WATER, WATER ...
Peter Coyne of Agritechsmartwater dropped us a line to inform us of the water situation at Wellington Dam in Westralia's south west. (For those who came in late... Agritechsmartwater is the outfit who offered the WA government a system of desalinating the not-so-perfect water that is emptied from Wellington Dam to the sea for the purpose of purging the dam. As opposed to the high energy powered Kwinana reverse osmosis plant, the Agritech system was not only going to utilise the water wasted to sea, but also utilise the natural head pressure from the dam to the plant near Brunswick Junction. See our link to Agritech "Perth Water" on our VISION
page. To date the WA government has not publicly announced what they don't like about this scheme. Observers may conclude that the WA government is just being bloody-minded about ignoring a solution that perhaps they should have put forward themselves.
Until such worthwhile criticism of the Agritech win/win plan is presented, it is difficult to conclude otherwise.)
Peter Coyne says:
"Apart from us wanting to keep in touch with all our supporters, the major catalyst for updating is the fact that Wellington Dam is about to over flow. Yes thats right, the dam that didn't have enough water for our project is about an inch from the top of the spillway and will probably over flow in the next 24 hours, how embarrassing.
We at AgritechSmartWater do not believe the Water Corporation will announce this event with the fanfare and applause we think the occasion deserves so we are doing it for them.
The Water Corporation publishes on their website the volumes of water held in storage in the Perth Metropolitan area dams and also dams in the South West.
The information for Perth dams can be obtained via this link
The South West Dams can be accessed via http://www.watercorporation.com.au/dams/dams_storageall.cfm?id=3.
It is worth going to both both sites and print both sets of tables. At the bottom of each section it gives the total volume in storage in ML (megalitres) and the % of capacity. What is interesting is the South West Dams are holding over 82% of capacity whereas Perth dams are holding 38% capacity, or less than half.
The big news however, is the fact that Wellington Dam is now holding 183 GL (gigalitres) of water. The 12 Perth Dams excluding Stirling Dam, which is included in the South West figures, is currently holding 237 GL. That means Wellington Dam is holding 76% of all the water currently held in 12 Perth Dams. Not a bad percentage considering the Water Corporation would have us believe there was not the 45 GL of water available for our project.
Another interesting fact is scouring of the water from Wellington Dam commenced in the first week of June, a month earlier than normal. We estimate that between 40-50 GL has already been discharged to the ocean. Had the scouring not occurred, the dam would have overflowed a month ago.
In an article by Suellen Jerrard published in the West Australian on the 4th of June 2005, I claimed the Water Corporation was wasting millions of litres of water a day by scouring to the sea. The response from Water Corporation's S.W manager, "scouring was not a waste and instead was vital in reducing salinity to a level where the water was usable by irrigators". I think its that sort of flawed logic that has got us into our current water crisis. We are only seeking to re-use the water after its left the dam, this would not alter the reason for scouring. What it would do is provide Perth with an additional 45GL of water rather that to discharge it into the ocean.
All this means is the battle continues, and I believe our case has become even stronger and is further strengthened by this further discussion about water from the Yarragadee Aquifer.
Both the Kwinana R.O plant and Yarragadee proposals are going to cost taxpayers in excess of $400M in capital costs and between $15M - $30M in operating costs for a cost of water at between $0.90 - $1.30 per kilolitre, far greater than the cost of reused water from Wellington Dam.
I have also attached a copy of a speech made by the Hon. John Fisher on the 5th of May 2005 during the Water Crisis Adjournment Debate in the Legislative Council. John's speech is to be applauded because it really encapsulates the real issues with water, and it is well worth reading.
You are both, the taxpayer and concerned water user, tell us what you prefer and who you believe."
---- If anyone would like to be emailed a copy of John Fisher's speach, please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted by westralian
at 8:32 PM JST
Updated: Friday, 30 September 2005 9:57 PM JST