RWT's must be part of the solution

The water management subgroup is working on providing a contribution towards water capture and reticulation systems that are in line with sustainable urban environments. See the document deposit relating to this area.

RWT's must be part of the solution

Postby Admin » Fri Apr 03, 2009 9:31 pm

Good to see some geniune views and commitment around water supply.

This debate including the cost implications and benefits of rainwater tanks as part of our overall need to protect and preserve water supply is very interesting and is raging all over Australia. A lot of variables need to be taken into account in determining an informed view on the subject include some of the following:

1. Cost to supply & install rainwater tanks.
2. Amount of water saved.
3. Reduction in stormwater run-off.
4. Greenhouse gas emissions.
5. Present potable water capacity.
6. Future potable needs and infrastructure cost to provide.
7. Enviromental impact from increased infrastructure options.
8. Public awareness and level of knowledge.
9. Perceived and largely uninformed health risks.
10. Willingness to accept change.
11. Population and geographical growth trends.
12. Ability to deliver solution in required time frames.
13. Differing State and Fed. govt rebates ranging from $0 to $1000.
14. Available finance in current economic climate to fund projects.
15. Geographical rainfall and evaporation rates.
16. Lack of co-operation between the states, particulary the Murray Darling basin.
17. Ramifications and opportunities for small, medium and large businesses.
18. Pro's and con's for alternate water supplies such as desalination.
19. Under utilised benefit from re-cycling.
20. The current cheap cost of mains water compared to other parts of the world. (In Europe it is more than double than here in Australia!)
21. Ability to make existing supply infrastructure more efficient in partnership with additional measures to boast supply.

Although freely admitting an unashamed bias towards rainwater tanks, I would strongly submit that Rainwater tanks are part of the solution and not all of the solution and nor are they the most expensive solution!

As a proud newly returned resident of North Queensland, I would hope that our decision makers in Council and State Govt. do undertake a thorough and unbiased review of all our options and with the big picture in mind. After all, it is not about saving money, it is all about saving a very valuable resource along with our planet. I also note with some disappointment that the 2007 QLD report hardly mentions rainwater tanks as part of the solution. They are only mentioned for some Tableland areas!

Finally, in an attempt to shed more light on rain water tanks, please find attached FYI a recent study undertaken in NSW covering very dry to very wet climate zones. It was interesting to note it is suggesting that more savings are evident when the wetter it becomes!

There is a lot more information available regarding this debate, but I think we very much need a local study to be undertaken which also factors rainwater tanks in the debate.

Regards, Nick

Nick Skutenko
Area Manager - FNQ
BlueScope Water

27 - 29 Redden Street, Portsmith, Cairns QLD 4870
phone: 07 4036 6433 fax: 07 4036 6444
mobile: 0438 62 64 62 |
Coombes study.pdf
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