Water Journal : Water Journal June 2013
WATER JUNE 2013 8CrossCurrent International Of cials have announced that construction work on what is slated to be the world's biggest hydroelectric project will commence in October 2015 in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The announcement of a formal commencement date comes after of cials from the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Africa met in Paris. The majority of the nine billion people on Earth will live with severe pressure on fresh water within the space of two generations as climate change, pollution and over-use of resources take their toll, scientists have warned. The world's water systems would soon reach a tipping point that "could trigger irreversible change with potentially catastrophic consequences" more than 500 water experts warned as they called on governments to start conserving the vital resource. USAID has released its rst global water and development strategy, which stresses that sustainable use of water is critical in saving lives, promoting sustainable development and achieving humanitarian goals. The strategy aims to save lives and advance developments through improvements in water supply, sanitation and WASH programs, and through sound management and use of water for food security. To better understand how bacteria impact the environment a former University of California, Riverside graduate student spent nearly a year building a system that replicates a human colon, septic tank and groundwater and "fed" the colon three times a day during week-long experiments to simulate human eating. Ian Marcus, who recently earned his PhD from the UC Riverside Bourns College of Engineering, says discussion of the research often leaves people a bit perplexed. Thames Water has announced that MWH Global will assume the role of Program Manager, participating in its 'Super Alliance' of industry leading organisations. The Alliance will deliver a £2 to £3 billion program of works developing and enhancing Thames Water's asset base in the Asset Management Program (AMP6) regulatory period. A study in which authors compared the water supply histories of four cities -- San Diego, Phoenix, San Antonio and Adelaide, Australia -- says the lessons learned were not just looking to urban water conservation, recycling and desalination as solutions. According to the study, saving just ve to 10 per cent of agricultural irrigation in upstream watersheds could satisfy a city's entire water needs. National The rst Sustainable Australia Report has been welcomed by the Minister for Water, Tony Burke, as a major contribution to the Government's efforts to achieve a sustainable Australia. Developed by the National Sustainability Council, the report includes a set of sustainability indicators to be reported against every two years, including natural capital -- climate, atmosphere, natural resources, water, waste, land, ecosystems and biodiversity. The Murray-Darling Basin Authority has announced the regional community representatives set to take on new roles as members of the Basin Communities Committee. The new members will formally start their roles on 1 July 2013, which will involve providing a community perspective to the Murray--Darling Basin Authority on Basin-related matters. The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) says it is considering a number of changes to its water quality policy to make it easier for people to comply. Under the current policy, local councils, businesses and primary producers must meet speci c water quality criteria for any waste discharged into waterways. However, the authority's Steven Mudge says it wants to change the policy to bring the state in line with national guidelines. He says it is looking at creating more exible rules. The EPA is reviewing and responding to submissions on the proposed changes. The nation's largest irrigator, the Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder (CEWH), has told a Senate Estimates hearing it has delivered 2,359 gigalitres of water to the environment in its rst ve years of operation. The CEWH manages and deploys the Commonwealth's vast parcel of water, worth $1.89 billion, for environmental purposes throughout the Murray--Darling Basin. It was allocated 2,812 gigalitres of water over the same ve-year period. Of the water that was not delivered, some was lost to evaporation, some has been carried over and some will yet be used this year. The Australian Greens and NSW farmer Penny Blatchford are calling on the 'old' parties to support the Greens' campaign to give landholders the right to say no to coal seam gas mining on their land. Australian Greens Leader Senator Christine Milne said Tony Abbott, Warren Truss and Julia Gillard were refusing to stand up for landholders who don't want coal seam gas mining on their land. Australian farms used a total of 9,007 gigalitres of water in 2011--12, a 19 per cent increase on the previous year; 8,174 gigalitres (91 per cent) of this was for irrigation. The area irrigated increased by nine per cent to 2.1 million hectares. Cotton accounted for 25 per cent of all irrigation water used, and 19 per cent of the area irrigated in Australia. Seventy- two per cent of irrigation in Australia occurred within the Murray--Darling Basin in 2011--12. Consecutive years of good seasonal rainfall resulted in an increase in water availability for agriculture in the Basin. Across Australia, most agricultural water was sourced from irrigation channels. New South Wales The NSW Government has released the NSW Floodplain Harvesting Policy to improve oodwater management and provide more certainty for irrigators. The policy provides a framework to manage water extraction from oodplains for the bene t of irrigators and the environment. NSW Minister for Finance and Services, Greg Pearce, has announced a $32 million upgrade to the Warriewood Wastewater Treatment Plant is complete. Mr Pearce said the upgrade was vital to meet the long- term population growth expected in Sydney's Northern Beaches.
Water Journal May 2013
Water Journal August 2013