Assessing Integrated Water Management Options for Urban Developments - Canberra case study

Gray, Stephen R, Sharma, Ashok, Diaper, Clare, Liston, Peter and Howe, Carol (2008) Assessing Integrated Water Management Options for Urban Developments - Canberra case study. Urban Water Journal, 5 (2). pp. 147-159. ISSN 1573-062X


Urban water services in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) are currently provided through conventional centralised systems, involving large scale water distribution, wastewater collection, water and wastewater treatment. A study was conducted to assist Environment ACT in setting broad policies for future water services in Canberra. This paper presents the outcomes of a study examining the effects of various water servicing options on water resources and the environment, for two townships in Canberra, one existing and one greenfield site. Three modelling tools were used to predict the effects of various alternative water servicing scenarios, including demand management options, rainwater tanks, greywater use, on-site detention tanks, gross pollutant traps, swales and ponds. The results show that potable water reductions are best achieved by demand management tools or a combination of greywater and rainwater use for existing suburbs, while 3rd pipe systems are preferred for greenfield sites. For this specific climatic region and end use demands, modelling predicted increased water savings from raintanks compared to greywater systems alone, with raintanks providing the additional benefit of reduced peak stormwater flows at the allotment scale. Rainwater and stormwater reuse from stormwater ponds within the catchments was found to provide the highest reduction in nutrient discharge from the case study areas. Environment ACT amended planning controls to facilitate installation of raintanks and greywater systems, and commenced a Government funded rebate scheme for raintanks as a result of this study.

Item type Article
Subjects Historical > RFCD Classification > 300000 Agricultural, Veterinary and Environmental Sciences
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > Centre for Environmental Safety and Risk Engineering (CESARE)
Keywords urban water management, rain tanks, waste water, storm water, water balance modelling, case studies, Canberra
Citations in Scopus 46 - View on Scopus
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