Welcome to New WAter Ways

Well if you are thinking the weather has been cold and dry you are right! October rainfall for WA was about 23% below normal. So what does this mean for our WSUD systems and structures?
Come and find out about Hydrology and nutrient transport processes in groundwater/surface water systems at a workshop this Friday at UWA, where Professor Carolyn Oldham and Carlos Ocampo will present the latest ressearch.
We are also very excited to have Dave Pannell from UWA present at our next speaker series talk on Friday 2 December at the Atrium Theatrette on valuing the economic, social and ecological costs and benefits of WSUD. Please see below for all the details. Hope to see you there.



WA water innovators honoured at awards

Innovation and sustainable management of water were showcased at the recent 2016 Australian Water Association (AWA) WA Water Awards in Perth. Each winner demonstrated how innovative thinking formed a vital part of our State's water future, exhibiting a wide range of innovation in the water sector, from helping reduce water use, to adapting urban design to reduce nutrient flows and developments in wastewater treatment processes. (DPC Media Statements)


September rainfall and streamflow summary

The Department of Water September rainfall and streamflow summary is now online.
Each month between June and November the Department of Water reports the latest rainfall and streamflow data collected by its hydrographers in the South West, Kwinana-Peel, Swan-Avon and South Coast regions. (DoW)


Eric Singleton Bird Sanctuary restoration project - WA's Premier's Excellence Award

The City of Bayswater is proud to announce that it was a joint winner, in partnership with the Department of Parks and Wildlife, for the WA's Premier's Excellence Award in the category 'managing the environment'  for the Eric Singleton Bird Sanctuary Project.  For those of you who did not hear the project also recently won the Western Australia Engineering Excellence Award in the 'environment' category. Click here to view the YouTube clip for the ESBS project series. (CoB)


Draft Government Sewerage Policy 2016 - Open for public comment

The Western Australian Government has approved the release of the amended Government Sewerage Policy and accompanying Explanatory Notes, for public comment. As an important stakeholder, you and your organisation are invited to consider these documents. The draft policy requires all new subdivisions and development to be connected to reticulated sewerage where available or considered necessary on health, environment or planning grounds with exceptions only in certain circumstances. Submissions close 5pm, Friday 10 February 2017. (PlanningWA)


Project excellence celebrated in public sector

A City of Bayswater bird sanctuary and a Department of Health program helping children recover from chronic pain are among this year's winners of the annual Premier's Awards for Excellence in Public Sector Management. (DPC Media Statements)


Water Science technical series - climate projections for Western Australia

The Department of Water has developed a standard, comprehensive set of climate scenarios for the whole of WA. The aim of the project is to enable a consistent, methodical assessment of climate change for Departmental of Water modelling and impact assessment. These scenarios will be used in various aspects of departmental business. (DoW)


Wheatbelt radar delivers real-time data for irrigation

Data from the first of three Doppler radars installed in Western Australia is set to support businesses in the Wheatbelt region, with a six-fold return on investment estimated for farmers. The $23 million project managed by the Western Australian Department of Agriculture and Food, the Newdegate radar imagery offers farming businesses real-time information on rainfall and wind, and is expected to transform farming practices in the region. (AWA)


Aquifer controls trigger Carnarvon water release

Extra water will be made available to Carnarvon irrigators to support water budgets for 2016-17. The Department of Water's aquifer status report and other information, the Carnarvon Water Allocation Advisory Committee had recommended the department release water for distribution if required, with a target date of December 1, 2016. (DPC Media Statements)


Trainees sow seeds of success at Broome plant

Water Minister recently met with trainees at a native seed bank in Broome which uses recycled water to grow native species for land restoration projects across the Kimberley and Pilbara regions. The Government, through the Water Corporation, had partnered with the Mamabulanjin Aboriginal Corporation (MAC) to offer Aboriginal trainees aged 17-24, the opportunity to work at the MAC seed bank to gain valuable experience and contribute to TAFE qualifications. (DPC Media Statements)


State Planning Framework out for comment

Planning Minister Donna Faragher has released Western Australia's updated State Planning Framework policy for public comment. State Planning Policy 1 State Planning Framework Policy (SPP 1) brings together existing State and regional policies, strategies, plans and guidelines within a central State Planning Framework. It sets the context for decision-making on land use and development in Western Australia. (DPC Media Statements)


Victoria releases major water policy

The Victorian Government has released a new water policy, which aims to help the state deal with drought, climate change, and population growth in future. (AWA)


Planning for a rainy day: there’s still lots to learn about Australia’s flood patterns

Recent floods in New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria have reminded us of the power of our weather and rivers to wreak havoc on homes, business and even, tragically, lives. As Dorothea Mackellar poetically pointed out, “droughts and flooding rains” have been a feature of Australia throughout history, so maybe we shouldn’t be all that surprised when they happen. However, we also know that the reported costs of flooding in Australia have been increasing, most likely through a combination of increased reporting, increased exposure through land use change and population growth, and changes to flood magnitude and severity. So it is critical that we understand what might be causing these changes. (The Conversation)


New tech tackles chemical-free water treatment

A South Australian company is gaining international traction using computer-generated frequencies to target specific minerals, improve water quality and eliminate scaling… the units – which cost $5000 upfront and generate an annual power bill of around $10 – have plenty of benefits for a broad range of commercial, domestic and public applications. (AWA)


Company directors can be held legally liable for ignoring the risks from climate change

Company directors who don’t properly consider climate related risks could be liable for breaching their duty of due care and diligence, a new legal opinion has found. Although the alarm for business leaders has been sounding for some time, the release of the opinion by senior barristers and leading solicitors confirms the potential liability for Australian company directors. (The Conversation)


A new report has found that urban trees help clean up air pollution and bring temperatures down

Planting Healthy Air is a brand new study from The Nature Conservancy in collaboration with the C40 Climate Leadership Group. This study investigates how important trees are in cleaning and cooling the air, on both a local and a global scale and as a result they have been able to identify the cities where an investment in tree planting can make the biggest impact. The study aims to provide urban leaders with the data they need to demonstrate that investments in tree planting can improve public health in their cities and concludes that trees are essentially the only cost-effective solution addressing both deteriorating air quality and rising urban temperatures. Some amazing interactive maps have also been developed to support the research. (202020 Vision)


Regulated water resource allocation needed for Australian trees

Australia needs to reconsider its carbon farming and afforestation policies to avoid placing excessive pressure on already limited water resources, one of Australia’s leading ecosystems experts has urged. (AWA)


Australia due for another recycled water campaign

The campaign for recycled drinking water needs to be relaunched and rebranded in Australia, according to a leading water technology provider. (AWA)


Australian Water Recycling Centre of Excellence: Final Report and Legacy Website   

Despite closing its doors in September 2016, the Australian Water Recycling Centre of Excellence released the Final Report on its activities over the past six-and-a-half years; and continues to provide extensive content on its legacy website.  The Final Report provides detail on the research projects and the outcomes and legacies developed from the research outputs; including lessons learned and recommendations for the future. There are also five supplementary reports that provide more detail on the processes behind some of the key Centre initiatives and achievements. The legacy website is live, but no longer updated, and provides access to the research, tools, frameworks, process documentation and other resources produced by the Centre and its research partners. (AWRCE)


Barangaroo: Sydney's largest urban renewal project aims to recycle more water than it uses

The developers have built an onsite treatment plant in an effort to conserve, recycle and export water, but no one has signed up yet. (The Guardian)


Community Capacity in NRM Survey - Now Open

Participate in the survey for a chance to win a $1000 grant for your community group. Perth NRM's Annual Community Capacity in NRM survey is now open and we would like to  encourage all environmental volunteers to participate. The survey is one of Perth NRM’s main ways to understand the capacity gaps in environmental groups and ensure that the training and workshops we provide target the most relevant topics for environmental volunteers. The data generated from this annual assessment helps us to show to funders the value and contribution environmental volunteers make to natural areas. Survey closes 5pm, Friday 25 November (Perth NRM)

Water news from around the world...

2015’s record-breaking temperatures will be normal by 2030 - it’s time to adapt

Generation Y has grown up in a rapidly warming world. According to the US National Climate Data Centre, every month since February 1985 has seen above average global temperatures, compared with the twentieth century. I have no memories of a “normal” month. 2016 is on track to be the hottest year on record, surpassing the previous records set in 2015 and in 2014. These are just a few of the flurry of recent record temperatures, which includes Australia’s hottest day, week, month, season and year. (The Conversation)


Green roofs now mandatory in San Francisco

This week, San Francisco became the first U.S. city to require that certain new buildings be built with a green roof. The new law, going into effect in January, will require between 15 to 30 percent of roof space on most new construction projects to incorporate solar, green roofs, or a blend of both (National Geographic).


Women’s input key to achieving SDG6

Australia has dedicated $100 million to gendered water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) issues abroad, but more must be done to address the absence of women’s input if true change is to be affected, says a leading Australian WASH researcher. As part of Australia's commitment to the United Nations High-Level Panel on Water, Malcolm Turnbull announced the funding would be committed to a new Water for Women initiative. (AWA)


California allows taste-testing of bottled recycled water

New legislation allowing Californians to taste-test recycled water in their communities was signed on 21 September 2016 and comes into effect on 1 January next year. Law AB 2022, Gordon: Advanced purified demonstration water allows facilities that produce recycled water to distribute free potable samples to the community for educational purposes. (The Daily Journal)


Risk, Cost and Benefit Assessment of enhancing water supplies with recycled water      

The US National Academy of Sciences (2016) has released its report entitled Using Graywater and Stormwater to Enhance Local Water Supplies: An Assessment of Risks, Costs, and Benefits. The report examines technical, economic, regulatory, and social issues associated with graywater and stormwater capture for a range of uses, including non-potable urban uses, irrigation, and groundwater recharge. By looking at case studies, the report considers the quality and suitability of water for reuse, treatment and storage technologies, and human health and environmental risks of water reuse. (AWA)


World’s largest GWRS to get bigger

As California faces a fifth year of record‐breaking drought, the world’s largest water reuse project of its kind, the Groundwater Replenishment System (GWRS), produced its 200‐billionth gallon of water. Implemented in January 2008, the GWRS supplies 850,000 people annually in Orange County. (OCWD))


World Toilet Day 2016: toilets and jobs

This year’s theme for World Toilet Day focuses on how sanitation, or the lack of it, can impact on livelihoods. Toilets play a crucial role in creating a strong economy, as well as improving health and protecting people’s safety and dignity, particularly women’s and girls’. World Toilet Day was on 19 November. (IWC)


CRC for Water Sensitive Cities

Help the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities develop new, tailored resources for you! (and go into the draw to win an iPad!)

Which projects do you think of as the best examples of water sensitive cities concepts? Are there built examples, strategies, policies or studies that serve as really great references? What kind of information makes examples the most useful for your work? This short survey will help the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities develop tailored new resources for everyone to use. 


New WAter Ways Events

Hydrology and nutrient transport processes in groundwater/surface water systems
Outcomes workshop
CRCWSC Project B2.4

When: Friday, 25 November 2016
Time: 10am - 2 pm
Where: University Hall, 130 Winthrop Ave, Crawley
Presenter: Carolyn Oldham & Carlos Ocampo and facilitated by Shelley Shepherd

This is a joint event between the Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities, the University of WA and New WAter Ways

The objective of the workshop is to understand key findings regarding hydrology and nutrient transport processes in groundwater/surface water systems and discuss the implications for future urban development.

The workshop will include:
  1. an overview of the project
  2. presentations on the performance of groundwater/ surface water systems: Anvil Way comp basin, Wharf St constructed wetland and Byford swales
  3. guidance for monitoring the hydrology and nutrient transport processes in groundwater/ surface water systems
  4. discussion of the implications of the results for regulators, environmental managers and the development industry; and
  5. development of  an agreed approach to future research and development.
This is an event not to be missed for those working in the development industry with an interst in achieveing better urban water management outcomes.

Please email to register. This is a free event.

Places are limited so get in quick!


Water Sensitive Cities Speaker Series

Valuing the economic, social and ecological costs and benefits of WSUD

When: 12-1pm, Friday 2 December 2016
Where: The Atrium Theatrette, Department of Water, 168 St George's Tce, Perth
Presenter:  Winthrop Prof. David Pannell, University of Western Australia


Want to know if people in Perth actually value rainwater tanks, water efficient gardens or living streams?

The Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities has been working with researchers at UWA and Monsah to estimate the benefits and costs of strategies and systems for water-sensitive cities. This information is being used to prepare best practice guidelines for the integrated economic evaluation of existing and new approaches to water infrastructure investment.
This presentation will describe the intent of CRCWSC Project A1.2 and outline some of the key findings from the research project's surveys, cost benefit analyses and case studies. We will also hear about the plans for the next phase of research and how you can get involved.

Brief Biography: 

David Pannell is Professor, Head of School of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of Western Australia; Director, Centre for Environmental Economics and Policy; ARC Federation Fellow (2007-12); Distinguished Fellow and past president of the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society; Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia; and a Director of Natural Decisions Pty Ltd.
His research includes the economics of land and water conservation; environmental policy; farmer adoption of conservation practices; risk; and economics of farming systems. He is author of 200 journal articles and book chapters, with awards for research in the USA, Australia, Canada and the UK, including the 2009 Eureka Prize for Interdisciplinary Research.
This is a free session. No rsvp is required.

NWW is always looking for the latest in ideas, systems and treatments that involve all aspects of water. If you would like to present your findings, work or ideas as part of our Water Sensitive Cities Speaker Series, we would love to hear from you:


New WAter Ways Training Sessions

New WAter Ways Training Sessions aim to provide introductory information on processes and concepts for local government and industry planners, engineers, landscape architects, asset managers and developers.
There are now 7 training sessions. The dates for 2017 have been announced. Pencil these dates in your diary – we will start taking your registrations from January 2017. If you are new to the NWW training sessions, we suggest, if possible, attending them in the order they appear below:
  • Better Urban Water Management - 21 February 2017
  • Introduction to stormwater management practices - 21 March 2017
  • Groundwater management for urban development – 23 May 2017
  • Local water management strategies – how to get it right - 20 June 2017
  • Biofilters – 25 July 2017
  • Retrofitting for WSUD – 15 August 2017
  • Maintenance – 19 September 2017
There is no cost for attendance at these sessions, however registration is essential as places are limited – Please email

Please visit the new page dedicated to the NWW training sessions here for full details of each training session.

Other Events

Please visit the New WAter Ways website for current and upcoming events that have already been advertised in past newsletters.

AWA: WA Brewery Site Tour & Beer Tasting: Little Creatures

When: 3.50 for a 4pm start, 2 December 2016
Where: Little Creatures Brewhouse, Fremantle
The WA Young Water Professionals invite you to join them to celebrate the end of 2016 together by attending a tour of the Little Creatures brewery in Fremantle, followed by an expert-led tasting of their local beers and cider.


IPWEA-WA City Super Day Sustainability: Make it green- Call for Papers Now Open!

When: 17 March 2017
Where: Crown, Perth
The Super Day Theme – Sustainability: make it green – revolves around all things sustainable within the public works sector.
Members of the Institute, professionals and academics working in the public works engineering space are invited to submit expressions of interest to present technical papers at the WA City Super Day. This is the leading public works engineering event on the Western Australian calendar and it is attended by participants from all areas of public works - especially local government. It provides a great opportunity to promote your organisation and yourself to delegates who will be attending this event. Email Cathy Higgs for more information


2017 Stormwater Victoria Conference – Time for a Watershed?

When: 3-5 May 2017
Where: Cumberland Resort, Lorne, VIC
When facing uncertainties like population growth and climate change it is possible to become paralysed by indecision or to rely on the "security" of groupthink to provide a solution. This can have serious long term implications for the environments we manage, particularly when it stifles innovation. Challenging the status quo allows practitioners to improve on the established best practices. Questioning provides a deeper and wider understanding of the problem faced, encourages new ideas and fosters collaborative problem solving.


2017 Stormwater NSW Conference

When: 23-25 August 2017
Where: Newcastle Convention Centre, Newcastle, NSW
Details TBA. Enquiries to


2017 Stormwater Queensland / IECA Joint Conference

When: 10-13 October 2017
Where: Pullman Brisbane King George Square, Brisbane, QLD
Details TBA.



Congratulations 2016 PLA National Awards of Excellence Recipients

Congratulations to, to the PLA’s National Awards of Excellence winners.  Winners were announced at the iconic Adelaide Oval where we celebrated the best of the best of our industry. (PLA)


Watering WA Towns

Closes: 30 November 2016
Watering WA Towns will provide grants of up to $2 million for community water supply improvements in dryland agricultural areas receiving less than 600 mm average annual rainfall. The program will focus on community benefits and be open to local governments, community groups and businesses.

Grant for water market tech solution: Improve transparency and reliability of water market information

Closes: 30 November 2016
The Global Innovation Linkages programme provides funding to help Australian businesses and researchers to collaborate with global partners on strategically focused, leading-edge research and development projects. Grants of up to $1 million are up for grabs for Australian businesses with innovative ways to improve water market information: Improve transparency and reliability of water market information to increase market participation by water licence holders and enhance consumer confidence in Australia’s water markets. (AusIndustry)

Water-use efficiency project funding announced

Closes: 6 December 2016
Up to $30 million in Federal Government funding is now available for projects improving water efficiency, sustainability, resilience and helping manage soil health. Applications for round three of the Rural Research and Development for Profit program are now open.

Regional Collaborations Programme

Closes: 16 January 2017
Applications are now open for eligible Australian research organisations and businesses who wish to apply for funding through Round One of the Regional Collaborations Programme. The programme will fund Australian participants from eligible organisations to collaborate with regional and international science, research and innovation partners on solutions to shared regional challenges within the Asia–Pacific regions.

Shelley Shepherd
New WAter Ways
Phone: 0403 170 040

New WAter Ways presents this information in the spirit of keeping the water community up to date with relevant events and courses available to build technical expertise. This should not be seen as an endorsement by New WAter Ways or its partners in respect to the content or accuracy of any course or information presented. While every attempt is made to present accurate information on events, dates, scholarships, jobs etc no responsibility is taken for the accuracy of any of the information

New Water Ways represents a partnership of the Department of Water, Department of Planning, Western Australian Local Government Association, Urban Development Institute of Australia (WA) and the Department of Parks and Wildlife (Rivers and Estuaries Division)

Shelley Shepherd
New WAter Ways
Phone: 0403 170 040


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