With the early onset of warm conditions in Queensland, qldwater have heard reports of cyanobacteria blooms (otherwise known as Harmful Algal Blooms or HAB) appearing in surface waters unusually early in the season, and in locations where they have historically been infrequent.
With this in mind, we have arranged a series of Webinars focused on three aspects of HABs that are relevant to drinking water service providers.
Thursday 20 October 2023, 10:00 – 11:00 am
by Matthew Coulton, General Manager Agriculture and Water at the Bureau of Meteorology
We have all seen a warmer than average winter and now, with both an El Niño and a positive Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) underway, their combined impact can increase the chance of below average rainfall over much of Australia and higher temperatures across the southern two-thirds of the country. Based on history, it is now also more likely that warm and dry conditions will persist over eastern Australia. El Niño events also increase the risk of extreme temperature shifts like heatwaves, hotter days and increased fire risks. Matt provides a Climate and Water briefing for the 2023-24 summer.
Download the presentation (Coming soon)
Thursday 26 October 2023, 10:00 – 11:30 am
by Ted Aldred, Manager Water Supply Regulation – Water Operations and Systems, Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing and Water
Blue green algae outbreaks in surface waters can be challenging for water service providers, especially when coupled with other risks that are heightened by high temperatures. Boiling drinking water is not an effective means for removing or inactivating toxins associated with HABs. In this webinar Ted talks about the role of the Drinking Water Quality Management Plan in managing these risks to provide safe drinking water for your community.
Thursday 2 November 2023, 10.00 to 11.00 am
by Dr Phil Choi, Senior Environmental Health Scientist, Queensland Public Health and Scientific Services, Queensland Health
The conditions that favour HABs include warm temperature, stratified water and calm or stagnant conditions: all circumstances that are associated with drier than usual wet seasons. If HABs do occur, they have the potential to impact drinking water supplies as well as recreational and irrigation water supplies. Queensland Health is currently updating its FAQ on HAB, and in this presentation Phil provides an overview of the different kinds of algae, the impact of location that leads to toxins forming, and how these impact on the health of people and animals.
Thursday 9 November 2023, 10.00 to 11.00 am
In this webinar we have presentations from water service providers with experience in management of harmful algal blooms reflecting on different mitigation strategies, what worked, what didn't and other lessons learned.
Tania Strixner-Harvey from Mount Isa Water Board presents on "Blue-green algae at Clear Water Lagoon: The journey so far…"
Trish Knavel and Laura Shiels from Townsville City Council presents "Managing Harmful Algal Blooms – Townsville City Council’s Experience"