Water Journal : Water Journal June 2013
WATER JUNE 2013 22 Young Water Professionals REAPING THE REWARDS FROM OZWATER Jo Greene -- AWA YWP National Committee President First I'd like to say a big thank you to the Ozwater'13 Committee for hosting a fantastic conference in Perth this year. It was a busy but thoroughly enjoyable and rewarding few days. Perth is a beautiful city, and the facilities at the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre are world-class. We kicked off with the Young Water Professionals workshop on Monday; I then spent Tuesday as Assistant Chair in the Water Reuse and Stormwater stream. This was followed by the YWP breakfast on Wednesday morning, I presented my paper in the afternoon, attended the Gala Dinner that night, in addition to acting as Assistant Chair at the conclusion of presentations each day, then nished by giving an address at the Closing Ceremony on Thursday. This year's Ozwater theme was: Competing for Water in a Climate of Change. Re ecting this, the theme of the YWP workshop was: Valuing Our Scarce Resource: Competition for Water in Remote and Regional Areas. We heard from three speakers: Doug Brown, Hydrogeologist in Mine Water Management, Peter McAllister, Regional Manager, North West Region Water Corporation, and Danielle Brunton, WASH Specialist, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). All three speakers were inspiring, but of particular note was Danielle's account of her time overseas working with refugees in camps and trying to provide water and sanitation to thousands of displaced people. Following the speakers there were some games to break the ice and we then formed groups for an interactive session to discuss the needs of each part of the community, and ways in which communities in regional areas can work together to implement sustainable water management practices. We were entertained by the 'greenies' group and the 'residents' group, who had made placards and spent quite a bit of time shouting slogans at the prospective 'developers'. The opportunity to act as Assistant Chair was very rewarding. The standard of the 10 presentations I attended on Tuesday was high. Attendance was good and the question and discussion time following each speaker was always stimulating. The purpose of the meetings held at the end of each day was to get the Assistant Chairs to communicate the key messages and themes that they had picked up through their day in each stream. I then collated these on Thursday to go into my address at the Closing Ceremony. I was excited to present my rst paper at conference. Titled Effectiveness and Opportunities in Water Ef ciency During Non-Drought in the Lower Hunter, it described three studies that were commissioned by my employer and that I had project managed. It was well received, with lots of questions and some interesting discussions of ine the next day. The Gala Dinner was the perfect opportunity to frock up and network, and as always the food and entertainment were spectacular. Congratulations to Kate Simmonds, winner of the AWA Young Water Professional of the Year Award, which was presented on the night. The award was presented to Kate for her contributions to the water industry through her role on the AWA Victorian Branch Committee, her service on the Sustainability Specialist Network, as well as her professional achievements with CH2M Hill Victoria.
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