WaterRA to host panel session at OzWater

March 18, 2019

Water Research Australia is excited to announce it will run a panel session at this year's OzWater entitled: The future role of catchments - are liveability outcomes aligned to public health protection?

To be held on Tuesday 7th May, the session will discuss the increasing importance of recreational access to drinking water catchments in Australia.

Drinking water catchments and storages are an attractive location for initiatives seeking to improve the liveability of a region. However, their traditional role is to support health protection via the exclusion of human activity, minimising human-derived hazards to drinking water supply.

The booming population growth in Australia’s urban and major regional centres has triggered increasing interest in evaluating the role of our catchments.

The session will synthesise panellists’ and audience members’ experience and knowledge of the current state of the issue and seek to understand changes to risk management practices in light of increasing prevalence of recreation in the past decade.

Featuring the following key panellists, with more to be announced:          

  • Rachael Miller, Head Water Quality | Water Corporation
  • Chris Owens, Senior Analyst | Sydney Water
  • Kelly Hill, Research Manager | Water Research Australia
  • Suzie Sarkis, Manager Water Program | Victoria Department of Health and Human Services
  • Cameron Veal, Catchment Water Quality Technical Coordinator | Seqwater
  • Dan Hoefel, Senior Manager Water Expertise & Research | SA Water

The session will also call on audience participation to:

  • Survey current uses of catchments across workshop attendees’ jurisdictions;
  • Identify potential and committed future uses for these catchments;
  • Explore causes for changing expectations of catchment usage;
  • Explore the expectations of the public – recreational users and drinking water consumers;
  • Survey the current state of the industry – water utilities and health regulators – water quality and liveability; and,
  • Discuss the strengths and limitations of forecasting methods – such as via quantitative modelling.

Participants will leave the session with a greater understanding of the aligned, neutral, and misaligned outcomes for the role of catchments with respect to health protection and recreational scenarios.

To find out more about registering for OzWater visit ozwater.org or contact Kelly Hill for more information about the WaterRA panel session.