Water Journal : Water Journal July 2012
crosscurrent 12 JULY 2012 water regular features An updated water allocation plan for the Ord River area will support hydropower and irrigation expansion while protecting the downstream river environment. The Ord Surface Water Allocation Plan: for public comment, released by the Department of Water, outlines water availability and licensing policies for the area. The department invites public comment until 14 September 2012. Victoria Many of Victoria's water authorities have released consultation papers on their draft water plans for public comment, which includes their plans for future investment in water and sewerage infrastructure. The four-month consultation period will give all Victorians the chance to review their local water plan and proposed water pricing, which will cover proposed services and prices for the period from 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2018. Minister for Water, Peter Walsh, said he strongly encouraged all members of the community to provide comment on the draft plans, which will outline the pricing structure for water. Modelling by the Victorian Coalition Government has revealed the health of the Murray River can be secured using far less water than that proposed under the Murray-Darling Basin Plan. Water Minister, Peter Walsh, said the findings would save the Commonwealth up to $1.3 billion if they were adopted. The Government of Victoria has signed an agreement with Mobil Oil Australia to stop the discharge of industrial wastewater into the Yarra River. Petroleum producer Mobil Oil Australia has held an Environment Protection Authority (EPA) licence to discharge its wastewater produced at Spotswood into the Yarra River since 1973. But, in a 2011 review of licensing arrangements, EPA entered into discussions with Mobil to investigate appropriate options to amend Mobil's Spotswood infrastructure to comply with the Environmental Protection Act 1970 (VIC) and the State Environment Protection Policy on wastewater discharge. Minister for Water, Peter Walsh, has announced Chris Chesterfield as Chief Executive Officer of the newly-established Office of Living Victoria. The Office of Living Victoria has been created by the Victorian Government in response to independent advice from the Living Victoria Ministerial Advisory Council contained in the Living Melbourne, Living Victoria Implementation Plan. Mr Walsh said the Government supported the vision outlined in the implementation plan for creating a smart resilient water system for a liveable, sustainable and productive Melbourne."The Office of Living Victoria will be established to drive reform by coordinating water and urban planning," Mr Walsh said. The average residential customer with East Gippsland Water will see no real increase in their water bill for five years under a proposal put forward by the corporation. Prices will only adjust in line with inflation. This is one of a number of proposals put forward by East Gippsland Water in its draft Water Plan for 2013--2018, Water Plan 3, which is now available for customer and stakeholder comment. New South Wales The National Water Commission and the NSW Office of Water have funded a large-scale investigation into the chemical characteristics of groundwater to improve our understanding of the possible impacts of high-volume groundwater pumping on groundwater quality. The studies, undertaken in collaboration with consultant Parsons Brinckerhoff, took place in the high- yielding aquifers of the Namoi, Macquarie, Lachlan, Murrumbidgee and Murray valleys, all within the NSW part of the Murray-Darling Basin. Over 1,000 groundwater samples were taken from Government-owned monitoring bores and private production bores. The Sydney Metropolitan Catchment Management Authority (SMCMA) is upgrading its Catchment Action Plan (CAP) for the Sydney region. The CAP is the overarching document guiding natural resource management in the region and is central to the delivery of natural resource management in Sydney. A new feature of the CAP is that it is to consider the long-term resilience of Sydney and its natural resources. To this end, consideration will be given in the CAP to social/cultural, economic and governance impacts as well as environmental and natural resource issues. SMCMA would like to invite you to provide input in to the new CAP by completing an online survey. Abigroup has been awarded a $40 million project by the Hunter Water Corporation to build a new water recycling plant as part of the Hunter Treatment Alliance program of works. The Kooragang Industrial Water Scheme (KIWS) involves constructing a new water reuse plant that will use Micro-filtration Reverse Osmosis processes with a 9ML/day output, including provision for a future expansion to 12ML/day. Abigroup's Ian Hutchinson, who is the Hunter Treatment Alliance Program Manager, said, "I'm very excited that Hunter Water Corporation Board has decided to deliver the KIWS project using the Hunter Treatment Alliance delivery model." Deep cracks in soil that appear during long dry spells can remain open underground even after they have visibly sealed on the surface, a new study has found. Researchers at the University of NSW have developed an innovative technique for examining the flow of water through cracks in soil by measuring electrical resistivity. It was discovered that even when cracks appear visibly closed on the surface, they often remain open underground. The exact time when underground cracks close can now be detected, which will have big implications for agricultural management of water. Sydney Water and the Water Infrastructure Group were praised for their commitment to safety when presented with a national award at the AWA National Water Awards in May 2012. Sydney Water Managing Director, Kevin Young, said the AWA National Safety Excellence Award 2012 was proof of the organisation's strong safety record while rehabilitating the Bondi Ocean Outfall Sewer, a key part of Sydney's infrastructure.
Water Journal August 2012
Water Journal May 2012