WATERMATTERS VICTORIAN WATER INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION NEWS Volume 8 Issue 1 Summer 2007 2005/2006 VICTORIAN INSIDE Page 2005/2006 Victorian Water Review Cover From the CEO’s Desk 2 WATER REVIEW Gippsland Water Helps Car Washes 2 T he 2005/2006 Upcoming VicWater Events 2 edition of the Bushfires and Drinking Water 3 Victorian Water Review is now Very Dry Victoria 3 available. For the first time the Victorian Inflows at Record Low Levels 3 Water Review is Holiday Water Restrictions 4 available free of charge on the Water Efficiency Task Group 4 VicWater website at Nathan and Elizabeth Tie the Knot 4 http://www.vicwater. gov.au/?sectionid=659 Goulburn-Murray Award Winners 5 The Victorian Water Methven Answers Water Crisis 5 Review continues to Task Group Topics 6 display how far the water industry has First Mildura Irrigation Trust 6 progressed, especially in the quality and Dams Working Group 7 level of service Vic & NSW Finalise Water Trading 7 provided to its customers. Importantly Millions of Litres Saved 8 the report also Promoting the Water Industry 8 highlights areas of concerns for the Water Aid Australia 8 industry and where improvements in performance need to be made and maintained. Suite 1, Level 6 Key industry performances in 2005/2006 include: 2 Collins Street, Melbourne, Victoria 3000 S 99% of the State’s population received water meeting E. coli standards. T: (03) 9639 8868 S Lost Time Injury Frequency Rate decreased to 7.7 (from 11.5 in 2004/2005). F: (03) 9639 8860 S State average water consumption per residential property increased to E: email@example.com 204kL/residential property (from 201kL in 2004/2005). www.vicwater.org.au S 18.5% of the State’s wastewater was recycled (from 15.8%. in 2004/2005). S The water industry spent $738.4 M on capital expenditure programs (from If you’d like to have an article considered for $792.5 M in 2004/2005). inclusion in Water Matters, email the finished This year the Victorian Water Review contains a reduced number of KPI’s but has article to firstname.lastname@example.org included Case Studies that provide important information on water businesses’ Due dates: 15 January, 15 April, 15 July performance throughout the year. Congratulations must be given to the Performance and 15 October or call T: (03) 9639 8868 Measurement Task Group for their time and effort in producing this year’s Review. WATER MATTERS SUMMER 2007 1 ʻʻ from ʻʻ steve bird the CEO’s desk a difficult time for water businesses These three major events continue to and their customers and has grow and are a valuable source of highlighted the importance of clear information and networking within customer communication. the industry. One very positive outcome has been W I would also like to wish former elcome to the summer the increased awareness of water VicWater staff member Jason edition of Water Matters. I efficiency and the very genuine efforts Walker all the best for in his new am sure that most people being shown by most Victorians to role at the Plastics and Chemicals took the opportunity for a break over the reduce their water consumption. I am Industries Association (PACIA) as the Christmas period and have returned fresh sure that this increased education and and ready for an exciting 2007. There Sustainability Manager. Jason has left reduced consumption will help us get will definitely be a range of challenges to through this critical period until inflows after four years at VicWater and has keep us all well occupied during the year. return to a more ‘normal’ pattern. made a valuable contribution to the Unfortunately, the year commenced with industry during that time. A quick reminder of the dates for the extremely severe bushfires that have main VicWater conferences planned for On a much brighter note, VicWater is heavily impacted on many individuals this year: pleased to welcome Leanne Cini who and water businesses. Our sympathy has been appointed to fill Jason’s goes to all those who have suffered from S Finance Managers Workshop vacancy. Leanne has been working at those events over recent weeks. 31 May and 1 June 2007 Coliban Water as a Project Engineer and The start of 2007 sees a continued S Sustainability Seminar will bring a range of skills to VicWater. increase in the levels of water restrictions 15 May 2007 across the State as the traditionally dry I look forward to meeting with many summer months have an impact on the S VicWater Annual Conference of you in our Task Groups and other already low water storages. It is certainly 13 and 14 September 2007 activities during 2007. GIPPSLAND WATER HELPS THE CAR WASH INDUSTRY GET THROUGH WATER RESTRICTIONS W orking with the Australian Car with owners of car wash businesses. other water conservation measures Wash Association (ACWA), The voluntary scheme rates the amount such as using tank water instead of Gippsland Water recently of potable water used in an average car mains water. hosted a presentation about a new Car wash from one to five stars. The Car Gippsland Water Chief Executive Officer Wash Rating Scheme, inviting local car Wash Rating Scheme involves a John Mitchell said that Gippsland Water wash businesses to attend. The scheme thorough audit process, as well as encourages businesses and their has been proactive by contacting car providing signage so that the public can customers to save water, and aims to wash businesses and organising a clearly identify which businesses are educate the car wash industry to be presentation about the Car Wash Rating taking part in the water saving scheme. water efficient and adhere to water Scheme before water restrictions take restrictions that are currently in place. For instance, premises with four star full force. “We are taking a proactive signage would mean that the business approach, helping businesses meet Adam Stone and Dianne Ross from the uses under 70 litres of potable water per requirements of water restrictions, ACWA spoke at the presentation to car for a standard wash. Businesses and ensuring that it is fair and equable discuss the Car Wash Rating Scheme also receive half a star if they take up across the board,” Mr Mitchell said. UPCOMING VICWATER EVENTS FINANCE MANAGERS WORKSHOP Arrangements have commenced for the Finance Managers workshop to be held on 31 May and 1 June 2007 at Crest on Barkly in St Kilda. Planning for the event was a feature of the Financial Issues Steering Committee (FISC) Meeting of 6 February 2007. SUSTAINABILITY SEMINAR The Sustainability Seminar will be held on 15 May 2007 in Melbourne. The Sustainability Task Group met in December 2006 to start planning this annual event. 2 WAT E R M AT T E R S SU M ME R 2 0 07 BUSHFIRES AND THE IMPACTS ON DRINKING WATER SUPPLIES W ater users in north eastern areas burnt in the recent bushfires the East Water, Goulburn Valley Water, Victoria should be on the look likelihood of this type of event is now Catchment Management Authorities out for changes in water quite high. A large rainfall event, or and government agencies are working quality in streams following storms or storm, could trigger a large flow of together to monitor changes to water rainfall events. The recent bushfires poor quality water into one of a number quality. People drawing water have removed protective vegetation of water storages in the region. The directly from streams are advised to from catchments. Even relatively small falls of rain can wash ash and sediment consequences of this could include monitor their supply source and make into streams and affect the quality of reservoir siltation, fish deaths or algal alternative arrangements if water water supplies. With the very large blooms. Goulburn Murray Water, North quality deteriorates. VERY DRY – VICTORIA IN 2006 T he Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) normal. There were some severe consecutive year with below normal has released its annual climate frosts during the year. rainfall. Both day-time and night- summary of Victoria. The key time temperatures averaged slightly findings were: S A feature of 2006 was the frequency above normal, although there were of intense anticyclones that affected some notable individual extremes S Victoria experienced a very dry Victoria’s weather. When these - for example, the earliest 30 degree+ year in 2006, with a number of anticyclones developed well to the day in Spring, the earliest 35 degree+ places receiving record low annual south of the continent, they drove day in Spring, and the coldest totals and a number of other places some very cold air across the State. Christmas Day on record. receiving less than half their usual By contrast, on other occasions they allocation. developed over the Tasman Sea, S Record lowest yearly total rainfall and drove hot air from the inland was experienced at Nhill, Lake S Day-time temperatures averaged across Victoria. Eildon, Ballarat, Sale, Bairnsdale mostly about a degree above nor- and Hamilton. mal, whilst night-time temperatures S In Melbourne 2006 will be averaged about half a degree below remembered for being the 10th INFLOWS AT RECORD LOW LEVELS T he extreme drought currently According to the latest update, inflows reflected in the near-neutral rainfall being experienced in many parts for the season June to November 2006 outlook for the 3 months December to of Australia is unprecedented in have been only 610 GL which is 56% February 2006. its duration and severity. Drought of the previous recorded minimum of In Melbourne, the last 10 years has seen conditions throughout large areas of the 1090 GL observed in 1902 and only streamflows to the reservoirs being Murray-Darling Basin are worsening 7% of the long-term average of 8400 below average. For spring 2006 when with rainfall in some catchments, over GL for the same period. The Bureau reservoirs usually recover, rainfall in the nine months March to November of Meteorology has advised that the the catchment was 53% of the weighted 2006, the lowest on record. According El Niño continues to strengthen and average of the past 30 years. The best to the latest Drought Update from responds to the question “What does spring month was November, with 69% River Murray Water, an internal this mean in Australia?” with “Generally of the average rainfall, with October the business division of the Murray- speaking, the main impact on rainfall is worst, recording only one-third of the Darling Basin Commission, released during winter and spring, with a switch average rainfall. in December 2006, higher than towards wetter conditions having been average temperatures and common in January or February exceptionally dry catchments have during previous El Niño events.” Such kept inflows to the Murray River a switch to wetter conditions is not system at record low levels. guaranteed, however, and this is WATER MATTERS SUMMER 2007 3 HOLIDAY MAKERS AND WATER RESTRICTIONS O ver the summer period VicWater resources in regional Victoria during holidays. Information on the different embarked on a major advertis- the holiday season. The campaign saw stages of water restrictions and links to ing campaign to increase the advertisements placed in Melbourne water businesses across the State can awareness of water restrictions that newspapers as well as VicWater be found on the VicWater website may be in place at holiday destinations. Chairman, Dennis Cavagna speaking www.vicwater.org.au. Holiday makers have the potential to frequently to the media on the need place increased pressure on water to continue to save water whilst on WATER EFFICIENCY TASK GROUP INFORMATION BULLETINS T he Water Efficiency Task Group water, and also identifies opportunities The Information Bulletins also contain has produced two Information for water savings and available useful useful links to relevant projects and Bulletins that may assist in bet- resources on water saving projects research. ter understanding water use, in par- and initiatives. ticular water use in rural Victoria. The Both Information Bulletins are ‘Water Efficiency in the Rural Sector’ The ‘Virtual Water’ Information Bulletin available on the VicWater website at Information Bulletin provides an over- provides important information on the www.vicwater.org.au. From the Home view of water use in rural agriculture amount of water used to produce items page go to: Task & Working Groups > including surface water diversions, and makes the link between Water Efficiency Task Group (WETG) > irrigation system deliveries and ground consumption patterns and water use. Information Bulletins CONGRATULATIONS TO NATHAN AND ELIZABETH C ongratulations to VicWater staff member Nathan Smith on his marriage to the girl of his dreams, Elizabeth Fewchuk in a ceremony on the 6th January 2007 at Essendon Community Baptist Church. Nathan and Elizabeth have now returned from their honeymoon touring New Zealand. 4 WAT E R M AT T E R S S U M M E R 2 0 07 NATIONAL AWARDS FOR GOULBURN-MURRAY WATER PROJECTS T wo Goulburn-Murray Water Creek Salt projects have been recognised for Interception engineering excellence, taking out Scheme was gold and silver at the annual Association managed by of Consulting Engineers Australia Goulburn- Awards for Excellence in Sydney. Murray Water on behalf of From entries all over Australia, for the Murray- projects in metropolitan, regional and Darling Basin international locations, the judges Commission. presented a Gold Award to SKM for the The Pyramid Pyramid Creek Salt Interception Scheme Creek Salt in the environment category and a Interception Silver Award to GHD for the Eildon Scheme is a Dam Improvement Project in the water large-scale category. The ACEA awards program is groundwa- one of the industry’s most prestigious ter pumping Salt Harvest recognising Australia’s world-class scheme that engineering activities. intercepts saline groundwater flows and new technology and other practical pumps them to evaporation basins. outcomes tackling salinity. The prize The Eildon project was undertaken by was presented by the Governor- the Eildon Alliance, comprising GHD, The scheme received more accolades General, Major-General Michael Jeffery, Goulburn-Murray Water, John Holland last June when it won the Engineers at a ceremony at Parliament House and Hazell Brothers, and the Pyramid Australia National Salinity Prize for in Canberra. METHVEN ANSWERS AUSTRALIA’S WATER CRISIS WITH 90L OF WATER SAVING EVERY TIME YOU SHOWER! S itting as the flagship of Methven’s water to collide, creating a ‘flame of commitment to luxury, water water’ that is enveloping and gentle. 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Highly Recommended in Product For more information see Innovation Category 2005 Methven Satinjet Futura Hand Shower www.methvenaustralia.com.au, [RRP: $220.00] www.satinjet.com.au or free call: Methven Satinjet Kiri Wall Shower 1800 035 330 [RRP: $ 163.00] Methven Satinjet’s unique Twin-Jet technology directs two single jets of WATER MATTERS SUMMER 2007 5 TRAINING AND OH&S MATTERS Steve Bird and Paul O’Brien made a The presentation focussed on the Gippsland, Westernport and presentation to the Office of Training effects of climate change and the skills Southern Rural Water Authorities. and Tertiary Education (OTTE) on the shortage on the water industry and the The meeting will address the issues training needs of the water industry just training-related implications of those of the new Consolidated OH&S prior to Christmas 2006. Les Mathieson, effects. A text based report will be Regulations and enhancements to the CEO of East Gippsland Water and Chair provided to OTTE by the end of OH&S Benchmarking Project which the of the VicWater Training Consultative February 2007. Network has been refining. Committee was to have been part of the The next meeting of the OH&S Network presentation team but he unfortunately will be held in April 2007 at Phillip needed to remain in East Gippsland that Island and will be sponsored by the day because of the bushfires. Gippsland, East Gippsland, South FIRST MILDURA IRRIGATION TRUST’S 17TH STREET SUB-SYSTEM REHABILITATION S ince late August 2006, when once the new 600-ML water storage is and irrigation ratepayers will no longer the First Mildura Irrigation Trust finished. Works on the water storage rely on individual pumps to achieve (FMIT) Board approved the works are nearing completion and water will pressurization. Subject to drought program for the high-pressure pipe be introduced by mid February 2007 so conditions, water availability will be lining of FMIT’s 17th Street’s as to allow for formal commissioning 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year sub-system, significant progress has of the new pump station. Pipe laying because of facilities provided by the been made. Pipe laying tenders is scheduled to be completed in late 600-ML water storage. were called and the successful May and this will allow the contractor FMIT has engaged Sinclair Knight Merz contractor commenced pipe laying in to install the new irrigator connections (SKM) to independently assess and late November. The new pipeline is a in time for the new irrigation period. determine the water savings from three high-pressure system and replaces 20 Irrigator connections will include separate water saving measures kms of gravity distribution system, magnetic flow meters capable of initiated by the Trust. Their recently comprising 4 kms of earthen channel, measuring low flows used for drip completed report has identified a total 2 kms of concrete channel and 14 kms irrigation, up to the higher flow of 5.906 GL of claimable permanent of ageing concrete pipes. rates required by irrigators using water savings from these measures. overhead sprays. Complementing the new high-pressure The Trust acknowledges the assistance system is a new pumping station, with 5 Once operational, the rehabilitated provided by the DSE’s Water Sector variable speed drive motors to achieve distribution system will provide Group in the assessment process under- cost effective pumping. Works on the high-pressure water to 750 hectares of taken by SKM. The FMIT Board has new pumping station are complete irrigable land and its 120 irrigators. In approved for portion of the proposed except for testing, which will occur addition, domestic and stock consumers water losses, identified through the bulk entitlement process, to be made available for sale through the National Water Initiative tender process. In addition to the savings identified by SKM in the earlier measures, the Trust is also confident that further water savings of 2.0 GL are potential as a result of the 17th Street rehabilita- tion project. As this project is entirely funded by the FMIT, all water savings recovered through the bulk entitlement process will be retained by the Trust. The FMIT is currently completing the formal process of having these savings recognised pursuant to the bulk entitlement procedures and receiving Ministerial approval for the changes. A View of the new pump station 6 WAT E R M AT T E R S S U M M E R 2 0 07 DAMS WORKING GROUP S The Dams Working Group is a operators and emergency response altering the water tightness of the proactive forum for discussion co-ordinators with the knowledge structure. Dam owners should pay and development of all aspects and training to better manage their particular attention to this issue of dams including planning, roles in a dam emergency response. when a dam commences to refill. construction, risk assessment The refilling of dams should be and safety upgrades. Dam S Following the decommissioning of undertaken as slowly as practical, owners outside the water industry several dams in Victoria, the Group with vigilant monitoring of seepage are also encouraged to attend. also saw the need to develop a and cracks. Representatives from AGL Pty Ltd Dams Decommissioning Guideline. (Hydro Electric Power Generation) Through funding from DSE regularly attend group meetings. and work undertaken by consult- DSE is also a major participant in ants URS, the Decommissioning the Group. The Dams Working Guidelines have been finalised and Group recently identified a gap in will be available in the near future. the National Water Training Package These Guidelines have been in regard to dams management and prepared to raise awareness of operations practice and sought potentially relevant issues and not and received funding for the as a prescriptive process of how development of a course in to decommission a dam. This High Hazard Dam Emergency approach allows a Project Manager Management Exercising to develop an accurate model of their real world context rather than S Following extensive development assuming conditions are favourable and negotiation, the course has or adverse to the proposed works. been accredited within the Victorian system. Registered training S The prolonged dry period presents organisations will be contacted to its own risk to earthen dams as the encourage delivery of the course. moisture content of the dam’s clay A parched Sunday Creek Reservoir near Broadford The aim of the course is to equip core can lower, thereby potentially – Currently holding 17% of storage capacity VICTORIA AND NEW SOUTH WALES FINALISE WATER TRADING P ermanent interstate water trade S During the period up until removal S The details of costs to be between Victoria and New of exit fees, exit fees may be included in access fees and the South Wales commenced on avoided by buyers and sellers possibility of ongoing usage of 1 January 2007. Both Victoria and contracting to use temporary shadow access fees are to be New South Wales have accepted the trade processes followed by a clarified by March 2007, with the Australian Competition and Consumer permanent transfer. ACCC being asked to contribute Commission (ACCC) recommendation to this work. that exit and termination fees, which S The factor used for the calculation of termination fees will be set at a S Irrigation businesses will be apply when water permanently leaves allowed to offer other options for a district, should be separate from the maximum multiplier of 15 times the permanent trading to suit their sale of water. As an alternative to access fee. This ensures sufficient businesses, provided they paying a termination fee, the states funds to maintain water supply also implement the ACCC have also agreed that sellers of water infrastructure over a suitable period recommendations, to enable can continue paying annual access/ and for structural readjustment the buyer to choose. delivery fees on an ongoing basis. so that remaining users are not The States have committed to the required to absorb these costs. S The arrangements will be included implementation of permanent interstate in a protocol to Schedule E of the water trading as follows: S A review of termination fees will Murray-Darling Basin Agreement be completed by 1 January 2009. by March 2007. S Access fees and termination The review will include an fees will be calculated and assessment of the multiplier used S An independent body or bodies implemented by 1 July 2007 and in calculating termination fees. will be commissioned to monitor, exit fees will also be removed by The ACCC will be asked to assess and report by August 2007 this date. contribute to this review. on compliance with the agreement. WATER MATTERS SUMMER 2007 7 MILLIONS OF LITRES SAVED WITH NEW REUSE IRRIGATION SCHEME W arrnambool Golf Club is now collected and stored in a lagoon at the the new scheme eliminates this using reclaimed water to keep Golf Club and is used to irrigate the problem. their greens in shape course via a new pump and automated Warrnambool Golf Club Secretary thanks to a new joint venture reuse delivery system. This has required a Manager, Garry Parsons said; “80 irrigation scheme with Wannon Water major upgrade with the Club investing megalitres of reuse water will be used and Fonterra. around $720,000 and will result in via this new irrigation scheme, that millions of litres of potable water means there will be a huge saving for Wannon Water, Fonterra and the being saved. our city’s water resources and we will Warrnambool Golf Club have worked together to introduce this new and Wannon Water Chairman, Harry Peeters be able to access suitable water to keep innovative water conservation scheme said; “The new reuse irrigation scheme the greens in top condition year round.” that will replace use of the city’s means less treated water from the city’s Fonterra Site Production Manager, drinking water and the need to use drinking water supply is being used Rob Howell said that in a drought bore water to irrigate the course. by the Warrnambool Golf Club, environment Fonterra is constantly The scheme is the first of its kind, a major saving in treating water to seeking new ways to reuse the water pioneering the use of condensate water drinking standards.” The new scheme required for everyday factory produc- on a golf course. also means the Golf Club now has tion. He said: “The reuse of this water Condensate water, water evaporated off a secure fit for purpose water is beneficial to Fonterra in several ways, milk to create dried milk powder, from supply year round to keep the course but most of all we are pleased to be the Fonterra dairy factory in Dennington in top condition. The bore water a part of an innovative water saving is being diverted from Wannon Water’s previously accessed to augment scheme that has practical benefits for Water Reclamation Plant directly to the supplies of potable water was highly the Golf Club, Warrnambool residents Warrnambool Golf Club. The water is saline and was damaging to the greens; and the environment.” PROMOTING THE WATER INDUSTRY W estern Water’s Gareth Ryan is The government agency has been the variety of work available in the water one of only two people select- established to identify skills shortages, industry, promotes Western Water and ed to feature in a Federal emerging trends and labour market its employees and showcases the Melton Government promotion of career information and develop resources to area,” he said. opportunities in the water industry. attract young people into key industries. Gareth is completing a diploma in The promotional video will be pitched conservation and land management. The 27-year-old operator at Western at students in Years 8 to 12 with the aim He is part of the team responsible for the Water’s Melton Recycled Water Plant of raising interest and awareness of new multi-million dollar Class A recycled spent a day before the cameras for job opportunities in the water water plant at Surbiton Park, which will a video that will target secondary sector. Team Leader of the Melton and serve Eynesbury and future development school students across Australia. A Bacchus Marsh recycled water plants, at Melton South. Rod also was camera crew from the Adelaide-based Rod Curtis, said Gareth’s selection recognised recently, winning the Government Skills Australia flew to recognised his skills and commitment prestigious Australian Water Association Melbourne to interview and film to delivering an essential service to the Operator of the Year award from Gareth at his Surbiton Park workplace. community. “The video also highlights candidates across Victoria. WATERAID AUSTRALIA AND VINIDEX NATIONAL GOLF DAYS V inidex and WaterAid Australia Manatuto and Liquica Districts of are pleased to announce a new Timor-Leste. WaterAid Australia has series of Golf Days to be con- now completed two major school-based ducted in 2007 following on from the water and sanitation projects in Papua success of the AWA National Golf Days New Guinea and about to begin the which has raised over $88,000 for our third project. projects in Papua New Guinea. Golf It’s first community water and sanitation Days will be conducted from March project in the Eastern Highlands is to November by WaterAid Australia progressing well. Member organisations. WaterAid Australia has just recently opened an office in Dili and has gained government approval to work in Local PNG Community celebrate the opening of their Atloos funded from the AWA Golf days This publication was printed on Australian made Tudor 100% recycled ﬁbre. 8 WAT E R M AT T E R S S U M M E R 2 0 07 Inks used are vegetable based, and mineral oil free.