Water Journal : Water Journal November 2011
crosscurrent 14 NOVEMBER 2011 water regular features The Queensland Cabinet has been briefed by the Bureau of Meteorology on what to expect from the coming wet season. Premier and Minister for Reconstruction, Anna Bligh, said the Cabinet also received an update on the Government's implementation of the Commission of Inquiry's recommendations. The Premier said that key actions by the Government included a review of the Wivenhoe, Somerset and North Pine Dams Flood Mitigation Manuals; a clear line of command to lower the dams and a review of disaster management plans of 22 local governments that are susceptible to flooding. Queensland's Water Utilities Minister Stephen Robertson has officially opened Dalby's second reverse osmosis plant, which will bolster the region's water supplies. Mr Robertson said the $6.4 million plant was vital to support the population growth in the region and the burgeoning resources industry, but also to protect the community from future droughts. Unitywater has teamed up with the University of Queensland (UQ) and infrastructure services company, Veolia Water Australia, to optimise water recycling technology and investigate new methods of purifying treated wastewater. As part of a project funded by Veolia, Seqwater and UQ, research undertaken by the University's Advanced Water Management Centre (AWMC) evaluates the impact of water quality on the operation of reverse osmosis membranes for wastewater recycling with a purpose-built pilot plant at Caboolture in South-East Queensland. The SEQ Water Grid's Luggage Point Advanced Water Treatment Plant has won the 2011 International WateReuse Project of the Year award. Water levels in the Ibis Dam at Irvinebank will be lowered by a further three metres following independent verification that the dam is structurally unsound. Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) Director-General, Jim Reeves, said DERM became concerned about the dam, built in 1907, after core drilling by SunWater in June 2010 found the dam wall was not a mass concrete structure, as previously thought. Western Australia Water Corporation Chief Executive Officer Sue Murphy has announced that Programmed Facility Management (Programmed FM) had been chosen as the utility's new partner to provide operations and maintenance services within Perth and Mandurah. She said the new partnership would take the form of an Alliance agreement of which the Corporation had extensive experience. A new $37.2 million wastewater treatment scheme has been officially opened in Broome to help cater for the town's growth and increase the use of recycled water. Water Minister Bill Marmion, who opened the scheme in Broome, said the project included a new treatment plant, a pump station in Roebuck Estate and a 9.9km pipeline. Southern Seawater Desalination Plant near Binningup (WA) is now open. Parliamentary Secretary for Urban Water, Senator Don Farrell said the completion of Western Australia's second major desalination plant will assist the state to meet its water security needs. The Australian Government contributed $18.4 million during initial construction of the plant to help ensure any future expansion is as cost effective and efficient as possible. Australia's first Desal Discovery Centre and dedicated national Desal Research Facility have been opened by WA Water Minister Bill Marmion at the National Centre of Excellence in Desalination. NCEDA's new $5 million national facilities at Murdoch University's Rockingham campus will be used by the Centre's scientists from 13 universities and CSIRO working with industry to improve desalination technologies, and are the result of unique collaboration between state and federal governments. Australian Capital Territory A National Climate and Water Briefing was held in Canberra last month. The two-page summary and full presentation are available on the Bureau of Meteorology website at: www.bom.gov.au/water/newEvents/presentations.shtml South Australia Up to 45 litres of groundwater will be saved every second through an important project to protect the iconic Great Artesian Basin. Work has now begun in South Australia on the third phase of the Great Artesian Basin Sustainability Initiative that will help protect the precious water resource. The Australian and South Australian Governments have finalised an agreement for Australian Government funding of $228 million towards the expansion of the Adelaide Desalination Plant to 100 gigalitres, as part of its total commitment of $328 million towards the plant. The Clayton Regulator in the Goolwa Channel will be removed following an agreement between the Australian and South Australian Governments. Federal Minister for Water Tony Burke and the South Australian Minister for the River Murray, Paul Caica, have announced funding of more than $3.8 million to restore the connectivity through the Goolwa Channel. A similar amount will be contributed by the Murray-Darling Basin Authority towards the project. Early works are now underway along Old Port Road on the $58.6 million Waterproofing the West -- Stage One project. This project will allow more harvesting, treatment, storage and supply of stormwater and will also mitigate flood risk in Adelaide's western suburbs.
Water Journal December 2011
Water Journal September 2011