03 August, 2012

30 year plan for Queensland’s water sector

My letter to the Minister for Energy and Water......

The Honourable Mark McArdle

Minister for Energy and Water

cc: The Premier, Mark Pascoe (CEO - International Water Centre), Robert Cavallucci (Member for Brisbane Central)

Dear Mr McArdle,

At the AWA Water Association Awards and Gala dinner recently, you announced that the Qld Government will “Release a discussion paper for a 30 year plan for Queensland’s water sector".

Over dinner, this led to a discussion about: "what are the issues that the Qld Government should discuss?" 

We (as a society) have to get better at dealing with an integrated water cycle with a comprehensive (holistic) approach to managing water supplies, irrigation, sewage treatment and managing stormwater.

Our current institutional arrangements do not lend themselves to an integrated approach.

Our centralised water distribution and sewerage networks are very vulnerable to extreme weather events and heavily reliant on energy intense treatment and transport.

In framing a 30 year plan for the Water Sector, I would like to see the Qld Government and the Water industry respond to the causes and impacts of climate change.

The causes of climate change, obviously include generation of greenhouse gas emissions (directly and indirectly).

The impacts include a greater intensity and variability of rainfall events. 

 I am interested in seeing more mileage for Sustainable sewage transport and treatment as part of the 30 year plan.

Sustainable sewage (also known as Productive Sanitation) might include source segregation of urine, faeces and trade waste with more emphasis on resource recovery and reuse.

I am looking forward to the release the discussion paper for a 30 year plan for Queensland’s water sector and participating in the discussion.


Rowan Barber

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