Water Journal : Water Journal June 2013
43 Ozwater Report Louise Wallace showed how catastrophic failure of an elevated storage tank in a remote community had led to a rethink in relation to addressing critical risks. Catherine Vero described a planning, technology selection and project model developed by the Power and Water Authority for remote Aboriginal communities, with an emphasis on effective communication. On the other hand, Madelaine Jenkins' thesis was that supporting communities to develop plans that they are able to advance on their own is resource intensive but, in the end, a better use of resources than a capital intensive x-or-fail approach, with far less inconvenience and impact on lives and livelihoods. Liz Pattison, however, made a case for direct utility involvement in service delivery for remote communities, and provided a long list of critical success factors in service delivery. Aditi Mankad reported on qualitative research into acceptability of managed aquifer recharge for stormwater intended for potable use. It seemed that, in Australia, assurance of quality and equitable distribution were more important than the water source as such. The authors noted the need for more empirical research in this area. Jennifer Price explained a complex experimental study into the impact of explanations about potable water reuse on consumers. She and her colleagues concluded that people who were undecided about the merits of potable reuse were likely to be more accepting if given a positive elaboration of the merits. Several authors addressed organisational issues. Kate Vinot argued that creating more innovative organisations is as much a science as an art. Organisations from both the public and private sector that are regarded as leaders in innovation do not leave innovation to chance: they take a systematic approach to developing innovative capabilities and their leaders create an environment in which innovation can succeed. Lindsey Brown's paper covered Melbourne Water's new approach to the use of planning instruments to regulate urban stormwater, noting that it would take some time for the learnings to be extracted. Peter Dennis provided evidence that a major project in Townsville was successful largely thanks to a philosophy of ensuring that those who started the project stayed with it till completion. Petra Kelly introduced plans for AWA to develop a water industry accreditation scheme that will both promote and reward the professional development undertaken across the sector. Christobel Ferguson described a catchment model for the Upper Murrumbidgee, which enables management to assess high-risk sub-catchments in regard to water quality, thus allowing for more effective resource allocation and better pathogen control. At the opposite end of the cycle, Glenn Shiell asserted that the Perth Long Term Ocean Outfall Monitoring (PLOOM) program provides support for the notion that ocean disposal is sustainable at current ows and secondary treatment levels. MINING AND RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT Hew Merret provided a perspective on the challenges and opportunities posed by fraccing in, or near, drinking water reserves and potential future water sources. He proposed an enhancement of existing proven drinking water quality management systems to ensure the protection of these vulnerable water sources and also described longer term data and research needs to ensure the protection of future sources of drinking water across WA. In complex hydrogeologic settings, Margaret Scott explained that 3D numerical modelling tools, along with dedicated monitoring networks, can provide scienti cally defensible insight to the development of groundwater management policies designed to mitigate, avoid or reverse detrimental impacts from development. Although models will vary for geographic regions, the methodology for developing these tools is consistent. Drawing on international experience and lessons learned has the potential to provide guidance as Western Australia tackles the complex issues associated with implementing cumulative effects assessments. Mike Harold had insights to share, based on Rio Tinto's experience with expansion of the Marandoo mine, mainly relating to the need for fully integrating, and having control over, all water uses on the mine. He stressed the need to have operations staff fully aware of risks associated with water. Through strategic water management, Rio Tinto is committed to identify, develop and communicate a clear pathway for the long-term stewardship of water resources. Jason Antenucci warned that caution is required in applying tted rainfall distributions and synthesised rainfall to sizing mine water infrastructure, owing to the impacts of long-term climate persistence at various sites. Maps of persistence can be generated, using BOM data, to determine regions of Australia where these features need to be considered in the design of mine water infrastructure. The certainty that a design actually has a 95 per cent reliability (or similar) is highly questionable, as the presence of long-term persistence or the occurrence of events at the tails of the distributions can easily change the probabilities, particularly as our rainfall records are relatively short. A tubular bioreactor to remove hydrogen sul de from the Wairakei geothermal power station cooling water was explained by Rob Fullerton. Performance has, in its rst six months, exceeded expectations, reducing the sul de load on the Waikato River considerably. It is possible to treat retort sour water from oil shale processing without the need to use energy and chemical intensive steam stripping processes, according to Graham Lea. The revised process involves multiple steps due to the highly contaminated nature of the water. As well as producing high-quality permeate for recycling in the facility, valuable ammonium salts can be recovered. The value of the captured by-products more than compensates for the high cost of treating retort sour water and the RO permeate is a vital resource in an arid climate.
Water Journal May 2013
Water Journal August 2013