eFlash #505

eFlash #505

eFlash #505
Date: 30-Sep-2021

In this edition: Have your say on the Draft State Infrastructure Strategy Water Chapter| Water Supply Regulation e-Alert| SEQ Code - Updates to Gravity Sewer Code Released| Webinar - Unitywater's Automated Metering Journey| qCRAC-SWEAP Contaminants Source Control Workshop| IWC Young Water Professionals Leadership Course

1. Have your say on the Draft State Infrastructure Strategy Water Chapter

The Department of State Development has recently released its draft strategy with a specific water chapter

Aside from broader water security and planning issues, urban water and sewerage services are specifically called out in the preamble: 

“Ensuring all Queenslanders have access to safe and secure drinking water is a critical priority. The Queensland Government works in partnership with local governments to ensure that communities have water and wastewater systems in place, and that these assets are sustainably managed, through good planning, proactive maintenance, and an appropriately skilled workforce.” 

and implied in some of the 13 priority actions identified, which at a high level include: 

1. Bulk water infrastructure 

2. Safe and secure water supply for all communities (the Queensland Government will support local governments to provide safe, secure and resilient water supply for their communities) 

3. Water to catalyse regional economic development 

4. Identifying regulatory and other reforms to improve access 

5. Best practice catchment analysis and water planning 

6. Embedding climate change risk and analysis 

7. Engaging with the Australian Government 

8. Achieving water security through innovation 

9. Communicating the benefits of water efficiency 

10. Dam improvement 

11. Considering the full range of water infrastructure options 

12. Queensland Water Market Optimisation 

13. Preserving our natural assets 

qldwater will respond to the survey but as the submissions are from individuals, members may wish to consider contributing their own ideas. While scant on detail, the document reflects some useful initiatives. 

However, a comparison to qldwater’s industry Roadmap would suggest that there is potential for stronger statements around public health (including how known challenges to achieving the abovementioned “critical priority” will be addressed) and environmental protection. The document also does little to recognise other key industry questions around ageing infrastructure or financial sustainability of service providers, while opportunities for regulatory reform appear narrowly focussed towards water licensing. 

One recurring idea from Roadmap consultation we intend to promote to support regional members is a strategic investment pipeline and ongoing funding support program, based on established minimum levels of service. The latest Building Our Regions program is a key win with devoted funding for water and sewerage and significantly improved criteria, however it has to be the first step towards a long-term, well planned approach to delivering these essential services. 

Feedback is open up until 7 October. 

2. Water Supply Regulation e-Alert

The Water Supply Regulator (RDMW) has released their latest ‘Water Supply Regulation e-Alert’ and all members are encouraged to ensure that the right people in their organisations are registered to receive these as they are a key/main part of RDMW’s communication strategy. Key points include: 

  • Friday 1 October – KPI data due. 
  • Thursday 7 October – Fraser Coast – Drinking Water Regulation Framework Workshop. Similar workshop planned for Charleville (23/11). 
  • The annual Performance Report (KPI and NPR data via SWIM) is required under s142A of the Water Supply Safety and Reliability Act 2008 and is due for the 2020-21 financial year by COB Friday 1st October 2021. 
  • Building our Regions Round 6 – FUNDING OPPORTUNITY. The guidelines for Round 6 of ‘Building Our Regions’ has been released and expressions of interest are open. This round exclusively provides funding for eligible construction, works and planning projects that improve water supply and sewerage services. Eligibility criteria apply and further information can be found here
  • Specialist/Essential workers – border exemptions. RDMW is responsible for reviewing any applications for border exemptions and to provide advice to Queensland Health about the criticality and necessity for the work to be done. 
  • Planning to be proactive – Water Supply. Water service providers are responsible for managing the water security risk for the communities they service. RDMW has developed a range of guidelines for developing sound and efficient water security plans, including asset management plans, drought management plans and water supply plans. These guidelines are available on the Business Queensland website under managing water supply risk

If you would like any further information or would like to receive the Water Supply Regulation e-Alerts please contact drinkingwater.reporting@rdmw.qld.gov.au

3. SEQ Code - Updates to Gravity Sewer Code Released

The South-East Queensland Design and Construction Code group are pleased to announce amendments to the SEQ Code edition of the WSAA WSA 02-2014-3.1 Gravity Sewerage Code in eBook format. A Schedule of Amendments for the changes (since July 2019) and updated drawings can be found on the SEQ Code website. The updated eBook is available on the WSAA Shop, please note WSAA will be in contact if a discount is available for your account.

4. Webinar - Unitywater's Automated Metering Journey

Steve McDonald was unfortunately ill and unable to present at the qldwater automated metering workshop on 7 September. Steve has kindly agreed to provide a special online presentation, providing an update on Unitywater’s automated metering program on Tuesday 2 November at 10:30 am.

Register Here for the webinar. 

Recordings of the other presentations from the day are now available at https://qldwater.com.au/automated-metering-workshop-2021

5. qCRAC-SWEAP Contaminants Source Control Workshop

Source control for emerging contaminants is an area that the qldwater Consortium for Research and Advocacy on Contaminants (qCRAC) has targeted for future action. This is because for some contaminants, for which treatment processes are complex and potentially costly, the most effective control method may be to control the chemical at the source before it enters the wastewater system. Interest in this area is the prompt for a workshop, jointly hosted by qCRAC and SWEAP.

The workshop will be run as a webinar on 21 October 2021 from 10:00 - 12:30.

We have lined up six speakers for what promises to be an informative and lively session: 

Shaun Thomas (South Australia EPA)
David Sheehan (Vic Water)
Brad Clarke (ALEC)
Jochen Mueller (QAEHS)
Susi Vardy (DES)
Colin Hester (UU) 

Register Here 

6. IWC Young Water Professionals Leadership Course

AWA is supporting International Water Centre (IWC) in their Water Leadership Program, a six-week course for Young Water Professionals dedicated to building leadership capacity in emerging water sector leaders.

During this course, water leadership and management experts Dr André Taylor and Dr Lachlan Guthrie will introduce participants to key leadership concepts to build their capability to lead project and staff teams.

This course has just opened for registrations, with content to begin in early November. 

Course Details 
There are two (2) offerings of the program: 

  • The first cohort will commence November 1, 2021. 
  • The second cohort commences February 28, 2022. 

AWA Member: $500
Non-Member: $600 (GST Exclusive) 

To find out more click here

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