter decisions to deliver better services at lower cost, avoiding costly infrastructure.
The Victorian Ombudsman has tabled a report in the Victorian Parliament following investigation into procurement, recruitment and contract management practices at the Office of Living Victoria.
SEPTEMBER 2014 water
CrossCurrent The report has made four recommendations: Review the Staffing Services State Purchase Contract Arrangements; Ensure all Administrative Offices are Obliged to Adhere to Government Supply Policies; Clarify Intellectual Property Rights for the Integrated Water Cycle Management Model; and Audit Office of Living Victoria’s Financial Management.
The Goulburn-Murray Water Price Review 2016 has been released. The purpose of this Guideline is to set out the Commission’s minimum requirements for information that should be provided in GoulburnMurray Water’s (G-MW) final price submission for the regulatory period 1 July 2016–30 June 2020. G-MW’s final price submission must provide sufficient information for the Commission to assess G-MW’s proposals for services, expenditure, revenue, and tariffs.
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment, Senator Simon Birmingham, and Victorian Minister for Water, Peter Walsh, have officially launched the Hipwell Road environmental watering works in Victoria’s iconic Gunbower Forest. The new infrastructure, developed under The Living Murray initiative, is designed to deliver environmental water from the River Murray into the forest.
A $1.2 million upgrade to radio firmware as part of the GoulburnMurray Water Connections Project will ensure more efficient water delivery to irrigators using the system’s modernised equipment. Senator Simon Birmingham, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister
for the Environment, and Victorian Minister for Water Peter Walsh, recently toured farms near Kerang that are being supplied by upgraded irrigation infrastructure under the Connections Project. Senator Birmingham says that when the project is completed, there will be about 18,000 automated devices in the network, so it was important the radio firmware was of a high standard.
Australian Capital Territory The ACT Government has taken an important step towards improving water quality in Canberra’s lakes and waterways with the announcement of the first successful consultancy to inform phase one of the $85 million Basin Priority Project. ACT Minister for the Environment, Simon Corbell, has announced that GHD is the successful tenderer.
New South Wales The NSW Government has announced a new framework that will map, monitor and protect groundwater resources across NSW. Minister for Natural Resources, Lands and Water, Kevin Humphries, and Minister for Resources and Energy, Anthony Roberts, says the Water Monitoring Framework will transform how water data is captured and used to protect the state’s water resources. State-of-the-art computer modelling will be used in conjunction with groundwater baseline data to map and protect underground water resources in NSW.
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CrossCurrent Close to one million litres of water will be saved every day as a result of a partnership between the private sector and Sydney Water at the new residential and commercial development at Central Park, Broadway. Minister for Natural Resources, Lands and Water, Kevin Humphries, says a new water recycling facility at the Central Park development on the site of the old Carlton Brewery is the largest of its kind in the world and will set the standard for water reuse and efficiency in new developments across Sydney.
NSW Deputy Premier, Andrew Stoner, and Minister for Natural Resources, Lands and Water, Kevin Humphries, have announced $17 million in funding for 10 projects across eight Local Government Areas under the most recent round of Water Security for Regions. Mr Stoner and Mr Humphries have also announced a new round of funding, worth an additional $80 million, would be open to an additional 41 local communities for urgent water security infrastructure projects.
Western Australia NEC Australia has won a four-year contract with the Western Australia Department of Water, which will see the company deliver an IT platform to enhance the state’s capacity to manage its water resources. The contract, which has an estimated value of AU$4.8 million, will see NEC deliver a water management platform that will give the WA Department of Water the capability to manage increased demands on water resources caused by rapid population growth, as well as tools to better manage forecasted declines in rainfall in some regions.
WA Environment Minister, Albert Jacob, has announced the appointment of Jason Banks to the inaugural position of Director General of the Department of Environment Regulation. Mr Jacob has congratulated Mr Banks on his appointment, saying: “Mr Banks has been Acting Director General of the Department of Environment Regulation since it was created in July 2013. He has successfully led the formation of the department, overseeing more than 300 staff and driving a range of reforms.”
Investigation into the water resources of the West Canning Basin has revealed massive underground reservoirs capable of fuelling bold plans for regional growth in the Pilbara, according to WA Water Minister Mia Davies. Ms Davies says mining, agriculture, industry and towns could all be expanded using the vast underground resource of the West Canning Basin to sustainably supply 100 gigalitres a year of water for use in the Pilbara.
A WA Government drilling program to boost water supplies and expand horticultural production in the Gascoyne is set to begin. WA Agriculture and Food Minister, Ken Baston, has announced contracts for drilling had been awarded to Austral Drilling Services and contracts for bore development had gone to Advanced Bore Services. “This marks a significant step forward in sourcing and delivering additional water suitable for horticultural production as part of the State Government’s Gascoyne Food Bowl initiative,” he says.
The first stage of an upgrade to Onslow’s water supply scheme, which will ultimately provide enough water to meet the town’s growing
water SEPTEMBER 2014
population, is now complete. The State Government’s Royalties for Regions program contributed $9.9 million and the Water Corporation provided $14.7 million to the $24.6 million upgrades.
The Economic Regulation Authority (ERA) has published the Small Water Suppliers – Sewerage, Irrigation and Water Statistics for the year ending 30 June 2014 on its website. The data for water and sewerage supply schemes with more than 1,000 connected properties and the state’s two largest irrigators is published in the Authority’s annual Water, Wastewater and Irrigation Performance Report, which also includes comparative analysis and commentary on the level of service provided.
Member News Water New Zealand’s Asia Pacific Stormwater Conference will be held from 20–22 May 2015 at the Pullman Hotel, Auckland. The theme for the conference is Liveable Cities, Liveable Communities. The call for abstracts closes 30 September. Please go to www. stormwaterconference.org.nz for more information.
Following the passing of WaterRA Chair Michael Moore, WaterRA has announced that Mr Saun Cox has taken over the role. Shaun has extensive operational and strategic leadership experience in the water industry and a passion for creating and adding value to organisations with which he works.
AWA was saddened to hear of the sudden passing of Kamal Fernando from NSW Water Solutions. Kamal was an icon in the water industry and his expertise was legendary. He won many awards as both a leader of successful multi-disciplinary teams and as an individual contributor where his personal professional presentation was his hallmark. Kamal’s family, friends and team were his pillars to support his passion and commitment. Kamal was a great supporter of AWA, in particular the NSW Branch, and will be greatly missed.
Aurecon has appointed Giam Swiegers as its new CEO, effective 1 February 2015. He will be based in the company’s Sydney office.
Ms Julie Abramson and Mr Richard Clarke have been appointed as Commissioners to the Essential Services Commission Victoria. Ms Abramson is a lawyer with over 20 years of regulatory experience and prior to this appointment was Special Adviser to the Secretariat for the Commonwealth’s Competition Policy Review.
GHD has opened a new office at Mount Isa. The office will be led by Grant Charles, a Senior Building Services Engineer with more than 45 years’ experience. He will be supported by GHD’s Townsville office.
Congratulations to Lee-Anne Sylva from GHD on winning the Maria Skyllas-Kazacos Young Professional Award for Outstanding Achievement at the 2014 Women in Engineering Awards. This award is open to all female alumni from the UNSW Faculty of Engineering working in any branch of industry or academia, in recognition of a significant achievement in their field.
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PERTH GROUNDWATER REPLENISHMENT PLANS DOUBLED The contract for the construction of Western Australia’s first full-scale groundwater replenishment plant has been signed, heralding a new era in the management of Perth’s drinking water supply. Speaking at AWA’s annual Western Australian lunch in Perth recently, WA Water Minister Mia Davies said the Advanced Water Recycling Plant (AWRP) would be built with double the treatment capacity of what was originally envisaged for stage one. “It was originally planned that stage one of the plant would have a capacity of seven gigalitres per year, which would then be expanded to 14GL and 28GL over several years as demand increased,” Ms Davies said. “However, due to a comprehensive and competitive tendering process and strong competition for the contract, the State Government has been able to effectively get the first two planned stages built for less than the price of one, saving $24million in the process. “It’s an excellent outcome for the State and will get our new climate-independent water source up and running at a higher capacity sooner than expected.” The Minister said the winning contractor, the CHT JV Alliance (formed by Thiess and CH2M Hill Australia), would be responsible for the design, construction and commissioning of the full-scale AWRP. It will be built on the same site as the current Groundwater Replenishment Trial site in Craigie. The total estimated cost of construction of the 14GL plant is $124.6 million, with construction due to begin in late August and commissioning to start by October 2016.
WSAA RELEASES FLAGSHIP ECONOMIC REGULATION REPORT
From left: WSAA Executive Director, Adam Lovell, WSAA Chair, Louise Dudley, and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment, the Hon. Senator Simon Birmingham. Coming from their own perspectives, consumer and private infrastructure representatives also support the Report. Jo Benvenuti, Executive Officer at the Consumer Utilities Advocacy Centre (CUAC), welcomes its release, saying: “This Report acknowledges the central role of consumers in designing the pricing and service reliability of this most essential of all services. We agree that an effective regulatory framework is important to consumers, who rely on fair water prices within the context of monopoly businesses.” Brendan Lyon, Chief Executive, Infrastructure Partnerships Australia (IPA), also endorsed the Report. “This Report brings an unabashed focus to getting the right regulation in place to drive efficient water prices, and to get water ready for meaningful microeconomic reform,” he said. “Asset recycling is a uniting focus for Australia’s governments, because it’s the single opportunity to fund major expansions of Australia’s transport and social infrastructure.” WSAA considers that states acting alone is not enough and is calling for a national urban water agreement through the Council of Australian Governments. “Clear minimum and agreed standards backed by rewards and sanctions to be met by all jurisdictions are required regardless of the future reform path for the urban water industry,” said Mr Lovell. The Report identifies the priorities for reform of economic regulation including:
Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA) has published its flagship report for 2014, Improving Economic Regulation of Urban Water. The Report is a comprehensive assessment of best practice economic regulation in the urban water sector and draws on experience from water and other industries, both here and overseas. “We need more independent, consistent and transparent regulation to minimise future price increases and provide greater incentives for productivity and efficiency,” said Adam Lovell, WSAA Executive Director. “Current regulation is not sufficiently focused on meeting the longterm interest of customers. We need stability for water businesses to be financially resilient to future climate, growth and renewal challenges and to provide the certainty needed for greater private sector investment.” The Report identifies significant gaps in the regulatory frameworks across Australia compared to best practice and recommends actions that are in the long-term interest of customers.
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From left: WSAA Executive Director, Adam Lovell; WSAA Chair, Louise Dudley; Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment, the Hon. Senator Simon Birmingham, Executive Officer Consumer Utilities Advocacy Centre (CUAC); Jo Benvenuti, and Head of Government and Regulatory Affairs Jonathan Kennedy, Infrastructure Partnerships Australia.
Industry News • Clear and transparent regulation which is independent from Governments; • Incentives for productivity and innovation; • Increased customer engagement; and • Merits review and appeal rights. To view the Report go to the WSAA website at www.wsaa.asn.au
EXPERT PANEL TO HELP DELIVER WATERQ VISION Some of Australia’s leading water experts including scientists, engineers, environmental planners and a futurist will work together to help deliver the vision of WaterQ: A 30-Year Strategy for Queensland’s Water Sector. Announcing the make-up of the promised Water Expert Panel at an AWA breakfast in Brisbane last month, Water Supply Minister Mark McArdle said the panel would develop a 100-day plan outlining ways in which innovation, research and development could benefit families, businesses, industry and farmers across Queensland.
Australian Water Recycling Centre of Excellence, and Member Infrastructure Qld; Poh-Ling Tan – Water Law and Governance professor and water planner; Chris Tanner – Professional Engineer, Director at Bligh Tanner, expert in infrastructure, environment and integrated water planning; Dr Cara Beal – Research Fellow at Griffith University’s Smart Water Research Centre, urban water scientist and environmental consultant; and Jim Binney – Principal at MainStream Economics and Policy. Mr McArdle has also announced a Strategic Advisory Committee to ensure WaterQ’s key strategies are effectively implemented and remain relevant to the sector. “The advisory committee will be chaired by my Director-General, Dan Hunt, and includes representatives from the water industry, local government, consumer advocacy groups and water services providers,” he said. “The committee will oversee and provide strategic direction and regular reviews on the implementation of the actions outlined in WaterQ to ensure the challenges and opportunities within Queensland’s water sector are addressed.” WaterQ is available at www.dews.qld.gov.au or by phoning 13 QGOV (13 7468).
WaterQ is the Queensland Government’s strong plan for a better water future and provides a long-term strategy for a water sector that will support increased productivity, economic growth, healthy communities and the environment. “In working to achieve this vision the expert panel will challenge the accepted norms by questioning what we already do and why we do it,” Mr McArdle said. “The expert panel’s work will be about identifying on-the-ground solutions to help strengthen and grow the water sector.” International WaterCentre CEO Mark Pascoe has been appointed to chair and lead the panel, which includes: Dr Steven Cork – Director at EcoInsights, Australian National University professor and futurist; Dr Rob Fearon – Director of Innovation Partnerships at the Queensland Water Directorate and water, sewerage and environmental expert; Leith Boully – Director Seqwater, Chair Local Management Arrangement Project, Chair Healthy Waterways, Chair
From left: Chris Tanner, Leith Boully, Mark Pascoe (Chair), Mark McArdle, Dr Steven Cork, Dr Cara Beal and Dr Rob Fearon.
Water-energy-Food nexus in Practice demanding a more coherent aPProach across industry one day event in meLBourne, BrisBane and sydney The demand on water resources across the energy, agricultural and urban water sectors is ever increasing, and is a constant challenge in managing sustainable water supply. Advocating a more coherent approach across sectors, the Water-Energy-Food Nexus event will cover responsible governance, collaborative policy and practice, economic growth and the way forward.
sPeakers incLude: dr steven kenway, Research Group Leader, Water-Energy-Carbon, UQ michael spencer, Secretary, Alliance for Water Stewardship Australia greg appleby, Energy Manager, Sydney Water dr darryl Low choy, CRC for Water Sensitive Cities dr karen hussey, Australian National University Professor chris moran, Director Sustainable Minerals Institute, UQ dr Jamie Pittock, ANU Water Initiative/UNESCO
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JOHN HOLLAND AWARDED $25 MILLION WATER PROJECT John Holland has been awarded the $25 million Googong Water Recycling Plant project in the Googong township located 16km south-east of Parliament House in Canberra. Under the contract, John Holland will design, supply, install and commission the first stage water recycling plant on behalf of Googong Township Pty Ltd, a joint venture between CIC Australia Limited (formerly Canberra Investment Corporation Limited) and Mirvac. Group Managing Director, Glenn Palin, said that the award reflects John Holland’s industry-leading skills in the delivery of water and wastewater infrastructure. “We’re very proud to be part of a project that will deliver water and wastewater services to Googong, reduce potable water consumption by about 62 per cent and see well over half the township’s wastewater recycled,” he said. Googong is a new township located on a 750-hectare Greenfield site and upon completion will contain approximately 5,500 residences and supporting educational, commercial and recreational facilities. A fundamental component of the development is the design and construction of the Integrated Water Cycle Network, including the Googong Water Recycling Plant, to collect and treat the town’s wastewater to re-use standard, then reticulate this recycled water for non-potable residential and irrigation re-use. On completion, Googong’s 16,000 residents will use less water than just 6,500 residents would normally use in an average Australian community. The project is planned to commence onsite in September and scheduled for completion in January 2016. At the peak onsite works the project workforce is expected to reach 30 people.
The Wairakei bioreactor.
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KIWI ENVIRONMENTAL INNOVATION RECEIVES INTERNATIONAL HONOURS Beca has been awarded Global Winner for the Design Projects Category of the 2014 International Water Association (IWA) Global Project Innovation Awards Competition. The design work on Contact Energy’s Wairakei bioreactor is a Kiwi innovation and the only New Zealand winner announced at the internationally recognised 2014 IWA Global Project Innovation Awards in Portugal. Jointly developed by Beca and Contact, the bioreactor has been designed to improve the quality of water that is discharged from the iconic Wairakei geothermal power station into the Waikato River by reducing hydrogen sulphide (H2S) discharges by harnessing the power of billions of naturally occurring sulphide-oxidising bacteria endemic to the Waikato River. To date, the bioreactor is reducing H2S in the cooling water discharges by almost 8,000 kilograms per week. It is also on track to achieving the August 2016 milestone of an overall reduction of 95 per cent. The IWA Global Project Innovation Awards is a prestigious global competition that recognises and celebrates innovation and excellence in water engineering projects around the world. The Wairakei bioreactor was recently given the accolade of Gold Award of Excellence at the ACENZ (Association of Consulting Engineers) 2014 INNOVATE NZ Awards and entered for the IChemE Awards 2014 in recognition of chemical engineering innovation and excellence. Last year it was also awarded the Energy Project of the Year and Environmental Excellence awards at the 2013 Deloitte Energy Excellence Awards (NZ), and received the 2013 New Zealand Engineering Excellence Award in the Chemical, Bio and Food category.
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MCCONNELL DOWELL WELCOMES NEW CENTRAL REGION MANAGER David Lougher has been appointed Central Region Manager for New South Wales and the ACT for McConnell Dowell. David will be responsible for securing and delivering projects across the full McConnell Dowell portfolio. Before joining McConnell Dowell, David worked with industry leaders such as Leighton Contractors, Thiess Contractors and Baulderstone in New South Wales, Queensland, Western Australia, Papua New Guinea and New Caledonia. His previous roles saw him grow business in the marine, power, tunnelling, structures and resource sectors.
AURECON APPOINTS NEW CEO FOR SYDNEY OFFICE Global engineering and technical services company Aurecon has announced the appointment of Giam Swiegers as its new CEO effective 1 February 2015. He will be based in the company’s Sydney office. Aurecon Chairman, Teddy Daka, said, “After an extensive global search for a new CEO, we are delighted that Giam will be joining Aurecon. He has an outstanding track record as a CEO and is a great cultural fit for us as a business.“
“With over 30 years’ in the construction industry, David brings a vast amount of professional experience to our business,” says John Hearst, Executive Director Operations. “His longstanding experience in meeting client goals and his industry connections will help us expand our profile and presence in New South Wales and the ACT.”
ISO WATER FOOTPRINT STANDARD PUBLISHED ISO has published a standard for measuring your water footprint. ISO 14046, Environmental Management – Water Footprint Principles, Requirements and Guidelines will allow all kinds of organisations, from industry to government and NGOs, the means to measure their ‘water footprint’, or their potential environmental impact of water use and pollution. The standard is based on a lifecycle assessment and can assist in: • Assessing the magnitude of potential environmental impacts related to water; • Identifying ways to reduce these impacts; • Facilitating water efficiency and optimisation of water management at product, process and organisational levels; and • Providing scientifically consistent and reliable information for reporting water footprint results that can be tracked over time. For more information please go to: www.iso.org
Giam leaves his current role as CEO of Deloitte Australia after a highly successful 12 years in the role. Giam began his career as an auditor with Deloitte in South Africa, and subsequently worked for Deloitte in the USA before returning to become Managing Partner of its Pretoria office. He moved to Australia in 1997 and became CEO on 1 June 2003. He has been a member of Deloitte’s Global Board and Global Board Governance Committee for three years and is a member of the Deloitte Global Executive Committee. With 7,500 staff across ANZ, Africa, Asia and the Middle East, Aurecon provides engineering, management and specialist technical services for public and private sector clients globally. The result of a three-way merger in 2009 between Australian engineering company Connell Wagner and South African companies Africon and Ninham Shand, the company delivers services across the span of the infrastructure lifecycle in 12 industries.
CONSULTATION KICKS OFF ON LAUNCESTON SEWERAGE SERVICES The Launceston community is being asked to help shape one of the biggest water and sewerage projects ever undertaken in Tasmania. Andrew Moir, TasWater General Manager Asset Management, said the Launceston Sewerage Improvement Project will focus on the planning of sewerage services within the greater Launceston area for the next 50 years. This significant project may cost in the order of $200 million. “TasWater will be conducting information sessions and an extensive consultation process to gain an understanding of the
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Industry News expectations of the local community around sewerage services in the area,” Mr Moir said. “It is a service that most people don’t think about unless they haven’t got it, but it’s something which will shape the future of greater Launceston. “Community health and safety, environmental sustainability and the capacity of businesses to invest and create jobs are all linked to a high-quality and reliable sewerage system,” he said. TasWater currently operates and maintains a network of seven sewage treatment plants across greater Launceston that process the equivalent of 15,000 olympic-sized swimming pools of sewage and services 75,000 people. “Inherited from the days when smaller councils operated separate systems, most plants are well in excess of 30 years old,” Mr Moir said. “It has resulted in an outdated and piecemeal system that is unable to meet the environmental standards and population of a modern Launceston, let alone support future demand.” The community will have their chance to find out more and have their say over the coming months. Please go to www.taswater.com.au for more information.
SOUTH EAST WATER LAUNCHES INTERACTIVE MAP South East Water has launched South East Water LIVE, an interactive map for customers with information on emergency works, planned improvements and scheduled services, that will give on-the-spot access from any mobile device or computer. “South East Water LIVE provides an interactive map for anyone to view current emergency works, planned improvements and scheduled services that are happening live across our service region. And it provides estimated resolution times for works, so customers can know how long it might impact them,” says General Manager Customer and Business Futures, Dr Hamish Reid. The retailer, which provides water, sewerage and recycled water services to more than 1.6 million people, is one of the first with a map-based, mobile-friendly, online solution for customers. The site allows users to search by suburb, street and, if on a mobile device, pin-point a location relative to the nearest emergency works or network improvement.
CEO OF AIS WINS GOLD AND SILVER STEVIE AWARDS Australian Innovative Systems (AIS) CEO Elena Gosse has taken out the Gold Award for Executive of the Year – Manufacturing, and a Silver Award for Most Innovative Company of the Year in Asia and Oceania in the recent 11th Annual International Business Awards. More than 3,500 nominations were received from more than 60 nations and territories. Elena said the awards were testament to AIS’s dedication to constant innovation, world-class manufacturing standards, exceptional staff and the company’s quest to create safe, economical and versatile products that help protect humans and habitats against waterborne pathogens and the transmission of infectious disease. “In the past 15 years the world’s population has grown by over one billion people and global economic output has more than doubled. Earth’s finite water reserves are facing increased human and industrial activity impacts, which means more germs and bacteria are entering the water. We must keep our water safe and healthy,” Elena said. “As a proudly owned and operated Australian business, we specialise in the manufacturing of chlorinators for water disinfection. We believe our technology provides the safest and best way to produce chlorine onsite and inline via the process of electrolysis and is suited to a wide range of industries including aquatic facilities, resort pools and lagoons, utility water, mining and horticulture.”
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Industry News In commenting on the standard of entries this year, Michael Gallagher, president and founder of the Stevie Awards said, “We congratulate all of the Stevie winners in this year’s IBAs. The quality of entries we receive improves every year. This year’s judges were rewarded with the opportunity to review more than 3,500 stories of business achievement and innovation from around the world. We look forward to celebrating the winners’ achievements in Paris on 10 October.” Details about The International Business Awards and the lists of Stevie Award winners are available at www.StevieAwards.com/IBA
NEW CEO TAKES THE HELM AT BIOGILL Steve Atherton has been appointed CEO at bio-technology company BioGill, while founder and previous CEO, John West, has moved into an international business development role to take advantage of the company’s overseas opportunities.
UNITED NATIONS WATERCOURSES CONVENTION ENTERS INTO FORCE
Commenting on the appointment, John Petty, BioGill’s Chairman, said, “Steve is a highly experienced and effective CEO with an impressive and extensive record in product development, revenue growth and in driving profitability. In his previous CEO role at an energy recovery and engineering company, Steve and his team tripled revenue both organically and through acquisitions and set up the business for a successful sale to a publicly listed company, delivering considerable value to the shareholders.
The United Nations Watercourses Convention – the first global framework on freshwater and the world’s only global framework for transboundary cooperation endorsed by the General Assembly of the United Nations – officially entered into force in August 2014.
“At BioGill, Steve’s key responsibility is to map out the true potential of the technology in the international wastewater industries, aquaculture and maritime, and develop strategies to globalise the business.”
“Our Board has been promoting the Convention because effective transboundary water management furthers peace and promotes cooperation, and is a fundamental element of sustainable development,” said Ms Uschi Eid, Chair of the UN SecretaryGeneral’s Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation. “It is high time to have it ratified, and I am satisfied it is going into force now, as we enter a new era of international cooperation defined by the post-2015 development agenda.”
BioGill is a disruptive technology in the biological treatment of wastewater. The technology was developed in the research laboratories of the Australian federal government agency, ANSTO, and BioGill was established to commercialise the technology. The company has wastewater treatment projects in Australia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Canada, Fiji, China, India, Mexico and the USA.
Currently, there are 276 transboundary freshwater lake and river basins worldwide, but only 40 per cent are governed by agreements. Where agreements exist, 80 per cent involve only two countries, even though other states may also be part of the watercourse in question. The Convention will standardise one set of criteria for which all countries with international river basins and transboundary waters abide, ensuring more practical management globally. These criteria include defining the subjects that countries should discuss on their shared waters, facilitating the process of transboundary cooperation and holding governments accountable to their own countries and regions. “We have found that we cannot achieve the same level of conservation goals in regions where countries are not cooperating on transboundary water management,” said Lifeng Li, Director of WWF’s global freshwater program. “Nature and wildlife do not respect national borders, and some of the most crucial areas for biodiversity are linked to international rivers and lakes. The UN Watercourses Convention will play an important role in creating a world in which people live in harmony with nature.” Marie-Laure Vercambre, Director of Green Cross International’s Water for Life and Peace Programme, emphasised the importance of the Convention, saying, “Not only will the governance of the largest and best known watercourses be enhanced by the UN Watercourses Convention, but all transboundary basins of a country’s territory will benefit from it, providing a harmonised legal coverage to all those watercourses that we know will be more and more exploited, utilised and developed.” For more information about the UNWC, please visit wwf.panda. org/unwc or www.unwatercoursesconvention.org
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Steve holds a Masters’ Degree in Engineering Science as well as a Bachelors’ Degree in Science (Engineering).
THE RIVER RED GUM – MUCH MORE THAN JUST A TREE Perhaps more so than any other Australian plant or animal, the river red gum has been central to the tensions .between economic, social and environmental values of rivers and floodplain landscapes in Australia. Flooded Forest and Desert Creek: Ecology and History of the River Red Gum, a new CSIRO book, examines not only the ecology of one of the most iconic Australian trees, but how changes in attitudes towards it have reflected broader shifts in values of Australian society.
Industry News Author, CSIRO’s Dr Matthew Colloff, says that given the prominence of the river red gum in Australian culture, we know surprisingly little about its ecology and life history.
water for irrigation – and examines how we have begun to move from a culture of exploitation to one of conservation, sustainable use and multiple values.
“The river red gum has been the subject of repeated government inquiries over its conservation, use and management. Despite this we know remarkably little about the basics of this species: its longevity; how deep its roots go; what proportion of its seedlings survive to adulthood; the diversity of organisms associated with it, and the nature of those associations,” Dr Colloff says.
The river red gum has the most widespread natural distribution of any eucalypt species in Australia, forming extensive forests and woodlands in the south-east and providing the structural and functional elements of important floodplain and wetland ecosystems. Along ephemeral creeks in arid central Australia it forms narrow corridors, providing vital refuge in the form of habitat and food resources for a whole host of animals in an otherwise hostile, arid environment.
Flooded Forest and Desert Creek describes what we do know about the biology and ecology of the river red gum, the changing landscape in which the tree lives, and the shifting cultural context that has been shaped by our unfolding interactions with it. The author describes the factors that have driven change in river red gum forests – fire, grazing, timber harvesting, river regulation and diversions of
“This may give us a glimpse into how we can understand the value of this tree as part of our common heritage and how we can manage river red gum forests under a drier future climate with reduced water availability,” Dr Colloff says.
This shift in consciousness has been articulated in part through the depiction of river red gums and inland floodplains in art, literature and the media. Images of the tree by Hans Heysen, Henry Johnstone, Harold Cazneaux and Lin Onus are among the best-known and mostloved works of art in our public galleries.
Flooded Forest and Desert Creek also contrasts the interactions between people and the trees in arid central Australia – where the tree is sacred, standing for water, life and hope – with those further east in the Murray-Darling Basin; where conflicts between the allocation of water for irrigated agricultural production and for the environment are still being played out.
Photo: Ian Overton, CSIRO
For more information please go to www.publish.csiro.au
SEPTEMBER 2014 water
FLEMINGTON RACETRACK DESAL PROJECT WINS WORLD AWARD A desalination project at Flemington Racecourse has been chosen as the WateReuse Project of the Year at an international conference in Dallas, USA. It was selected from a string of water reuse projects across the globe including Abu Dhabi, West Africa and Russia. There is an abundant supply of groundwater under the racecourse, but it is too saline to be used directly to water the grass and flowers. Water is also available from the adjacent Maribyrnong River, however the build-up of salt in the water makes it unusable. The desaln8 desalination technology turns this brackish bore water into clean water and currently deliver 40 million litres of this fresh water annually to the track to help keep the raceground’s displays of roses healthy and the grass lush and green. Apart from dramatically reducing Flemington’s use of potable town water – enough for 1100 households – the cost of the water is one-third the price of tap water. The technology will soon supply half of Flemington Racetrack’s water needs and is expected to be rolled out to farms, golf courses and sports grounds across Australia and internationally.
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WHY Persistence Pays Off Justin Simonis – AWA YWP National Committee President With the advent of 2014 AWA Australian Water Awards, I find myself thinking of this quote by Calvin Coolidge, 30th President of US, 1872–1933: “Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan ‘Press On’ has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.” While I am loathe to infer that Mr Coolidge may have oversimplified things, contrary to the sentiment expressed in the quote I would suggest that persistence in the absence of talent, education or genius is not likely to result in success. Our awards celebrate not just persistence, then, but the increasingly impressive application of it by the talented and educated individuals in organisations across the country.
Meanwhile, September sees a new National Manager – Industry Development join AWA, Geoffrey Gray. Geoffrey’s portfolio will include Export & Market Access, Industry Innovation, Professional Development Programs (under which the Young Water Professional network now sits) and Specialist Networks. As I’m sure you will appreciate, being the lynchpin and guiding the development of one of the three pillars in the current business strategy is no small task, and on behalf of YWPs nationally, I welcome Geoffrey and wish him all the best. So, I hear you ask, what do the AWA Awards, a dead American President, a CEO with a vision for an industry association, and a new guy who hadn’t even started in his role at the time of writing have in common – apart from sounding like the start of a joke where they all walk into a bar?
At the state and national level we celebrate the persistence of people across the following categories: Water Professional of the Year; Young Water Professional of the Year; Undergraduate Water Prize; Program Innovation; Infrastructure Project Innovation; Water Industry Safety Excellence; and Research Innovation. These categories, and the entrants we continually attract to them, are truly a reason to be proud of the Australian water industry.
Well, Geoffrey’s portfolio has been designed to champion the Association’s efforts in the areas of export and innovation (among others). As part of this, he will oversee programs such as an international secondment/exchange program for YWP and leadership positions, the development of Industry Capability Teams, delivery of an international trade and export program and the building of an industry innovation program. All of these initiatives have been designed to develop and promote the ‘smarts’ within our industry – smarts that our Awards program identifies and celebrates.
On a seemingly unrelated note, I recently attended a briefing by AWA CEO Jonathan McKeown where he put some meat on the bones of the new AWA business strategy that was released in July. Jonathan articulated an exciting vision for AWA that will see our industry set new benchmarks and be showcased across the world.
So the message is: Press on. Persevere. Recognise the great things you are doing and complete an Awards submission. If it’s too late to prepare for this year’s awards, start planning for next year’s program. Remember: persistence is the key, especially when combined with all the talent and expertise we are lucky enough to have in our YWP network.
SEPTEMBER 2014 water
AWA SUBMISSION TO NORTHERN AUSTRALIA GREEN PAPER In August 2014 AWA took the opportunity to comment on the Green Paper on Developing Northern Australia; AWA looks forward to providing further input and advice as the White Paper comes to fruition. The key issues articulated in the Green Paper, including delivering economic infrastructure, improving land use and access, improving water access and management, promoting trade and investment, fostering education and innovation, and enhancing governance, are aligned with the key areas that AWA believes need to be the focus in developing a prosperous northern Australia. AWA’s submission can be found at www.awa.asn.au Hot off the press: The Joint Select Committee on Northern Australia Inquiry into the Development of Northern Australia submitted their Final Report on 4 September 2014. The report can be found at www.aph.gov.au
CALL FOR VOLUNTEERS FOR WATER JOURNAL EDITORIAL COMMITTEE Water Journal is produced eight times a year and distributed to more than 5,000 people and organisations, as well as being available as a digital version to AWA members and non-members. Each issue contains peer-reviewed articles and technical papers of topical interest to the readership, as well as conference reports and water-related news from around the world. AWA is seeking to broaden the participation of the existing Editorial Committee, both geographically and in the areas of technical/management expertise and type of organisation. AWA invites Expressions of Interest from AWA members who are keen to volunteer their time to be actively involved in the Committee. The function of the Editorial Committee is to assist the AWA Publications team by:
Applications should include a brief CV of about 200 words, a statement on the applicant’s areas of expertise and thoughts on the future direction of the water industry. Please email your application to firstname.lastname@example.org, and cc email@example.com. Applications close October 31 2014.
SHOWCASING INNOVATIVE SOLUTIONS TO DEGRÉMONT AUSTRALIA Through Department of Industry funding, ICN and AWA have been working collaboratively to showcase the capabilities of selected AWA member organisations or members of Water Industry Capability teams. On 4 August 2014, AWA facilitated a showcase of water technologies to the three operational areas of Degrémont Australia: Design and Build; Operations and Maintenance; and Networks. Twelve Australian water industry firms presented their water solutions, from water treatment and re-use through to consultancy and enabling technologies, to senior staff at Degrémont Australia. The event was viewed positively by both Degrémont staff and presenters, and there was interested discussion on the proposed benefits of each product or service. After the formal showcasing session, Degrémont staff and suppliers networked informally to discuss possible future relationships. Following the success of this and previous showcases, similar events are being planned for 2014–15. For more information please contact Geoffrey Gray, National Manager – Industry Development at firstname.lastname@example.org
NOTICE OF AWA ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING AWA Members are cordially invited to the 2014 Annual General Meeting, which will be held at the Mercure Hotel, 818–820 George St, Sydney, Tuesday 14 October 2014 at 4.15 pm. Items of business will include:
• Identifying interesting, topical and emerging issues as suitable themes for future issues;
1. Welcome, OH&S briefing, declaration of proxies;
• Identifying specialists who can be approached to contribute papers;
3. Presentation by President and CEO;
• Assisting authors in the preparation of papers (where necessary);
4. Annual Review 2013–14;
• Peer reviewing (or identifying experts to peer review) technical papers;
5. Interim Report (year to date) and outlook 2014–15;
• Assisting in reviewing submitted technical papers to ensure a high standard of integrity and reporting; and • Assisting in ensuring that reports are prepared for major AWA or affiliated conferences.
2. Confirmation of Minutes of 2013 Annual General Meeting;
6. Adoption of Financial Statements – Year ending June 30 2014 Financial Statements and Reports. To receive the Annual Report and Financial Statements for the year ended 30 June 2014 together with the Auditors report; 7. Confirmation of Director Elections;
Meetings are held eight times a year in Melbourne CBD with participation by teleconference for members outside of Melbourne.
8. Confirmation of Deloitte Private as Company Auditor;
Applications are invited from AWA members who have significant expertise and experience in varied areas of the water sector.
10. To consider such other business of a general nature of which the Chairperson permits based on a written submission;
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9. Discussion of Other Business;
AWA News 11. Questions from the floor. If you wish to attend, please advise the Company Secretary at email@example.com or phone (02) 9467 8402 by 5pm AEST 7 October 2014. Proxies Members may appoint a proxy to: 1. Act generally on their behalf, or 2. Vote only in accordance with instructions on the Proxy Form. A proxy need not be a member. The appointment of a proxy must be in writing using the Appointment of Proxy form, which can be found on the AWA website at www.awa.asn.au/uploadedfiles/ Notice_of_Annual_General_Meeting_2014.pdf.
Branch News ACT ACT BRANCH STUDENT AWARDS The AWA ACT Branch Student awards were presented to a panel of judges and guests on Thursday 21 August at ANU, Canberra. The judges were suitably impressed with the calibre of the presentations and we look forward to announcing the winners (along with the Industry Award winners) at the ACT Awards Night & Debate on the Lake in December 2014.
BE PART OF THE CONVERSATION AT AWA’S NATIONAL WATER POLICY SUMMIT
LAUNCH OF THE ACT WATER STRATEGY
The 2014 National Water Policy Summit will take place 14–15 October 2014 at the Shangri-La in Sydney.
LUNCH SESSION: MAXIMISING ENVIRONMENTAL AND SOCIAL OUTCOMES IN THE MURRAY-DARLING BASIN
Join some of Australia’s most influential and engaging industry leaders from the water, resources and agribusiness sectors and focus on setting the priorities to shape an ‘industry-led’ water strategy to reposition water as a major economic driver for Australia’s future. The Summit will consider the following challenges and preferred solutions to a range of issues, including: • Climate variability and how governments and industry need a new approach to planning; • Reforming how the water sector is regulated and structured; • Private sector participation in the management of our rural and urban water assets to expand our productive industries; • Adjusting community perceptions and values of water. Please visit www.awa.asn.au/waterpolicysummit for more information.
REGISTER NOW FOR THE NATIONAL OPERATIONS CONFERENCE Registrations have opened for AWA’s 2014 National Operations Conference, which will be held at the Cairns Convention Centre from 28–30 October. With the mounting damage to the nearby Great Barrier Reef as a pertinent reminder, the conference will take a strong focus on the environmental obligation in the sustainability of our operations. As emerging industries such as mining, agribusiness and tourism come to fruition, we need to ensure that future national prosperity is balanced with sustainable water usage and environmental protection. Go to the AWA website and register now for this three-day conference and exhibition program of Australian speakers, technical tours, and an exciting social program including the Conference Dinner. Please visit www.awa.asn.au/operators2014 to register.
The AWA ACT Branch was delighted to partner with the ACT Government to launch the ACT Water Strategy on Friday 1 August. After the launch, Minister Corbell made himself available to informally network with attendees and said that a great partnership was developing between the ACT Government and AWA. We look forward to continuing to work together.
Join us on 13 November 2014 at the GHD offices in Canberra for a luncheon with senior staff from the Commonwealth Department of Environment to discuss maximising environmental and social outcomes in the Murray-Darling Basin. Tim Fisher and John Robertson will present and lead an interactive discussion on Commonwealth initiatives to establish a Sustainable Diversion Limit (SDL) Adjustment Mechanism for surface water resources in the Murray-Darling Basin. This presentation will provide participants with an overview of the policy environment framing the SDL adjustment mechanism policy, and provide background on the proposed program of projects needed to effect an SDL adjustment between 2015 and 2024. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
NEW SOUTH WALES NSW BRANCH AWARDS The 2014 NSW Award Branch Nominations have now closed. We received a huge response for all categories and the judging panel is currently reviewing all entries. The finalists will be announced in coming months, with the winners to be presented at the NSW Awards Night in February 2015.
NSW HEADS OF WATER GALA DINNER The annual NSW Heads of Water Gala dinner was held on 1 August 2014 at Dockside Sydney. This premier water event brings together leading water professionals for an evening of networking with colleagues and peers. The dinner is attended by a mix of water professionals such as contractors, design consultants, manufacturers, suppliers and, of course, utilities. Once again we had a great turnout and we would like to thank the event sponsor UGL for their support of the event. Congratulations, too, to Cheryl Marvell from Sydney Water, who was presented with the Rodger Pettit Award. Cheryl was recognised
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AWA News for her duties as Past President of AWA NSW Branch, and for being key driver and organiser of the AWA Engineers & Operators Conference. Cheryl is also a strong supporter of the Young Water Professionals network and continues to show good leadership to the Australian water industry as a whole.
NORTHERN REGIONAL CONFERENCE Registrations are open for this year’s AWA Northern Regional Conference. Droughts, floods and changing regulatory environments all pose challenges in planning and managing water systems, and this conference examines these complexities through a focused program. The conference will open with a welcome from Councillor Col Murray, Mayor of Tamworth Regional Council, and the packed program will cover advances in cyanobacteria knowledge and management, implementing drinking water management plans, experiences in emergency management and technological advances and recycled water regulation and projects. The event will provide an opportunity for local councils, regulators and consultants to engage in the challenges and opportunities for regional water management during these times of uncertainty.
“My mentor truly changed, enlightened and brightened my horizon in terms of what it really comes down to when meeting new people. It has been a really rewarding mentoring program and his teachings will be of great benefit for my future career and personal life” (Mentee). For more information on the Queensland YWP Mentoring Program please contact Rui Pu Yang (Mentoring Coordinator) at email@example.com
52nd Annual Dinner
NT BRANCH CONFERENCE: WATER IN THE BUSH
The Victorian Branch Annual Dinner is always a highlight and the 52nd Dinner, held on 7 August at Melbourne Town Hall, was no exception, combining a superb venue, short and sharp speeches, and plenty of opportunities for networking for the 500 participants who attended.
Water in the Bush is the flagship NT Branch annual conference. Held in Darwin every year, it is a key event on the local water industry calendar. The event, which this year takes place on 24 October, brings together members of water industry sectors across the NT to present research and discuss current and emerging issues. In 2013, Water In the Bush attracted over 100 key industry personnel, senior water industry figures from a wide range of Government agencies, dignitaries, as well as representatives from authorities, government departments, private water companies, contractors, consultants, suppliers and service companies. More information on the 2014 conference registration and program will be provided soon. To register your interest in presenting, or to suggest topics of interest, please contact Kathryn Fuller, NT Branch President at Kathryn.Fuller@powerwater.com.au
QUEENSLAND QUEENSLAND YWP MENTORING PROGRAM Mentoring, where an experienced professional offers knowledge, insight and resources to a mentee, is a well-known strategy for self-development, career development and skill development. The YWP Mentoring Program is widely recognised in the water industry as being highly successful. The program has been conducted since 2012, and this year will again involve some 40 participants from a range of professional fields in water industry. The 2014 Program, launched in July, links a variety of interested people in the water industry with experienced professionals. While the program supports mentees in developing their careers, the experience is rewarding for both mentors and mentees, with positive feedback regularly received from participants. For example: “As usual I never cease to be amazed by the enthusiasm and desire for knowledge of my mentee. I can only hope that I can enable him to obtain a reasonable insight into a possible future life as a water engineer” (Mentor).
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The evening’s formalities were guided by Branch President Mark Bartley, who impressed everyone with his ability to keep speakers to their allocated time. We were also fortunate to have two guest speakers, the Shadow Minister for Water, Martin Foley MP, and AWA National President, Graham Dooley. Martin described his personal journey leading to his current role and his commitment to the central contribution that water makes to a healthy, liveable community. He ventured the promise that, should his party be successful in the forthcoming election, it would take a considered approach to implementing its water policies. Graham spoke with his usual energy and passion (although he may have been briefer than usual, due to Mark’s diligent timekeeping!). One point he encouraged everyone to consider is the financing of water infrastructure, particularly the options for new financing models for the industry as it faces new challenges and opportunities. Two other key events during the dinner were the introduction of the new Branch Committee and the awarding of Life Membership to Andrew Chapman. Andrew’s award was met with warm applause, in recognition of the wonderful contribution he has made to the Victorian Branch and AWA as a whole over 25 years. After the conclusion of the formal program, networking continued until midnight. All in all, the 52nd Annual Dinner met the high standard established by past events. The Victorian Branch was delighted by the return of Thiess as the major sponsor of the dinner and looks forward to continuing this long tradition. Many thanks also to Victorian Branch Manager, Gail Reardon, and Carmel Clark, Branch Manager Tasmania, for making sure that the dinner ran smoothly and seamlessly.
New Members AWA welcomes the following new members since the most recent issue of Water Journal
NEW CORPORATE MEMBERS
New South Wales
Corporate Bronze Xtralis ARL (WA)
NEW INDIVIDUAL MEMBERS
NSW K Naumann, R de Zylva, T Tye, P
Get The Message Pty Ltd
Sproules, M Dawson, N Yekta, A Carroll, M Haliwell Queensland B Kerr, E DuPriest, N
HMA Valveco Tyware
Stephens, J Wilson, N Try, S Tye, A McLennan, A Simon, J Comino, T Mannhardt, L Luke, C Bueta
South Australia J Nolan Victoria R He, P McCafferty, J Masi,
R Cadman, M Warnes, S Sierkiewicz, M Bourdon Western Australia A Storey, K McDonald, C McDonald, C Horsley, T Zirakbash
NEW OVERSEAS MEMBERS S Kumar Eashwaran, India
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
September Wed, 17 Sep–Fri, 19 Sep 2014
ENVIRO’14, Adelaide Convention Centre, SA
Sat, 20 Sep 2014
YWP WA Technical Tour, Mundaring Water Treatment Plant, WA
October Wed, 08 Oct 2014
SA Young Water Professionals Event, Adelaide, SA
Wed, 08 Oct 2014
QLD Monthly Technical Meeting – Thinking Outside of the Box, Brisbane, QLD
Thu, 09 Oct–Fri, 10 Oct 2014
NSW Northern Regional Conference, Tamworth, NSW
Fri, 10 Oct 2014
SA Awards – Judging Day, SA Water House, SA
Tue, 14 Oct–Wed, 15 Oct 2014
National Water Policy Summit, Sydney, NSW
Fri, 17 Oct 2014
QLD Young Water Professionals’ Amazing Race, Brisbane, QLD
Wed, 22 Oct 2014
SA Technical Seminar: Integrated Urban Water Management, Adelaide, SA
Thu, 23 Oct 2014
WA National Water Week Conference, Perth, WA
Fri, 24 Oct 2014
NT Branch Conference: Water In The Bush, Darwin, NT
Tue, 28 Oct–Thu, 30 Oct 2014
National Operations Conference, Cairns, QLD
November Fri, 07 Nov–Sat, 08 Nov 2014
QWater’14 Conference, Surfers Paradise, QLD
Thu, 13 Nov 2014
ACT Branch Lunch Session, Canberra, ACT
Thu, 13 Nov 2014
VIC YWP Seminar – Paradigm Shift, Melbourne, VIC
Fri, 14 Nov 2014
SA Branch Annual Awards Gala Dinner, Adelaide, SA
Tue, 25 Nov–Thu, 27 Nov 2014
Water-Energy-Food Nexus Conference, Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane
Thu, 27 Nov 2014
The Galah Dinner & Debate, Sandy Bay, TAS
Fri, 28 Nov 2014
WA Water Awards Gala Dinner, Perth, WA
December Thu, 11 Dec 2014
SA YWP – End of Year Seminar & Christmas Networking, Adelaide, SA
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COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT – WHAT’S THE BEST APPROACH? Managing water or wastewater infrastructure projects that impact on local communities can be a challenge, writes Rachael de Zylva. But using a little bit of social science and the right communications channel could make it a whole lot easier. Understanding your audience and their perceptions is key to any successful stakeholder engagement. However, communicating with a local community about changes to their water or wastewater services can take senior managers right out of their comfort zone. While your engineers are solving the technical elements, you need to get up to speed with the local community and learn how they are feeling about your project and its potential impact on them. Usually the biggest questions for the community will revolve around the ‘WIIFM’ factor: What’s In It For Me? Or, how will this project affect me, my family, my property, or my business personally? Once you have communicated the key facts about the project – who, what, where, when, why and how – all the easy answers – what is the best approach to community engagement? Community responses will naturally fall into a spectrum ranging from positive to negative, or somewhere in the middle (a ‘watch-and-see’ mentality). So how do you know who to spend your time on? Interestingly, social science research1 has found people’s response to change means they will always fall into five segments across a bell curve as shown in the chart below right. With a little research via surveys, interviews, focus groups or even via social media, you can divide the community into the following five groups and plan your approach and communications plan accordingly.
Pioneers On the far right are those who will get on board. Although there are not many of them, these are your pioneers – those community members who can see the long-term benefits of the project. They understand the change and (usually) they are important influencers who can help persuade
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others. This group is vital to the success of your project, so find these trailblazers and hold on to them. Empower them with up-to-date information about the project and enable them to share this content through their own channels – particularly social media, which is an incredibly fast way of pushing out your message.
Optimists Just behind the pioneers is a larger group who understand the reasoning for the project and tend to feel optimistic or hopeful about it and the future. Keep this group on side with open and transparent communications throughout the project’s life cycle.
Fence-sitters In the middle of the bell curve are your fencesitters. They will remain undecided and prefer to wait and see what impact your project may have on them before they commit. This is your largest group and the pioneers can sway them; however, those on the left side of the bell curve can also drag them into negative thoughts. This is a group you can and should be working on. What will shift them one way or the other?
Concerned To the left of the fence-sitters are a group who are concerned or worried. They are more negative than positive about the project. With this group it could simply be a matter of taking a Senior Project
Opinion Engineer and sitting down with them to listen to their concerns, and explaining what you are doing and why.
Social media seems to be the hottest topic around, and if you have not embraced it yet for your project’s community relations, you may be missing an important opportunity to quickly and easily reach people. Once your community is segmented, social media provides a vehicle for communicating project updates or explaining the technology/technical processes being employed in simple language.
TOTAL DENIAL To the far left are a smaller group of community members who may never accept your project. They are in total denial about it even happening! No matter what you do, this little group may never be persuaded, and spending too much time on them may be neither effective nor efficient.
Aside from the usual channels of leaflets, newsletters, phone hotlines or information sessions, social media is a channel worth exploring both for its immediacy and high rate of use. If used correctly, social media can build trust and provide an efficient two-way channel to track community sentiment and bust myths as soon as they surface. However, this also means being prepared to openly answer the difficult questions in a forum that can feel very public and leave you exposed to risk if you are not prepared in advance.
Rachael de Zylva (email: Rachael@getthemessage. com.au) is the Director of Get the Message, a communications consultancy that specialises in the water and wastewater industry. Rachael also organises the annual NSW WaterAid Ball.
Change for the better – Communication World, September/October 2006, p38, International Association of Business Communicators, www.iabc.com/cw
NATIONAL WATER POLICY SUMMIT 2014 14-15 OCTOBER 2014
DO YOU WANT TO HELP SHAPE A STRATEGY FOR WATER TO DRIVE AUSTRALIA’S PROSPERITY? Water needs to be repositioned in our national debate as a major economic driver for Australia’s future, and industry now needs to take a strong lead in that process. AWA are hosting the National Policy Summit to focus on setting the priorities to shape an ‘industry-led’ water strategy to drive Australia’s future prosperity. The Summit will include some of Australia’s most influential and engaging industry leaders from the water, resources and agribusiness sectors whose future prospects remain dependent on the sustainable management of water.
Date: 14 October – Summit Dinner 15 October – Summit Time: 8:30am – 5:15pm Venue: Shangri-La Sydney
SPEAkERS INcLUDE: Ann Burns, Growth & Strategy Lead for Asia Pacific, Accenture Matthew Williams, Partner Risk Services, Deloitte Tony kelly, Previous Managing Director, Yarra Valley Water Francois Gouws, Managing Director, Trility Thibaut de crisnay, Managing Director, Veolia Water Technologies Australia kim Morison, Managing Director, Blue Sky Water Partners Gerry Lawson, Chairman, SunRice Mike Harold, Principal Advisor – Water Policy, Rio Tinto Dr Martin van Bueren, Director, Synergies Consulting Organised by
Your digital journal is now available!
NOW YOU CAN READ WATER JOURNAL BEFORE ITâ€™S EVEN PRINTED... AND ACCESS BACK ISSUES AT THE CLICK OF A BUTTON! www.awa.asn.au/Journal/
There is real value in urban water planning – why can’t we see it? Although various state-level policies, strategies and guidelines exist in WA to integrate water into the land use planning system, there seems to be a lack of acknowledgement of the benefits of good urban water planning. Environmental Practitioner Shelley Shepherd looks at the challenges associated with the implementation of Better Urban Water Management in that state.
rban water planning policies and processes aim to apply a technical understanding of site issues and constraints to facilitate better environmental and social outcomes. The publication of Better Urban Water Management in 2008 by the Western Australian Planning Commission was a significant step forward in urban water planning and has considerably improved the way that water resources are considered through the land development process. However, in recent years there appears to have been a loss of focus on the core objectives and principles in relation to informed decision-making, relevance and risk that were at its heart. This paper considers the successes and failures of the implementation of Better Urban Water Management in WA, highlights some key current and emerging issues, and proposes some critical steps towards future improvement.
Introduction Western Australia has historically lagged behind the east coast of Australia in terms of delivering good urban water management outcomes as part of land use planning and development, otherwise known as Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD). In 2008, the Western Australian Planning Commission released Better Urban Water Management – the framework to integrate water resources into the land use planning system. This, together with a number of state-level policies, strategies and guidelines, provided a real opportunity to improve our urban and regional water planning and deliver total water cycle outcomes on the ground. A recent informal review of planning documentation and onground outcomes since its release has found that limited benefits to the urban water cycle and resultant community have actually been realised. It highlighted a number of issues with delivery that may require a re-think of our implementation approach.
What is the purpose of urban and regional water planning? Significant pressures on our water resources in recent times, particularly from declining rainfall runoff and population growth, have highlighted the importance of urban and regional water planning. It is no longer appropriate to consider elements of the water cycle independently in order to provide for water supply, sewerage or drainage, as this will result in disconnected systems, which often lead to impacts on the water quality of waterways, wetlands and the groundwater as well as the inefficient, single use of water. The intent of urban and regional water planning is to identify and provide for the fit-for-purpose water needs of the community, environment and economy, both now and into the future. This can be achieved by optimising the efficiency of use and reuse of this precious resource, while recognising the needs of important
ecosystems that require protection and maintenance, particularly in terms of water quality and environmental water requirements. Urban water planning should also protect future development from flooding. Although we don’t traditionally build in (surface water) flood-prone areas in Western Australia, we have in the past drained the land to permit development in areas of high groundwater. It is being increasingly recognised, particularly by the Department of Water through the release of its guideline on groundwater management (DoW, 2013), that if we are to conserve what remains of our unique wetland environments, we need to rethink this strategy in future development areas. We need to look for new alternatives as well as make the most of the exceptions, where it is demonstrated through urban water planning that groundwater drainage will not impact on environmentally sensitive areas and the water resource will not be “wasted”. The urban water planning process thus provides greater certainty for development outcomes in these challenging environments. Planning for water supply and sewerage is traditionally undertaken at a district (or larger) scale. This approach has successfully provided the Water Corporation with the opportunity to commence a program of water recycling in the Perth Metropolitan area that is to be commended. It is recognised, however, that economies of scale and current business operating systems provide a challenge for water recycling and reuse at the local scale.
The complementary benefits are notable Although the goals of urban water planning are often only associated with improved management of rainfall, groundwater and wastewater, true implementation of WSUD principles will also result in many other benefits. One of the more widely recognised outcomes is the improved amenity of parks and open space, which are designed to cater for multiple uses and often retain or include vegetated areas to address water quality issues. The focus on incorporating stormwater into open space areas often facilitates the retention of trees and water bodies, which in turn create enjoyable environments for recreational activity, improving community health. The creation of living streams instead of trapezoidal drains reduces safety risks by reducing water depths and velocities. It also improves passive surveillance by providing an attractive feature for development, rather than a hidden, fenced, low-amenity area that may have been a target for vandalism and rubbish dumping. Like other WSUD infrastructure, living streams are often “adopted” by the community and become valued areas that are the focus of neighbourhood activities. This recognition by the local population assists in the development and maintenance of community cohesion (SERCUL, undated).
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Figure 1. Integrating water planning with land use planning processes (adapted from WAPC, 2008). Of increasing recognition is the reduction in urban heat island effects, which is observed from providing water to green infrastructure in an urban landscape (Wong et al., 2012). A reduction in urban temperatures in cities in summer not only improves the comfort of citizens, but has also been suggested to reduce the number of heat-stress health related incidents and resultant social and economic cost to the community (Tapper and Loughnan, 2009). Other, less-recognised benefits include improved environmental awareness within the community; and improved water availability through increased infiltration and recharge. Increasing water use efficiency and recycling also delays the need for additional water sources to be secured to cope with growing populations and the usually significant cost of the infrastructure that is required.
WA’s urban water planning framework The objective of Better Urban Water Management (WAPC, 2008) is to achieve better management and use of urban water resources by ensuring that an appropriate level of consideration is given to the water cycle at each stage of the planning system. It identifies the various actions and investigations that are required at the various stages of the WA planning process and proposes that each planning application is supported by a corresponding water management report. One of the foundation principles of Better Urban Water Management is to adequately inform decision making. Accordingly, each water management report should contain sufficient information
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to support the planning decision being made. For example, where land is to be rezoned for urban development, Better Urban Water Management requires that this application is supported by an assessment of whether the land, from a water resources perspective, is capable of being developed. This generally includes the identification of critical elements such as important environments to be protected; the amount of land required for drainage; and the availability of water sources for future uses (Figure 1). The next stage of planning determines the broad structure of a development. Better Urban Water Management asks that this is supported by “proof of concept” regarding the management of stormwater, groundwater and wastewater, and the supply of potable and non-potable water needs. Experience has shown that this stage and the “district-level” stage beforehand are critical to the optimisation of urban water outcomes. Planning for water at the subdivision stage, which is reflective of the process pre-2008, is too late to facilitate ecological outcomes, alternative water and wastewater servicing/reuse, or ensure sufficient land is identified to adequately manage surface water flows and quality. A large variety of WSUD options exist to achieve various water management objectives. It is important, therefore, that the proposed WSUD strategy is appropriate for the specific site characteristics and the urban form that is proposed. This is noted in Better Urban Water Management, through the remaining foundation principles of relevance and risk management. The intent of Better Urban Water Management is to ensure that the risks to and from water resources
Figure 2. Recognised WSUD best practice in Mandurah, WA. to a development are identified and understood, and only those that are relevant require further investigation and response. Although the framework was designed predominantly to support new greenfield and urban renewal projects, its principles and requirements should be considered for infill situations as well, in order to address the requirements of State Planning Policy 2.9: Water Resources (2006) and deliver more compact cities. Key urban water planning needs for infill situations include the capacity of drainage networks to cope with additional flows, which also provides opportunities for retrofitting; the capacity of wastewater service networks and opportunities for alternative provision; and water availability for irrigation/maintenance of public open space, as this becomes even more important for the community through increased usage.
Recognising the value of urban water planning Early outcomes of the urban water planning process were celebrated, as they showed vision, innovation and technical excellence. The development industry embraced the objectives of WSUD and worked in partnership with state and local government to deliver improved water quality outcomes, recharge opportunities and high-quality public open spaces (Figures 2 and 3). However, the roll-out of the process across the state over the past five years has highlighted a number of issues that are now hindering implementation. Although the development industry is supportive of the need to better manage our water resources, urban water management is increasingly being seen as just an approval requirement, with limited integration occurring through the planning and design process. This significantly reduces the opportunity for good water planning to add value to the development outcome and ultimate community.
Industry capacity building programs such as Clearwater in Victoria and New WAter Ways in WA, recognise that a wide range of stakeholders and disciplines are involved in the achievement of WSUD and that all need to understand and support the requirements at each stage of the planning and development approvals process. This necessitates the engagement and education of planners, engineers, landscape architects, contractors, asset managers and parks staff, which is difficult to achieve and maintain. It is further complicated by the need to understand and support the different roles and responsibilities of regulators and industry. It is recognised that good urban water planning requires a certain level of technical knowledge and expertise. Although it is possible to suggest that outcomes can be achieved that are consistent with defined urban water management criteria, it is more difficult to actually demonstrate it. In difficult sites, such as those with wetlands or high groundwater, this justification can involve significant investigations, modelling and reporting, all of which add to the time and cost of the approvals process. As with most changes in practice, it is easy to find examples where application of the new concepts has resulted in a less than optimal outcome. In some instances, the actions required to retrofit these areas have been incredibly costly, while in others the problems are still unresolved. These examples provide ammunition for industry and regulators to either require overly conservative responses or return to the â€œold wayâ€? of addressing drainage and water management. The level of support for WSUD solutions is also impacted by a lack of trusted data which demonstrates the performance of individual WSUD treatments under Western Australian conditions. This is being addressed, however, by the Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities, which is working to investigate and demonstrate water-sensitive urbanism and future technologies, facilitating adoption pathways where possible.
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Figure 3. Recognised WSUD best practice in Armadale, WA. Another area of uncertainty is the perceived cost of maintenance into the longer term. Although it is understood in principle that the long-term replacement cost of traditional systems generally outweighs the cost of regular maintenance of WSUD systems, this has not been conclusively demonstrated. There is also a lack of understanding of the activities that are required for short and long term maintenance and the perception that more work must be done in an environment of diminishing resources. Building understanding and confidence in this area is critical to the long-term uptake of WSUD systems and their progression from innovation to business as usual.
Enhancing water planning processes in the future One of the most significant “success factors” for improved urban water planning practices and performance is recognition across the industry that the process and requirements for water planning actually add value to the development outcome. Although the direct and complementary benefits of water planning are being increasingly recognised by industry, they often get lost in the drive to meet all the other requirements of our complex regulatory planning system, resulting in a “tick-box” mentality that chases the approval rather than the outcome. This also reduces the ability to integrate water management with other elements of urban and regional planning, thereby reducing the capacity to optimise economic, cultural and social outcomes for the community. The ability to deliver innovative solutions is further penalised by our approval system, which tends to pause at anything that is new or unknown. There is a need to foster an approval system that welcomes innovation through mechanisms such as fast-tracking, concessions or bonuses as appropriate. Early consideration and engagement is also necessary to provide sufficient time to scope, test, design and deliver non-conventional practice. Research has suggested that demonstration projects and political and technical champions are necessary for improved implementation of urban water management outcomes (Farrelly et al., 2008).
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Although programs such as New WAter Ways aim to showcase industry achievements, these programs are often “preaching to the converted” and lack ongoing monitoring to conclusively demonstrate performance into the longer term. Thus, enhancing the delivery of urban and regional water planning into the future requires commitment to the process and its requirements at all levels of planning and a belief by all stakeholders that the outcomes of the process will add value to the community in both the short and longer term.
Conclusion The availability and quality of our water resources are being increasingly challenged as a result of population growth, diminishing rainfall runoff and recharge and inadequate planning. However, there are signs that the tide is turning, with the roll-out of better policy and processes like Better Urban Water Management, as well as through the efforts of capacity building groups and academia in educating and researching new and innovative systems and strategies. There is, however, a need to reinvigorate this process and recapture the imagination of the development industry so that these efforts are not wasted as we continue to see a cookie cutter approach to water management delivering less than optimal solutions. Effective and timely water planning can deliver better outcomes provided it is undertaken with the drive to look for improved practices and performance. It is recognised that the list of implementation issues is considerable and it is often daunting to set about making changes, but there are so many benefits to good urban water planning that the challenges must not be ignored. Future steps to improve water planning should focus on: • Addressing the tick-box mentality – water planning must add value; • Encouraging proponents to identify issues early so that solutions can be identified in a timely manner. This also facilitates innovation and new ways of doing things;
Feature Article • Establishing an environment where regulators welcome and
SERCUL (undated): Bannister Creek Living Stream: Urban Waterways Renewal,
encourage innovation rather than penalise someone who tries
South East Regional Centre for Urban Landcare pamphlet, SERCUL
to do something different;
• Increasing the integration between water planning and other
Tapper N & Loughnan M (2009): Towards Management of Urban Heat Stress in Urban Environments: Recent Developments in Melbourne, Victoria,
elements of urban and regional planning so that the opportunities
presentation to Creating Water Sensitive Futures Workshops 2009.
to inform and be informed are maximised; • Reinforcing and restating the principles of relevance and risk
WAPC (2008): Better Urban Water Management, Western Australian Planning Commission, Perth, WA.
management; and • Identifying and engaging with potential champions at a political
Wong THF, Allen R, Brown RR, Deleti A, Gangadharan L, Gernjak W, Jakob C, Johnstone P, Reeder M, Tapper N, Vietz G & Walsh CJ (2013):
level who recognise the importance of water resource planning
Blueprint 2013 – Stormwater Management in a Water Sensitive City.
and who can support demonstration projects that showcase the
Melbourne, Australia: Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive
best of Australian innovation and skill. WJ
Cities, ISBN 978-1-921912-02-3, July 2013.
Thanks to Helen Brookes, Partner, Essential Environmental for
Shelley Shepherd (email: shelley@ essentialenvironmental.com.au) is a Partner of Essential Environmental, a boutique consultancy that specialises in environmental planning, urban water management, natural resource management, environmental impact assessment and policy development. Shelley is a Certified Environmental Practitioner, Certified Practising Planner, Member of Sustainable Development Committee – Urban Development Institute of Australia and an AGIC Infrastructure Sustainability Accredited Professional.
her assistance and guidance in framing this paper, as well as her continued support of all things WSUD.
References Department of Water (2013): Water Resource Considerations When Controlling Groundwater Levels in Urban Development, Department of Water, Perth, WA. Farrelly M, Brown R & Davis C (2008): Can Demonstration Projects Act as a Mechanism for Promoting a Transition? Proceedings of the 6th International Water Sensitive Urban Design Conference, Perth, WA, 5–8 May 2009. Government of Western Australia (2006): State Planning Policy 2.9: Water Resources, Western Australian Planning Commission, Perth, WA.
NatioNal operatioNs CoNfereNCe affordability, liveability aNd seNsitivity – operatioNs iN the tweNty teeNs
28 To 30 OctOber 2014 cairns cOnventiOn centre
registratioN Now opeN
With the tightening of funds for water operations nationally, it is imperative that we innovate and optimise the way we work like never before. This will ensure we continue to provide best value for money for our customers, while not reducing our quality standards.
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With the 2014 National operations Conference being held in Cairns and the mounting damage of the nearby Great Barrier Reef as a reminder, we are taking a strong focus on the environmental obligation in the sustainability of our operations. As emerging industries come to fruition, e.g. mining, agribusiness and tourism, we need to ensure the future national prosperity is balanced carefully SEPTEMBER 2014 water with sustainable water usage and environmental protection.
CRUMBLING SEWERS LINKED TO DRINKING WATER TREATMENT Zhiguo Yuan and Jurg Keller, respectively Deputy Director and Director at the Advanced Water Management Centre, University of Queensland, wrote this article for The Conversation.
ustralian sewers are being corroded partly because of an additive used in the drinking water treatment process. In some cases the lifetime of concrete pipes is being reduced by up to 90%. But much of that corrosion could be reduced by a simple change in the chemicals used to treat the water, as the authors recently reported in the journal Science (Pikaar et al., 2014).
Our urban-based societies are completely dependent on extensive infrastructure support to function effectively. Wastewater collection in sewer networks is arguably one of the most critical elements in todayâ€™s cities. It helps to protect public health and enable the productive economic activities that are crucial for our high living standards.
THE CORROSIVE ELEMENT But the effective operation of these critical sewer networks is under constant threat due to a simple but powerful molecule: H2S or hydrogen sulfide. Sulfide is generated in the sewage from sulfate and organic waste and can be stripped as hydrogen sulfide gas into the sewer atmosphere. On the upper walls of the sewers, microbes take up the H2S and oxidise it with air to form sulfuric acid, H2SO4. This is extremely powerful in corroding concrete, which is the most common material used in large sewer pipes. This corrosion process converts solid concrete into a soft, crumbling powder at a rate of up to 10mm/year, or more in extreme cases. This can reduce the useful lifetime of sewer pipes from the expected 50â€“100 years to as little as 10 years! Given the huge costs of building and maintaining extensive infrastructure networks such as wastewater collection systems (typically 70% of total infrastructure value is in the pipes), it is crucial to manage this corrosion process effectively to ensure a long service life of sewer pipes.
An extensive industry survey found that a major part of the sulfate in sewage originates from the water treatment coagulants.
water SEPTEMBER 2014
CORROSION A COSTLY MATTER Sewer maintenance and repair or replacement is already costing Australian water utilities hundreds of millions dollars per year. A similar amount is spent on various mitigation efforts such as chemical dosing and ventilation, to minimise the corrosion process. So any deterioration of our ageing sewer infrastructure is a major concern. Why can we not reduce the hydrogen sulfide generation in the first place? Well, maybe we can if we manage the whole urban water system in an integrated way, and particularly look at the water treatment processes far upstream! Our study was done over several years and is the first to reveal this surprising connection between water treatment and wastewater management. To reduce the sulfide formation we would need to reduce either the sulfate or the organics in the sewage. The latter is not possible due to the continuing waste discharges from households and industries, which is indeed a major function of the sewer system.
TREATMENT PART OF THE PROBLEM But when we carefully identified the sources of the sulfate in the wastewater we made the startling discovery that 50% or more could be added in the purification process at the drinking water treatment plant. Chemical coagulants are added in most water treatment processes to remove turbidity from the source water. In Australia, and many other countries worldwide, aluminium sulfate (alum) is the most commonly used coagulant as it is widely available and relatively cheap. While the aluminium binds to the particles in the water and is removed in the process, the sulfate is soluble and remains in the
The production of hydrogen sulfide (H2S) from sulfate (SO4) in the water, and its subsequent release to sewer air and oxidation to sulfuric acid at concrete surface, corrodes concrete pipes.
Feature Article treated drinking water. This is of no concern for human health but can have major impacts in the sewer systems downstream due to the sulfide-induced corrosion. In our study, we have clearly identified that in systems with low sulfate levels in the raw water (as is typically the case with dam-based water supplies), the sulfate added in the drinking water treatment can cause significant additional sulfide formation in sewers. Interestingly, the production of desalinated or recycled water typically eliminates sulfate from the final product water. That creates a potentially very valuable benefit for downstream sewer protection.
WHY DIDN’T WE KNOW BEFORE? The main reason this surprising connection has not been discovered earlier is likely due to our institutional separation of the urban water system into water and wastewater sections. These are often run by different organisations. Therefore a more fully integrated urban water management approach is necessary to identify such interactions and determine the most optimal long-term solution for the overall system, rather than primarily minimising costs locally. In our current situation, a change to non-sulfate coagulants could be quite easily done. This would dramatically reduce concrete corrosion – by 35% after just 10 hours and 60% over longer durations.
It’s also possible to remove sulfate from source water using desalination. Some cities, such as Sydney, are already using non-sulfate coagulants in their water treatment, although usually due to local availability or cost benefits rather than the whole-system impacts demonstrated in our study. Nevertheless, this demonstrates that these alternative coagulants are just as effective and efficient in water treatment operations. WJ This article has been reprinted courtesy of The Conversation: theconversation.com/crumbling-sewers-are-linked-to-drinking-watertreatment-30398
8 no 13 e 40 20 ER Volum MB CE 5 DE 8.9
It would likely incur only marginal additional treatment costs at the drinking water plant but could generate significant overall savings across the whole water system by reducing corrosion.
Pikaar I, Sharma KR, Shihu H, Gernjak W, Keller J, Zhiguo Y (2014):
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Reducing Sewer Corrosion Through Integrated Urban Water Management. Science, 15, 345, 6198 pp 812–814.
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TAIWAN PUTS ON A SHOW AWA was recently invited by the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (Taitra) for a pre-exhibition press tour in preparation for Taiwan’s 1st International Water Show, Aqua Taiwan. Michael Seller, AWA National Manager – Members, provides this report. Day 1 I am greeted in the hotel lobby by Ms Mia Chang and Mr David Chan from Taitra, who have organised a two-day tour of Taiwan manufacturers, a research institute, government agencies, utilities and a number of site visits. Mia and David are also responsible for the promotion and management of Aqua Taiwan. We are soon joined Mr Arjan Veering, freelance journalist and editor of Water Forum from The Netherlands, and make our way to our first venue – ITRI (Industrial Technology & Research Institute). ITRI We are met by Deputy Division Director Wang-Kuan Chang, Researcher Yuan-Liang Tai and Kristie Lee from the Office of Marketing & Communications, which has approximately 50 staff. An excellent presentation follows detailing ITRI’s core competency – water treatment technology – where they have had a number of success stories that are recognised worldwide. We are also given a tour of the Material & Chemical Research lab, which features a number of similarities to our own CSIRO in regards to the quality of the facilities, partnerships with industry and Government, and collaboration with similar organisations globally. Currently ITRI does not have any affiliations with Australian research, so if any readers are interested in exploring this option I would be delighted to assist with an introduction. For further information about ITRI please visit www.itri.org.tw. Tankpac Industries/Global Water Solutions Next we head to Taichung to visit one of the largest manufacturers of pressure tanks in the world – Tankpac – which distributes into Australia through Grundfos, Davey Pumps and White International. Their presentation focuses on current customers, significant research and development, and continued growth with construction already begun on expanding
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Facilities at Tankpac Industries/Global Water Solutions. their current site. Company President Mr Han-Chin Lai has inspired excellence from his staff and the manufacturing facility boasts first-class standards of safety, staff training and research and development. Please visit www.globalwatersolutions.com.au for more information. Caware Filtering Group A two-hour drive sees us arrive in Kaohsiung, where Aqua Taiwan will be hosted. I am again impressed by the manufacturing facility, including the research labs with their focus on activated carbon filters for water and air. We are given a presentation from a number of enthusiastic staff, including Caware General Manager Carren Chang whose passion for her business is only matched by her passion for Taiwan. (The fact that Carren welcomed us with a cold beer on arrival as it was late in the day also ensured I had found a new friend). The Caware team treated us to a traditional indigenous meal, including some dancing, which I was happy to take part in, albeit with a lot of encouragement! For more information on Caware please visit www.caware.com.tw
Dancing with local indigenous people from the mountains of Kaohsiung.
Day 2 Following a wonderful evening of fine food and dancing – followed by some karaoke, as I thought it important to mix with the locals – the two hours’ sleep I’d managed to snatch does not dampen my enthusiasm for the day ahead. I dust myself off and check out of 85 Sky Tower Hotel – the second largest building in Taiwan – and board the bus for our first visit of the day. Viscarb It seems there is now a trend starting to emerge, as our visit to Viscarb does not disappoint, with R&D at the forefront of this manufacturer of activated carbon for both industrial and domestic use. It is fascinating to hear how coconut shells are extensively used as part of the manufacturing process. Vice President Mr LungHung Wang provides an excellent presentation along with Phoenix Wang, who looks after sales and is keen to connect with Australian organisations. Please visit www.viscarb.com.tw for more information. EPZA Our next visit is to the Ministry of Economic Affairs, which was set up in 1966 to promote Taiwan to the global economy and is currently primarily focused on export processing. Time is limited for our visit, however it is just as rewarding as the rest of the tour, and we are well looked after by our host, Deputy Director Ou Yen-Mien. For further information please visit www.epza.gov.tw. Rotek Home sickness starts to kick in, as at this stage I am starting to notice many similarities to a number of AWA corporate members who provide water treatment equipment, water purification and membrane separation technology. The arrival of Pizza Hut pizzas compounds the feeling; however, Taiwan hospitality being as it is
Kaohsiung by night. we are also offered some local fine delicacies. Rotek also focuses on R&D and has expansions planned to service South East Asia and Africa, which they see as key emerging markets. Rotek has a distributor in Australia through Rotork. Please visit www.rotekwater. com for further information. China Ecotek Corporation I am starting to struggle a little from the previous night’s celebrations; however, I quickly bounce back as we are treated to a presentation from Ecotek and a site tour of both water supply and water treatment plant, designed and constructed with their partners Degrémont. There is a host of information available on Ecotek – certainly too much to include in this report – however, I encourage you to visit the company’s website at www.ecotek.com.tw. Green Forest Development Enterprise Our final destination brings us to a site tour of a recently built sewage treatment plant, which is privately owned. This particular plant was built to assist in cleaning of the river system and services three communities, including defence forces. There are further plans for piping systems and community awareness campaigns with a focus on government and the private sector working closely together. For further information please visit www.lealeagroup.com.tw
Conclusion Aqua Taiwan will be held at the Kaohsiung Exhibition Centre from 8–10 October 2014. If you are interested in attending or exhibiting, please go to www.aquataiwan.net for more information. If you are interested in contacting any of the organisations discussed in this article please contact Michael Seller at firstname.lastname@example.org
Left: The water treatment plant at China Ecotek Corporation. Right: Inside the lab.
SEPTEMBER 2014 water
IWA Conference on Pre-Treatment of Water and Wastewater Mitch Laginestra, Principal Engineer based in South Australia and GHD's Technical Leader of Industrial Wastewater, was a keynote speaker at the recent IWA Conference on Pre-Treatment of Water & Wastewater and provides this report. The International Water Association (IWA) conference on PreTreatment of Water and Wastewater was held at Tongji University in Shanghai, China, 18–20 May 2014. Shanghai is reportedly the largest or highest-populated city in the world, so perhaps 110 delegates among some 25 million inhabitants doesn’t sound that significant. However, considering the attendees were from all over the world – and considering Putin and other Asian leaders were in Shanghai at the same time (albeit not at the same conference!) the status of the venue at least was somewhat elevated!
Day 1 Professor Fengting Li, Vice Dean of the College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Tongji University and United Nations Environmental Program Tongji Institute of Environment for Sustainable Development, and Chair of the organising committee of IWA, welcomed the delegates and passed the baton to the first of an impressive array of keynote speakers: Dr Juihui Qu, from the Chinese Academy of Engineering (Research Centre for Eco-Environmental Sciences) spoke about the priorities for improving water and environmental quality in China, nominating key issues of sanitation, nutrient reduction from point sources, arsenic contamination in Inner Mongolia and fluoride. Currently there is a push for simple, efficient and sustainable technologies in rural and urban situations. Current standards for effluent quality include BOD 20 and 60 mg/L for municipal sewage treatment plants (Class 1A and 1B respectively), and 100 mg/L for industrial wastewater effluent. Dr Ioannis Alexiou, of Scientists International based in the UK, followed with a talk on sustainable industrial management, applying pre-treatment in a European context and evolving a circular economy. He spoke of renewed environmental conscience in Europe creating a shift in industrial production, and use of resources and energy (use of energy-efficient technologies and the introduction of renewable energy resources including solar, biomass, wind and hydro-power).
Shanghai by night is a spectacular sight.
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The talk also focused on use of legislation and economic incentives to adopt ecologically friendly design. Anaerobic digestion, bioethanol production, membranes and tri-generation are some of the most promising technologies, allowing the recovery of by-products and simultaneous production of heat, cooling and power with technical, economic and environmental benefits. The third keynote speaker was Professor Arturo Keller, Professor of Biogeochemistry, Bren School, University of California, Santa Barbara, USA, who spoke on the application of nanotechnology, and the opportunities and risks for water and wastewater treatment and soil remediation. Management strategies for contaminants (such as pesticides) include application of a number of emerging technologies such as nano-particles, biochemical injection materials (including reactants, catalysts, adsorbents) and nano-membranes. Keynote speaker #4, Dr Baoyu Gao, Environmental Engineering, Shandong University, China, spoke of coagulant behaviours and effect on membrane fouling in a coagulation/ultrafiltration hybrid process. The key emphasis on the paper was use of a new coagulant Al13, which reportedly formed stronger flocs that are larger and more stable than PAC and alum. The coagulant (yet to become commercially available) performed better than PAC at acidic pH, although there is only low DOM removal. Professor Fengting Li, from Tongji University, Shanghai, presented his research on development of the coagulant industry in China. The Chinese market involves a high production rate of a multitude of chemicals for pre-treatment and coagulation of drinking water. China has adopted grading of water sources for drinking water (I–V, with I representing the best for drinking water). It was noted that grades III and IV are the most commonly used treatments for drinking water. PAC is a common chemical applied, with different grades being used for drinking water versus industrial water pre-treatment. Dr Santino Di Bernardino, Waste and Biogas Director, Professor at National Laboratory for Energy, Lisbon University, spoke on pre-treatment of industrial wastewater in a sustainable context (environmental, economic and societal) and talked about development of regulations and aspects in Europe. Before 1980, end-of-pipe pollution reduction was typically adopted. The following decade involved a strong focus on legislation. In 2000, cleaner technologies emerged, and in 2010 the advent of sustainable production has now largely been adopted in Europe. Wilbert Menkveld, from Nijhuis Water Technology in the Netherlands, spoke on development of a novel Dissolved Air Flotation system for pre-treatment of industrial wastewater. Termed the intelligent DAF, it reportedly uses some 30% lower energy consumption (0.03 kWh/m3) per volume wastewater treated in comparison to conventional DAF installations. This high efficiency is partly the result of the air bubble size being around 20-40 μm (some 50% smaller than typical). Examples of application in the poultry and oil refinery wastewater were presented and reportedly showed results of 99% removal of suspended solids and oils and greases and up to 85% COD removal. The I-DAF can also be used without chemicals, but lower reduction of contaminants is achieved. Guido Kooijman, Sanitary Engineering, Civil Engineering, University of Technology Delft, Stevinweg, Netherlands, spoke on the influence of chemically enhanced primary treatment and its impact on digestion and sludge dewaterability. Sludge land application has been prohibited in Europe since the 1990s, and consequently incineration is now advocated, which requires high dewaterability for cost effectiveness. The application of flocculants in primary sedimentation of wastewater plants increases sludge production. Cationic and
Conference Report treatment plants in China. Investigation was undertaken on removal using flocculant aids (Poly-dimethyl Diallyl Ammonium Chloride, powdered activated carbon (PAC), clay and sodium alginate) and pre-oxidants (ClO2, NaClO, and KMnO4), and using fixed coagulation dosing of 2 mg/L of polyaluminium chloride and 6 mg/L of lime solution. The results show that the addition of flocculant aids can significantly improve the removal of the algae from 50% to 95%. HCA was found to be the most effective flocculant aids for Synedra removal.
The Bund is a popular spot with tourists. anionic organic flocculants, as well as an organic coagulant, were compared in conditioning of primary sludge. The research showed that dosing flocculants has an effect on biogas production, aeration requirements, COD/N ratio and, above all, dewaterability of the waste sludge. The use of cationic flocculant was found to increase gas generation and provided for improved dewaterability. Up next was Dr Istvan Licsko, Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Department of Sanitary and Environment Engineering, Hungary, who presented a paper on Dissolved-Solid Transformation of Aluminium- and Ferric-Hydroxides in Pre-treatment of Wastewaters. Traditional coagulants (aluminiumand ferric salts) typically hydrolyse rapidly and transform into poorly water-soluble positively charged aluminium- and ferric-hydroxide compounds (with sufficient alkalinity). These metal hydroxides adsorb onto the surface of colloid particles, changing their negative electric charge and decreasing their aggregative stability. Research found that aluminium and ferric hydroxides aggregate with each other, although they have positive electric charge, and this has a significant role in neutralisation of the colloids, and in the processes of floc growth. Zhiyong Zhang, State Key Laboratory of Pollution Control and Resources Reuse, School of Environmental Science & Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai, spoke on his research into treatment of papermaking wastewater by advanced oxidation processes (which included Fenton, pyrite-catalysed by hydrogen dioxide, sodium hypochlorite and ferrate oxidation). All processes generally showed reasonable COD reduction, but perhaps the pyrite-catalysed hydrogen dioxide indicated best results – at initial pH 4, pyrite dosage 1g/L, H2O2 dosage 0.15mL/L, and the oxidation reaction time 1h, COD of papermaking wastewater was reduced to 45mg/L (65 %).
Göran Bäckman, Kemira Kemi AB, Sundsvall, Sweden, spoke on Activated Sludge Optimization Using a Bioassay Measurement System (LumiKemATP). The test is used to flag toxicity presence in wastewater and also to optimise/determine the need for nutrient addition. An example of application for a pulp and paper mill's wastewater was presented, and it was shown that the data generated could be integrated with other standardised mill operating parameters. Dr Liu Jia, College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Laboratory of Pollution Control and Resource Reuse, Tongji University, spoke on her research into Synthesis of Biological Demulsifiers and Mechanism in the Breakup of Emulsions. The talk was essentially about the pre-treatment for oil recovery. Chemical demulsifiers are commonly used in China; however, demulsifying bacterial strains can achieve breakup of emulsified wastewater and enable oil recovery (enabling higher dispersion rates into the water–oil interface, and improve efficiency).
Day 2 Wilbert Menkveld, Nijhuis Water Technology, The Netherlands, spoke about the proprietary Aecomix system for combined anaerobic treatment of food and beverage industry wastewater. This involves a two-stage process – mixed digester (reactor) followed by Dissolved Biogas Flotation. A case study was presented for a chocolate manufacturer, which reportedly achieved COD reduction of over 97%. The excess sludge from the aerobic system is returned to the Aecomix reactor (which is a significant advantage over high rate [UASB type] reactors). It was also claimed that the system has a 20% lower operational cost compared to a conventional DAF installation (with coagulation) followed by UASB. Valeri Razafimanantsoa, University of Stavanger, Norway, presented his research on selective size distribution of influent suspended solids on downstream biological processes. Fine
Hongtao Wang, Laboratory of Yangtze River Water Environment, College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai, spoke on Removal of TiO2 and Ag nanoparticles by clay. Research was undertaken on removal of environmental contaminants (titanium dioxide and silver) using the clay, kaolinite. Varying factors (humic acid, sodium chloride, and pH) and dosage rates were studied, with conclusions essentially showing increased aggregation with addition of kaolinite. Yi Tao, Laboratory of Microorganism Application and Risk Control of Shenzhen, Tsinghua University, China, delivered a presentation on algae removal (Synedra) using flocculant aids and pre-oxidants. Development of Synedra species in rivers and reservoirs is reported to have caused serious seasonal problems at drinking water
Some of the delegates on the grounds of Tongji University. Represented here are speakers from Germany, China, The Netherlands, Portugal, Australia and the UK.
SEPTEMBER 2014 water
Dr Santino Di Berardino gave the final presentation on Day 2. screen filters (33μm and 90μm) were used as a primary treatment to characterise particles by size to see if removal of particles would have any negative impact on downstream biological nitrogen removal processes. Marginally higher COD reduction was noted in SBRs fed with fine-screened wastewater compared to the control bioreactors. No difference was recorded on the performance of bioreactors for nitrogen removal. Mostafa Zahmatkesh, from Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands, spoke on fungal pre-treatment of lignin-rich sludge. White rot fungi is one of the few organisms that can degrade lignin, and a pilot study using a bubble column bioreactor was undertaken. COD reduction of lignin-rich wastewater was found to improve significantly with inoculation by pre-grown fungal mycelium. Haibo Li, Laboratory of Pollution Control and Resources Reuse, School of the Environment, Nanjing University, China, spoke about Removal of Dissolved Organic Matter by Combining Anion Exchange and Cation Exchange Resins for Advanced Wastewater Treatment. He undertook full-scale trials on municipal and textile wastewater over a number of years. This study investigated and compared removal of dissolved organic matter from biological effluent by cation and anion exchange resins. Yongjun Zhang, TU Berlin, Chair of Environmental Process Engineering, Germany, delivered a presentation on his research into application of an aerated biofilter to remove trace pollutants. The study involved enhancement of naturally occurring manganeseoxidising bacteria to mediate the degradation of pollutants (as a tertiary stage) in WWTP effluent. Keynote speaker #5, Mitch Laginestra, GHD, Australia, spoke on applications of covered anaerobic lagoons in the red meat industry. Covered lagoons provide a number of benefits over conventional uncovered lagoons, including: • Opportunity to control odours; • Capture of greenhouse gases; • Use of biogas to generate electrical energy and thus minimise the carbon footprint of the facility. A number of design criteria including depth, cover type, gas removal, pre-treatment, gas cleaning, safety aspects, desludging, downstream treatment requirements and how to operate and maintain anaerobic lagoons were outlined. A number of case studies were presented, noting performance.
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Dr Di Berardino and Mitch Laginestra in front of the picturesque Tongji University in the bustling metropolis of Shanghai. Dr Jia-Qian Jiang, of the Glasgow Caledonian University, UK, then presented his research on modified adsorption chemicals for removal of heavy metals in water treatment. These were largely based on aluminium iron polymers. The final talk of the conference was delivered by Dr Santino Di Bernardino, of the Bioenergy Unit at Lisbon University, Portugal, on two-stage biological treatment of tannery wastewater. A bench scale system was set up using an anaerobic hybrid filter followed by anoxic sulphide oxidation reactor, converting H2S to elemental sulphur and recirculation loop (oxidation reactor mixed slurry is returned to the inflow). The theory provides for coexistence of methanogenic bacteria, sulphate-reducing bacteria and sulphur-oxidising bacteria converting hydrogen sulphide and sulphates into sulphur, minimising potential methane inhibition. This two-step treatment reportedly achieves higher removal of contaminants than conventional chemical precipitation, avoids the addition of chemicals, thus minimising sludge production, and removes hydrogen sulphide and sulphate.
Other Attractions The conference was scheduled to have a technical tour afterwards to Qingcaosha Reservoir, some 50km outside Shanghai on the famous Yangtze River. However, this was cancelled due to restrictions on access during the coincidental Economic Summit of Asia’s leaders (Vladimir Putin and leaders from 30 other Asian countries being in town). Shanghai is an interesting city, with a number of tourist attractions. The Bund (the river promenade) is a fascinating mix of old-world 19th century charm (built during the financial growth spurt of the city) on the western side, while on the eastern side of the Huang Pu River, the scale of construction and neon lights provides a spectacular backdrop. After Day 1, to showcase the spectacular eastern river front at night, an evening river cruise was arranged by the organising committee. Shanghai is reportedly China’s most expensive city. There are still plenty of great places to eat and go to, and the cost is not prohibitive, but if you go (for example) to the famous Long Bar of the Waldorf Hotel across the road from the Bund, a couple of small drinks cost close to $40 – a darn sight more than dinner for two at many restaurants. Certainly the transport rail network is very impressive (although patrons of the system need to learn how to queue), and the Huangpu River, old city, convention centre, People’s Park and French Quarter are all appealing.
Water Treatment To Pre-Treat For MF/RO Or Not?
D Solley et al.
M Duke et al.
M Wicks et al.
G Keremane et al.
R Irwin et al.
G McGill et al.
K Linge et al.
A Davison et al.
Evidence from the short- and long-term operational history of six membrane reuse plants in SE Queensland
Firefighting Wastewater Treatment Using Powdered Activated Carbon And Ceramic Membranes
A trial demonstrating a beneficial effect of direct application of PAC in reducing the rate of fouling
Stormwater Treatment Solid And Nutrient Pollutant Removal By An Engineered Stormwater Filtration Media
Field evaluation of a radial cartridge media filter
Community Engagement The Emotional Connection To Urban Water Through The Lens Of The Water Customer A PhotoStory exercise in metropolitan Adelaide
Water Recycling Validation Of UF Membrane Plants For Water Recycling In Victoria
A test program using challenge organisms to determine reduction in virus removal performance
Water Reuse This icon means the paper has been refereed
Reclaimed Water For The Shoalhaven Region
Expansion of the existing REMS to double the volume of reclaimed water in the northern LGA
Using Indicator Chemicals And Online Surrogates To Manage The Chemical Risk Of Recycled Water
Exploring monitoring strategies for reverse osmosis treatment
Risk Management Towards Effective Corporate Governance From Source To Endpoint
Why businesses must understand their water ‘products’ from catchment to consumer
Biosolids Management Sustainable Solutions For Emerging Organic Pollutants In Biosolids
Two case studies on contamination of drinking water supplies resulting from land application of contaminated biosolids
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.
Nowra Wastewater Treatment Plant.
NOVEMBER 2014 • SMALL WATER & WASTEWATER SYSTEMS • ASSET MANAGEMENT • PIPELINE MAINTENANCE • CAPACITY BUILDING IN THE WATER INDUSTRY • INDUSTRY SKILLS
TO PRE-TREAT FOR MF/RO OR NOT? Evidence from the short- and long-term operational history of six membrane reuse plants in South-East Queensland D Solley, B Rhodes, M Hordern, A Roux
ABSTRACT In the past decade, six micro- or ultra-filtration/reverse osmosis reuse treatment plants, ranging in capacity from 4 to 100 ML/d, have been constructed in South-East Queensland. The feedwater for all these reuse plants is wastewater treated to a secondary BNR standard with secondary clarification only. Two different pre-treatment approaches have been adopted ahead of the membrane processes, which fall into two broad process types; those that directly feed treated wastewater onto the MF or UF (without pre-treatment other than micro-screening), and those with chemical clarification pre-treatment prior to MF or UF. The reuse plants that include pretreatment ahead of MF/RO are designed to maximise the production of reuse water from the available wastewater. As a result, the plant recovery adopted is 82%, resulting in 83% to 85% recovery being required from the three-stage RO process. In comparison, the reuse plants that have no pre-treatment prior to MF/RO generally operate at lower RO recovery of about 75%. The plantsâ€™ performance indicates that chemical clarification pre-treatment provides stable operation of high recovery RO processes, with low CIP requirements. However, these processes may require design and operation that is outside normal practice. In comparison,
the operation of reuse plants without pretreatment has resulted in lower RO and plant recovery rates being adopted, and potentially higher RO CIP requirements. Long-term operation appears possible, with low maintenance requirements for the MF system. Routine chemical cleans of both the MF/UF and RO membranes at these smaller plants may lead to improved process performance. Keywords: Reuse, water recycling, membrane, pre-treatment, microfiltration, ultrafiltration, reverse osmosis.
INTRODUCTION South-East Queensland is a region experiencing increasing demand on water resources, due to high population growth and reduced rainfall runoff into existing water storages caused by drought and climate change. In response to this increased demand, six reuse treatment plants incorporating either micro-filtration (MF) or ultra-filtration (UF) upstream of reverse osmosis (RO) have been constructed in the past decade to produce water for a variety of purposes, from industrial use through to indirect potable reuse (IPR) (refer Table 1). The reuse plants range in capacity from 4 to 100 ML/d (refer Table 1), with the feed water for all plants being wastewater treated to a secondary biological nutrient removal (BNR) standard with secondary clarification only. The exceptions are Plant B, where the feed to the reuse plant is downstream
of effluent cloth filtration and ultraviolet (UV) disinfection, and Plant C where the feed is downstream of effluent UV disinfection. Plants A and E receive treated wastewater from the same source wastewater treatment plant. The other plants also receive source water from their adjacent wastewater treatment plant, apart from Plant D, which receives treated wastewater from four different wastewater plants. These pre-treatment approaches fall into two broad process types; those that directly feed treated wastewater to the MF or UF process (without pre-treatment other than micro-screening) (Figure 1), and those with chemical clarification pretreatment prior to MF or UF (Figure 2).
REUSE PLANT DESIGN The quality of the treated wastewater feed to the membrane processes has a major impact on the performance and operability of membrane reuse treatment plants, and on final product water quality. Pre-treatment can amend the quality of membrane feedwater, with the objective of improving the membrane performance by reducing the feed solids, organic matter and ortho-phosphate levels that contribute to fouling and scaling. Pre-treatment by chemical coagulation and clarification may also be the last opportunity in the treatment train to reduce phosphorus
Table 1. South-East Queensland MF/RO or UF/RO reuse treatment plants. Capacity ML/d
Industrial & IPR
Industrial & IPR
Industrial & IPR
WATER SEPTEMBER 2014
Figure 1. Process schematic for direct feed to MF/UF filters.
Figure 2. Process schematic for chemical clarification pre-treatment prior to MF/UF filters.
Table 2. Reuse membrane plant process description. RO Pre-treatment
Available Wastewater Treated
Cloth filters, UV, Strainers
Coagulation & settling
Coagulation & settling
Coagulation & ballasted settling
*From the total available from four wastewater treatment plants
levels to meet both product water and RO concentrate quality objectives. However, chemicals added to pretreatment processes may also adversely impact the downstream membrane processes. Typical chemical additives include coagulants and polymers, which may increase (or decrease) the fouling potential and the solids load applied to the membranes, dependent on the dose applied and the efficiency of the gravity settling clarification process. Ballasted settling (using sand as a weighting agent with polymer) can also improve clarification performance and dramatically reduce the footprint required for pre-treatment, albeit at the risk of introducing polymer and an abrasive agent to the membrane feed. The main process step, common to all these reuse treatment plants, is reverse osmosis. The RO process has been included in each plant’s treatment train to remove salt and nutrients and provide a barrier to chemical and pathogenic contaminants. The RO configuration for all plants is a single pass arrangement, with three-stage configurations for all but Plant C, which has a two-stage RO process. The plants operate at different RO recovery rates, as shown in Table 2. Micro- or ultra-filtration pre-treatment has been provided at all plants to
provide suitable feedwater quality for the RO, and also in most cases to provide an additional microbial barrier to pathogens. The target water quality adopted for feedwater to all the RO processes is turbidity less than 1.5 NTU and silt density index (SDI) less than 3, which either MF or UF processes can provide. Typically, turbidity less than 0.2 NTU has been achieved at all plants. The manufacture and model for each respective type of system happen to be the same, the exception being that the MF system for Plant A operates without an intermediate maintenance chemical cleaning system, which is provided for in Plants B and E. The MF/UF feedwater at each plant is also pre-strained with 400 to 500 µm aperture strainers. As noted earlier, the reuse plant feed for Plant B also includes cloth filtration, and Plants B and C include UV disinfection upstream of the reuse plant off-take and strainers. DESIGN OF MEMBRANE PLANTS WITH PRE-TREATMENT
The reuse plants that include pretreatment ahead of the membranes (Plants D, E and F) were designed to maximise reuse water production from the available wastewater. An 82% recovery objective was adopted at these plants, requiring up to 85% recovery from the RO processes. The plants
were also designed to achieve reductions in phosphorus (and nitrogen) levels discharged to waterways with the RO concentrate. Another perceived benefit of the pre-treatment was a reduction in organics in the membrane feed, with the aim of reducing organic fouling of the membranes. A significant distinction with this plant type was aligned with the high production targets, as a higher percentage (90%) of the available treated wastewater was captured for reuse treatment (refer Table 2). The implication was that neither MF/UF backwash nor RO concentrate were returned to the upstream wastewater treatment plant. The MF/UF backwash was recycled within the reuse plant, and RO concentrate waste was discharged to waterways via dedicated outfall diffusers. Chemical coagulation/clarification. Plate settlers were used at Plants D and E, configured in a rectangular tank with flocculation chambers upstream. The ferric chloride coagulant is dosed into the feed line entering the flocculation zones, and mixed with the feedwater using static mixers at Plant D and rapid mixers at Plant E. At Plant F, a ballasted settling process was used, requiring the addition of polymer and micro-sand dosing to the pretreatment process. This allowed much higher effective rise rates (refer Table 3). Process chemistry. The reuse plants have adopted different chemical dosing approaches for the pre-treatment and membrane processes. The pH of the treated wastewater feed is generally in the range 7.5 to 8.0 (refer Table 4). Ferric chloride dosing at the pre-treatment plants reduces the pH in the membrane feed to between 6.5 and 7.0. Plant D’s RO feed is acid-dosed to further reduce the pH and limit RO scale formation, resulting in an RO feed pH of between 6.0 and 6.8. Plant F adopted acid dosing in two locations; upstream of pre-treatment and RO feed (to keep the UF feed pH greater than 6.5), resulting in an RO feed pH of 6.5. Plant E does not adjust the RO
Table 3. Chemically assisted clarification process parameters. Maximum (typical) plant feed total phosphorus
Maximum (typical) ferric chloride dose rate
Clarifier surface loading rate
Clarifier maximum effective rise rate
ROC total phosphorus limit
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Technical Papers DESIGN OF MEMBRANE PLANTS WITHOUT PRE-TREATMENT
Table 4. Typical plant and process unit feedwater characteristics.
Perhaps the most distinguishing difference between the reuse plant types is that the plants without pretreatment operate at a lower RO recovery of about 75% (Table 2). Plant A was initially designed for RO recovery of 87%, but was not able to operate at this level following plant commissioning, due to biological fouling and calcium phosphate scaling of the RO membranes. As a result, an RO recovery of 76% was adopted for long-term operation. Figure 3 shows the results of RO recovery trials, demonstrating that this plant was unable to achieve higher than 78% RO recovery (Irvine-Brown, 2006).
Plant feed pH
Plant feed TP
RO feed pH
RO feed ortho-P
MF/UF feed turbidity
feed pH, with the pH dependent on the plant feedwater characteristics and ferric chloride dose rate. Ferric chloride dosing at the pretreatment plants is controlled to achieve an RO feed phosphorus concentration of between 0.5 to 0.7 mgP/L (refer Table 4). The level has been set this low, not only to limit RO scaling but in order to meet environmental objectives. The RO concentrate is discharged to adjacent waterways, and the plants achieve greater than 90% phosphorus reduction (refer Table 3). The product water total phosphorus limit is 0.13 mgP/L, which is easily achieved with a maximum RO feed ortho-phosphorus concentration of 0.7 mgP/L. Pre-formed chloramine is dosed upstream of MF/UF at all pre-treatment reuse plants to control biological fouling of the MF/UF and RO membranes. The dose is adjusted to provide a chloramine residual of between 2 and 3 mgCl2/L in the RO feed, with the exception of Plant E, which has adopted a lower level of 1 to 2 mgCl2/L (Morgan et al., 2009). All six reuse plants dose antiscalant chemical upstream of the RO process to limit the scaling potential. MF/UF backwash. The MF/UF backwash stream, containing the solids removed from the membrane surface, was initially dealt with in two different ways at the pre-treatment reuse plants. At Plants D and F, the UF backwash stream was sent to a separate plate clarification process, where the majority of backwashed solids were removed, prior to the clarified water being returned to the main process feed. At Plant E, however, the MF backwash was returned directly to the main process at the clarifier feed tank, without any solids removal step. Due to an apparent build-up of solids in the feed tank/ clarifier/MF process loop, this was later modified to also include a side-stream clarification process for separate MF backwash treatment.
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The option of an anionic polymer dose to the pre-treatment feed (in addition to ferric chloride) was examined during the post-commissioning phase, using short-term pilot and full-scale trials (Schimmoller et al., 2010). A typical polymer dose rate of 0.2 mg/L was used during the trials.
Process chemistry. The process chemistry for Plants B and C is similar, with acid dosing for pH correction upstream of the RO process. A key difference is that Plant B has very low plant feed total phosphorus of 0.7 mgP/L and operates at lower RO feed pH (Table 3), bringing its RO system operating conditions more in line with the pre-treatment reuse plants. In comparison, Plant C has widely varying phosphorus levels (averaging 6 mgP/L), which are generally much higher than Plant B or the pre-treatment plants’ RO feed concentrations. For Plants B and C, chloramine is dosed upstream of the MF/UF process for bio-fouling control in the membrane processes.
The aim of reducing the clarifier effluent turbidity, and hence the solids build-up in the pre-treatment/MF loop, was achieved in the trials, with no observed negative effect on the MF or RO membrane processes (Schimmoller et al., 2010). However, this approach was not adopted due to a perceived risk of downstream MF membrane fouling in the long-term. Solids stream. The inclusion of chemical clarification introduces a solids stream to the reuse plant process. Typically, solids are generated from the ferric chloride dosing at a rate of between 0.8 to 0.95 gSS/gFeCl3 dosed. At these plants, the clarifier underflow sludge is thickened in gravity thickeners, prior to centrifuge dewatering and sludge disposal.
For its first eight years of operation, Plant A operated with chlorine dosing in the MF feed, followed by ammonia dosing to form chloramine upstream of the RO process. Shortly after
100 76% Recovery
12 80 10
CIP All Stages
CIP Stage 3
Water Permeability Coefficient (nm s-1 kPa-1)
Permeate Flow (L/s), Salt Transport Coefficient (nm/s)
10 0 20-Jun-06
Stage 1 Permeate Flow
Stage 2 Permeate Flow
Stage 3 Permeate Flow
Salt Transport Coefficient
Stage 1 Water Permeability Coefficient
Stage 2 Water Permeabiity Coefficient
Stage 3 Water Permeability Coefficient
Figure 3. Plant ‘A’ RO recovery trial: RO4 permeate flow, water transport and salt transport.
commissioning, sodium bisulphite dosing to the RO feed was introduced to ensure the absence of free chlorine, but this also quenched the chloramine dose to the RO. In 2009, sodium bisulphite dosing was replaced with a pre-formed chloramine system dosing upstream
plant inlet. The RO concentrate is also discharged to the wastewater treatment plant inlet (Plant A), or to the effluent discharge channel downstream of the reuse plant off-take (Plants B and C). The MF feed solids load is very low in comparison to the solids generated
of the MF. Plant A does not have a pH correction/acid-dosing system for the mainstream process. MF/UF backwash. The MF/UF backwash for the plants without pre-treatment is returned to the wastewater treatment
Table 5. MF/UF design and performance parameters. Plant Parameter
TMP No. Racks No. Modules
Backwash frequency minutes
CEBW/EFM Type 1 - Frequency
Citric + sulphuric
Citric + sulphuric
Citric + sulphuric
Chlorine + caustic
Type 2 - Frequency
CIP - Frequency
- Step 1
Chlorine + caustic
Chlorine + caustic
- Step 2
Citric + sulphuric Citric + sulphuric
Citric + sulphuric
Table 6. RO design and performance parameters. Plant
Toray TML20 -400
Koch 18â€? 2800
Caustic + EDTA
Caustic + SLS
CIP: Stage 1 -Step 1 -Step 2
6 - 12
6 - 12
6 - 12
Caustic + SLS
1.5 - 3
6 - 12
6 - 12
6 - 12
Stage 2 & 3
-Frequency Notes: EDTA HCl SLS Citric Caustic
Ethylene diamine tetraacetic acid Hydrochloric acid Sodium lauryl sulphate Citric acid Caustic soda
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The relative performance of each plant type is perhaps best quantified by examining the performance of the membrane processes for each plant, given that they are directly impacted by the quality of the feedwater, whether modified with chemical clarification or not. The relevant performance parameters for the MF/UF and RO processes are presented in Table 5 and Table 6 respectively. MF/UF PERFORMANCE
Trans-membrane pressure (TMP). The TMP data given in Table 5 shows that the three pre-treatment plants (D, E and F) have generally operated with a lower TMP value and range than ‘no pre-treatment’ Plants A and C (also refer Figures 4 to 7). Plant B is an exception; however, it is noted that this plant operates with cloth filtration and UV disinfection upstream of the reuse plant off-take. It is also noted that the pretreatment reuse plants have operated for a relatively short period and at low production rates. Figure 4 shows that a steep rise in the TMP and range was experienced for Plant C after about
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Post-CIP MF1 TMP Pre-CIP MF2 TMP Post-CIP MF2 TMP 12 per. Mov. Avg. (Pre-CIP MF1 TMP) 12 per. Mov. Avg. (Post-CIP MF1 TMP) 12 per. Mov. Avg. (Pre-CIP MF2 TMP) 12 per. Mov. Avg. (Post-CIP MF2 TMP)
60 40 20 0 22/05/2008
Figure 4. Plant ‘C’ UF pre- & post-CIP trans-membrane pressure (TMP). 120
Rack 1 Rack 2 Rack 3 Rack 4 Rack 5 Rack 6
100 80 60 40 20 0 01-Feb-13
Figure 5. Plant ‘A’ MF trans-membrane pressure (TMP). 50 45 40 35 30 TMP (kPa)
Two of the pre-treatment reuse plants experienced initial performance problems, associated at least in part with their pre-treatment processes and downstream effects on the MF/ UF process (albeit achieving very good RO performance, with very low fouling and scaling rates in their short, lowproduction operation). In contrast, the plants without pre-treatment have experienced relatively trouble-free MF/ UF operation, albeit at lower plant and RO process recovery. However, RO membrane fouling and scaling has been more significant for Plant A.
Pre-CIP MF1 TMP
OPERATIONAL EXPERIENCE Five of the six reuse plants have been in operation for a minimum of four years, and 12 years for Plant A. However, the three pre-treatment reuse plants have not operated for an extended period at capacity during their operational life, and have mainly operated at low production output (due to demand for recycled water significantly diminishing).
100 TMP (kPa)
by the pre-treatment reuse plants, so the impact of solids returned to the wastewater treatment plant is also minimal. As such, there is no need for a separate solids stream in this reuse plant type.
25 20 15 10 5 0 14-Oct-09 3-Nov-09 23-Nov-09 13-Dec-09 2-Jan-10
22-Jan-10 11-Feb-10 3-Mar-10 23-Mar-10 12-Apr-10
Figure 6. Plant ‘D’ UF trans-membrane pressure (TMP). 120 Rack 1 Rack 2
Rack 3 Rack 4
60 40 20 0 29/10/08
Figure 7. Plant ‘E’ MF trans-membrane pressure (TMP). three years of operation, with early performance replicating that given for the pre-treatment reuse plants.
process difference, with the pre-
Membrane cleaning. The adopted membrane cleaning regime for the various plant types is another key
cleans (known as chemical enhanced
treatment reuse plants providing regular chlorine and citric acid maintenance backwash (CEBW) or enhanced flux maintenance (EFM)), with longer-interval
intensive clean-in-place (CIP) chemical cleans. The chemical cleans for Plants A and C occur at irregular intervals, normally triggered by a high TMP value. This may have resulted in the high TMP values and range, and high post-CIP TMP. The high post-CIP TMP for Plant C evident in the latter half of the trend given in Figure 4 indicates either irreversible fouling or incomplete cleaning of the UF membranes. It is possible that a more intensive cleaning approach may restore the TMP closer to the “as new” range. Mueller et al. (2008) describe development of a modified maintenance and CIP chemical cleaning strategy for Plant E, targeting manganese and ferric foulants, thought to originate from the pre-treatment coagulant dosing. Membrane life. Despite higher relative TMP and an apparent higher degree of fouling with minimal chemical cleaning, Plant A’s MF membranes have provided a robust pre-treatment process for RO. This is best indicated by the MF membrane modules only being replaced once after eight years of service, and providing water quality within specification throughout this period. The other five plants’ operating times are less than the expected MF/UF module life, and in the pre-treatment reuse plants’ case, lower production rates have also resulted in shorter operating times. Hence, there is no clear indication of expected membrane life for the pre-treatment reuse plant type. Except for Plant F, there is no early indication that the inclusion of pre-treatment has been detrimental or beneficial to membrane life. Negative impacts of pre-treatment. Following start-up, Plant F experienced fouling of the UF membrane modules associated with polymer dosing in the ballasted settling pre-treatment process. Changes in the operation of the plant to reduce the polymer fouling resulted in significant solids fouling and weight gain in the UF modules, and related fibre breakage and widespread integrity problems. Measures implemented with the aim to control the impacts of polymer and ferric solids are described by Findlay et al., (2012), including the addition of a post-backwash UF flush and a post-clarification coagulant dose to the UF feed. During troubleshooting investigations for Plant F, its pilot plant was used to trial direct feed of treated wastewater
(without chemical clarification pretreatment) to the UF membranes. Significant fouling of the UF membranes occurred, as indicated by rapidly reducing permeability. This provided some indication that the pre-treatment at Plant F was in some way contributing to a reduction in UF membrane fouling. Subsequent short-term pilot trials indicated that this fouling could also be controlled with a small coagulant dose to the UF feed. As mentioned previously, Plant E experienced solids accumulation in the clarifier/MF/backwash processes and high MF feed turbidity during postcommissioning operation. Poor solids removal at the clarifier design rise rate of 0.8 m/h was apparent. The plant’s operation was kept within the MF feed quality specification with the clarifier feed flow reduced or shut down when the MF feed turbidity exceeded 20 NTU. Polymer addition was not adopted in the mainstream MF feed, due to concerns regarding polymer fouling of the MF membranes. These problems were rectified by halving the clarifier rise rate to 0.4 m/h through duplicating the clarifier units, and providing separate MF backwash clarification (with polymer addition). Under these conditions, the clarifier effluent turbidity is typically less than 2 NTU. It is also worth noting that the sludge thickener underflow design concentration of 2% dry solids (DS) was not achieved, with typically 1% DS achieved (with polymer addition to the thickener sludge feed). RO PERFORMANCE
Assessment of chemical clarification pretreatment’s impact on RO performance is limited without parallel pilot studies treating the same source water, but perhaps the best measure in the absence of pilot studies is comparison of membrane chemical cleaning requirements and RO membrane life. Comparison of the RO CIP regimes shown in Table 6 indicates that the plants with chemical clarification pretreatment have lower CIP frequency than the plants without pre-treatment. Operational experience at these plants is that the RO process requires minimal chemical cleaning. Plant C, with cloth filtration and UV disinfection upstream of the MF process, has also not experienced significant fouling. However, Phillips et al. (2010) report on bio-fouling of the RO pre-
filters, which was rectified by raising the MF feed chloramine dose from 1.5 to 2.5 mg.Cl2/L. Plant A has experienced significant biological fouling and calcium phosphate scaling during its operating life, and currently operates with a higher CIP frequency than the other reuse plants. This is the only plant where the RO modules have been replaced, albeit with the plant having operated for much longer. The modules were changed in 2008 after five years’ operation with an alternative RO module, and 2011 prematurely, due to this alternative RO module not meeting the product water conductivity specification. Improvements to the chloramine dosing system and cessation of sodium bisulphite quenching in the RO feed, have led to a significant reduction in the RO fouling and scaling problems. Scaling may be further reduced through adoption of acid dosing to reduce the RO feed pH to similar levels provided at the other reuse plants.
CONCLUSIONS Evidence from the short-term operational history of three pre-treatment reuse plants shows that chemical clarification pre-treatment of treated wastewater prior to MF/RO provides stable operation of high-recovery RO processes, with low CIP requirements. However, the chemical clarification and MF/UF processes may require design and operation that is outside normal practice. In comparison, the reuse plants without pre-treatment have adopted lower RO and plant recovery rates, potentially resulting in higher RO CIP requirements. However, successful long-term operation appears possible, with low maintenance requirements for the MF/UF systems. Routine chemical cleans of the MF/UF and RO membranes at these plants may lead to improved performance. Consideration should be given to the requirement for high reuse plant recovery objectives, as the cost of providing chemical clarification pre-treatment is high for the resulting small gain in production capacity. Costs for chemical clarification pre-treatment are estimated to be about 20% of the reuse plant capital cost and a third of the operational cost, considering electricity, chemicals and sludge disposal costs (based on costs presented by Schimmoller et al., 2012). Lower recovery targets may reduce the need for pre-treatment and also reduce the risks that accompany the introduction
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Technical Papers of treatment chemicals and by-products generated. Where environmental requirements or objectives are the driver for reduced phosphorus releases to waterways, alternative strategies for phosphorus reduction could also be considered, which could focus on greater phosphorus reduction in the upstream wastewater treatment process.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The assistance provided by Queensland Urban Utilities, Seqwater and Unitywater in providing data and background information is gratefully acknowledged. This is an edited version of a paper originally presented at the IWA Membrane Technology Conference in Toronto, Canada in August 2013, and is in press for Water Practice and Technology.
THE AUTHORS David Solley (email: david. email@example.com) is Principal Process Engineer with GHD in Brisbane, Queensland. He has over 25 years’ experience in the area of wastewater treatment and reuse.
Bradley Rhodes (email: Bradley.firstname.lastname@example.org) is a Senior Process Engineer with Veolia Water Australia. He worked on the Western Corridor Recycled Water Scheme for Veolia operations. Mark Hordern (email: Mark. Hordern@urbanutilities.com. au) is a Chartered Chemical Engineer at Queensland Urban Utilities in Brisbane, Queensland. Mark has worked in the area of water recycling for five years and specialises in commissioning and operation of water recycling plants. Annalie Roux (email: Annalie.Roux@seqwater. com.au) is the Manager of Policy, Strategy Research and Innovation for Seqwater in Brisbane, Queensland. She has over 20 years’ experience in water, wastewater and recycled water.
REFERENCES Findlay AS & Layson AJ (2012): Overcoming Membrane Performance Issues Resulting from Upstream Polymer and Ferric Chloride
Addition. WEFTEC 2012, New Orleans, LA, USA. Irvine-Brown C (2006): Increasing the Recovery of the RO Racks and Scaling Issues. Internal Brisbane Water memorandum. Morgan R, Solley D, Thew R, Edge D & Schimmoller L (2009): Advanced Nutrient Removal for Direct Potable Reuse. Proceedings of the AWA Ozwater’09 Conference & Exhibition, Melbourne, Australia. Mueller PA, Foster LA & Morgan R (2008): Pretreatment to Optimize MF/RO Design and Operation in a Municipal Secondary Effluent Application. WEF Membrane Technology Conference, Atlanta, GA, USA. Phillips R, Sharma M & Bueta C (2010): Optimisation of the Murrumba Downs Advanced Water Treatment Plant. AWA National Operations Conference, Sydney, Australia. Schimmoller L, Lozier J & O’Neill T (2010): Does Polymer Addition Negatively Affect Microfiltration and Reverse Osmosis? Water Journal, 37, 7 pp 50–57. Schimmoller L, Angelotti B, Bellamy B & Lozier J (2012): Achieving Drinking Water Reuse Without Reverse Osmosis. Water Journal, 39, 6, pp 58–62.
More than a drop in the ocean. Your stormwater management solution. Trust. Integrity. Honesty. www.stormwater360.com.au I 1300 354 722 WATER SEPTEMBER 2014
FIREFIGHTING WASTEWATER TREATMENT UTILISING POWDERED ACTIVATED CARBON AND CERAMIC MEMBRANES A trial demonstrating a beneficial effect of the direct application of powdered activated carbon to ceramic membrane filtration in reducing the rate of fouling M Duke, L Ramchandran, R Anderson, S Gray
ABSTRACT Firefighting wastewater is often highly polluted, with a combination of heavy metals, oils and grease, and surfactants used to produce foam. This presents a challenge to technologies typically used to treat the water to a standard suitable for water recycling. In this study, a robust process was trialled to treat the wastewater utilising the following steps: flocculation, ozone and powdered activated carbon, followed by ceramic membrane filtration. Ceramic membranes were selected to filter the hard powdered activated carbon particles at high water recovery. Laboratory-scale tests were first conducted on a 1,000L sample of firefighting wastewater to confirm operating parameters, including dose rates and likely fouling to be generated on the membrane. A continuously operating process was then trialled utilising 10,000L of wastewater having a COD reaching up to 5,000 mg/L towards the end of the testing. The pilot plant trial was operated for 10 days (1,000 L/day) with a view to optimising the operating conditions. The complete process saw turbidity reduced to values consistently below 1 NTU, while COD was within the range of 720 mg/L to 950 mg/L. The direct application of powdered activated carbon assisted the membrane by maintaining a stable flux and reducing the fouling rate â€“ compared to running the membrane unit without the carbon dosing, which caused rapid fouling of the membrane that could not be restored with normal operation. This research has shown that a viable treatment process can be employed to adequately treat firefighting
wastewater. Moreover, the trials have demonstrated a beneficial effect of the direct application of powdered activated carbon to ceramic membrane filtration in reducing the rate of fouling.
INTRODUCTION A novel process was required for continuous treatment of water from a proposed firefighting training facility in Melbourne. The treated water is intended to be reused as firefighting water at the facility. Firefighting exercises at the facility will use a specially formulated firefighting training foam. A number of fuels may be used to start fires during training exercises, including kerosene and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). Dry chemical powder will also be used at the facility to simulate extinguishing of fires. As the training foam is a new product, there is limited relevant experience of treatment processes that are effective in treating water containing this foaming agent. It is unlikely that any single treatment operation or commercial device will remove all forms of oil (emulsified, free and dissolved) in oilwater mixtures. A series of treatment operations will be required to reduce the concentrations of pollutants in the firefighting water to levels that allow it to be reused. The wastewater to be treated is a high-concentration emulsified kerosene, surfactant and dry powder system. As the facility was yet to be built, no actual wastewater was available and a synthetic mixture of the kerosene, surfactant and dry powder was made, with the concentrations higher than usual to provide the worst-case scenario.
The process flow diagram, with tank sizes and pump flow rates, is shown in Figure 1. The main operations are flocculation, ozonation, powdered activated carbon (PAC) and ceramic membrane filtration (CMF). The purpose and details of these unit operations are described in Table 1. A novel feature is the use of CMF instead of polymer membrane filtration to avoid issues with membrane wear from the PAC. Literature refers to PAC combined with polymer UF as being effective at reducing fouling (Dixon et al., 2011; Li et al., 2011), including membrane bioreactors (Remy et al., 2010), but no long-term studies have been conducted. So concerns over the longer-term operation due to PAC scouring of the membranes led to the choice of the more robust CMF. It was considered reasonable to proceed, since literature has shown that ceramic membranes have effectively treated water of a similar nature (Yang et al., 2011) and thus are a better option for more sustainable operation of the full-scale system.
EXPERIMENTAL METHODS The wastewater (12,000L) was delivered from an existing firefighting test site in Sydney to Victoria Universityâ€™s Werribee campus in a 14,000L isotainer. A circulation pump was installed in the isotainer to maintain mixing during the trial. The sample was observed to be foamy, with a dark grey appearance and a noticeable kerosene odour. The measured COD during initial filling exceeded the upper limit of the device at 10,000 mg/L. COD measured during the trial was found to be lower, which may be due to floating of oils to the top of the isotainer as the feed for the trial was drawn from the bottom.
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Oxygen (156 m3[NTP])
Ozone generator (0.49 m3[NTP]/h)
0.5 wt% MF solution (9L - per 3 days)
Pump 02 (694 mL/min)
Mixing and settling tank (21 L settling zone volume)
Pump 04 (0.7 mL/min) 10 wt% PAC slurry (10L total)
Suspended matter drain (14 mL/min)
Pump 01 (1 mL/min)
Storage container Approx 15m3 (1,000L per day)
~3 vol% O3 in O2
Ceramic UF Membrane (50nm, 0.24m2)
Pump 03 (680 mL/min)
The effect of the various stages of treatment on the COD is shown in Figure 3. The reduction in COD is much less than that observed for turbidity. However, irrespective of the quality of the raw water, a combination of all the stages of treatment does lower the COD to 25% of the original values.
Ozone contactor (10L)
Pump 06 (max 83,000 mL/min)
Pump 05 (680 mL/min) PAC contactor and surge tank (40L)
Spent PAC purge (<80 mL/min)
Treated water product (>600 mL/min)
Figure 1. Flow diagram of the firefighting wastewater treatment process used in the trial. Table 1. Overview of unit operations in trial, their purpose and details. Unit stage Flocculation – settling
• Bulk oil removal
• Flocculent: Magnafloc LT45 cationic polyelectrolyte
• COD and turbidity reduction
• Settling time: 30 mins
• Break down organics Ozonation
• Improve aesthetics of water • COD and turbidity reduction • Remove low level organics
• Final polish • COD reduced to <100 mg/L
• Contact time: 15 mins • Dose rate (~1% O3): 0.8 L[NTP]/ min per L of contact tank • PAC: PS1300 from Advanced Carbon Technologies • Contact time: 2 mins
• Small particle removal
• Type: CMF19040 from Jiuwu Hi-Tech, China
• Final treatment barrier
• Area: 0.24 m2
• Remove PAC
• Pore size: 50nm and 200nm • Recirculation flow: up to 5,000 L/h
The pilot plant was operated over a period of two weeks. Week 1 was operated for five days, where overnight continuous running occurred in the last four days. The second week’s operation was continuous for five days. The setup of the operation is summarised in Table 2. The relatively high dose of Magnafloc reflects the very high concentration of emulsified oils in this wastewater. Samples of the raw water, aqueous layer from the settling tank (settled water), ozonated water and permeate
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Treatment of the raw water with flocculation followed by ozonation and PAC and CMF treatment consistently reduced the turbidity of the samples from 800–1600 to down to <1 NTU. The first stage of treatment reduced turbidity by an order of magnitude, despite increases observed in the later stages of the trial. Ozonation did not reduce turbidity as much as PAC and CMF treatment.
from the membrane rig were taken twice a day for analysis. All samples were tested for turbidity and COD.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION Performance overview – COD and turbidity Overall COD and turbidity were considered as indicators of performance efficiency of the continuous trial. Figure 2 shows the overall measures of turbidity and COD of the samples during the twoweek trial.
It was also observed that the aesthetic quality of the treated water sample improved progressively as the water passed through the three stages of treatment. Flocculation was not able to reduce the kerosene odour, but was successful in reducing foaming of the raw water, which was likely due to the use of more foaming agents during the firefighting exercise. However, ozonation notably reduced the kerosene odour, and the final PAC and membrane treatment delivered a clear, colourless permeate with a slight musty odour. COD in the CMF permeate, however, was higher than expected. It is suspected this is due to the higher quantity of soluble organic matter that could not be removed by any of the operations proposed (i.e. surfactants). Performance of flocculation The trial initially started with 15 mg/L Magnafloc with a settling time of 30mins, based on a preliminary laboratory study on a separately delivered sample. However, the sample delivered in this trial varied from the sample used in the preliminary laboratory studies, which did not have a foamy characteristic, and COD was lower, at 2,400 mg/L. Therefore, the dosing level had to be re-optimised. Before re-optimisation, the ozone contactor foamed uncontrollably. Increasing the flocculant dose to 75 mg/L gave better turbidity removal and immediately stopped the foaming issues in the ozone contactor. This highlights the importance of flocculation in the deactivation of surfactants. Doses of 50 mg/L and 100 mg/L were also trialled, but no flocculation was observed. In the first week, flocculation was carried out at the ambient temperature of 10°C–12°C.
Table 2. Major operational features for the two-week pilot plant trial. Operation week
Major operational parameters • 0.5% Magnafloc solution dosed to achieve 75 mg/L concentration
• Flocculation and settling at ambient temperature (~12°C) • 10% w/v PAC slurry dosed to achieve 100 mg/L concentration • Ceramic membrane with 50nm pore size used and operated at low recovery • 0.25% Magnafloc solution dosed to achieve 40 mg/L concentration
• Flocculation and settling at partially heated temperatures (19 °C–22°C) • 5.0% w/v and 2.5% w/v PAC slurry used • Ceramic membrane with 200nm pore size used and operated for high recoveries
Figure 2. Overall turbidity of samples during the two-week pilot plant trial. Break at 80h indicates break between the two one-week trials.
In the second week, the settling tank was heated to 20°C. This had a significant effect on flocculation efficiency. Figure 4 shows the Magnafloc dose effect on turbidity at the settling temperature of 20°C. It was observed that 40 mg/L of Magnafloc was most suitable for obtaining clear flocculation at 20°C. Hence, for the second week of operation the temperature of the mixing tank was maintained at between 19°C and 22°C by running warm water through a coil suspended in the mixing tank. The effect of this modification was more consistent reduction of turbidity and COD in the settled water (Figures 2 and 3), despite the poorer quality of raw water after 120h runtime (Day 7). It was observed that the turbidity, as well as the COD, of the raw water continuously increased after Day 7. Despite the declining water quality, the flocculation operation continued to reduce the COD by approximately 50%, while turbidity continued to be reduced by more than 90%, indicating that flocculation works primarily by removing oily droplets in the water. The spikes in COD on the mornings of Days 9 and 10 (169h and 193h respectively) shown in Figure 3 correspond to the presence of the thick layer of flocculated mass that accumulated on the settling tank overnight. This could be effectively removed via the installation of an automated skimmer on the settling tank. Performance of ozonation Ozonation resulted in consistent reduction in COD of the flocculated sample by about 34% and the turbidity by 79% in the first week of continuous operation. As the efficiency of flocculation reduced on Day 5 (~100h), the turbidity and COD values of ozonated water also increased correspondingly. However, during the second week of operation when the flocculation efficiency was optimised, there was no further improvement in water quality due to ozonation. In fact, the improvement in the quality of the settled water averaged 25% reduction for COD, while for turbidity it averaged 47%.
Figure 3. Overall turbidity of samples during the two-week pilot plant trial. Break at 80h indicates break between the two one-week trials.
Thus, it appears that ozonation was limited in its ability to improve the quality of water, and was consistent with it being able to assist in removal of particulate materials (kerosene droplets) but having
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Figure 4. Turbidity of raw water after flocculation and settling at 20°C. limited impact on dissolved organics (surfactants). It is interesting to note that when the quality of settled water became poor on Days 9 and 10 (from 150h to 200h), for reasons described in the previous section, ozonation seemed to maintain the quality of ozonated water to the same as previous days. This indicates that, in case of operational variations in the flocculation stage, ozonation can maintain the quality of ozonated water to be fed into Stage III of the treatment process. The action of gas bubbling in the contactor itself likely played a key role in completion of the settling process. Ozone itself, however, appeared to act mostly to convert the nature of the organics in the water, with the most obvious effect being to reduce the kerosene smell in the water. Performance of PAC and CMF With the exception of Day 2, when the COD and turbidity of the raw water was unusually low due to failure of a recirculation pump, treatment after ozone with PAC followed by membrane filtration reduced the COD by another 37–40% and the turbidity by 98% to < 1 NTU (Figures 2 and 3). Even when the COD and turbidity values of the water coming from the ozone contactor were higher, particularly towards the end of Weeks 1 and 2, the combined PAC and membrane treatment reduced these values to maintain the quality of the final permeate. Overnight failure of PAC dosing due to blocking issues did not affect the COD or the turbidity of the final permeate. However, the permeate appeared more foamy and left a stable foam when shaken. Also, when PAC delivery stopped, membrane flux noticeably declined. The membrane performance was based on the permeate flux, pressure and quality as well as on the recovery. Variations in operating pressure were
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Figure 5. Overall Week 2 performance of PAC and CMF process showing flux and water recovery.
also recorded and were related to the flux. The average operating pressure in Week 1 was 175 kPa, with an average flux of 96 L.m-2h-1, while in Week 2 it was 110 kPa and 97 L.m-2h-1 (LMH) respectively. While differences could be attributed to pore size of the membrane, based on our observations the performance was much the same and it was thought to be more likely that a fouling layer formed on the membrane surface that dictated performance regardless of the membrane’s functional layer. It could also be that the particles were larger than the larger membrane pore size (200nm). Given that there was no significant difference in the permeate quality from either of the two membranes, ceramic membranes with larger pore size may be preferable. Figure 5 shows the water recoveries and membrane flux for Week 2 when the highest membrane recoveries were tested. To maintain the flux of the membranes, backwashing with clean water at 175 kPa for 2 minutes was performed on Days 7, 8, 9 and 10, as shown by the vertical lines in Figure 5. The effect of backwashing on the membrane flux is shown in Figure 6. Backwashing improved the flow rate of the permeate, but dropped within 10 minutes to relatively stable values for some time. Regular backwash (daily) from Day 7 onwards improved the permeate flow rates, indicating that regular backwashes could help maintain flux of the membranes. It was observed that, when a backwash was carried out when water recovery was 94% or greater, then the flux stabilised at a value greater than immediately prior to backwash. This supports the conclusion that high recoveries with high PAC concentration in the concentrate circuit assist with the operation of the membrane. The
recovery (R) achieved each day is marked on the trace for that day. The effect of stopping PAC dosing, shown in the circled area of Figure 5, is shown in Figure 7. In this set-up, there was no reject flow (100% recovery) and thus all PAC was contained in the concentrate circuit with the idea being to observe if PAC was only acting to scour the membrane and maintain performance, and not offer benefits due to its adsorption function. The permeate flow rate reduced during the period when PAC was not dosed. The permeate quality was also negatively affected during this period. Although the water still appeared colourless and clear, stable foam formed on the permeate surface and the turbidity increased to values >1 NTU (which might be due to interference to the turbidity reading from bubbles). This indicated that PAC dosing was essential in removing organic matter and that membranes alone were not enough to treat the ozonated water. Also, PAC scouring itself does not control fouling and fresh PAC must also be continuously added to maintain flux. After this ‘stop PAC’ event, flux remained stable again, but did not return to the original value, indicating irreversible fouling. A backwash after this event on Day 10 didn’t assist in regaining flux once stabilised (Figure 6), but the lower recovery upon stabilisation could be a likely explanation as this was observed in Figure 7. When recovery was improved by reducing the feed flow to the membrane, flux started to improve slightly. This further supports the conclusion that stable membrane performance is achieved at high recoveries (>90%) for effective scouring by PAC at high concentrations in the concentration loop. The estimated PAC in this circuit was 1,000 mg/L to 3,000 mg/L.
Figure 6. Membrane flux in response to backwash (at t = 0).
Figure 7. Effect of stopping PAC dosing on permeate flow rate (Day 9).
Each membrane was cleaned using 1% NaOH solution. The 50nm membrane was cleaned after Day 1 by overnight soak in the NaOH solution, carried out by simply blocking the feed line to the membrane, pouring the solution into the membrane channels and leaving overnight. The 200nm pore size membrane was cleaned at the end of its run by circulating 20L of the cleaning solution in the rig and closing the system by returning permeate to the feed tank. No pressure was applied. The results indicate that the caustic soak greatly assisted in cleaning the membrane and returning fluxes to practical levels. Compared to the recommended cleaning procedure from the manufacturer (1~3%NaOH, Na3PO4, NaClO, or 1~3%HNO3, 1%H3PO4, Oxalic acid – all solutions up to 50°C), the cleaning used here was mild and could have been carried out at higher concentrations and/ or higher temperatures.
Continuous treatment of the collected water from firefighting training for repeated reuse for firefighting appears viable using the pilot plant tested in this work, although no tests on the use of treated water in firefighting applications have been conducted. Multiple processes are needed to achieve the desired water quality and give it more assurance due to the multi-barrier approach.
The 50nm membrane demonstrated strong recovery by cleaning after significant fouling (due to the fixed flux operation condition) on Day 1, indicating that the nature of fouling was probably organic and it was easily removed under alkaline conditions. The 200nm membrane demonstrated less improvement, but the cleaning process was shorter. Also, the exposure period leading up to the fouling of the 200nm membrane was longer and fouling may have been more established, leading to less recovery from cleaning. In summary, chemical cleaning was demonstrated to be effective and this capacity should be included in a plant design. Optimisation of cleaning was beyond the scope of this work, but a combination of acid/alkali cleaning on a plant should be considered. Ceramic membranes will be resilient to repeated cleaning steps.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The Authors would like to thank Henry Mallia for his direct involvement during the preliminary laboratory work and continuous trial. The Authors would also like to thank Dr Nicholas Milne, Dr Bo Zhu and Yaoxin Hu at Victoria University for their work in preliminary laboratory testing and associated set-up of experiments. The help of Noel Dow at Victoria University in assisting with the set-up of the continuous process and safety assessment is also gratefully acknowledged.
THE AUTHORS Professor Mikel Duke (email: Mikel.Duke@ vu.edu.au) is a Principal Research Fellow at the Institute for Sustainability and Innovation at Victoria University. His research interests focus on innovative technologies for sustainable water treatment and food processing. He has developed new membrane materials and demonstrated new membrane processes in these applications as a principal investigator on over 35 projects over the last 10 years. Lata Ramchandran (email: Lata.Ramchandran@vu.edu. au) is a post-doctoral Research Fellow in the Advanced Food Systems Research Unit at the College
of Health and Biomedicine, Victoria University. Her research interests include physical chemistry of foods, functional foods, food protein conformation and interactions and membrane processes. Rhys Anderson (email: email@example.com) is a Process Engineer and the Australasian Water Skills Network Manager based in Arup’s Melbourne Office. Rhys’ skills and interests are in the delivery of innovative water and wastewater treatment projects to meet the needs of society. Professor Stephen Gray (email: Stephen.Gray@ vu.edu.au) is Director of the Institute for Sustainability and Innovation at Victoria University. His research interests include membrane fouling, high recovery reverse osmosis, brine management, membrane distillation and membrane fabrication.
REFERENCES Dixon MB, Richard Y, Ho L, Chow CWK, O’Neill BK & Newcombe G (2011): A CoagulationPowdered Activated Carbon-Ultrafiltration – Multiple Barrier Approach for Removing Toxins from Two Australian Cyanobacterial Blooms. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 186, 2–3, pp 1553–1559. Li Y, Zhang X, Zhang W, Wang J & Chen C (2011): Effect of Powdered Activated Carbon on Immersed Hollow Fiber Ultrafiltration Membrane Fouling Caused by Particles and Natural Organic Matter. Desalination, In Press, Corrected Proof. Remy M, Potier V, Temmink H & Rulkens W (2010): Why Low Powdered Activated Carbon Addition Reduces Membrane Fouling in MBRs. Water Research, 44, 3, pp 861–867. Yang Y, Chen R & Xing W (2011): Integration of Ceramic Membrane Microfiltration With Powdered Activated Carbon for Advanced Treatment of Oil-in-Water Emulsion. Separation and Purification Technology, 76, 3, pp 373–377.
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SOLID AND NUTRIENT POLLUTANT REMOVAL BY AN ENGINEERED STORMWATER FILTRATION MEDIA Field evaluation of a radial cartridge media filter M Wicks, J Lenhart, J Pedrick
ABSTRACT This paper provides a summary of the results associated with a 20-month field study conducted at the Mitchell Community College test site located in the town of Mooresville, North Carolina, USA. The study was conducted to demonstrate the effectiveness of a radial cartridge filtration system (RCFS) using an activated alumina media, treating stormwater runoff with respect to the removal of solid and nutrient pollutants. Testing of the RCFS was conducted for a suite of pollutants, including Total Suspended Solids (TSS), Total Phosphorus (TP) and Total Nitrogen (TN) in accordance with an approved Project Plan. Results from the study indicated that the RCFS, operating at 0.5L/s per cartridge, successfully treated stormwater runoff with significant reductions for solid and nutrient pollutants that were observed between influent and effluent sampling locations using the Efficiency Ratio (ER) calculation (TSS 90%, TP 86%, and TN 56%) and Summation of Load (SOL) efficiency calculation methods (TSS 91%, TP 87%, and TN 50%). These results demonstrate that the radial cartridge filter system was able to successfully meet the current load-based objectives from the NSW DECC (2007) and QLD Single State Planning Policy (2014) for all relevant pollutants, including TSS, TP and TN.
(Wicks et al., 2011) using a granular perlite, zeolite and carbon filtration media blends. Similar to blended filtration media, activated alumina media employs both physical as well as chemical filtration characteristics to promote adsorption of pollutants such as dissolved phosphorus (Ma, 2011). The legislated removal requirements of both phosphorus and nitrogen have become commonplace in Australia, for example the Queensland Planning Policy (DSDIP, 2014) for the treatment of stormwater from development sites. Although the stormwater treatment objectives for TSS, TP and TN have been commonplace in Australia, reliable and transferrable data from robust field assessments in other regions can seldom be accomplished due to variations in climatic conditions, particle size distribution of solids and soluble fractions of nutrients. For example, Wong and Walker (2009) found that the particle size distributions range on Australian roadways were between approximately 2 and 500 microns. This research provides information for a range of particle size distributions for
suspended solids, together with both soluble and particulate fractions of both phosphorus and nitrogen at mean concentrations that can be compared to the Australia context, to validate the performance of the activated alumina in the RFCS. The RCFS, as seen in Figure 1, is typically comprised of a vault that houses rechargeable, media-filled filter cartridges. Stormwater entering the system percolates horizontally through these media-filled cartridges, where pollutant removal processes occur. Once filtered through the media, the treated stormwater is directed to a collection pipe and/or discharged to the receiving water. The Mitchell Community College testing site is located in the town of Mooresville, North Carolina; it is owned and operated by Mitchell Community College and is used for parking. The site is 68% impervious and the total drainage area for the site is 4,370m2. A view of the finished parking lot located on site can be seen in Figure 2. Stormwater runoff from the contributing drainage area is directed to the RCFS for treatment before eventually discharging. OVERFLOW RISER AND HOOD
INLET ENERGY DISSIPATER
Keywords: BMP, stormwater, TP, TN, TSS, activated alumina, media filter cartridge.
INTRODUCTION This field trial complements previous studies undertaken on the RCFS utilising alternative filtration media in both North America and Australia. RCFS have previously demonstrated significant removal of both phosphorus and nitrogen (about 44%) on a SOL basis
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OUTLET SUMP INLET PIPE
CONDUIT INLET SUMP
Figure 1. Diagram of an RFCS system.
The RCFS was designed as a captureand-treat system. The storage component of the system (tank) is a 750mm diameter corrugated metal pipe (CMP) network designed to capture 75% of the calculated water quality volume (i.e. the runoff associated with a 25mm event). The treatment component (StormFilter) was designed on a mass-loading basis required to meet the annual pollutant loading requirements of the site with a minimum estimated interval between maintenance of one year. The estimation of the yearly maintenance was based
The RCFS system contained a total of eight, 460mm high, media-filled filter cartridges operating at a flow rate of 0.5L/s per cartridge. Each of the filter cartridges was filled with an activated alumina media. The media used for this study was a granular perlite coated with activated alumina; this was done to aid in the attenuation and/ or capture of nutrient pollutants by cation exchange and adsorption. With the exception of the surface coating, coated and uncoated perlite media were
determined to be identical with respect to physical characteristics and therefore the media should be considered equivalent with respect to expected solids removal performance.
METHOD The Mitchell Community College RCFS installation was evaluated over a 20-month period following system maintenance in November 2010. Independent oversight of all aspects of the project was provided by Ryan Winston, MS, Extension Associate Engineer in the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering at North Carolina State University. Sample handling services (sample retrieval, system reset and sample submittal) were provided by Pace Analytical Services (Pace) and laboratory work was conducted by Pace and Test America. Precipitation was measured with a tipping bucket-type rain gauge. Influent and effluent water quality samples were collected by portable automated samplers simultaneously collecting flow, precipitation and water quality samples. Each automatic sampler was connected to the cellular network for remote communication and data access. The influent sampler was equipped with an area velocity flow module with low profile sensor for flow analysis and influent sample pacing. The effluent sampler was equipped with a bubbler flow module used in conjunction with a weir for flow analysis and effluent sample pacing. Sample strainers and flow
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Figure 2. Aerial view of the testing site.
on a predictive probabilistic assessment of the sediment load entrained within the stormwater runoff from the site. Although the cartridges were maintained on a yearly basis, a qualitative assessment undertaken at the time of the cartridge exchange did not indicate that any bypassing of treatment occurred due to filter occlusion. The yearly maintenance frequency is unremarkable, given the detention tank upstream and the RCFSâ€™s passive surface cleaning mechanism, which activates at least once during every runoff event and deposits the waste on the floor of the cartridge bay.
Technical Papers RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
measurement equipment were secured to the invert of the influent and effluent pipes using stainless steel spring rings.
efficiency as the average event mean concentration of pollutants over some time period.
Following a precipitation event, composite samples were submitted for analysis according to accepted, relevant EPA, ASTM (Suspended Sediment Concentration) and SM254D (TSS) methods. The field monitoring methods used for this study represent the current state-of-the-art practice and are similar to those used by researchers in North Carolina to evaluate vegetated stormwater treatment systems.
The ER method assumes: 1) The weight of all storm events is equal, regardless of the relative magnitude of the storm event; and 2) that if all storm events at the site had been monitored, the average inlet and outlet EMCs would be similar to those that were monitored (URS/ EPA, 1999). ER results for each parameter in the 13 events sampled are summarised in Table 1.
To obtain a better understanding of RCFS performance with respect to solids, the portion of SSC (Suspended Sediment Concentration) particles smaller than 500µm and 2000µm was also determined. For each of the 13 qualifying storm events sampled between November of 2010 and June of 2012: 1.
The total rainfall was greater than 2.5mm for each event sampled;
The minimum inter-event period was greater than six hours for all storm events sampled;
The minimum number of influent and effluent aliquots collected per storm event was five;
Seven influent flow-weighted composite samples covered ≥ 50% of the total storm flow, while six covered between 34% and 49%; effluent flowweighted composite samples covered ≥ 50% of the total storm flow for all storm events sampled.
Performance was calculated using the Efficiency Ratio (ER) efficiency calculation method. The ER method defines the
Performance was also calculated using the Summation of Loads (SOL) efficiency calculation method. The SOL method defines the efficiency as a percentage based on the ratio of the summation of all influent loads to the summation of all effluent loads.
The SOL method assumes: 1) Monitoring data accurately represents the actual entire total loads in and out of the BMP for a period long enough to overshadow any temporary storage or export of pollutants; and 2) Any significant storm events that were not monitored had a ratio of inlet to effluent loads similar to the storms events that were monitored (URS/EPA, 1999). In an effort to eliminate the introduction of potential bias associated with observed discrepancies between influent and effluent measured volumes, it was assumed that the influent volume was equal to the effluent volume. Measured effluent volume was used to calculate loads for both the influent and effluent sample locations.
Monitoring 13 storm events over a 20-month period resulted in the collection of cumulative rainfall representing 704mm. Comparison of the measured rainfall intensities is not wholly representative of that found in Australia due to varying climatic regions. The presence, however, of upstream storage attenuates flows from all storms such that differences in rainfall intensities are not a significant factor on treatment performance and pollutant wash-off. Full treatment flow through each RCFS is not achieved until the water level inside the chamber reaches a height of 460mm. At this water elevation a siphon is activated and the cartridge throughput of 0.5L/s per cartridge is achieved, regardless of the rainfall intensity. Non-parametric statistical methods were used to evaluate correlations and differences between non-transformed influent and effluent event mean concentrations (EMCs), since influent and effluent EMCs were generally not from the same statistical distribution due the complex nature and variability of stormwater monitoring. To test for positive correlations between influent and effluent EMCs, the Spearman Rank Order Correlation test was used (USGS, 1991). To evaluate the significance of differences between influent and effluent EMCs, the Mann-Whitney Rank Sum Test was used (USGS, 1991). For the Mann-Whitney Rank Sum Test the null hypothesis was that the two samples were not drawn from populations with different medians. A significant difference between influent and effluent EMCs was concluded when P<0.05. Based on the use of the
Table 1. Summary of results. no. of events
Range of Influent EMCs (mg/L)
Median Influent EMC (mg/L)
Mean Influent EMC (mg/L)
Range of Effluent EMCs (mg/L)
Median Effluent EMC (mg/L)
Mean Effluent EMC (mg/L)
Mean Removal Efficiency (Sum of Loads)
Efficiency Ratio (ER)
SSC < 2000 micron
17.7 - 2080.0
1.9 - 7.2
SSC < 500 micron
9.0 - 393.0
1.7 - 10.0
0.065 - 0.9
0.025 - 0.058
0.019 - 0.225
0.0 - 0.033
0.025 - 0.850
0.025 - 0.160
0.035 - 2.95
0.35 - 0.82
0.25 - 2.70
0.25 - 0.58
0.05 - 0.72
0.05 - 0.24
0.10 - 0.35
0.10 - 0.35
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SUSPENDED SOLIDS PARAMETERS
Under Australian conditions Walker and Wong (1999) found that most suspended solids in stormwater runoff is smaller than 500µm. In this study the closest parameter was SSC<500µm. Influent EMCs for SSC <500µm ranged from 9mg/L to 393mg/L with a median of 29mg/L and a mean of 66mg/L. Corresponding effluent EMCs ranged from 2mg/L to 10mg/L with a median of 3mg/L and a mean of 4mg/L, resulting in an ER of 93% and a SOL efficiency of 94%. This result needs to be explained in context with lower than expected influent concentrations. High pollutant concentrations lead to high percentage reductions and tend to over-estimate the removal efficiency of pollutants from stormwater treatment systems (CSIRO, 2010). A literature review by Duncan (1999) showed that the median influent concentration for total suspended solids ranged from the lowest 41mg/L for roofs to 232mg/L for urban roads. Fletcher (2004) found that mean influent concentrations for roofs to roadways ranged from 20mg/L to 270mg/L. PHOSPHORUS PARAMETERS
phosphorus, but are ineffective at removing soluble phosphorus. The absorptive filtration properties of the activated alumina media provides further removal mechanisms of total phosphorus in stormwater through the synergistic effects of precipitation, adsorption and filtration (Ma, 2009). These results not only demonstrate that the system was able to provide substantial and consistent removal, given the high solubility of phosphorus and at low mean influent concentration for the study of 0.22mg/L, but was able to attenuate TP captured by the system over the entire course of the study. The soluble fraction appears to be higher than found by Vaze and Chew (2004) under Australian conditions; they estimated that 20 to 30% of the phosphorus is soluble. It would be expected, given the primary removal mechanism of the RCFS is physical filtration, that a higher particulate fraction of phosphorus would yield a similar result. Fletcher et al. (2004) measured mean TP concentrations of between 0.25 and 0.50mg/L for most land uses while the BMP Database (2010) suggests a typical TP range 0.11 to 0.38mg/L, across a variety of land uses. Clearly the mean influent TP concentration of 0.22mg/L for this study correlates well with the published data from Australia. In addition, the removal processes of physical straining and adsorption are independent of location and solely a function of water chemistry, filtration media and associated hydraulic conductivity. Hence our results should apply to Australian stormwater. NITROGEN PARAMETERS
Given that the phosphorus removal target in the Australian context is based solely on TP load removal efficiency, the review of additional data was required to further demonstrate the significance of the RCFS TP removal efficiencies obtained. In an effort to isolate phosphorus removal efficiency based on solubility of TP, dissolved phosphorus was also measured. Removal efficiencies for TP and dissolved P were 86% and 74%, respectively, using the ER method cf 87% and 67%, using the SOL efficiency calculation method.
Given that the nitrogen removal target in the Australian context is based solely on TN load removal efficiency, the review of additional data was required to further demonstrate the significance of the RCFS TN removal efficiencies obtained in this study. In an effort to further isolate nitrogen removal efficiency NH3+ was also measured. Removal efficiencies based on NH3+, led to overall removal efficiency of 63% based on the ER and 60% using the SOL efficiency calculation method.
The removal of dissolved phosphorus is unsurprising but warrants further discussion. Traditional forms of treatment such as settling and inert filtration are able to remove particulate bound
There are several pathways in which ammonium reduction may be occurring in the RCFS system that require further discussion. During the manufacturing process of the activated alumina media,
aluminium oxide powder is mixed with clay to form a slurry, which is coated and then baked onto the perlite media. In operational conditions at low cartridge flow rates, the RCFS also has the ability to physically remove clay particles in addition to the clay found within the media from the manufacturing process. Substitution of silica by aluminum in soil clay particles causes clays to have a negative charge (Cornell University, 2007). Because of this negative charge at sites on or within the media structure, we expect that the media would provide some sorptive capacity and affinity for ammonium. The characteristics of the media would also result in an increase in pH. This increase in pH would cause the ammonium to convert to ammonia and then volatilise into the atmosphere. Fletcher et al. (2004) measured nitrogen concentrations of at least 2mg/L for most urban land uses within Australia, while Duncan (1999) determined median concentrations for roads and urban catchments of 2.2 to 2.5mg/L. In Melbourne, Taylor et al. found that, for TN in stormwater, 49% consisted of dissolved inorganic nitrogen (NH3+ and NOx), which compares well with the 44% dissolved inorganic nitrogen load from the RCFS study. The soluble component of nitrogen in stormwater found by Wicks et al. (2011) and Miguntanna et al. (2010) from roadways and commercial areas in Queensland was 50 to 60%. Vaze and Chew (2004), also under Australian conditions, found that the soluble portion of nitrogen in stormwater can be up to 50%. In the RCFS study, soluble organic nitrogen was not measured; however, assuming a modest allowance for soluble organic nitrogen the soluble component of nitrogen in stormwater for the RCFS study would be expected to be similar to results from Australian studies.
CONCLUSIONS Between April 2011 and June 2012, 13 storm events were monitored and were determined to meet the relevant USA storm data collection requirements. Significant reductions in sediment and nutrient pollutant concentrations were measured between influent and effluent sampling locations using the Efficiency Ratio (ER) calculation method (TSS 90%, TP 86%, and TN 56%) and Summation of Load (SOL) efficiency calculation method (TSS 91%, TP 87%, and TN 50%). These results demonstrate that the radial cartridge filter system was able to successfully meet the current load-
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Spearman Rank Order correlation test, positive correlations (P<0.05) were determined between influent and effluent EMCs for Ortho-P and NH3+. Based on the use of the Mann-Whitney Rank Sum test, the difference in the median values between the influent and effluent EMCs is greater than would be expected by chance. Therefore, a statistically significant difference (P<0.05) was observed for TSS, SSC (<2000µm), SSC (<500µm), TP, PP, TKN, TN, and ON.
Technical Papers based objectives from the NSW DECC (2007) and QLD Single State Planning Policy (2014) for all relevant pollutants, including TSS, TP and TN. Results from the 20-month study, that represented 704mm of precipitation, show that the RCFS tested was effective in removing solid and nutrient pollutants from the stormwater runoff. This study was completed using the recommended design criteria based on an individual cartridge flow rate of 0.5L/s, activated alumina media, and a volume-based design methodology. The RCFS was designed to capture and treat 75% of the calculated water quality volume (i.e. the runoff volume associated with a 25mm event). The RCFS was also designed on a mass-loading basis to meet the annual pollutant loading requirements of the site with a minimum expected interval between maintenance of one year. The fraction of soluble nitrogen found in this study is in good agreement with the Australian data. The influent concentrations, however, are at the lower end of the Australian data. CSIRO (2010) found that higher influent concentrations lead to higher percentage removals and, in this context, we would expect results of the RCFS study to be conservative when applied under Australian conditions.
THE AUTHORS Michael Wicks (email: michaelw@stormwater360. com.au) is Technical Director of Stormwater360 Australia. Michael is a Civil Engineer with 15 years’ experience and an array of skills including hydraulics, hydrology, stormwater quality modelling, structural design, project management, research and development. Michael has designed, constructed, implemented, and monitored numerous stormwater quality treatment facilities throughout the east coast of Australia. Jim Lenhart is the founder of Stormwater Management Inc and former Chief Technology Officer for CONTECH Stormwater Solutions. He is currently the owner of Stormwater Northwest and consults with companies that provide products and services in the stormwater related markets. Jim is currently an active member of the Water Environment Federation, the Water Environment Research Foundation, ASCE EWRI, and serves as Vice Chair for the
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Urban Water Resources Research Council. Jim holds a BS in Plant Sciences, a BS in Agricultural Engineering and MS in Water Resources Engineering. He has authored over 45 papers on the subject of water quality and stormwater treatment. John Pedrick is Project Manager of Contech Engineered Solutions, Portland Oregon and has 14 years of stormwater management experience, including managing numerous stormwater BMP monitoring programs in the US. He currently serves on the CPSWQ Council as the representative for The Northwest Region and holds a dual degree in Agricultural and Extension Education (AEE) and Environmental Resource Management (ERM) from The Pennsylvania State University College of Agricultural Sciences.
REFERENCES BMP Database (2010): International Stormwater Best Management Practices (BMP) Database. Pollutant Category Summary: Nutrients. Prepared by Geosyntec Consultants Inc. and Wright Water Engineers Inc. (available from www.bmpdatabase.org). Chiew FHS & Vaze J (2004): Nutrient Loads Associated with Different Sediment Sizes in Urban Stormwater and Surface Pollutants. Journal of Environmental Engineering, 130, 4, pp 391–396. American Society of Civil Engineers, April 2004. Contech Stormwater Solutions Inc. (Contech) (2002): Evaluation of Lifecycle Loading Characteristics of The Stormwater Management StormFilter® Cartridge Portland, Oregon. Cornell University Cooperative Extension (Cornell) (2007): Cation Exchange Capacity (CEC), Agronomy Fact Sheet Series, Fact Sheet 22. Duncan HP (1999): Urban Stormwater Quality: A Statistical Overview, Report 99/3, Cooperative Research Centre for Catchment Hydrology, Melbourne, Australia. Fletcher T, Duncan H, Poelsma P & Lloyd S, (2004): Stormwater Flow and Quality, and the Effectiveness of Non-Proprietary Stormwater Treatment Measures – A Review and Gap Analysis. Cooperative Research Centre for Catchment Hydrology, Technical Report 04/8.
Ma J, Lenhart J, Pedrick J & Tracy K (2010): Stormwater Phosphorus Removal Using Innovative Filtration Media. American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), World Environmental and Water Resources Congress: Challenges of Change, Providence, Rhode Island. Miguntanna NP, Goonetilleke A & Egodowatta P (2010): Understanding Nutrient Build-up on Urban Road Surfaces. Journal of Environmental Sciences, 22, 6, pp 806–812. Neumann L & Sharma A (2010): Literature Review on Performance Testing Approaches for Gross Pollutant Traps. CSIRO, Water for a Healthy Country National Research Flagship. NSW Department of Environment and Climate Change (DECC, 2007): Managing Urban Stormwater: Environmental Targets. Consultation Draft – October 2007, Department of Environment and Climate Change NSW, p 4. Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Division of Science, Research and Technology. (Rutgers/NJDEP) (2006): Correlation of Total Suspended Solids (TSS) and Suspended Sediment Concentration (SSC) Test Methods.: Trenton, Oregon: Qizhong (George) Guo. Taylor GD, Fletcher TD, Wong THF, Breen PF & Duncan HP (2005): Nitrogen Composition in Urban Runoff – Implications for Stormwater Management. Water Research, 39, pp 1982–1989. URS Greiner Woodward Clyde, Urban Drainage and Flood Control District, Urban Water Resources Research Council (UWRRC) of ASCE, Office of Water, US Environmental Protection Agency (URS/EPA) (1999): Development of Performance Measures Task 3.1 – Technical Memorandum Determining Urban Stormwater Best Management Practice (BMP) Removal Efficiencies. Washington DC: Author. US Geological Survey (USGS) (1980): Water Resources Division by Office of Water Quality (OWQ) Technical Memorandum No 80, 17. US Geological Survey (USGS) (1991): US Geological Survey, Techniques of WaterResources Investigations Reston, Virginia. DR Helsel & RM Hirsch. Walker TA & Wong THF (1999): Effectiveness of Street Sweeping for Stormwater Pollution Control. Cooperative Research Centre for Catchment Hydrology, Technical Report 99/8.
Ma J, Lenhart J & Tracy K (2009): Phosphorus Removal in Urban Runoff Using Adsorptive Filtration Media. Contech Stormwater Solutions Inc.
Washington State Department of Ecology (WADOE) (2003): Guidance for Evaluating Emerging Stormwater Treatment Technologies: Technology Assessment Protocol – Ecology (TAPE) (Publication Number 02-10-037). Olympia, WA: Author. Available online: www. ecy.wa.gov/pubs/0210037.pdf
Ma J, Lenhart J & Tracy K (2011): Ortho-phosphate Adsorption Equilibrium and Breakthrough on Filtration Media for Stormwater Runoff Treatment. Journal of Irrigation and Drainage, April, 2011, pp 244–250.
Wicks M, Vigar N & Hannah M (2011): Nutrients and Solids Removal by an Engineered Treatment Train – Field Evaluation of a Gully Pit Insert and Cartridge Media Filter. Water Journal, 38, 6, pp 83–88.
THE EMOTIONAL CONNECTION TO URBAN WATER THROUGH THE LENS OF THE WATER CUSTOMER A PhotoStory exercise in metropolitan Adelaide G Keremane, Z Wu, J McKay
This paper describes and reports on the use of the PhotoStory research method for eliciting values, emotional connection and the social relations involved in the governance of water in an urban setting. Using a combination of photos, diaries and group discussions, the study examined the emotional resonance of the concept of urban water in Adelaide and concepts such as justice, equity, aesthetics and probing the relationships between them and the grand conception of water governance models. This original empirical research reveals that the conceptions of water are deep and the community is comfortable with some policies such as water saving, but is questioning others. The results express a huge emotional connection to water used for aesthetic purposes. The emotive captions to the photos express the depth of resonance and caring and, indeed, demonstrate connection of the community with water governance issues.
INTRODUCTION Researching a community’s behaviour and/or values and interests in an urban setting can be tricky for researchers, particularly when dealing with ‘new’ water sources like recycled wastewater and stormwater. It can be difficult to observe and record the community members’ responses to water governance in written form or even in oral interviews. The focus group is a much better tool and the addition of photos (taken by the respondents earlier) guides and gives them time to ruminate over difficult concepts such as water justice. It is important for policy makers to have a deep understanding of the values and connections to water to assist in identifying new governance options. The PhotoStory method (see ‘Method’ section) used in this study
is grounded in principles of communitybased participatory research that enables researchers, community leaders and community members to improve community wellbeing (Dakin et al., 2014). In the present context, the issue of community wellbeing is associated with the idea of sustainability, especially transitioning towards a water-sensitive city. In recent years, water supply in South Australia has endured a major drought and Adelaide has adopted an Integrated Urban Water Management (IUWM) strategy by having a portfolio of water supply sources. These include traditional and non-traditional water sources such as desalinated water, recycled water, rainwater collection and stormwater harvesting. However, the hurdles to effective implementation of IUWM are largely social and institutional (McKay, 2005; Brown et al., 2006; Brown and Farrelly, 2009) and the challenge is more fundamental, going to the values and interests of the community. In this regard, a legal and governance study sponsored by the Goyder Institute for Water Research was conducted to identify the governance challenges and potential solutions to support the implementation of IUWM in Metropolitan Adelaide. The project used a mix of qualitative and quantitative research methods to gather the required data, and PhotoStory was used to examine an urban community’s emotional resonance to the concept of urban water governance in Adelaide.
METHOD PhotoStory is a modified form of the Photovoice technique; it involves putting cameras into the hands of the participants and giving them an opportunity to express their emotions about a specific issue through photos (Killion and Wang, 2000). This method
has been used successfully in projects related to issues as diverse as infectious disease, health education, homelessness, economic barriers, sexual domination, population isolation and political violence (Catalani and Minkler, 2010). However, studies exploring community values, thoughts or concerns about water through the PhotoStory method are rare. A thorough search of literature led us to a handful of studies that have used Photovoice or its adaptation to elicit participants’ values and/or perceptions related to water management (e.g. Garcetti and Kevany, 2013; Keremane and McKay, 2011; Golder, 2013; Baldwin, 2008; Atkinson et al., 2009). Generally, the PhotoStory method includes four stages: (1) Site selection, understanding the issues, and addressing ethical issues through an ethics approval; (2) Setting themes, recruiting participants and an introductory workshop where cameras and diaries are allocated; (3) A final workshop and consultation with the printed photos and the participants like a focus group; and (4) Disseminating the findings. It can be adapted to suit the study context; for example, see Keremane and McKay (2011), who used this technique with irrigators in rural Australia. The same paper also describes each stage in more detail. Recruiting participants for this study was an arduous task and it can also be one of the very few drawbacks of this method (Keremane and McKay, 2011). In this project, as a first step, invitations to participate in the study were sent out to participants (160 email addresses) from our previous study, who had indicated their willingness to take part in a PhotoStory exercise. Only seven recipients agreed to participate and they were invited to attend an introductory workshop. Only three of the seven participants agreeing
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attended the workshop; the rest could not make it due to prior commitments, or the time/date did not suit them. The workshop was to brief participants about the exercise and to explain what was required from them. In addition, we asked them to refer to us more people whom they thought would be interested in participating in the exercise. As a result of snowballing we finally had 10 people agreeing to participate in the exercise. Participants were from different suburbs in Adelaide, indicating a good coverage of the metropolitan area. Two out of 10 dropped out after the start because one had an emergency and the other moved overseas. Out of the remaining eight participants, five attended the final workshop and contributed to the group discussion. All participants were provided with the material pack (Figure 1). The themes for the study were identified, considering the objectives and the project requirement. A scoping study identified the issues associated with urban water management in general, and particularly implementing IUWM. This includes addition of produced water sources such as desalination, wastewater and stormwater into the water supply mix, and the study provided better understanding of the issues related to IUWM, as well as helping to decide the themes. As a result, the final list included some general themes and some projectspecific themes, including: • Meaning of water; • What is good about living here? • What is bad about living here? • Difficulties with water; • Issues and debates in urban water management; • Sustainable water management; • Ownership issue of new water sources (e.g. stormwater, recycled water, desalinated water); and • Water justice. All ethical issues encountered during the study were addressed in accordance with the Human Research Ethics Policy of the University of South Australia. Participants were each encouraged to take 27 photos in relation to the given themes. Along with taking photos, participants were instructed to fill in a diary with the details of each photo,
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which enabled the researchers to be accurate in attribution, as researchers would be dealing with several hundred photographs over a period of several weeks. The exercise was open for about 16 weeks. In the end we received eight cameras and corresponding diaries, along with the consent forms. We had 148 photos in total and the narratives related to each photo were transferred verbatim from the diaries onto the backs of the respective photos. A final workshop was conducted with the participants to discuss their experiences of participating in the exercise and their viewpoint about the photos and themes. It was evident during the workshop that photos can evoke deeper elements of human consciousness than words (Harper, 2002) and elicit personal meaning to each issue in question (Hurworth, 2003). At the end of the workshop two new themes were generated: ‘Looking Ahead’; and ‘Now and Then’. Altogether, 30 photographs representing various themes were selected by participants.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION – THE PHOTOSTORIES We called our adaptation a ‘PhotoStory’ because it was more than participants taking some photographs; it was deeper and wider, and covered the personal aspects of the story of the participants. The focus was more on the story or the narratives because people tend
to describe, account for, and perhaps relive their activities through narratives (Morrill et al., 2000) and the stories describe the world as it is lived and understood by the storyteller (Ewick and Silbey, 1995). Furthermore, it is now well acknowledged that managing urban waters requires multiple tools of regulation, community engagement and forums to express dissent (Collins and Ison, 2009). According to Amores (2008, p 780), more flexible, open and imaginative methods are needed, in consonance with the complex and diffuse cultural atmosphere that surrounds our perception of water. Also, it is well documented in literatures that people explain their actions to themselves and to others through stories (Ewick and Silbey, 1995), and PhotoStory gives participants a tool to record and reflect on their intuitive understandings and/or voice their concerns of a specific issue (urban water use in this case) to the broader community and policy-makers. What’s more, the adage ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’ applies to all PhotoStory projects, including the present study, because the photos and the narratives bring out a rich expression of local people’s ideas and emotions about any particular topic or issue – urban water governance in this case. Accordingly, the PhotoStories in this project represented the experiences of a community living in a city that is well known for its urban water management
PHOTOSTORY MATERIAL PACK CONTENTS >> One disposable camera (27 frames) >> One photo diary >> One pen >> One quick guide >> One reply-paid envelope (for people to return the camera and diary) >> One supermarket gift voucher (valued at $20) as a ‘thank you’ gift >> One Picturing Freshwater Justice book, published as part of a previous study with irrigators (to give participants some ideas about the method and what was expecting of them.) Figure 1. Contents of a PhotoStory material pack.
Figure 2a. “Hand washing is the easiest way to prevent infections.” Figure 2b. “Water is used in multiple ways. A fountain brings people a piece of coolness in hot weather.” Figure 2c. “How can we use rainwater in a better way?”
Asking a community how it values water, or what water means to it, implies how a community ‘treats’ water. The selected photographs and corresponding narratives illustrate that while the community values water as a ‘source’ for drinking and/or washing (Figure 2a), at the same time people appreciate the aesthetic values of water (Figure 2b). It is also clear that they are committed to efficient use of this scarce resource (Figure 2c).
WHAT IS GOOD – AND BAD – ABOUT LIVING HERE?
Figure 3a. “Ducks on Lake Windemere recreation reserve.” Figure 3b. “This imaginative use of water shows its owner is aware of its value and prices it affects, also that he/she measures it carefully. How wonderful if the River Torrens was also treated with such regard.” Figure 3c. “Why is there a dead tree within 20 metres of what’s called the Sturt River on maps? The river is in a concrete culvert so no water can get into the subsoil.” Figure 3d. “The ‘Sturt Drain’, as we call it, is very ugly downstairs of South Road and all the way to Glenelg.” initiatives. They make up a picture of justice, as seen by the participants, who show many reasons to behave sustainably. As mentioned earlier, the participants selected 30 photos.
to the concept of urban water by using selected PhotoStories. What follows are the PhotoStories generated during this exercise that shed light on participants’ emotional connection to urban water.
A detailed exposition of them all is beyond the scope of this paper; nevertheless, the paper intends to present the power of this method to elicit the community’s values and interests relating to water and provide the emotional resonance
MEANING OF WATER
The meaning of water encompasses the complex interactions between human beings and water as a natural resource. Water has different meanings for people from different societal and
According to a 2013 Property Council Survey, Adelaide was voted the most liveable city in Australia for three years in a row because it is an affordable place to buy housing, has a good standard of living and is clean. The same survey rated Adelaide to be No. 2 in the country for having a good approach to environmental sustainability and climate change. So what do the communities living here think? The photos and the narratives representing what is good and bad about living in Adelaide were mostly positive in that the community appreciated the opportunities and/ spots available in Adelaide for people to go for a walk with friends (Figure 3a). The photos also valued individual commitment to efficient use of the scarce water resources by adopting innovative techniques (Figure 3b). On the other hand, a common theme that emerged from the photographs telling the story of what is negative about living in Adelaide was ‘neglect’ on the part of the management and/or policy aspect of water (Figure 3c and Figure 3d).
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cultural backgrounds. It carries social, spiritual, political and environmental meanings, and these have an influential effect on patterns of water use, and on the relationships between water users and suppliers.
(a) Figure 4a. “The fountain/water play is beautiful and shows water being alive. So much care is given to help people relax in the city.” Figure 4b. “Water justice – leaking tap. Water is limited and shouldn’t be wasted.”
Figure 5a. “Notice regarding recycled water usage at entrance to retirement village.” Figure 5b. “Rainwater tank – rainwater can be used for watering gardens, flushing toilets.” Figure 5c. “Adelaide Desalination Plant – I am not sure who owns the water but positive I’ll be paying for this project for a long time through inflated water bills and whatever the SA Government can get out of me.” WATER JUSTICE
All communities need access to safe, affordable water for drinking, fishing, recreational and cultural uses; building a communal vision for how water is distributed and managed. Accordingly, how did the participants in this exercise picture water justice (Figures 4a and 4b)? While one photo and the narrative focuses on the aesthetic value of water, another describes the process of achieving water justice through alternative water allocation and use systems, such as conservation and water reuse.
community was apprehensive about desalinated water, mostly due to the associated costs (Figure 5c).
Although use of photography in research has a long history, it is still a relatively new approach in the water research domain. This project used PhotoStory to engage urban community and policy makers in a dialogue about sustainable urban water management in Adelaide. The method was found to be a powerful tool to capture and record participants’ intuitive understanding about the concept of urban water.
Looking ahead was a new theme suggested by the participants. The PhotoStories in this theme clearly demonstrate that the community appreciates the current situation and understands that having a portfolio of water supply sources is the way ahead to achieving water security. This means using recycled wastewater (Figure 5a) and rainwater (Figure 5b) in tandem with the mains supply. However, the
The resulting PhotoStories give a two-dimensional narration (visual and written) as to how the concept of urban water has been experienced and interpreted by people in the community. Compared to other qualitative research methods, PhotoStory provides the participants a medium to express their values and interests and/or voice their concerns to the broader community and policy makers.
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While it remains to be seen if the PhotoStories will have a direct bearing on water policy decisions in South Australia, for the wider community, the policy makers and others the project has definitely created a window of opportunity to look, listen and learn from the community instead of deciding what is best for it from afar. While the tool is very powerful, it has its own set of challenges. Issues such as ethics, recruiting the participants, time and commitment need to be considered well in advance of conducting the actual exercise. It is important to have the project entirely driven by the community and to let the community members do the story telling; the researcher has to be just a facilitator.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The study gratefully acknowledges the sponsorship by the Goyder Institute for Water Research, South Australia. We are also thankful to all our participants for their time and effort.
Technical Papers THE AUTHORS Dr Ganesh Keremane (email: ganesh.keremane@ unisa.edu.au) is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Comparative Water Policies and Laws, School of Law, University of South Australia.
Professor Jennifer McKay (email: jennifer. firstname.lastname@example.org) is Professor of Business Law and foundation Director of the Centre for Comparative Water Policies and Laws, School of Law, University of South Australia.
REFERENCES Amores JA (2008): Ideology, Magic and Spectres, Current Sociology, 56, pp 779–797.
Baldwin C (2008): Integrating Values and Interest in Water Planning Using a Consensus-Building Approach, Thesis (PhD), the University of Queensland. Brown R & Farrelly M (2009): Challenges Ahead – Social and Institutional Factors Influencing Sustainable Urban Stormwater Management in Australia. Water Science and Technology, 59, 4, pp 653–660. Brown RR, Sharp L & Ashley RM (2006): Implementation Impediments to Institutionalising the Practice of Sustainable Urban Water Management, Water Science and Technology, 54, 6–7, pp 415–422. Catalani C & Minkler M (2010): Photovoice: A Review of the Literature in Health and Public Health. Health Education & Behavior, 37, 3, pp 424–451. Collins K & Ison R (2009): Editorial: Living With Environmental Change: Adaptation as Social Learning, Environmental Policy and Governance, 19, pp 351–57. Dakin EK, Parker SN, Amell JW & Rogers BS (2014): Seeing With Our Own Eyes: Youth in Mathare, Kenya Use Photovoice to Examine Individual and Community Strengths. Qualitative Social Work. DOI: 10.1177/1473325014526085.
Ewick P & Silbey SS (1995): Subversive Stories and Hegemonic Tales: Toward Sociology of Narrative, Law and Society Review, 29, 2, pp 197–226. Garcetti G & Kevany K (2013): Water is Key, Journal of Cleaner Production, 60, pp 216-224. Golder C, Trowsdale S & Fisher K (2013): Writing and Photographing ‘Little Water’, Australasian Journal of Environmental Management, 20, 3, pp 242–255. Harper D (2002): Talking about Pictures: A Case for Photo Elicitation, Visual Studies, 17, pp 3–26. Hurworth R (2003): Photo-interviewing for Research, Social Research Update, 40, pp 1–4. Keremane GB & McKay J (2011) Using Photostory to Capture Irrigators’ Motions About Water Policy and Sustainable Development Objectives: A Case Study in Rural Australia, Action Research, 9, 4, pp 405–425. McKay JM (2005): Water Institutional Reform in Australia, Water Policy, 7, 2, pp 35–52. Morrill C, Yalda C, Adelman M, Musheno M & Bejarano C (2000): Telling Tales in School: Youth Culture and Conflict Narratives’, 34, 3, pp 521–566.
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Dr Zhifang Wu (email: email@example.com. au) is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Comparative Water Policies and Laws, School of Law, University of South Australia.
Atkinson M, Kilvington M & Fenemor A (2009): Watershed Talk – the Cultivation of Ideas and Action. Manaaki Whenua Press. 45pp.
VALIDATION OF UF MEMBRANE PLANTS FOR WATER RECYCLING IN VICTORIA A test program using challenge organisms to determine reduction in virus removal performance due to compromised membrane integrity R Irwin, M van Herk, D Smith
ABSTRACT All Class A water recycling schemes in Victoria require endorsement from the Victorian Department of Health (Vic DH), in addition to approval from EPA Victoria. Vic DH has published validation guidelines for Class A treatment processes to ascertain that the adopted treatment processes are achieving the targeted pathogen reduction. South East Water recently constructed three recycled water treatment plants, all of which use ultrafiltration systems supplied by Pall Corporation. These were pre-validated in the US for compliance with USEPA Long Term 2 Enhanced Surface Water Treatment Rule Toolbox Guidance Manual (LT2ESWTR) and USEPA Membrane Filtration Guidance Manual (MFGM). However, these validation studies were carried out on intact systems; there was a lack of adequate information demonstrating the performance of the membrane modules with compromised integrity, i.e. broken fibre(s). Accordingly, a test program was undertaken using challenge organisms (MS2 bacteriophage) to determine the reduction in virus removal performance resulting from cut fibre(s). The results were compared with calculated values using bubble point theory for protozoa removal, as per the MFGM.
three recycled water treatment plants (RWTPs) collectively producing up to 32 ML/d of Class A water for a variety of uses. These plants are located at Pakenham, Somers and Mt Martha (Figure 1). The upgrade program was implemented by the South East Recycled Water Alliance (SERWA), comprising three partners: AECOM as the designers; Transfield Services as the contractors; and SEW as the client. All the treatment plants comprise a process train that includes ultrafiltration followed by UV disinfection and chlorination. The UF plants have been pre-validated in the US for compliance with the USEPA LT2SWTR (2010) and the USEPA MFGM (2005). However, these studies did not adequately establish the relationships between intact and compromised membrane fibres, the pressure decay rate test and the resultant impact on the removal of pathogens, particularly viruses. This paper describes the studies carried out to correlate the number of cut fibres in a single membrane module with the pressure decay rate obtained during a Direct Integrity Test (DIT), and the impact on the log removal values
The results apparently showed that the calculated value for protozoa was more conservative than the measured value using MS2. This paper gives details of the methodology adopted and results obtained, and discusses the implications for plant monitoring and operation.
INTRODUCTION South East Water (SEW) provides services to approximately 1.5 million people located to the south and east of Melbourne. It has recently constructed
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Figure 1. South East Water service area.
(LRV) for the bacteriophage MS2. The data obtained were presented to the Vic DH to demonstrate that the pathogen removal performance of the UF stages could be adequately monitored to ensure ongoing compliance with the certified log removal credits. DITs are carried out daily on all UF racks, and Critical Control Limits (CCL) have been set for the pressure decay rates obtained. If any rack fails the test the product water is deemed out of spec and is diverted to waste.
PLANT DESCRIPTION All UF stages use Aria AP-6 Ultrafiltration systems, incorporating Microza LOA6210 membrane modules, supplied by Pall Corporation. The systems are designed to achieve a minimum 4-log reduction of protozoa and 4-log reduction of viruses, in compliance with the MFGM, as outlined in the Vic DH Guidelines For Validating Treatment Processes For Pathogen Reduction (2013).
INTACT FIBRE TEST MODULES Five test membrane modules were selected by Pall Membranes as having the lowest Quality Control Release Values (QCRV) from discrete manufacture lots. Each of these was fitted with sampling ports on the outlet.
Defective ﬁbre outlet plugged with pin
Fibre outlet FILTERED WATER OUTLET
Cut ﬁbre with section removed
Resin potting with ﬁbres open BACKWASH OUTLET
Thus, if pressure decay rates can be correlated with virus removal effectiveness, operational control limits for DITs can be set that ensure virus removal performance. OBJECTIVES
The objectives of the test program were four-fold:
Resin potting with ﬁbres sealed
The focus of the established techniques for DITs is on protozoa removal performance from surface waters. DITs based on pressure decay involve draining the system, applying air pressure to one side of the membrane and measuring the pressure decay over a five-minute period. Using bubble point theory, the rate of decay can be related to the number of 3 µm diameter breaches in the membrane barrier, this being the smallest size hole that will allow the passage of Cryptosporidium. However, in these RWTP applications the membrane systems are required to remove viruses as well as protozoa and, therefore, the technique may be problematic for determining virus removal as viruses are far smaller than protozoa.
METHODOLOGY AND RESULTS INTACT MEMBRANE VIRUS REMOVAL PERFORMANCE
The five intact fibre test modules were installed into the Pakenham RWTP and the plant operated at a filtrate flow rate of 28.3 L/s, equivalent to the test flux of 120 LMH. Membrane backwashing intervals were set at once every
MS2 coliphage was used as the surrogate indicator organism as it is similar in size, shape and surface characteristics to many pathogenic enteric viruses. The stock suspension of MS2 was sourced from a NATAaccredited laboratory and had a concentration of 1.6 * 1013 pfu/100 mL. This was dosed into the feedwater at a flow rate of 20 L/h to give a maximum feedwater phage concentration of 6.5 Log (3*106 pfu/100mL). Samples of feedwater and filtered water were collected and assayed in triplicate for MS2 coliphage using the techniques described in ISO 10705-1 (1995) and APHA – Standard Methods (2005). Calculation of LRV was based on paired samples of feed water and filtrate using Equation 1.
(1) Where: LRV = Log Reduction Value demonstrated during the test C0 = Feed concentration of phage (pfu/100mL) C = Filtrate concentration of phage (pfu/100mL) For calculation of the LRV the minimum concentration in the filtrate was set to the detection limit, i.e. = 1. Table 1 shows the LRV values obtained for each module. The lowest value obtained was selected as representative, thus the lowest LRV for an intact Microza LOA 6210 UF membrane module was 5.892 LRV for MS2 phage. While this approach may be viewed as overly conservative, it was required by Vic DH to provide a
Table 1. Calculated log reduction values for the test rack and modules. Calculated Indicator
Calculated LRV M1
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• To determine intact membrane performance FEED WATER INLET with respect to virus particle Figure 2. Schematic diagram of the cut fibre test module. removal using CUT FIBRE TEST MODULE the MFGM methodology for protozoa A separate test membrane module removal; was prepared to replicate the effects • To determine the reduction in virus of cut-fibre defects. An access hole was removal effectiveness from a single cut into the side of the module as close membrane module with one or more as practicable to the discharge end and cut fibres; a section of fibre approximately 3cm long was removed from each of a total • To establish the relationship between of 30 membrane fibres. The access hole the number of cut fibres and increased was then resealed with clear plastic pressure decay rate during a DIT; and and the cut fibres temporarily repaired • To correlate DIT pressure decay rate using stainless steel pins, in accordance with pathogen LRV to enable critical with the Pall Membranes module repair control limits (CCL) to be set for the procedure, to enable progressive removal performance of the UF treatment during testing. A schematic diagram of stage at each plant with respect to the test module is shown in Figure 2. the LRV for viruses and protozoa.
20 minutes and the feed water was sourced from the final Class A recycled water tank.
Filtered W ater to W as te
was 1.7*106 pfu/100 mL, i.e. less than the maximum allowable concentration of 3*106 pfu/100 mL.
Backwas h Tank
Backwas h Tank
Filtrate Sample Point
M e m b r a n e
The test procedures adopted were similar to those used for the full-scale intact membrane trials at Pakenham. Typical feedwater characteristics and operating parameters are shown in Table 2.
M o d u l e
In order to minimise the possibility of erroneous test results, considerable care was taken in the experimental design, sample collection and phage assay. This included:
Backwas h to W as te
Feed W ater Sample Point
Feed Buffer Tank
Potable W ater Supply
SMBS Dos ing
MS2 Dos ing
Figure 3. Schematic process flow diagram of the pilot plant. sound basis for the protection of public health in Victoria.
additional monitoring instrumentation and sampling and dosing points.
CUT FIBRE VS. REDUCTION IN VIRUS LRV
The cut fibre module was installed in the pilot plant as shown in the schematic process block diagram in Figure 3. Potable water was used as the plant feedwater to ensure a turbidity of less than 2 NTU, as required by the MFGM and to be consistent with the Vic DH Validation Guidelines. The potable water was pre-tested for suitability by spiking with a concentration of MS2 phage close to that expected in the pilot plant filtered water to confirm that no die-off of phage would occur over the expected sample transit time.
The objective of the cut fibre membrane testing was to determine the reduction in virus removal effectiveness (LRV) from a single membrane module with one or more cut fibres. The testing was carried out using the same methodology as that used for the intact module testing described in the previous section and was carried out at Pall Membranes’ pilot plant test facility at Somersby in New South Wales. This pilot plant accepts fullsized membrane modules and includes all the pumps, tanks, pipework, instruments and controls that are found on fullscale plants, with the added benefit of
The MFGM guidance was used for the design of the test protocol and thus the applied feedwater phage concentration
• Maximising sensitivity by maintaining the feedwater phage concentration as close as practicable to the maximum limit allowed by the MFGM, i.e. an average phage titre of log10 5.874 pfu/100mL. • Testing the feedwater for constituents that could cause MS2 die-off, in particular free chlorine. Water samples were spiked with MS2 to concentrations approximating those expected in filtrate and feed water and stored for 24 hours at 4°C before assay. This testing showed no appreciable die-off of phage in either the feed or filtrate samples. • Sterilising sample points, including both flexible hosing and stainless steel pipework, with alcohol and heat before commencement of the testing and operating with a continuous flow to drain. • Using separate personnel to take feedwater and filtered water samples to prevent cross-contamination, and using alcohol wipes and new gloves between each test run.
Table 2. Feedwater quality and operating parameters. Parameter Values
No. of Data Points
Operating Parameter Flow rate 1
Feed water turbidity
Feed water TDS
Feed water pH
Feed water sulfate
Feed water chloride
Feed water conductivity
Feed water temperature
Feed water MS2 phage concentration
Note 1 – Minimum flux was recorded during a backwash.
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Table 3. Calculated MS2 LRVs for a single cut fibre module. Filtration Run Number
Feedwater MS2 Minimum Log10 Concentration
Filtrate MS2 Maximum Log10 Concentration
• Using separate bottle storage containers for feed and filtrate samples in order to prevent cross contamination. • Segregating filtrate and feed samples at the laboratory reception and assaying samples in separate clean rooms. There are several methods available to calculate the virus LRV from test data. In line with the conservative approach required by Vic DH, the minimum of each feed replicate and the maximum of each filtrate replicate were used to calculate the LRV for the data set. Thus the 54 feed and filtered water data points from the MS2 assays resulted in 18 calculated LRVs (see Table 3). However, of the 54 results in the data set, 41 were recorded as “<1”, i.e. no phage detected in the filtrate. Phage was detected in only seven of the 18 filtered water samples, which is a relatively small data set from which to extract a statistically valid result; possible reasons for this will be discussed later. In this situation, the most conservative approach is selection of the worst case and this is consistent with the approach adopted in the Validation Guidelines of Vic DH. This particularly conservative approach results in the selection of an LRV of 3.584 for a membrane module containing 1
cut fibre, this being the lowest observed value from the data available. This result can be compared with a simplistic dilution model for predicting the LRV of a membrane module with a cut or broken fibre where the flow rate out of the broken fibre is assumed to be the same as that from an intact fibre, i.e. directly proportional to the flow rate of the entire module divided by the number of fibres in the module (Equation 2).
behave as discrete, inert particles, the concentration of phage exiting the end of a cut fibre into the filtrate flow will be the same as the concentration of phage in the feedwater. The resultant combined concentration of phage in the filtrate can then be calculated from a known feedwater concentration and the virus LRV for a cut fibre module calculated using Equation 1, thus: Intact Membrane Module Phage Removal Module flow rate = 0.833 L/s
Number of fibres per module = 5648
Flow rate per fibre = 0.1465 mL/sec
Qbroken fibre = flow rate in one broken fibre (L/s)
Assumed feed concentration of phage (C0) = 1,000,000 (106) particles per mL
Qmodule = flow rate of the entire module (L/s)
Minimum phage removal = 5.892 LRV
n = number of fibres in the module In reality, the flow rate through a broken fibre may be affected by various factors, such as the type of breakage (i.e. a cut, tear, rip, etc), the location of the breakage in relation to the distance from the discharge end, operating pressure of the system, fibre blockages, etc. These factors could result in higher or lower flow rates through the cut fibre. On the basis that the flow through a single broken fibre is the same as that through an intact fibre, and that phage
Phage concentration in filtrate C = 10(65.892) = 1.282 particles per mL Phage discharge rate per intact module = 1.282*5684*0.1465 = 1068 particles/sec Cut Fibre Membrane Module Phage Removal Assumed phage removal by cut fibre = 0 LRV Phage discharge rate from single cut fibre = 1000000*1*0.1465 = 146500 particles/sec Phage discharge rate from cut fibre
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Technical Papers module = 1068+146500 = 147568 particles/sec Phage concentration = 147568/833 = 177 particles/mL LRV for single cut fibre module using Equation 1: log(1000000) – log(177) = 3.752 LRV This compares with the conservative LRV of 3.584 determined by measurement of phage concentration in the membrane filtrate from a single cut-fibre module.
CUT FIBRES VS INCREASE IN PRESSURE DECAY RATE
The Somersby pilot plant study demonstrated the impact on the virus LRV of a single cut fibre in a UF membrane module. In order to use observed DIT results on a full-scale plant to set an Upper Control Limit (UCL) for viruses, testing was required to correlate the number of cut fibres with the observed pressure decay rate during a DIT. As the three RWTPs have differing numbers of modules in their UF stages, site-specific testing was required to characterise the actual system response to a number of known membrane defects (or cut fibres). Comparison of these results with the calculated LRVs, using a dilution model approach, could then be used to set the UCLs. The DIT process for a UF membrane rack involves a number of sequence steps: • Initiation of the DIT (manual or timer-based); • Stop forward filtration; • Pressurise the feed side of the membrane with compressed air; • Once the set minimum DIT pressure is reached, continue applying
compressed air in 40-second pulses until the pressure differential reaches a value of less than 1 kPa; • Shut off compressed air supply and allow a 60-second settling period for the system to equalise before the start of the integrity test period; • Integrity test period – the starting pressure for the DIT calculation is captured by the control system and a 5-minute timer starts. At the end of the DIT test period, the final pressure is captured and the difference between this and the starting pressure is the DIT result; • Depressurisation; and • DIT value compared with UCL: – DIT less than Critical Value = Pass – Rack returned to operation – DIT higher than Critical Value = Failure – Rack shut down Cut fibre vs pressure decay rate testing was carried out at all sites; the testing carried out at Mt Martha is described in the following sections. Each of the five UF racks was subjected to 10 DITs over the course of a week. The worst performing rack (highest intact DIT) and largest variability of the DIT data was identified and the cut-fibre test module was installed in this rack with all 30 cut fibres temporarily repaired using stainless steel pins. These pins were installed to enable progressive removal during testing. DIT testing of this rack was carried out to ensure that the system was “intact” and consistent with the baseline intact DITs obtained during the selection of the test rack. Table 4 shows the system-specific variables for the Mt Martha UF membrane installation used during the testing.
Membrane repair pins were removed progressively from the test module according to the following sequence: 1, 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 20, 25 and 30. A minimum of three DITs were completed for cut fibres 1 through to 15 to ensure the repeatability of the test was demonstrated. Cut-fibre numbers 20, 25 and 30 were only tested once. For each DIT test run, the following procedure was adopted: • Forward filtration for a minimum of 10 minutes; • Backwash cycle; • Forward filtration for a minimum of 10 minutes; • Initiation of DIT manually from the HMI; • Return to forward filtration; and • Repeat. The results showed a number of significant features (Figure 4): • Good linear correlation between the number of cut fibres and pressure decay rate (Equation 3); • The intersect of the y-axis (i.e. 0 cut fibres) gave a pressure decay rate of 0.5469 kPa/5 min., which is very close to the average intact DIT for the rack (average = 0.5527 kPa/5 min.); • The increase in pressure decay rate per cut fibre was very consistent for numbers of cut fibres greater than one; and • One cut fibre was detectable above the baseline intact DIT.
Table 4. Mt Martha UF system variables. Parameter Ptest
DIT test pressure
System back pressure
Assumed atmospheric pressure
Design filtrate flow per rack
Volume of pressurised air in system during test
Volumetric concentration factor
Air-liquid conversion ratio
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Log Removal Credits (validated LRV)
DIT PRESSURE DECAY RATE VS PATHOGEN LRV
Using the data obtained in the previous studies on intact and single cut fibre modules, a system (or rack) based mass balance was developed to enable the calculation of the loss of effective LRV from increasing numbers of cut fibres in a rack of otherwise intact membranes. The number of cut fibres was extended from zero to the point at which the minimum 4 LRV requirement was breached. The inputs to this model were:
Technical Papers the case of the three recycled water treatment plants, the treatment objective is a 4.0 LRV for both protozoa and virus particles.
DIT kPa / 5 mins
25 20 15 10 5 0 0
Number of Cut Fibres Figure 4. Mt Martha UF Plant Rack C: Number of cut fibres vs DIT results. Rack size – 115 modules
diameter, i.e. sufficient to allow protozoa such as Cryptosporidia to pass through the membrane.
Intact module LRV = 5.892 1 cut fibre module LRV = 3.584
Using Equations 1 and 2, the LRVs vs numbers of cut fibres were calculated as shown in Figure 5. This demonstrated that up to 43 cut fibres could be tolerated in one UF rack before the minimum virus LRV of 4.0 was exceeded. Extrapolating the data presented in Figure 4, the pressure decay rate associated with 43 cut fibres would be 36.59 kPa/5 mins. The MFGM provides an alternative method for calculating the upper control limit for pressure decay testing, based on bubble point theory (Equation 4). This is formulated for the removal of protozoa and assumes a breach of ≥3.0 µm
(4) Inputting the values in Table 4 into Equation 4, the theoretical Upper Control Limit for the pressure decay rate during a DIT at Mt Martha was determined as 6.705 kPa/5 minutes for a 4.0 Log Removal Value for protozoa. This is considerably less than the value of 36.59 kPa/5 minutes for virus LRV, as determined using the dilution model.
DISCUSSION In accordance with the requirements of Vic DH, the Control Limits for the UF systems at all sites were set by selecting the lowest Direct Integrity Test value that had been calculated or demonstrated to satisfy the treatment objectives. In
Log10 Removal Values
Intact Membrane Rack
5.5 5 4.5
Alarm Limit LRV = 4.108
Upper Control Limit LRV = 4.008
4 3.5 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 15 20 25 30 34 35 40 42 43 44 45 Number of Cut Fibres
Figure 5. Mt Martha UF Plant Rack C: Number of cut fibres vs Virus LRVs.
However, as noted earlier, the results of the cut fibre challenge testing with MS2 were limited by the poor recovery of phage in the filtrate; only seven of the 18 paired filtered water samples produced a detectable result. This could have been improved if a higher phage titre had been used in the feed water. However, the MFGM advises that the maximum feed concentration of the test suspension should be based on the detection limit of the challenge particulate in the filtrate and must be determined according to the equation: Maximum Feed Concentration = (3.16 x 106) x (Filtrate Detection Limit) This expression allows for the demonstration of up to 6.5 log removal during challenge testing if the challenge particulate is removed to the detection limit. Although the detection limit for MS2 is 1 pfu/100mL, the recovery at this limit of detection can be extremely variable, as demonstrated by the cutfibre test results, despite the rigorous precautions taken to avoid crosscontamination and phage toxicity. The assumption that viruses behave as discrete, inert, uniformly distributed particles is not necessarily accurate; phage particles readily aggregate and adhere to surfaces and this will influence the removal efficiency of the membrane system. These results highlight the difficulties in accurately measuring the removal performance of membranes with respect
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Assumed feed water virus concentration - 6 Log (1,000,000) pfu/mL
Thus, the most conservative value of DIT pressure decay rate is that determined by bubble point theory for protozoa rather than the actual test results obtained for MS2 phage. This is counter-intuitive as it would be expected that a lower DIT pressure decay rate, representing fewer and smaller breaches, would be associated with the removal of viruses rather than the considerably larger protozoa. Notwithstanding these concerns, the challenge test result for a single cut fibre module (LRV = 3.584) was very similar to the theoretical dilution model result (LRV = 3.752). However, when the dilution model was applied to an entire rack of 115 modules, the maximum allowable number of cut fibres (43) was considerably higher than that determined by bubble point theory.
Technical Papers to viruses using MS2 as a surrogate organism. The guidance offered in the LT2ESWTR and MFGM is largely directed towards the removal of protozoa and this limits its usefulness when considering virus removal. In particular, the restriction on the influent concentration prevents accurate determination of the effect of breaches in the membrane barrier.
In the absence of challenge test methodologies that generate accurate and reliable data on the removal efficiencies of membrane systems for both viruses and protozoa, health regulators in Victoria have adopted the conservative approach outlined above. Thus at Mt Martha, the UCL has been set at the equivalent of six cut fibres in a rack of 115 modules, each containing more than 5600 fibres – i.e. over 653,600 fibres in total. This represents an allowable failure rate of less than 0.001% and a pressure decay rate of only 6.705 kPa/5 mins (<1.0 psi/5 mins) during a DIT. Pakenham and Somers RWTPs have been operating successfully since 2012 and Mt Martha since August 2013. To date, the DIT pressure decay rates have been well below the UCL values. However, as the plants age, membrane imperfections and wear on valve seals, etc, could lead to a premature increase in the DIT pressure decay rate and a breach of the UCL. Although such imperfections can increase the pressure decay rate, they may not necessarily be sufficient to reduce the virus LRV below the critical limit. Such a compromised rack could be challenge tested with MS2 to determine the LRV, but this is a costly and disruptive
exercise and the results may not be conclusive. Ultimately, this could lead to the premature replacement of UF racks unnecessarily at a considerable increase in Opex. There is clearly an urgent need for more research into the mechanisms involved in the removal of viruses in membrane systems. In particular, the relationship between pathogen LRV and parameters that can be readily measured, such as DIT, requires further investigation. In addition, challenge testing to verify ongoing plant performance requires appropriate surrogates for viruses and protozoa that are truly representative, low cost, readily detectable and safe to use.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT The Authors gratefully acknowledge the assistance of Andrew Lanchbery, who carried out the pilot plant testing at Somersby and the full-scale plant testing.
THE AUTHORS Dr Richard Irwin (email: firstname.lastname@example.org) is Technical Director with AECOM. He has over 35 years of global experience in wastewater treatment and extensive knowledge in processes and techniques applied to the treatment of sewage and sludge. Richard has been a member of the British and European Standards Committees for Wastewater Engineering for more than 15 years. He chaired the European Standards Group that produced the series of 16 European standards (EN 12255) covering all aspects of sewage treatment.
David Smith (email: email@example.com) is Manager Product Quality with South East Water in Melbourne. He has over 20 years’ experience in the water industry with several Australian utilities. David specialises in quality management systems and, in particular, the application of HACCP principles to many facets of water and wastewater treatment. Maarten van Herk (email: Maarten. vanHerk@sew.com.au) is the Commissioning, Operations and Maintenance Manager for the South East Recycled Water Alliance. He has over 10 years’ experience in the water industry ranging from planning, design and construction to operations and maintenance.
REFERENCES APHA (2005): Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater, 21st Edition. Department of Health Victoria (2013): Guidelines for Validating Treatment Processes for Pathogen Reduction – Supporting Class A Recycled Water Schemes in Victoria. ISO (1995): ISO 10705, Detection and Enumeration of Bacteriophages. USEPA (2005): Membrane Filtration Guidance Manual 2005. USEPA (2010): Long Term 2 Enhanced Surface Water Treatment Rule Toolbox Guidance Manual 2010.
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RECLAIMED WATER FOR THE SHOALHAVEN REGION Expansion of the existing REMS to double the volume of available reclaimed water in the northern Shoalhaven City Council local government area G McGill, R Horner, T Flapper
ABSTRACT Shoalhaven Water, a business group of Shoalhaven City Council, owns and operates the REclaimed water Management Scheme (REMS) in the northern Shoalhaven City Council local government area. The Scheme is one of the largest water recycling schemes undertaken by a regional water authority (Figure 1). The existing scheme, referred to as Stage 1A, was commissioned in 2002 and Shoalhaven Water is now looking to expand the scheme (Stage 1B) to double the volume of reclaimed water available to the REMS. Through the expansion of the scheme, the project team, Shoalhaven Water & GHD, needed to consider how the level of treatment and reuse of water can be tailored to ensure that the final quality of water is fit for its intended purpose, in keeping with the Australian Guidelines for Water Recycling (AGWR).
Stage 1A of the Scheme was commissioned in January 2002 and has been developed by Shoalhaven Water over a number of years. Significant infrastructure is in place to collect reclaimed water from the St Georges Basin, Huskisson/Vincentia, Culburra and Callala Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTPs). The collected reclaimed water is transferred to participating irrigation areas via a transfer and distribution system. The current REMS also includes a 600 ML bulk storage facility at Coonamia to store surplus reclaimed water, and an ocean outfall located at Penguin Head near Culburra, with an emergency release point to Jervis Bay at Plantation Point. Construction of the scheme was jointly funded by Shoalhaven City Council, the NSW and Commonwealth Governments, and individual irrigators. The scheme was developed by Shoalhaven Water in response to
Since its inception the REMS has provided reclaimed water to a range of end users, including: • Dairy farms; • A golf course; • Several sporting grounds.
• Promoting local economic development; • Directly involving the community in water conservation. REMS is a critical water supply source for the dairy industry, particularly during drought. The REMS effluent contains nitrogen and phosphorus, which can reduce the need for pasture improvement by the addition of fertilisers. In June 2012, Shoalhaven Water commissioned GHD to assist with planning for implementing and augmenting the scheme.
In 2012/13 approximately 1,940 ML of reclaimed water was beneficially reused for irrigation of over 500 hectares of land and also for dairy yard washdown. Previously, potable water was used for dairy yard washdown and irrigation. Replacing this usage with reclaimed water is a great example of providing fit-foruse water.
EXISTING SCHEME – STAGE 1A
a community desire for greater reuse of the water resources in the region, to replace potable water usage with appropriate “fit-for-use” reclaimed water where possible, and to reduce the amount of water discharged to the local waterways.
EXPANDING THE SCHEME Looking ahead, Shoalhaven Water is seeking to expand the existing REMS to continue to promote sustainable development by: • Protecting the environment; • Reducing demand for potable water supplies;
Figure 1. Reclaimed water supply locations (WWTPs), transfer and distribution infrastructure for the REMS.
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Figure 2. Nowra Wastewater Treatment Plant.
FIT FOR PURPOSE The works originally planned for augmentation of the REMS was the upgrade of Shoalhaven Water’s two remaining WWTPs in the area, Bomaderry and Nowra, and their connection to REMS (Stage 1B). Addition of these two WWTPs will double the reclaimed water available for beneficial reuse as well as significantly reduce future discharges from Nowra and Bomaderry WWTPs to the Shoalhaven River. The effluent quality of the water that is discharged will be of a much higher quality to protect the estuarine environment and downstream oyster-growing regions. Reviewing the augmentation of the REMS has involved discussion about
fit-for-use treatment for the entire scheme, both the existing Stage 1A works and the proposed Stage 1B works. It has also been underpinned by environmental discharge water quality requirements for the Shoalhaven River, including the oyster-growing zones and the benefits and drawbacks of ‘treatment’ versus ‘end use’ control. Shoalhaven Water has opted for treatment control for the REMS stages: • Stage 1A works: AGWR were introduced more than four years after commissioning of the REMS. Treatment at the four Stage 1A plants, although meeting historical regulatory needs, does not fully meet the enhanced requirements outlined by the AGWR. Plans to augment and expand the REMS include upgrading the existing
Figure 3. Bomaderry Wastewater Treatment Plant.
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connected four WWTPs to align with the AGWR; • Stage 1B works: Treated highquality effluent from Bomaderry and Nowra WWTPs will be supplied primarily to the REMS and, during prolonged periods of wet weather, may be secondarily discharged to the Shoalhaven River. Thus, when designing the WWTP it is important to consider the two outflow water qualities required: – for water recycling and reuse; and – for discharge to the Shoalhaven River. The approach taken for the design is discussed in the following sections.
AUGMENTATION OF THE SCHEME STAGE 1 A WORKS
Due to the amount of existing infrastructure, comprising the existing REMS, four WWTPs and the distribution and storage system connecting to the 24 end users, various permutations
All except two end users of the REMS are located downstream of Vincentia WWTP, thus a two-pronged approached has been selected for the upgrade of the Stage 1A plants: • A retrofit of UV treatment systems at three out of four of the existing Stage 1A plants, Vincentia, Culburra and Callala treatment plants to bring the existing REMS outlined in the AGWR; • Separate treatment or approach for the two other end users located on the transfer main from St Georges Basin WWTP to Vincentia WWTP.
STAGE 1 B WORKS
Nowra WWTP’s (first commissioned 1937, shown in Figure 2) and Bomaderry WWTP’s (first commissioned 1972, shown in Figure 3) current treatment capacities are 12,500 and 21,000 equivalent people respectively. The infrastructure at these plants is in need of repair as the assets age, and further capacity is required to provide for current and future development in the catchments of these plants. The effluent from these two plants is currently being discharged to local waterways that drain to the Shoalhaven River. Neither plant is connected to the REMS as the effluent quality does not meet the requirements for reclaimed water, and effluent transfer infrastructure is not in place.
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Stage 1A plants are currently fitted with chlorination disinfection. This treatment alone does not achieve the required pathogen Log Reduction Values (LRVs) defined by the AGWR, for the authorised end uses of the reclaimed water. Shoalhaven Water is ultimately responsible for the quality of the reclaimed water, and needs to ensure that it can be validated, verified and controlled.
were investigated to bring the REMS Stage 1A effluent in line with the AGWR requirements.
Table 1. Stage 1B effluent qualities. Parameter
Reuse (90th %ile)
River Discharge (90th %ile)
Oil and Grease
Table 1 summarises the two different water qualities for the different outflows required for Nowra and Bomaderry WWTP.
0.5 mg/L / 2 mg/L (Target/Max)
< 0.1 mg/L
End Use LRV – Virus
1 LRV after tertiary treatment (based on NSW Food Authority, Shellfish Regulations)
End Use LRV – Protozoa
End Use LRV – Bacteria
Free Chlorine Residual
Faecal Coliform The Stage 1B works include: • Upgrades to Nowra and Bomaderry WWTPs to address predicted catchment needs to 2041 and to provide reclaimed water complying with the required guidelines; • A reclaimed water transfer main under the Shoalhaven River connecting Bomaderry WWTP to Nowra WWTP;
regulations identified by the NSW EPA, but also the Department of Primary Industries (NSW Food Authority, Shellfish Regulations). The interests of both the NSW EPA and the NSW Food Authority’s Shellfish Regulations were considered in the water quality modelling in order to determine the effluent treatment levels mentioned below.
• A reclaimed water transfer main from Nowra WWTP to connect to the existing REMS distribution network. Once Stage 1B is complete, reclaimed effluent can be sent from Nowra and Bomaderry WWTP to the REMS. As part of the upgrade of the WWTPs it was important to consider the purpose and use of the effluent from the WWTPs. Both plants will have the possibility of being able to discharge to the REMS for water recycling and reuse, or to the Shoalhaven River as environmental discharges. As mentioned above, all flows to REMS distribution will be treated to a level to meet the requirements as outlined in the AGWR for the intended identified end uses. River discharge qualities are governed by the NSW EPA. Depending on the severity of the wet weather event tertiary-treated effluent, secondarytreated effluent or screened and degritted stormwater may overflow to the Shoalhaven River. To gain a better understanding of the discharge qualities and impacts
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200 cfu/100 mL (as required by EPA) on the river environment, GHD conducted water quality modelling. The modelling was undertaken for a range of discharge and treatment scenarios, with a focus on comparing the status quo for the existing WWTPs to the discharge scenarios described below: • Dry weather – surplus reclaimed water discharges to the river (tertiary treated and UV disinfected); • Wet weather – resulting in tertiary and secondary discharges to the river; • Significant storm events – resulting in tertiary, secondary and stormwater discharges to the river. Discussions between the NSW EPA and Shoalhaven Water noted that wet weather and storm events were rare, would be difficult to design and operate for, and the high flow regime impacts in the Shoalhaven River under such conditions would supersede any such investment. As such, the water quality model mainly focuses on river discharges of surplus reclaimed water to the environment, providing a further important example of where a fit-for-purpose approach has been incorporated into the upgrade and augmentation of the REMS. The tertiary river discharge qualities are governed by the NSW EPA. However, key stakeholders interested in the quality of the river are the oyster farmers. They have established their harvesting areas in the Shoalhaven River estuary, so river discharges need to meet not only the
The commissioning of REMS 1B is expected to occur in mid-2017 and will double the volume of water available for beneficial reuse, ease the demand of potable water and significantly reduce future discharges from Nowra and Bomaderry WWTPs to the Shoalhaven River. The design process was very much informed by the various water quality scenarios to be met and the need to provide for two fit-for-purpose effluents – one for the river discharge and one for the REMS discharge. Water quality modelling and ongoing liaison with all regulatory stakeholders allowed a successful concept design to be developed.
THE AUTHORS Gabrielle McGill (email: firstname.lastname@example.org) is a Process Engineer in GHD Water Infrastructure Team Sydney. She is GHD’s project coordinator and one of the process engineers for the REMS design work. Robert Horner (email: email@example.com. gov.au) is Shoalhaven Water’s representative for the strategic, approvals and conceptual phases of REMS 1B and is the lead for stakeholder consultation. He was also the client project manager for the design, construction and commissioning phases of the first stage of REMS, which commenced operation in 2002. Dr Therese Flapper (email: firstname.lastname@example.org) is the Market Leader for Infrastructure and Regional Services for GHD, Canberra and Southern NSW. She is GHD’s Project Director for the REMS design work and has also led the water quality assessment and regulatory compliance for the project.
USING INDICATOR CHEMICALS AND ONLINE SURROGATES TO MANAGE THE CHEMICAL RISK OF RECYCLED WATER Exploring monitoring strategies for reverse osmosis treatment K Linge, D Liew, B Edwards, P Blair, R Trolio, K Cadee, JWA Charrois
It is recommended that RO treatment performance monitoring should focus on surrogate parameters that can be measured online, as they provide immediate feedback that can be linked to variation in plant performance. In contrast, a set of chemical indicators chosen to consider health risks posed by a broad array of chemical classes proved valuable in demonstrating the ongoing safety of the recycled water. Keywords: Chemical risk, groundwater replenishment, reverse osmosis, treatment performance indicator (TPI).
INTRODUCTION Drinking water augmentation is considered an inherently high-risk use of recycled water because of the public health implications of contaminants in untreated wastewater. While the greatest acute risk to consumers of drinking recycled water
Chemicals in drinking water have long been assessed relative to values relevant to human health risk (ADWG, 2011; WHO, 2006; CDPH, 2011; Drewes et al., 2008). However, since 2004, the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines (ADWG) have recommended a riskbased management framework utilising multiple barriers, rather than relying solely on compliance of product water with guideline concentrations (ADWG, 2011). This approach was also adopted for the Australian Guidelines for Water Recycling (AGWR, 2008), where the focus is on targeted operational monitoring, after an initial validation of chemical and microbiological removal by each treatment process. One approach that has been proposed as a cost-effective means of monitoring treatment processes is the use of treatment performance indicators (TPIs). These are chemicals that provide a conservative assessment of the removal of unmonitored chemicals with similar physicochemical characteristics in a given treatment process (Drewes et al., 2008; AGWR, 2008; Dickenson et al., 2011; Rodriguez et al., 2012). Treatment performance can also be monitored using online surrogates. These are parameters for which quantifiable change in real time can serve as a performance measure of chemical removal.
Reverse osmosis is a key barrier in the removal of chemicals in many water recycling schemes. Chemical rejection by RO is influenced by compound-specific properties (e.g. molecular size, solubility, diffusivity, polarity, hydrophobicity and charge), membrane properties (e.g. permeability, pore size, hydrophobicity and charge), as well as membrane operating conditions (e.g. flux, trans-membrane pressure and membrane-cleaning regime). Based on a comprehensive literature review, Bellona et al. (2004) proposed a schema for qualitative prediction of rejection of organic micropollutants (Figure 1), which considers molecular weight (MW), molecular width (MWd), the acid dissociation constant (pKa, which determines whether a molecule will be charged at a given pH), and the octanolwater partition coefficient (Kow, which is a measure of the polarity of a molecule). Use of this schema illustrates that rejection efficiency can be predicted for any chemical based on its physical and chemical properties. Thus it was hypothesised that monitoring a set of chemicals that represent a broad range of physicochemical properties, in particular size, charge and hydrophobicity, would give confidence that the chemical indicators chosen also account for unknown and new chemicals (Van Buynder et al., 2009). The Western Australian Groundwater Replenishment Trial (GWRT) was undertaken by the Water Corporation of Western Australia (January 2010 to December 2012) to demonstrate the technical feasibility of groundwater replenishment with recycled water to deliver safe and reliable water (WCWA, 2013). The purpose-built Beenyup Advanced Water Recycling Plant (AWRP) produced up to 5 ML/day of recycled water from secondary treated wastewater that would otherwise be
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The Water Corporation of Western Australiaâ€™s Groundwater Replenishment Trial (GWRT) has recently tested a new approach for monitoring reverse osmosis (RO) treatment performance using a suite of treatment performance indicator (TPI) chemicals and two online surrogate parameters â€“ conductivity and total organic carbon. It was intended that TPIs would provide a conservative assessment of the removal of unmonitored chemicals with similar physicochemical characteristics. However, while operational and surrogate parameters indicated good RO performance, the calculated removal efficiency of many TPIs failed to meet targets. External factors, including analytical method uncertainty, low feed concentration and, in some cases, the potential for chemicals to form within the treatment process, were found to significantly affect calculated removal.
remains pathogenic microorganisms (AGWR, 2008; ADWG, 2011), there is also community and scientific concern over chemicals in recycled water. Secondary treated wastewater contains a wide range of household, industrial and agricultural chemicals (Van Buynder et al., 2009; Shon et al., 2006), albeit at low concentrations. Coupled with this, the increasing sensitivity of chemical analysis techniques permits detection of increasing numbers of chemicals in water and wastewater at lower and lower concentrations (e.g., ng/L levels).
BOX 1. DEFINITION OF SURROGATE AND INDICATOR CHEMICALS TESTED DURING GWRT
• Frequently detected in feedwater (>80% & preferably at 100% detection); • The ratio of the concentration of the chemical in the RO feedwater to the limit of reporting (LOR) of the analytical method was greater than five.
Surrogate A bulk parameter, such as conductivity or total organic carbon, in which a quantifiable change can serve as a performance measure of chemical removal by individual treatment processes. For operational control, surrogates need to be able to be measured and reported in real time. Treatment Performance Indicator (TPI) An individual chemical, occurring at quantifiable level in source water, that can represent a group of chemicals with similar physicochemical characteristics, relevant to treatment removal. Thus monitoring TPI removal provides a conservative assessment of the removal of those unmonitored chemicals with similar physicochemical characteristics. The criteria for selection of a TPI in this study were: • Quantifiable using an established and preferably accredited analytical method;
Recycled Water Quality Indicator (RWQI) An individual chemical that demonstrates the safety of recycled water for a specific chemical group, providing additional confidence beyond TPI that all chemical hazards are being mitigated. This is particularly useful for chemical classes for which TPIs could not be identified, such as hormones and pesticides. RWQIs were chosen based on the following criteria for selection: • Quantifiable using an established and preferably accredited analytical method; • Frequency and concentration of detection in feedwater.
Organic Chemical Poor rejection
Before commencement of the GWRT, baseline monitoring was undertaken at two RO plants, the Kwinana Water Recycling Plant and Beenyup Pilot Plant over three years (2006–2008) to assess the chemical risk associated with wastewater treated through RO, with 396 chemicals assessed before and after RO treatment in 15 chemical classes (Van Buynder et al., 2009; Linge et al., 2010; Linge et al., 2012).
Moderate to high rejection
MW < MWCO
MW > MWCO
MWd > 0.6 nm
MWd < 0.6 nm
MWd < 0.6 nm
MWd > 0.6 nm
High membrane surface charge
log Kow > 2
log Kow < 2
log Kow > 2
pH > pKa
Low membrane surface charge
pH < pKa
pH > pKa
pH < pKa
log Kow < 2
MWd < 0.6 nm
MWd > 0.6 nm
Figure 1. Rejection diagram for organic micropollutants, adapted from Bellona et al. (2004) and printed with permission from Elsevier. *Rejection of hydrophobic classes (1, 2, 7) were also impacted by chemical partitioning and diffusion through the membrane. discharged to the ocean from Beenyup Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP). Wastewater at Beenyup WWTP is treated by a nitrification-denitrification activated sludge process, and then undergoes advanced treatment via ultrafiltration, RO and UV disinfection at the AWRP. The key chemical removal barrier is RO. As well as regular analysis of an extensive suite of 292 recycled water quality parameters in the treated water, TPI chemicals were identified to monitor chemical removal by RO. In addition, the concept of Recycled Water Quality Indicators (RWQIs) was also developed during baseline monitoring (Van Buynder et al., 2009), and trialled during the GWRT to demonstrate the safety of recycled
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water with respect to specific chemical groups of health concern (see Box 1 for definition of terms). To our knowledge, GWRT was the first full-scale test of an indicator chemical approach for monitoring RO treatment performance. During the trial, it became apparent that the calculated removals of TPIs through RO were not consistently achieving targets, even though 100% of the water quality samples met health and environmental guidelines. This paper provides an assessment of the TPI data collected during the GWRT, comments on RWQI selection, and recommendations on performance monitoring for recycled water plants utilising RO.
This original research confirmed that online monitoring of total organic carbon (TOC) and conductivity were suitable surrogates to monitor RO treatment and that they were suitable critical control points for the AWRP, and also identified target chemicals to act as TPIs in the trial (Table 1). While it was initially intended that a TPI would be chosen for each of the 15 chemical classes tested, it became apparent that for some chemical classes there were no chemicals detected with sufficient frequency in secondary wastewater (>80% and preferably at 100% detection) to be considered as a TPI (see Table 1). Given that some of these classes posed a particular health risk (e.g. hormones), a second class of indicator chemical was also developed – the Recycled Water Quality Indicator (RWQI) – to demonstrate the safety of recycled water for a specific chemical group. The criteria for selection of TPI and RWQI are presented in Box 1. For those chemical classes for which a TPI had been identified, this chemical also acted as the RWQI for that class. While TPI and RWQI selection was based on the percentage detection and concentration of chemicals in secondary wastewater, the
Table 1. Rejection class and target removal efficiency of TPI, shaded in green, plus additional RWQI selected during commissioning of the Beenyup AWRP. Indicator (chemical group) Boron (Metals & metalloids) Nitrate (Inorganic anions) NDMA (N-Nitrosamines) Chlorate (Inorganic anions) 1,4-Dioxane (Miscellaneous) Chloroform (Halogenated disinfection by-products) 1,4-Dichlorobenzene (VOCs)
RO rejection class, assuming MWCO = 200 Da and pH 7 3, 5 or 6 depending on membrane surface charge and per cent dissociation 5 or 6 depending on membrane surface charge 3 5 or 6 depending on membrane surface charge
TPI target removal efficiency
Percentage detection in secondary wastewater (Van Buynder et al., 2009)
Percentage detection in RO treated water (Linge et al., 2012)
10.8 62 74 83
Carbamazepine (Neutral pharmaceuticals) Estrone (Hormones) EDTA (Complexing agents) Diclofenac (Acidic pharmaceuticals) Trifluralin (Pesticides) Octachlorodibenzodioxin (Dioxins, furans and dioxin-like PCBs)
1 or 2 depending on molecular width 1or 2 depending on molecular width 3, 5, or 6, depending on membrane surface change and percent dissociation
[UF Filtrate] - [RO Permeate] 100 [UF Filtrate]
Factors affecting calculated TPI removal efficiencies were determined using GWRT monitoring data from March 2010 to October 2011. Additionally, RO membrane replacement in December 2011, motivated by deteriorating operational parameters, offered a unique unplanned experiment to evaluate calculated TPI removal efficiencies before and after membrane replacement.
DISCUSSION FACTORS AFFECTING CALCULATED TPI REMOVAL EFFICIENCY
At face value, if a calculated TPI removal efficiency does not meet a removal target, it suggests that RO is not consistently removing that TPI from the recycled water stream. However, analysis of the GWRT dataset indicated that calculated TPI removal efficiencies were impacted by several external factors, including poor data confidence, the potential for chemicals to form within the treatment process, and low feedwater concentration. In these cases, failure of a TPI to meet a removal target cannot be used as
evidence that the RO treatment is not operating properly. Chemical classes such as disinfection by-products and volatile organic compounds may increase in concentration within MF/RO plants (Linge et al., 2013; Van Buynder et al., 2009; Rodriguez et al., 2012). For disinfection by-products, this increase in concentration is attributed to formation after chloramination, which is used to reduce RO membrane biofouling. Disinfection by-products formation in MF/RO plants can lead to underestimation of removal by RO (Linge et al., 2013; Van Buynder et al., 2009). Increases in volatile organic compound concentrations have been attributed to trace contamination from atmospheric sources (Rodriguez et al., 2012). In this study, 1,4-dichlorobenzene was also frequently detected in both field and trip blanks, potentially influencing some RO removal calculations by up to 25%. Trace contamination may come from sampling equipment, sample preparation, or atmospheric sources.
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Removal targets for each TPI were determined during commissioning based on observed removal. Treatment performance across RO was calculated using TPI concentrations in samples of ultrafiltration treated water (filtrate) and RO permeate, as per Equation 1. For those parameters not detected in RO permeate, the TPI removal efficiency was calculated assuming an RO permeate concentration equal to the limit of reporting (LOR) of the analytical method. Hence, in these cases the removal efficiency is a conservative estimate. %Removal =
indicators chosen represent a wide range of chemical types, with particular focus on chemicals that are likely to be poorly rejected (e.g. Class 2 or 3). The majority of larger molecules (e.g. MW > MWCO of the RO membrane) chosen are charge neutral and hydrophobic and, therefore, may pass through an RO membrane by adsorption and diffusion processes.
significantly diminished, it will indicate reduced system performance’ (Van Buynder et al., 2009). However, analysis of GWRT data demonstrated that no TPI showed a clear reduction in RO removal with membrane age, due in part to the factors discussed above.
Target removal = 80%
10% 0% March 2010
Treatment Performance (% Removal)
0 September 2010
Figure 2. Comparison of calculated treatment performance (blue) and feedwater concentrations (red) for diclofenac.
The impact of data confidence can be illustrated by considering the variability in calculated removal efficiency for each TPI, reported as percentage relative standard deviation (Table 2). Only samples where minimum feed concentrations were achieved were chosen. Chloroform, NDMA and 1,4-dichlorobenzene all show variability in calculated RO rejection that is greater than 100%, and all of these chemicals are likely to be impacted by formation, blank contamination in field and trip blanks, or analytical uncertainty. Previous calculation of measurement uncertainty for all TPI, except nitrate, showed that the TPI with the highest relative uncertainty is NDMA (40% relative standard deviation). This is the only TPI measured at ng/L concentrations (Van Buynder et al., 2009). Given this large uncertainty, and the low concentrations of NDMA measured in the RO product water (typically <10 ng/L), we estimate the uncertainty for NDMA removal efficiency will be at least 80% relative standard deviation. Even in the absence of any other form of uncertainty (e.g. from sampling or contamination), this large method uncertainty has a significant impact on the reliability of NDMA as a TPI candidate. Finally, removal percentage is fundamentally limited as a performance metric for TPI, as accurate calculation requires the TPI to always be detected in the feedwater, and never occur below detection levels in the RO permeate. When a TPI is not detected in RO permeate, the calculated removal will be influenced by the LOR of the analytical method and calculated removal is underestimated. This effect is demonstrated for diclofenac (Figure 2), which was never detected in RO permeate and therefore calculation of removal efficiency always used the
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LOR value (0.05 μg/L). Target removal of 80% for diclofenac could only be demonstrated when feedwater concentrations were above a ‘minimum feed concentration’ of 0.25 μg/L and, therefore, calculated removal could not be used to monitor RO performance when feedwater concentrations were below 0.25 μg/L. Similar patterns were seen for EDTA and 1,4-dioxane, indicating that the reason that these compounds show calculated removal below target was because feed concentrations were too low and not due to RO underperformance. In contrast, carbamazepine concentrations were always above the minimum required in feedwater, and calculated removal always met the target. Furthermore, once the analytical method for EDTA was modified such that the LOR reduced from 10 to 1 μg/L, both minimum feed concentration and target removal were always achieved, despite EDTA never being detected in RO permeate. Table 2 summarises the impact of the factors described on the calculated removal for each TPI. Only two TPI, carbamazepine and nitrate, were not affected by either variable feed concentration or poor data confidence. However, carbamazepine is a large molecule and is unlikely to be sensitive to changes in RO removal efficiency (Bellona et al., 2004). Nitrate is more likely to be sensitive to changes in RO, although it is still expected to have moderate membrane rejection (i.e. removal) because of electrostatic repulsion. SENSITIVITY OF TPI RESPONSE COMPARED TO CONDUCTIVITY
The intended use of TPIs and surrogate parameters during the GWRT was to indicate changes in performance in RO treatment, such that ‘If the level of removal of the indicator compound is
In December 2011, the RO membranes in the AWRP were replaced because of decreased operational performance (e.g. excessive trans-membrane pressure drop and high electrical conductivity of the permeate). Figure 3 shows that the conductivity in RO permeate significantly decreased on membrane changeout, while the RO conductivity removal efficiency, calculated using online measurements that matched TPI sampling times, increased. This confirmed that conductivity was sufficiently sensitive to reflect dramatic changes in RO performance, such as when membranes are replaced. In contrast, the calculated removal efficiencies for large molecular-sized TPIs from Class 7 or 10 (e.g. carbamazepine, diclofenac, EDTA) showed no difference after RO changeout (data not shown). Figure 3 also shows that calculated removal efficiencies for NDMA remained variable both before and after RO changeout, and this was similar for other ‘sensitive’ TPIs with poor data confidence (e.g. chloroform, 1,4-dichlorobenzene, 1,4-dioxane and boron). The only TPI (Figure 3) for which calculated removal efficiency improved after RO changeout was nitrate (89 ± 2.2 after, compared to 84 ± 3.1 before). This finding is in agreement with our previous conclusion that nitrate was the only ‘sensitive’ TPI with good data confidence. PRACTICAL CONSIDERATIONS FOR TPI ANALYSIS
While it is certainly more cost effective to focus chemical analysis on a select list of 10 or 20 chemicals, rather than hundreds, trace chemical analysis at μg/L or ng/L concentrations is still time consuming and expensive. Laboratory turn-around times for off-line measurement of TPI ranged from 12–25 working days (WCWA, 2012). Even if nitrate were a suitable TPI, its current turnaround time of 14 days means it could not be used to indicate a deterioration in RO removal in a timely manner. Operational monitoring must be conducted in real time to enable quick response to changes. Monitoring of critical control points at the GWRT is already undertaken using a number of online parameters, including conductivity, TOC and turbidity.
Table 2. Frequency that target removal efficiency is achieved compared to the effect of variable feed concentration and data confidence on calculated target removal for each TPI. Frequency target removal efficiency is achieved
Frequency that feed concentration was sufficient to demonstrate target removal
Variability in calculated removal (% relative standard deviation)
Suitability as a treatment performance indicator
Method uncertainty impacts calculated RO removal, but potentially sensitive TPI
Nitrate as N
Moderately sensitive TPI
Large analytical uncertainty and potential for formation in AWRP
Insufficient feed concentration
Moderate measurement uncertainty and clear evidence of formation in AWRP
Moderate measurement uncertainty and frequent contamination in blanks
High data confidence but insensitive TPI
Target removal achieved 100% of time once LOR was reduced from 10 μg/L to 1 μg/L. But insensitive TPI
Insufficient feed concentration
An Australian study, which evaluated bioanalytical tools for determining recycled water safety, has also suggested a tiered structure of chemical risk management, in which prioritisation of health indicators is based on relevance and feasibility of in vitro testing systems (Chapman et al., 2011). The analysis of 15 RWQIs during the GWRT, in conjunction with an extensive suite of 292 recycled
CONCLUSIONS In practice, TPIs were not able to demonstrate RO membrane performance as anticipated. Analysis of GWRT data indicated that calculated TPI removal efficiency was affected by many external factors (low concentration in feedwater,
90 %Removal Nitrate
Membrane Changeout Dec 2011
30 %Removal NDMA
Treatment Performance (% Removal)
The USEPA’s most recently published strategy for drinking water standards (US EPA, 2010) now contains the key principle that contaminants should be addressed as a group for cost-effective drinking water quality, and that new treatment technologies should address health risks posed by a broad array of chemicals. A recent Recycled Water Science Advisory Panel review convened by the California State Water Resources Control Board also recommended monitoring of both healthbased and performance-based indicators for chemicals of emerging concern in recycled water (Anderson et al., 2010).
formation during water treatment and atmospheric contamination), and the results for all TPIs except carbamazepine, EDTA and nitrate were affected in this way. Prior to a membrane changeout in December 2011, there was no measureable decline in calculated TPI removal efficiency, and the only TPI sufficiently sensitive to respond to membrane changeout was nitrate. Surrogates (i.e. conductivity) and operational parameters were better indicators of changes in RO performance than the TPIs, and it is recommended that RO treatment performance monitoring should focus on online surrogates and operational parameters, as they provide an immediate response that can be linked to variation in plant performance effectively in real time. Furthermore, they are easily available as online instruments, and are typically implemented in automated control systems.
Figure 3. Effect of membrane changeout on conductivity measured in RO permeate, and the calculated removal efficiency of conductivity, nitrate and NDMA.
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RECYCLED WATER QUALITY INDICATORS (RWQI)
water quality parameters, is one of the first explicit tests of the concept that a group of chemicals can be represented by analysis of a single chemical (RWQI), rather than analysis of every chemical in that group. The RWQIs chosen in this study confirmed the safety of recycled water at the GWRT; however, the occurrence pattern of trace organic chemicals in treated wastewater is country-specific (Dickenson et al., 2011). Hence, any proposed indicator requires an occurrence survey to provide data on detection frequency and concentration before it can be adopted.
Online measurements of specific chemicals, such as colorimetric analysis of nitrate, sulfate, chlorine, ammonia and monochloramine, may provide a reliable measurement of sensitive indicators in addition to surrogate measurements. However, more research is required to determine if this would be appropriate in practice. Online analysis may also overcome issues of trace contamination from sampling equipment and sample preparation.
Technical Papers While TPIs were not able to sufficiently monitor RO treatment performance, the monitoring undertaken during the GWRT generated an extremely valuable dataset, which led to a greater understanding of how the AWRP operates. In addition, RWQIs demonstrated the safety of recycled water at the GWRT, and chemical indicators based on health considerations are gaining traction internationally. While guidance for appropriate health-based indicators can be found in the literature, the occurrence pattern of trace organic chemicals in treated wastewater is locationspecific. Thus chemical indicators must be chosen using sound evidence, including assessment of feedwater concentrations, RO removal and a clear understanding of their health risk, before adoption.
Keith Cadee (email: keith. email@example.com) is the former General Manager of WCWA and is currently an Adjunct Professor at Curtin University in WA. Jeffrey WA Charrois (email: firstname.lastname@example.org) is an Adjunct Associate Professor and former Director of CWQRC. He is currently Manager of the Drinking Water and Wastewater Section with Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development (Canada).
The Authors would like to thank staff from the Water Corporation of Western Australia for their assistance throughout the project and especially Scott Garbin and Rebecca Dracup who provided data from the GWRT for analysis.
AGWR (2008): Australian Guidelines for Water Recycling: Managing Health and Environmental Risks. Augmentation of Drinking Water Supplies. Canberra: Environment Protection and Heritage Council, National Health and Medical Research Council, Natural Resource Management Ministerial Council.
Kathryn Linge (email: email@example.com) is a Senior Research Fellow and current Acting Deputy Director at the Curtin Water Quality Research Centre (CWQRC) at Curtin University in WA.
Rino Trolio (email: Rino.Trolio@ watercorporation.com.au) is the former Wastewater Quality Branch Manager and current North West Regional Manager at WCWA.
Deborah Liew (email: firstname.lastname@example.org) is a Senior Research Officer at CWQRC. She has five years of research experience in drinking water and recycled water treatment processes. Bradley Edwards (email: Bradley.Edwards@ watercorporation.com.au) is the R&D Alliance Manager at the Water Corporation of Western Australia (WCWA). Brad previously worked in the Wastewater Process Expertise Group and more recently, has been working on the Ground Water Replenishment Trial investigating and demonstrating system integrity and process validation for the Advanced Water Recycling Plant. Palenque Blair (email: Palenque.Blair@ watercorporation.com.au) is a Senior Environmental Engineer at WCWA. She was previously Research & Monitoring lead on the Groundwater Replenishment Trial and now works within Planning.
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ADWG (2011): Australian Drinking Water Guidelines 6. National Water Quality Management Strategy. Canberra: National Health and Medical Research Council, Natural Resource Management Ministerial Council.
Anderson P, Denslow N, Drewes JE, Olivieri A, Schlenk D & Snyder SA (2010): Monitoring Strategies for Chemicals of Emerging Concern (CECs) in Recycled Water: Recommendations of a Science Advisory Panel, California: State Water Resources Board. Bellona C, Drewes JE, Xu P & Amy G (2004): Factors Affecting the Rejection of Organic Solutes During NF/RO Treatment – A Literature Review, Water Research, 38, 12, pp 2795–2809. CDPH (2011): Groundwater Replenishment Reuse Draft Regulation. Title 22, Chapter 3, Sacramento, CA: California Department of Health. Chapman HL, Leusch FDL, Prochazka E, Cumming J, Ross V, Humpage A, Froscio S, Laingam S, Khan SJ, Trinh T & McDonald JA (2011): A National Approach to Health Risk Assessment, Risk Communication and Management of Chemical Hazards from Recycled Water, Canberra: National Water Commission. Dickenson ERV, Snyder SA, Sedlak DL & Drewes JE (2011): Indicator Compounds for Assessment of Wastewater Effluent Contributions to Flow and Water Quality, Water Research, 45, 3, pp 1199–1212. Drewes JE, Dickenson E & Snyder S (2011): Development of Surrogates to Determine the Effocacy of Groundwater Recharge Systems of the Removal of Trace Organic Chemicals, Alexandria: WateReuse Foundation (WRF05-004).
Drewes JE, Sedlak D, Snyder S & Dickenson E (2008): Development of Indicators and Surrogates for Chemical Contaminant Removal During Wastewater Treatment and Reclamation, Alexandria: WateReuse Foundation (WRF03-014). Khan SJ (2010): Quantitative Chemical Exposure Assessment for Water Recycling Schemes, Canberra: National Water Commission. Linge K, Blair P, Busetti F, Rodriguez C, Handyside M, Blythe J, Bromley M, Lord O, Higginson S, Heitz A, Joll C, Newby C & Toze S (2010): Validation of Dual Membrane Treatment for Indirect Potable Reuse, Water Journal, 37, 6, pp 39–43. Linge KL, Blair P, Busetti F, Rodriguez C & Heitz A (2012): Chemicals in Reverse Osmosis-Treated Wastewater: Occurrence, Health Risk, and Contribution to Residual Dissolved Organic Carbon, Journal of Water Supply: Research and Technology – AQUA, 61, 8, pp 494–505. Linge KL, Blythe JW, Busetti F, Blair P, Rodriguez C & Heitz A (2013): Formation of Halogenated Disinfection By-Products During Microfiltration and Reverse Osmosis Treatment: Implications for Water Recycling, Separation and Purification Technology, 104, pp 221–228. NWRI (2009): Final Report: Independent Advisory Panel for the City of San Diego Indirect Potable Reuse/Reservoir Augmentation Demonstration Project, Fountain Valley, California: National Water Research Institute. Rodriguez C, Linge K, Blair P, Busetti F, Devine B, Van Buynder P, Weinstein P & Cook A (2012): Recycled Water: Potential Health Risks from Volatile Compounds and the Use of 1,4-dichlorobenzene as a Treatment Performance Indicator’, Water Research, 46, pp 93–106. Shon HK, Vigneswaran S & Snyder SA (2006): Effluent Organic Matter (EfOM) in Wastewater: Constituents, Effects, and Treatment’, Critical Reviews in Environmental Science and Technology, 36, 4, pp 327–374. US EPA (2010): A New Approach to Protecting Drinking Water and Public Health, US EPA Office of Water (EPA 815F10001). Van Buynder P, Lugg R, Rodriguez C, Bromley M, Filmer J, Blair P, Handyside M, Higginson S, Turner N, Lord O, Taylor P, Courtney K, Newby C, Heitz A, Linge K, Blythe J, Busetti F & Toze S (2009): Premier’s Collaborative Research Program (2005–2008): Characterising Treated Wastewater For Drinking Purposes Following Reverse Osmosis Treatment. Technical Report: Department of Health, Western Australia (ISBN: 978-0-9807477-0-6). Available at: www.public.health.wa.gov.au/3/1117/2/ groundwater_replenishment_trial.pm. WCWA (2012): GWRT Treatment Performance Indicator Review (Koch Membranes): Water Corporation of Western Australia. WCWA (2013): Groundwater Replenishment Trial Final Report Perth, Western Australia: Water Corporation of Western Australia (ISBN 1 74043 829 9). WHO (2006): Guidelines for Drinking-Water Quality: Incorporating First Addendum. 3rd edn. Geneva: World Health Organisation.
TOWARDS EFFECTIVE CORPORATE GOVERNANCE FROM SOURCE TO ENDPOINT Why businesses must understand their water ‘products’ from catchment to consumer to identify and manage risk A Davison, B Burford, A Contos
ABSTRACT Water Journal has reported previously on the duties of directors and overarching corporate governance1 management for state-owned corporations (SOCs) in the context of risk management (Davison et al., 2011). SOCs need to fully understand their operating context if they are to holistically understand and manage risks. The ‘Frameworks’ within contemporary Australian water cycle guidance, such as the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines, note that enterprises must understand their water ‘products’ from catchment to consumer to ensure that risks are properly identified and managed.
In this paper we discuss a Source to Endpoint (S2E) risk identification and management approach utilising elements of the Frameworks, specifically focused on public water utilities. We also present potential information, which could be monitored by utilities to facilitate the analysis of trends and allow issues to be managed in a proactive manner as well as underpin reporting requirements up to the board.
SOURCE TO ENDPOINT The Framework for Management of Drinking Water Quality (ADWG, 2011) specifically requires utilities to have clear reporting in place, which explicitly means top-down bottom-up dissemination of
water quality information. While risk management plans are often developed and have to be endorsed by boards, the plans may ‘sit on shelves’ and then not be properly understood, monitored or implemented by boards. In some cases, executives specifically require water quality or critical control point exceedances or ‘water quality near hits’ to be notified directly to them; however, it is more normally the case that finished water quality is reported rather than barrier effectiveness. The ADWG (2011) espouse the importance of understanding and managing the water supply chain from catchment to consumer. To ensure that all water products and services can be ‘captured’, it is important to widen the concept of a supply chain being from
We suggest that an expanded framework approach from Source to Endpoint (S2E) could be used to help SOCs identify, understand and manage the risks to all the products and services that they deliver and, hence, provide for an improved approach to corporate governance. To help illustrate this point, we include information from a recent high-profile legal case, The Hasties Group, which helps to provide clarification on the responsibilities of management and directors, including the information that should be sought from management by directors, and when.
be understood by all, at their required level, in order to effect appropriate water organisation management and leadership.
INTRODUCTION It is a contemporary expectation for a complex water organisation that they will have some sort of overarching risk management strategy in place, usually informed by a recognised industry or other standard (such as ISO 31000), and that this strategy will be embedded from ‘corporate to coalface’ across its operations. Underpinning this strategy is a simple concept of Authority, Responsibility and Accountability or ARA (Figure 1 and Table 1). ARA should 1
Figure 1. Authority, Responsibility and Accountability conceptualisation from ‘corporate to coalface’.
“The framework of rules, relationships, systems and processes within and by which authority is exercised and controlled within corporations. It encompasses the mechanisms by which companies, and those in control, are held to account.” See ASX (2014) for more information.
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Table 1. Authority, responsibility and accountability. Area
Examples 1. The State Owned Corporations Act 1989 (NSW) provides that: a. “In the exercise of powers and the discharge of functions, an officer of a statutory SOC must exercise the degree of care and diligence that a reasonable person in a like position in a statutory SOC would exercise in the statutory SOC’s circumstances.” (Schedule 10, section 3(3)).
Authority Set by the legal and formal framework in which an organisation operates and provides a person or organisation with the power to conduct an act or act in a certain manner.
2. The formal framework may also include internal documentation. For instance, many water utilities now have water quality and other policies in place in which their standard of duty is set out. It is important to read and understand your corporate documentation as this material may reflect the organisation’s overarching authorities conferred by statute and other legal instruments, eg: a. Corporate objectives or values b. A drinking water quality policy may contain authoritative statements such as “Large Water Corp is committed to supplying drinking water which meets all of our required obligations.” c. A policy will usually be signed off by the CEO and/or the chair of the organisation’s board, to give further authority to its contents. 1. A drinking water quality policy may contain responsibility statements, eg:
Responsibility Responsibilities are developed from the identified legal and formal authorities and are important in setting out the expected standard of duty of an individual working on behalf of an organisation. If an authority to conduct an act or act in a certain manner has been identified, there is a corresponding responsibility on the individual or organisation to do so.
a. “Large Water Corp is responsible for implementing a risk management plan for its drinking water supply under the Safe Drinking Water Act 2003 (Vic) and its supporting regulations.” 2. A position description statement is based on setting out the responsibilities of an individual, eg: a. The Water Quality Manager is responsible for developing and implementing the Drinking Water Quality Management System. b. The Water Quality Officer is responsible for contributing to and implementing the requirements of the Drinking Water Quality Management System. c. The Water Quality Operator is responsible for the correct operation of the critical control points.
Once authority and responsibility have been established, an individual and an organisation will be held accountable for their actions. The degree of accountability will depend on what you should have known and when, what you should have done and when, and the provisions described in legislation or other formal documentation. ‘Source through to Enduse or Endpoint’ (S2E). Understanding the S2E context for an organisation’s products and services is fundamental to understanding how everything fits together and needs to be managed, from corporate to coalface. In the past, the industry has been used to dealing with what it may have thought of as a typical drinking water supply system, generally where one utility has been responsible for harvesting and collection of raw water all the way through to delivery of the product to the customer. However, even in such systems it is important, but not always easy, to understand: • Exactly what products and services the organisation produces and provides;
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1. The repercussions of not complying with your responsibilities can vary depending on the degree of the non-compliance. In some cases, repercussions of non-compliance may incur severe punitive measures such as being sent to jail or a monetary penalty, depending on whether the non-compliance is viewed as a criminal or civil matter. Non-compliance repercussions within an organisation may include reprimand (on various levels), demotion or even job loss.
• Which ‘parties’ need to be identified as part of the system; and • Who has obligations to whom, and what are they? In considering fit-for-purpose products and services within your S2E delivery system, you will need to understand: • The flow of water from S2E; • The products, their quality specifications and requirements, and services provided by the organisation as part of the S2E chain; • Responsibilities for management of the products and services offered by the organisation.
There are myriad water products and services, which an enterprise may have to deal with. Each of these water products and services will have its own set of stakeholders and stakeholder groups. Managers of enterprises need to balance the many competing demands of stakeholders across all water services and products. Before one can engage with stakeholders, it is important to understand: • Which ‘parties’ need to be identified as part of the S2E chain; and • Who has obligations to whom, and what are they?
Cross Jurisdictional River Basin Authority • Value Driver: Water Quantity, Water Quality, Infrastructure Management, Environment Protection • Instrument: Cross Jurisdictional River Management Act
Customers • Value Driver: Levels of Service, Value for Money • Instrument: Operating Licence – Customer Service Charter
Private Company • Value Driver: Financial • Instrument: Contract
therefore these contexts require an increased complexity of understanding as well as a review of business opportunity/ risk against the enterprise’s risk appetite and tolerance.
Table 2. Summary of legal ‘things to be aware of’.
Example of Governing Instrument
‘Protection of Health’ Acts, contracts, operating licences, operating requirements and reporting expectations
‘Protection of Environment’ Acts, operating licences
Contracts, ‘fair trading’ legislation
Work health and safety legislation
‘Infrastructure Safety’ Acts, contracts, operating licences
Supply continuity contracts
This section draws from information presented in PPB Advisory (2013).
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In summary, there are several types of legal Pricing Regulator • Value Driver: Financial contexts about • Instrument: Independent Pricing Act which enterprises Ministry of Environment need to be aware. • Value Driver: Environment Protection, Water Quality/Quantity • Instrument: Environmental Protection Act/Regulations While not intended Ministry of Health to be exhaustive, • Value Driver: Public Health Protection (Water Quality) some of the legal • Instrument: Public Health Act/Regulations contextual issues Water Enterprise Dams Safety Committee • Value Driver: All Corporate Objectives are summarised in • Value Driver: Infrastructure Management • Instrument: Various including Corporations Act 2001 (Cth), State • Instrument: Dams Safety Act, Dams Safety Table 2. However, Owned Corporations Act, Workplace Health and Safety Act, Committee Guidelines Commercial Contracts etc it must be emphasised that Figure 2. Examples of S2E stakeholders, value drivers and instruments (not intended to be comprehensive). an enterprise must In identifying key stakeholders, internal for creating a group of value drivers. understand its Objectives or functions of ‘enabling’ as well as external stakeholders should own context not only in terms of identifying acts are also a useful source of information be considered. legal and formal requirements, but also in (and are often used to help set a stateterms of keeping its information current. Identifying key stakeholder value owned corporation’s corporate objectives). RECENT LEARNINGS2 drivers is important as: Once the stakeholders and their This section covers the failure of • At a corporate level: value drivers have been identified, the the Hastie Group with many of the next step is to understand the formal – They have a direct influence over findings related to the overall failure of and legal obligations that apply in the an enterprise’s risk appetite and governance and management processes. jurisdiction in which those stakeholders management framework. Growing from a Sydney-based airoperate. Many water enterprises source conditioning business, the Hastie Group their water from multiple jurisdictions – They have a direct bearing on an became a provider of a wide range of and, therefore, must be aware of the enterprise’s compliance requirements. services and was a leading international broad range of their jurisdictional • At a project level: designer, installer and maintainer of requirements. An overview of S2E technical services to the building and analysis of stakeholders and their legal – They have a direct bearing on the infrastructure sectors. The Hastie and formal requirements is provided regulatory and formal framework Group had established operations in in Figure 2. Modern water enterprises within which a project is to be Australasia, the UK and the Middle may also often offer consulting services, conducted. East. Its customers included construction which can be provided not only in An enterprise’s objectives, missions companies, shopping malls, developers separate national jurisdictions but or values can be used as a starting point and various industrial corporations. also international jurisdictions, and
Table 3. ‘Good Guy’ and ‘Bad Guy’ approaches to corporate governance (WPW, 2012). Area
What the Good Guys Do
What the Bad Guys Do
Chief Executive Officers
Keep their egos in check, focus on the long term, demonstrate principled leadership, listen to the Board and to key stakeholders, are not also the Chairman of the Board.
Act like dictators, are often also the Chairman of the Board, ignore or collude with the Board, institute change of control bonuses or ‘golden parachutes’, pay themselves huge salaries, allow their egos to run riot, take reckless risks, focus on profits not principles.
Boards of Directors
Have sufficient relevant skills and understanding to review and challenge management performance, ask a lot of questions, vote against management as they see fit, rein in executive pay.
Golf with their pals (or worse, relatives) in management, vote the way management tells them, don’t bother asking any questions.
Are vocal on corporate governance issues, exercise their voting rights, find out about the company they are invested in.
At worst, nothing. At best, rely too much on ratings agencies, fail to fulfil due diligence, don’t bother voting.
Attitudes to Regulation
Satisfy or exceed regulatory requirements and demonstrate best practices in their industry by being as transparent as possible.
Look at regulation with contempt and analyse how they can best get around it.
Keep clear, simple, consistent and transparent accounts and pay their taxes.
Falsify results, overstate sales, inflate their stock price, hide losses, claim inappropriate expenses, evade taxes.
In 2012, the company was placed into administration and PPB Advisory was appointed to investigate. PPB Advisory notes the following as among the reasons for the Hastie Group’s failure: • Inadequate operational management processes; • Inadequate management reporting systems; • Inadequate Board reporting systems; • Inadequate control exercised by the Board over management. In addition, several issues were noted in terms of overall control deficiencies with the Hastie Group, including:
• Internal systems for project management were inadequate and not to industry standard; • There appears to have been a general culture of ignoring bad news; • The Audit and Risk Committee (ARC) was largely inactive; • The Board appeared not to have ‘an enquiring mind’ as to reliability of financial statements and overall reporting.
CONCLUSIONS In their blog, investment managers Willauer Prosky Willaeur (WPW, 2012) note the big difference in the approaches taken by companies with and without good corporate governance in place (Table 3). WPW (2012) note that good corporate governance leads to higher returns, in one study as much as 8.5%
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of shareholder value for companies in the highest decile of a governance index (Gompers, Ishii and Metrick, 2002). For public water utilities, high compliance is probably the bigger goal rather than financial returns in terms of corporate governance. However, key utility shareholders (government) would still be interested in returns on investment. To conclude, it is worth reflecting on the WPW (2012) approaches in Table 3 and working out where you and your enterprise sit. Does your CEO keep his or her ego in check? Does your enterprise have a culture of disseminating bad as well as good news? Is your enterprise vocal about good corporate governance? Do you have a sufficiently representative dashboard to monitor your performance and act in a timely manner? Do people in your enterprise know what their responsibilities and accountabilities are?
THE AUTHORS Dr Annette Davison (email: annette@riskedge. com.au) is Principal and Director at Risk Edge Pty Ltd, Killara, NSW. Bob Burford (email: bob.burford5@gmail. com) is Principal, BBTech Consulting, Kingston Beach, Tasmania. Dr Annalisa Contos (email: annalisa@atom. com.au) is Principal, Atom Consulting, NSW.
REFERENCES ASX Corporate Governance Council (ASX) (2014): Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations. 3rd Edition (www.asx.com. au/documents/asx-compliance/cgc-principlesand-recommendations-3rd-edn.pdf). Davison AD (2011): Enterprise Risk Management. Risk Appetite and Risk Tolerance: How Robust Are Yours? Water Journal, 38, 5, pp 65–68. Davison, A., Burford, B. and Alden, S. (2011) Duties and obligations of directors in public utilities. How well do you understand water quality? Water (Journal of the Australian Water Association) Volume 38(7): 44-46. Gompers PA, Ishii J & Metrick A (2002): Corporate Governance and Equity Prices. The Wharton Financial Institutions Center. Working Paper 02-032 (fic.wharton.upenn.edu/fic/ papers/02/0232.pdf). ISO 31000:2009 Risk Management – Principles and Guidelines (adopted in Australia as AS/ NZS ISO 31000:2009). NHMRC/NRMMC (National Health and Medical Research Council and National Resource Ministers Ministerial Council) (2011): Australian Drinking Water Guidelines. ISBN Online: 1864965118. PPB Advisory (2013): Hastie Group Limited and Specific Subsidiaries. Report by Administrators Pursuant to Section 439A of the Corporations Act 2001. January 2013 Joint and Several Administrators Ian Carson, Craig Crosbie and David McEvoy. WPW (Willauer Prosky Willaeur) (2012): What is Corporate Governance and Why Should We Care? wpwam.com/post.php?s=2012-0817-what-is-corporate-governance-and-whyshould-we-care (accessed 7 February 2013).
SUSTAINABLE SOLUTIONS FOR EMERGING ORGANIC POLLUTANTS IN BIOSOLIDS Two case studies about contamination of drinking water supplies resulting from land application of contaminated biosolids and organic amendments. B Clarke
ABSTRACT ‘Emerging organic’ pollution in biosolids is a complex issue facing the Australian water industry. The nature and types of pollutants found in biosolids are constantly changing as manufacturing and industry practices are modified, and there are no policy or regulation mechanisms for protecting the quality of biosolids from ‘unknown’ or ‘emerging’ pollutants. There are thousands of organic pollutants documented to be present in biosolids and there are potentially thousands more ‘unknowns’. In this paper two case studies are presented that discuss the contamination of drinking water supplies that resulted from the land application of contaminated biosolids and organic amendments. Rather than calling attention to this particular pollutant, they highlight the deficiency in the current biosolids regulation in Australia and throughout the world.
industry so that it will begin to debate the complicated issue of emerging organic pollutants in biosolids.
INTRODUCTION The land application of biosolids (treated sewage sludge) is a management option that is favoured in most Australian states (NRMMC, 2004) and internationally (EPCEU, 1989; US EPA, 1999; European Commission, 2001) as it takes advantage of the positive fertiliser and soilameliorating properties of the material (Katterman & Day, 1989; Lindsay & Logan, 1998). The Australian and New Zealand Biosolids Partnership (ANZBP) estimates that 1.3 million tonnes of biosolids (in dewatered form) are produced in Australia annually, most of which is applied to land in agriculture (60%), but this can vary significantly between states (DSEWPC, 2012). A significant amount of research has been completed to ensure that biosolids
are applied to land in the safest and most sustainable manner in terms of protecting public health and, to a lesser extent, the environment, focusing on pathogens and inorganic and organic pollutants (Pritchard et al., 2010). Research into organic pollutants in biosolids is extensive, with thousands of published articles reflecting the fact that sewage sludge (the precursor of biosolids) is a “sink” that concentrates contaminants through typical wastewater treatment processes (Clarke et al., 2010b; Clarke & Smith, 2011). The first priority pollutants investigated by researchers and regulators included organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), polychlorinated byphenyls (PCBs) and polychlorinated dioxins/furans (PCDD/ Fs) for the purposes of characterising typical levels, fate in the environment and risk profile. Fortunately, modern Australian biosolids typically contain
Three solutions are proposed to protect the quality of biosolids and ensure the long-term sustainability of the land application route for this material. They are: (1) regular national biosolids surveys for emerging pollutants; (2) the development of an Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Regulation program; and (3) the development and application of biological-based assays for generalised toxicity that can be related to relevant human/ecological endpoints.
Figure 1. Average concentration of ‘emerging’ contaminants in international biosolids (Clarke & Smith, 2011).
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‘Emerging organic pollutants’ will require constant vigilance by the water industry to ensure that the land application of biosolids does not place human health or the environment at risk from new organic pollutants in the future. The purpose of this paper is to facilitate a discussion within the water
Technical Papers low concentrations of these chemicals (often below the detection limit) and are unlikely to pose an issue for the land application of biosolids in Australia (Clarke et al., 2008; Clarke et al., 2010a). However, there are literally thousands of chemicals measured in biosolids, and new chemicals are constantly being introduced by the chemical industry that can be considered as potential contaminants (Clarke & Smith, 2011). To give a sense of perspective, there are over 88 million chemicals registered with the Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) and over 143,000 chemicals registered for use in the European Union (ECHA, 2009; Toussant, 2009). It is the sheer number of chemicals, and the constant introduction of new chemicals onto the market, that poses a continuing threat of contamination of biosolids. It is an issue that the water industry throughout the world is grappling with, and a driving factor behind the Swiss decision to ban biosolids being applied to land (Anonymous, 2001). The purpose of this article is to facilitate a discussion within the water industry so that it will begin to debate the complicated issue of emerging organic pollutants in biosolids. The structure of this article is in three parts: (1) Overview of international regulatory practices for organic pollutants in biosolids; (2) a Case Study of environmental contamination resulting from biosolids land application; and (3) Proposed Solutions.
OVERVIEW Only a few countries have organic contaminant limits in biosolids; these include: Australia, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, France, Germany and Sweden (Table 1). At present, the USA does not regulate organic pollutants in biosolids based on risk assessments and empirical data (US EPA, 1999). Australian states have independent jurisdiction over the environmental regulations on biosolids, but regulations in individual states are mainly derived from the NSW guidelines (NSW EPA, 2000). All guidelines include concentration limits for the organochlorine pesticides DDT (1 mg kg-1 dw), aldrin (0.5 mg kg-1 dw), chlordane (0.5 mg kg-1 dw), dieldrin (0.5 mg kg-1 dw), hexachlorobenzene (0.5 mg kg-1 dw) and lindane (0.5 mg kg-1 dw) (NRMMC, 2004). 1
Australia is the only country to regulate permissible levels of the OCPs in biosolids. The rationale on which the Australian organic pollutant limits is based is the maximum residue limits (MRLs) in grazing beef for international export (NSW Agriculture, 1991). However, recent studies have shown that OCPs are for the most part not detectable in modern Australian biosolids and, if present, are below guideline limits that would limit land application (Clarke et al., 2010a). It is argued that the inclusion of OCPs in Australian biosolids regulations is no longer necessary, and continued compliance monitoring is an inefficient use of money that could be spent in more effective, targeted analyses. In Europe, Directive 86/278/EEC regulating the agricultural use of sewage sludge (i.e., biosolids) does not include pollutant limits for organic compounds (EPCEU, 1986). However, while some European countries such as Germany did include organic compounds in national controls on sludge recycling strategies, others considered this to be unnecessary based on previous risk assessment evaluations. A proposal to revise Directive 86/278/EEC to include concentration limits for absorbable organically bound halogens (AOX; 500 mg kg-1 dw), linear alkyl benzene sulphonate (LAS; 2,600 mg kg-1 dw), di(2ethylhexyl)phthalate (DEHP; 100 mg kg-1 dw), nonylphenol ethyoxylate (NPE; 50 mg kg-1 dw), polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs; 6 mg kg-1 dw), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs; 0.8 mg kg-1 dw) and dioxin-like compounds (100 ng I-TEQ kg-1 dw) (European Commission, 2001) was proposed in 2001. At this point in time there is no agreement on which, if any, organic compounds should be regulated in Europe. Many countries agree that PCBs are an organic pollutant for which biosolids contaminant limits should be applied: viz. Australia, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, France, Germany and Sweden. The regulatory limits range between 0.2–1 mg kg-1 dw (Table 1). PCDD/Fs or ‘dioxins’ are one of the most contentious organic pollutants found in biosolids and often prompt negative public reaction and media responses due to the known toxicity of these compounds (US EPA, 2004). Several European countries regulate PCDD/Fs in biosolids and a limit value of 100 ng I-TEQ kg-1 dw for PCDD/
Fs was proposed in 2001 by the European Commission, but has yet to be adopted (European Commission, 2001). In Australia, EPA Victoria has an investigation limit of 50 ng WHO98 TEQ kg-1 dw for PCDD/Fs and dioxin-like PCBs, which is based on contaminated soil guidelines, but no other Australian states regulate these substances in biosolids (NEPC, 1999; EPA Victoria, 2004; NRMMC, 2004). The US EPA proposed a limit of 300 ng I-TEQ kg-1 dw, but determined that regulating PCDD/Fs in biosolids was unnecessary to protect human health because the concentrations were much smaller than critical threshold values derived from a quantitative risk assessment that models human exposure through plant, animal and water pathways when land-applying biosolids (US EPA, 2003). Australian research has shown that the levels of PCBs and PCDD/Fs in our biosolids are low when compared to international studies and are unlikely to pose a risk to human health and/or the environment (Clarke et al., 2008; Clarke et al., 2010a). Internationally, there are no policy or regulation mechanisms for ‘unknown’ or ‘emerging’ pollutants in biosolids. It is the complexity of the problem that has resulted in the current inadequate regulatory approach to emerging pollutants in biosolids throughout the world. It is also important to recognise that this issue will be constantly evolving and that we will need continual vigilance by committed professionals. The case studies described in the next section document what can happen when biosolids are contaminated, and applied to land.
CASE STUDY Fluorinated surfactants (referred to as PFCs) are a new class of organic pollutant present in a range of commercial products such as non-stick coatings, stain-repellent fabrics, paper packaging products and fire-fighting foams. The widespread use of PFCs, combined with their emissions characteristics and chemical properties, have resulted in a broad range of these substances being detected in the environment, wildlife and humans (Buck et al., 2011). In 2001, the first reports appeared documenting the accumulation of PFCs in the wildlife throughout the world (3M Environmental Laboratory, 2001; Giesy & Kannan, 2001). Since that time studies have shown that PFCs are present in
A variety of toxicity equivalency (TEQ) schemes have been applied to calculating the relative concentration of PCDD/Fs in samples based and are used through various regulations. The international system (I-TEQ) was later replaced the World Health Organisation model (WHO98 TEQ).
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Table 1. Standards for maximum concentrations of organic contaminants in sewage sludge mg kg-1 dw; except PCDD/Fs ng WHO05 TEQ kg-1 dw. AOX
∑DDT 1 OCPs 1B
Denmark EC (2000)A
50 - 100
Fluoranthene: 4 Benzo(b)fluoranthene: 2.5 Benzo(a)pyrene: 1.5
Germany Current (2002)
MBT+OBT F: 0.6 Tonalid: 15 Galaxolide: 10
Proposed but withdrawn and basis subject to review Individually applied to aldrin, chlordane, dieldrin, heptachlor (and the epoxide), hexachlorobenzene and lindane Sum of 9 congeners: acenapthene, fluorene, phenanthrene, fluoranthene, pyrene, benzo(b+j+k)fluoranthene, benzo(a)pyrene, benzo(ghi)perylene, indeno(1,2,3-c,d)pyrene. D Sum of 7 congeners: PCB 28, 52, 101, 118, 138, 153, 180 E Sum of 6 congeners: PCB 28, 52, 101, 138, 153, 180 F MBT - Mercaptobenzothiazole; OBT - 2-hydroxybenzothiazole References: (EPCEU, 1986; European Commission, 2001; Eriksen et al., 2009) A B
the human body, including Australians (Kärrman et al., 2006), with long half-lives in the human body of 2–9 years (Olsen et al., 2007), as well as being extremely persistent in the environment (e.g., the two most common PFCs, PFOA and PFOS, have environmental half-lives in water of >92 years and >41 years respectively (USEPA, 2014).
There are a number of examples where PFC contaminated waste was
The reported problems extend further. Unlike other persistent organic
pollutants that are often highly lipophilic (fat-loving), studies have shown because PFCs are water-soluble, their ability to transfer from the soil matrix into the plant material (the biotransfer factor) is high for potato, carrot and cucumber and cereal crops (Stahl et al., 2009; Lechner & Knapp, 2011). This transfer from ‘soils to crops’ provides a plausible explanation for the presence of PFCs in plant-based food stuffs (Noorlander et al., 2011). While PFCs are not normally present in dairy samples, they were present in dairy milk samples collected from the Decatur region of Alabama (Young et al., 2012) and in Japanese farmland animals (Guruge et al., 2008). This case study illustrates what can happen if new potential pollutants are not being monitored or regulated. Of even more concern is that land application of these fluorinatedcontaminated biosolids is compliant with Australian biosolids regulations, demonstrating a deficiency in Australian regulatory practice. Furthermore, without altered regulatory practices it is entirely possible that similar contamination incidents will continue. The German and USA incidents occurred following the use of organic material on land, and
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Human exposure to PFCs is thought to typically occur through the diet and includes fish (Noorlander et al., 2011), plant-based products and meat (Guruge et al., 2008), as well as potable water (Quiñones & Snyder, 2009). PFCs can act as development and reproductive toxicants (Kim et al., 2013), and have been associated with lowered birth weight and increased mortality in laboratory rat studies (Pinney et al., 2014) and decreased human sperm counts (Joensen et al., 2009). Unfortunately, modern wastewater treatment processes will not degrade most PFCs, and they will normally be released into the environment via the treated effluent and/or biosolids (Boulanger et al., 2005) creating a challenging management issue.
applied to land with serious negative impacts. One of the most notorious examples is Decatur, Alabama, USA, where biosolids contaminated with high levels of PFCs from the trade waste of fluorinated chemicals manufacturers, chemical users and landfill leachates were applied to agricultural land for over 10 years, polluting the local groundwater supplies (Renner, 2009). From a total of 51 groundwater well samples, 25% exceeded the USEPA’s health-based advisory limit for the PFC contaminant (Renner, 2009; USEPA, 2009a). This is not an isolated case. Industrial waste with high concentrations of PFCs incorporated into a soil improver by a recycling company and sold to farmers in Sauerland, Germany, caused substantial environmental pollution (Wilhelm et al., 2008). One town of 50,000 had its drinking water supply contaminated at levels greater than the USEPA’s healthbased advisory limit, which resulted in elevated body concentrations of PFCs 4–8 times higher than control populations, even a year after the exposure through drinking water had ceased (Hölzer et al., 2009).
Technical Papers demonstrate that we must be vigilant about the types of trade waste accepted into wastewater treatment plants, particularly when the resulting biosolids (or organic materials) are applied to land.
pollutants’ that are considered national priorities. This list would be evolving and kept up-to-date, based on the best scientific evidence, and target ‘emerging’ pollutants.
While analytical detection methods are capable of quantifying trace levels (pg/g) of organic contaminants, the cost can be several thousand dollars per complete analysis. Moreover, current analytical approaches only provide information for targeted compounds, and little is known about the unknown chemical constituents present in biosolids. For this reason, the State of California and the US EPA have recently advocated the use of high-throughput biological assays for the monitoring of water quality as a complementary testing paradigm for conventional analytical tests (Collins et al., 2008; Anderson et al., 2010). Samples recorded as positive would be further scrutinised to identify the specific chemical causing the positive hit. While quite a lot of work has looked at the application of biological assay for recycled water (Macova et al., 2011), very little work has looked at this concept in relation to biosolids. Biological assays could equally apply to biosolids management and add another level of safety to ensure that biosolids or other organic material applied to land doesn’t contain elevated levels of pollutants similar to those in the USA and Germany.
The easiest method of protecting the quality of biosolids is to ensure that the type and quality of trade waste entering each facility is known. While trade waste is normally strictly monitored, the examples mentioned demonstrate that trade waste can easily contaminate biosolids, particularly with new and emerging pollutants that are not part of regulatory frameworks. However, trade waste is not the only source of chemicals and the use of chemicals in the domestic environment is also known to contaminate biosolids (Clarke et al., 2010b). Knowing the exact nature of inputs in water treatment may not always be practicable, so a coordinated national response is suggested that has three components.
The first requirement for assessing risk is knowledge of typical concentrations of pollutants found in biosolids. The results of national sewage sludge/ biosolids surveys allow the industry to document typical concentrations, providing benchmark data across the country, and it is the author’s opinion that this provides the public with confidence that the industry is pro-actively engaged with the issue of organic contaminants. Similarly to practice in the USA, national biosolids surveys should be conducted in Australia every three to five years to measure the concentration of priority pollutants, with particular focus on knowledge gaps (USEPA, 2009b). Priority should be given to plants with a high proportion of industrial dischargers in their catchments, but should include samples from all regions of Australia with a mix of urban and rural treatment plants. The second proposal is for the development of an ‘Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Program’ for compounds having identified risk priorities, and for which there is little data in the Australian context. Conceptually this is similar to the US drinking water Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Regulation (UMCR) list that uses this policy mechanism to obtain important baseline concentration data for the entire country (US EPA, 1996). Rather than compliance monitoring for OCPs that are rarely present, the money should be allocated to monitoring ‘emerging
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CONCLUSION There are thousands of known organic pollutants documented in biosolids and potentially thousands more. The nature and types of pollutants will be constantly changing as manufacturing and industry practices are modified, so this is a longterm issue facing the water industry in Australia and throughout the world. ‘Emerging organic pollutants’ will require constant vigilance by the water industry to ensure that the land application of biosolids does not place human health or the environment at risk from new organic pollutants in the future.
THE AUTHOR Bradley Clarke (email: bradley.clarke@rmit. edu.au) is a lecturer in Environmental Science at RMIT University, specialising in organic pollutants in the environment. In particular he works on understanding the movement of organic pollutants through the environment to assess risks to public health and the
environment. After completing his PhD at RMIT University in 2008 (investigating the risks to public health from the land application of biosolids contaminated with persistent organic pollutants), he completed post-doctoral work at Imperial College in London and at the University of Arizona.
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Pritchard DL, Penney N, Mclaughlin MJ, Rigby H & Schwarz K (2010): Land Application of Sewage Sludge (Biosolids) in Australia: Risks to the Environment and Food Crops. Water Science and Technology, 62, pp 48–57. Quiñones O & Snyder SA (2009): Occurrence of Perfluoroalkyl Carboxylates and Sulfonates in Drinking Water Utilities and Related Waters from the United States. Environmental Science & Technology, 43, pp 9089–9095. Renner R (2009): Are Perfluorochemicals Widespread in Biosolids? Environmental Science & Technology, 43, pp 5164–5164. Stahl T, Heyn J, Thiele H, Hüther J, Failing K, Georgii S & Brunn H (2009): Carryover of Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA) and Perfluorooctane Sulfonate (PFOS) from Soil to Plants. Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology, 57, pp 289–298. Toussant M (2009): Editorial: A Scientific Milestone. Chemical and Engineering News, 87, 3. US EPA (1996): Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA, PL 93-523; amended PL 104-208). Washington, USA, US Environmental Protection Agency. US EPA (1999): Standards for the Use or Disposal of Sewage Sludge. 40CFR Part 503. Proposed Rule. Federal Register 64 (246): 72045-72062. US Environmental Protection Agency. US EPA (2003): Federal Register: Part III Environmental Protection Agency – Standards for the Use or Disposal of Sewage Sludge: Decision Not to Regulate Dioxins in LandApplied Sewage Sludge. Washington, US Environmental Protection Agency. US EPA (2004): Information Sheet 1 Dioxin: Summary of the Dioxin Reassessment Science. USEPA (2009a): Provisional Health Advisories for Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA) and Perflurooctane Sulfonate (PFOS) US Environmental Protection Agency. USEPA (2009b): Targeted National Sewage Sludge Survey Sampling and Analysis Technical Report. USEPA (2014): Emerging Contaminants – Perfluorooctane Sulfonate (PFOS) and Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA). Wilhelm M, Kraft M, Rauchfuss K & Hölzer J (2008): Assessment and Management of the First German Case of a Contamination with Perfluorinated Compounds (PFC) in the Region Sauerland, North Rhine-Westphalia. Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Part A, 71, pp 725–733. Young WM, South P, Begley TH, Diachenko GW & Noonan GO (2012): Determination of Perfluorochemicals in Cow’s Milk Using Liquid Chromatography-Tandem Mass Spectrometry. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 60, pp 1652–1658.
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Kärrman A, Mueller JF, Van Bavel B, Harden F, Toms L-ML & Lindström G (2006): Levels of 12 Perfluorinated Chemicals in Pooled Australian Serum, Collected 2002−2003, In Relation to Age, Gender and Region. Environmental Science & Technology, 40, pp 3742–3748.
Kim M, Son J, Park MS, Ji Y, Chae S, Jun C, Bae J-S, Kwon TK, Choo Y-S, Yoon H, Yoon D, Ryoo J, Kim S-H, Park M-J & Lee H-S (2013): In Vivo Evaluation and Comparison of Developmental Toxicity and Teratogenicity of Perfluoroalkyl Compounds Using Xenopus Embryos. Chemosphere, 93, pp 1153–1160.
water business NOV MONO COMPLETES PROJECT TO ENSURE QUALITY LEVELS FOR WELSH WATER NOV Mono has delivered a turnkey project to provide an extra level of protection for a major water and waste treatment plant in Pembrokeshire, Wales. The project centers on an EZstripTM progressing cavity pump, which is now being used on sewage transfer duties to ensure that the plant can guarantee the quality of the treated sewage under any flow conditions. Powered by a 4kW motor and operating at a duty speed of 226 rpm, the EZstripTM pump draws sewage from the centre of the final settlement tank at Dwr Cymru’s Crymych treatment plant. It pumps the sewage back up to the head of the treatment system, from where it returns back through the
filter bed to the final tank. This ensures that the plant’s biological filters do not dry out and remain effective, even in low flow conditions. This in turn helps to maintain the quality of the final sewage within the required boundaries, at all times. Mono was approached because of its ability to provide a full turnkey package, which covered all the stages, from initial site survey, design and manufacture, through to full mechanical and electrical installation. Working closely with the project’s civil contractor, Mono installed the pump, suction pipe, rising main, control panel, overpressure and high temperature devices and completed the final testing and commissioning. Both the electrical and mechanical work were handled by Mono, which has since completed a similar project at Dwr Cymru’s Lamphey treatment plant.
The progressing cavity pump at the centre of the Crymych project features Mono’s revolutionary EZstripTM design, which allows it to be maintained in-place. This provides a quick and easy way to disassemble, de-rag and maintain the pump without the need to disconnect suction and discharge pipework. This reduces a typical day-long maintenance operation down to just 30 minutes. Available in cast iron or stainless steel, and with a choice of rotor and stator materials, the pump requires only basic tools to maintain, and can be retrofitted into existing installations where a Mono Compact C pump has been used previously. For more details on the EZstripTM pump please visit www.mono-pumps.com.
NEW ECONOMY-COST FLOTATION LEVEL TRANSMITTER FOR FLOTATION CELLS FloLevel Technologies, an innovator of level measurement products, has launched a new self-cleaning Flotation Level Transmitter (FLT) that offers a simple, low-maintenance device for difficult environments, like flotation cells. The FLT will increase operational efficiency of the flotation cell because the acoustic technology is not affected by density, build-up, scaling, hydraulic imbalance affects, conductivity or sticky froth conditions. The FLT FloLevel™ Array will provide a reliable and repeatable pulp/ slurry level (froth depth) with constant high resolution because the acoustic technology is not affected by the ore slurry (guange) characteristic changes.
NOV Mono has delivered a turnkey project at Dwr Cymru’s Crymych treatment plant in Pembrokeshire, Wales, with the EZstripTM pump.
water SEPTEMBER 2014
“We have focused on developing a simpler, low-maintenance replacement of level technologies like displacement floats, pressure transmitters, conductivity probes, that are known to be affected by
Water Business environmental changes, resulting in increased costs for mineral recovery in the flotation cell. This new FLT technology will work with a higher repeatable accuracy in these tough environments,” says Robert Stirling, owner and inventor of FloLevel Technologies. The FloLevel system is easy to install from the top of the flotation cell and easy to calibrate. It comes with an adjustable 316SS bracket, flange mounting options and a colour display controller mounted in a stainless steel enclosure. It can measure all types of flotation cells, with a maximum control range of 6400mm (250”); resolution accuracy options available are 2mm (0.08”) 15mm (0.5”) and 25mm (1.00”). Various output capability options are available, like 3 x 4-20Ma, Modbus, ProfiBus, Foundation FieldBus, DeviceNet and Ethernet.
applied, ensures proper and safe valve operation at all times. Key features of the EasiDrive: • Low-cost alternative to permanent actuators; • No permanent power supply required; • Suitable for all climatic conditions; • Wide band torque capability with variable torque adjustment as standard; • Ideal for moving tight or partially-seized valves; • Adaptable to any size/type of valve; • Eliminates operator fatigue and greatly reduces the risk of injury; • No ‘kickback’ often associated with other torque devices; • Variable output torque – so no damage to valves by ‘over-torquing’; • Reduces work crew tasks to one-man operation; • Fully portable – can manage banks of valves with a single drive tool.
The FloLevel Array is suitable for all mineral recovery, eg: copper, molybdenum, gold, silver, lead, nickel, iron ore, coal, potash, oil sands, zinc, gypsum, etc.
EasiDrive is highly versatile and can be powered by air, electricity or battery, giving the user ultimate control over their preferred choice. It can also be custom designed to suit specific site requirements.
For more information please go to www.flo-level.com
Please go to www.smithflowcontrol.com for more information.
PORTABLE VALVE ACTUATION FOR WATER AND WASTEWATER INSTALLATIONS
FICO TECHNOLOGY HELPS YARRA VALLEY WATER AUTOMATE DEVELOPMENT APPLICATIONS
Operating valves in water and wastewater installations can be a laborious and dangerous task, especially if the valves are used infrequently, are corroded or have varying torque requirements.
FICO, a leading predictive analytics and decision management software company, has announced that Yarra Valley Water has automated 80% of its development applications since it implemented FICO’s powerful decision management technology. Using the FICO® Blaze Advisor® business rules management system, Yarra Valley Water has reduced the time required for land and water use application approvals from several weeks to two days – speeding up project time, improving customer satisfaction and reducing costs associated with processing paperwork.
Smith Flow Control’s EasiDrive portable valve actuator is designed specifically for these scenarios, by allowing operatives to operate valves without the need for dedicated valve actuators. With the EasiDrive the operator has absolute control. One person can efficiently drive multiple valves with a single tool, reducing fatigue and risk of injury and resulting in major cost and time savings. A unique feature is a ‘reaction kit’ that prevents a torque kickback, ensuring valve movement is always fully controlled and preventing operator injury and fatigue. In addition, the variable torque output feature, which prevents excessive torque being
The technology transformation at Yarra Valley Water – Melbourne’s largest water and sewerage utility, serving more than 1.7 million people and 50,000 businesses – was directed by Australian consultancy Wise Technology Management, and took three years to complete, from design to final testing. The original development application process
involved sending paper documents to various parts of the organisation for assessment and then returning decisions to the applicant by fax or mail. With the new easyACCESS system, applicants submit their applications online, and the FICO® Blaze Advisor® business rules management system processes the application, accessing core data including the GIS, property and encumbrance information. Yarra Valley Water led the business change program to streamline the ‘easyACCESS portal’ for the conveyancing, land development and plumbing industries. Its close collaboration with Wise Technology Management ensured that the data path and business processes were smoothly integrated into the FICO business rules engine. “Processing new applications had been a labour-intensive process and we felt developers were waiting too long,” said Sam Austin, general manager for sustainable development services at Yarra Valley Water. “We have made a significant effort to map our processes and decision-making. Previously, much of this resided in people’s heads or was scattered in documentation. Now, with the new system, this information is built into a robust, rules-based solution, yielding significant rewards for Yarra Valley Water and developers alike.” John Wise, principal at Wise Technology Management, added, “The new system has produced numerous operational savings, brought consistency to development application decisions and allowed Yarra Valley Water to plan the use of water, recycling and storage up to five years ahead.” With water industry standards basically the same across Australia, Yarra Valley Water’s rules engine is essentially a water industry module that can be universally applied. Other water utilities can use the system with only minor adjustments required for their own level of risk or specific water specifications. This technology transformation is closely tied to Yarra Valley Water’s vision as a progressive organisation with a strong sustainability and efficiency mission. Yarra Valley Water is invested in providing zero emission operations and Integrated Water Management Services such as recycled water to 100,000 customers in the highgrowth corridor to the north of Melbourne. The easyACCESS system helps the organisation do this by improving its ability to handle long-term planning, shifting resources from administration to front-line
SEPTEMBER 2014 water
water Business services and accurately billing developers and plumbers. “What Yarra Valley Water and Wise Technology Management have achieved is incredibly innovative,” said Dan McConaghy, president of FICO Asia Pacific. “They have managed to combine numerous complex data sets in a way that has modernised the process, increased user satisfaction and delivered a measureable return on investment. This is a great example of the value and power of analytics-based decision management technology at work.” Yarra Valley Water is Melbourne’s largest water and sewerage business. It provides water supply and sewerage services to over 1.7 million people and over 50,000 businesses in the northern and eastern suburbs. For more information please go to www.yvw.com.au
MATTRESSES FLOATED AT LOCAL SEWAGE TREATMENT PLANT Queensland Urban Utilities has launched a new trial that uses floating wetlands to purify wastewater at the Forest Hill Sewage Treatment Plant, near Laidley. The Queensland-first project involves growing wetlands on specially engineered plastic mattresses, which are then floated on purpose-built lagoons. Queensland Urban Utilities spokesperson, Michelle Cull, said it was a natural, costeffective and energy-efficient solution to purifying wastewater. “The roots of the plants dangle beneath the mattress, drawing out nutrients such as carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus,” she said. “The floating wetland is like nature’s kidney, cleansing the water by trapping sediment and removing toxins. It’s a great example of green engineering and also has
the potential to reduce operational costs at the plant.” This is Queensland Urban Utilities’ second trial of the floating wetlands, after a nest of turtles destroyed the pilot program last year. “Hungry Brisbane short-necked turtles feasted on the roots hanging underwater, killing the plants,” Ms Cull said. “This time around, we have installed nets and meshing to protect the floating wetland, without removing the turtles from their home. So far it seems to be working – the plants are thriving and early water quality test results are promising.” The trial will run until the end of the year, and if successful could be rolled out at similar regional sewage treatment plants. “Queensland Urban Utilities is committed to finding innovative, natural solutions to
wastewater treatment,” Ms Cull said. “We want to cater for growing populations while not only protecting the environment, but using its natural ability to our advantage.”
UNLEASHING THE CLEANING POWER OF THE BRECONCHERRY TEMPEST TANK WASHER Now available from Tecpro Australia, the innovative Breconcherry Tempest is a high-flow jetting tank washer specially designed with longer nozzles to maximise power and efficiency. Ideal for large vessels in the food, beverage, pharmaceutical, chemical, coatings and transport industries, the Tempest’s long nozzles produce four ‘heavy’ and highly focused jets that rotate in a spiral pattern to provide a powerful 360º coverage. Powered entirely by the wash, the rotating
Field • Laboratory • Process
• Chlorine • Turbidity
Instruments for up to 40 Other Parameters
For more information call 03 9769 0666 Fax: 03 9769 0699
water SEPTEMBER 2014
• pH • DO • EC • Turbidity
Web: www.hannainst.com.au & www.hannachecker.com.au
pH/ORP/EC Controllers & Probes
Water Business The pump is powered by a Kubota 0C95 9.5hp air-cooled diesel engine with integrated solenoid and remote control kit. A remote control, similar in size to a TV remote, controls each sprayer individually and can also start and stop the pump from up to 50m away.
head maintains an optimum jet peripheral velocity that maximises jet impingement and chemical dwell times. The short, efficient wash cycle minimises down time and saves on water, chemical and discharge water costs. The cleverly designed Tempest is constructed from only 48 parts, which can be dismantled and re-assembled in minutes. To service the unit, you only require the basic repair kit containing just 10 parts, making it extremely easy and cost-effective to maintain. The sleek external design and self-cleaning backwash nozzles reduce wear and tear and improve hygiene by ensuring product cannot settle on the cleaning head. New carbon-filled teflon bearings improve performance and eliminate contamination risks associated with wear and tear of ball bearings. Food/pharmaceutical grade Teflon bearings are also available if required. Lightweight and compact, the Tempest has a 1.5” BSP connection and requires a minimum manhole/flange opening of 210mm for unit insertion. At a pressure of 10 Bar and a flow rate of 390 L/min, the Tempest has a cleaning radius of 9.5m and wetting radius of 17m. It is suitable for working temperatures up to 95º C and ambient temperatures of up to 140º C. An ideal replacement for large spray balls, the Tempest is the perfect tank washer where high impact or saturation cleaning is required and where efficiency, durability and hygiene are essential. For more information about the Tecpro product range, please visit www.tecpro.com.au
TIPPERS GO TANKER Tanker manufacturers are gearing up for a boom in civil infrastructure and for when the El Niño kicks in. With large parts of the Eastern states already in drought, dust will represent a major environmental site problem with potentially far-reaching effects. Innovative tanker manufacturer, WTBB, has developed a range of portable tanker kits that can convert tippers or flatbed trucks into water carts. No vehicle modifications or structural changes are required. Based in Port Kembla in NSW, WTBB is a major supplier to the civil engineering and the rental industries. The flexible ‘Tipper-Tank’ package can turn a basic road maintenance or council tip truck into a road tanker in a matter of minutes. The base model is a 10,000 litre Rapid Spray poly tank equipped with an Aussie high-volume, high-pressure, 3” diesel drive pump. Spray heads, dribble bar and an integrated hose reel with fire-fighting spray nozzle provide flexibility for contractors.
WTBB sources its tank and pump combinations from Australian Pump Industries. That means that pumps and tanks are aligned in terms of capacity, size and suitability, adding to the overall effectiveness and efficiency of the system. The collaboration between Australian Pump Industries and WTBB has been important for both companies.
Brenden Bastian demonstrates the remote control for the versatile spray system on WBTT’s new Tipper-Tank. “Unusual seasonal conditions, like the developing El Niño, have created a huge demand for tankers for construction sites. With the Tipper-Tank kit, it’s not necessary to invest in purpose-built water trucks that may spend up to 50% of the year sitting idle,” said WTBB’s Brenden Bastian. Bastian is the Design Engineer and innovator behind the Tipper-Tank program, a project that’s been under development for the last five years. “We’ve added a number of user-friendly features to take the pain out of swapping from tanker to tipper and vice versa,” he said. “The heavy-duty galvanised steel base has integrated fork tyne slots for ease of movement.” The tank set has an optional jack-leg kit that means the tank can be unloaded from the truck without a crane or fork lift. The tank kit can be left jacked up and ready to be mounted on the truck when required. WTBB exclusively uses Aussie Pump tanker pumps because of their reliability and performance. The big 3” pump used on the tankers has excellent self-priming characteristics enabling the tanker to load from creeks, streams or dams where necessary. “These pumps will suck through a vertical lift of up to 8.4 metres,” said Bastian. “No other pump we try can even approach that kind of suction capability.” The base kit includes a heavy-duty Aussie model QP310SL high-pressure 3” pump that boasts flows of up to 1,100 lpm. Maximum head is 50m; that’s 75psi, providing loads of pressure for spray heads and dribble bar.
“We wanted equipment that won’t fail in the field and were impressed by Aussie Pumps’ five-year pump end warranty,” said Bastian. “The support we get from the engineering team at Aussie has been firstrate and the product’s performance in the field extraordinarily reliable.” Buying the complete Tipper-Tank kit means operators don’t have to worry about any changes to the tipper truck in either structural or system mods. “The operator’s manual explains how to use the jack-leg system. The operator can load and unload himself by a simple tip procedure that makes it easy,” said Bastian. A full technical specification is available from WTBB (wtbb.com.au). Information on a full range of the world’s best tanker pumps and tank/pump combinations is available from Australian Pump Industries at www. aussiepumps.com.au
NSF INTERNATIONAL EXPANDS PLASTIC PIPE TESTING CAPABILITIES NSF International has acquired the laboratory portion of Jana Laboratories Inc, an engineering consulting and laboratory testing firm that serves the global water and plastic pipe industries. Jana Laboratories’ 14-person laboratory staff and 20,000-square-foot laboratory in Aurora, Ontario, will be renamed NSF Janalab and become part of NSF’s global network of ISO/IEC 17025 accredited laboratories throughout North and South America, Europe and Asia. The acquisition expands NSF’s pipe testing capabilities, making them the largest provider of oxidative resistance stress testing in the world and the largest provider of hydrostatic performance stress testing in North America. NSF Janalab includes a 4,000-square-foot Advanced Pipe Test
SEPTEMBER 2014 water
Water Business Facility II, which has the largest oxidative resistance stress testing capacity in the world, as well as significant hydrostatic performance stress testing capacity. These capabilities, along with NSF International’s existing global laboratory capabilities, combine to make NSF one of the leading providers of performance and health effects testing and certification for the global plastic pipe industry. Jana will retain the consulting and training portion of its business under the name Jana. Plastic piping plays an essential role in the distribution of gas, drinking and wastewater worldwide. Global demand for plastic pipe is projected to rise 8.5 percent annually through 2017 to 11.2 billion meters. Testing and certification to internationallyrecognised standards verifies plastic piping products have met the required durability, performance and safety criteria for use in commercial and residential applications. NSF International has served as a global provider of testing and certification for the plastic pipe industry for nearly 50 years. NSF developed the American national standards for pipes and other products that treat or come into contact with drinking water and certified more than 60,000 products to these standards. In 1990, the US EPA replaced its own drinking water product advisory program with these NSF standards.
“The ELITE CMF350 provides a solution for those customers who desire peak performance and ultimate control for their critical and challenging applications,” said Bill Graber, vice president of marketing for Emerson’s Micro Motion business. Micro Motion® ELITE® CMF350 meters are available with Smart Meter Verification (SMV), which provides advanced diagnostics of meter health and performance without removing the sensor from the line or interrupting the manufacturing or measurement processes. The verification is quick, easy and can be executed remotely without a trip to the field, additional instrumentation, or data interpretation. SMV diagnostic reports are also increasingly recognised by third-party regulatory agencies, enabling work practice changes that save money and improve worker and environmental safety. The CMF350 extends the accuracy and reliability of Micro Motion® ELITE® flowmeters to a range of high-flow applications including gas and liquid custody transfer, process unit material balances in refineries, and critical chemical feedstock measurements. For more information on Emerson’s Micro Motion® ELITE® CMF350 Coriolis flowmeter visit: www.micromotion.com.
Emerson Process Management has introduced the Micro Motion® ELITE® CMF350 Coriolis flowmeter for line sizes from 3.5 to 4.5 inches (DN sizes of 90–125). The meter expands the ELITE family by providing accuracy and reliability for customers who require measurement of medium-to-large flow rates.
This meter is applicable in the oil and gas, refining, chemical and power industries. It is ideal for applications such as cementing, custody transfer of liquid and gas, production separation, basic and specialty chemicals, ethylene and crude production and manufacturing processes.
water SEPTEMBER 2014
GHD, one of the world’s leading engineering, architecture, environmental and construction companies, has been appointed by Townsville City Council as design consultant for the upgrade of utilities infrastructure in Townsville’s CBD. The project involves upgrading approximately 12km of water and sewerage underground pipework, construction of a new reservoir, as well as stormwater drainage and footpaths. Jose Foruria, GHD’s North Queensland Manager, says the company has a long history of delivering water infrastructure design projects in the region and looks forward to supporting the city’s ongoing growth. “GHD has been in Townsville since 1972 and our water services team for this project is comprised largely of long-term local residents. Our knowledge of the area and the water and sewerage infrastructure will be invaluable as the project progresses,” Jose says.
EMERSON EXPANDS FLOWMETER FAMILY
The Micro Motion® ELITE® CMF350 flowmeter features an optimum level of scalability and standardisation for the best fit in applications where flow rate accuracy with low-pressure drop and high turndown is critical. Specifically, this meter delivers 0.05% optional liquid mass flow accuracy and volume accuracy, ±0.35% gas accuracy and ±0.0002 g/cc liquid density accuracy. Maximum flow rates for this sensor reach 15,000 lb/min (409,000 kg/h).
GHD TO DESIGN TOWNSVILLE UTILITIES UPGRADE
“Constructability, and minimising the impact on the local residents and businesses will be key factors in this project. We will be working closely with Council to determine the most practical way of delivering the works,” he says. “Our team recognises the complexity of this project. We will be adopting an approach that is flexible, adaptable, insightful, robust and responsive in order to deliver a balanced project outcome for Townsville.
The ELITE® CMF350 Coriolis flowmeter.
“We are pleased to be working alongside Council on this project, and look forward to helping to deliver an improved water and sewerage network for the Townsville community.”
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Degrémont 13 DIX Engineering
Projex 22 Schneider 5 Stormwater360
Water Infrastructure Group
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This issue features technical papers on themes such as Water Treatment, Stormwater Treatment, Community Engagement, Water Recycling and Reus...
Published on Sep 15, 2014
This issue features technical papers on themes such as Water Treatment, Stormwater Treatment, Community Engagement, Water Recycling and Reus...