Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Wentworth Group promotes IPR

The Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists is a group of respected Australian scientists with an aim to raise awareness and facilitate debate regarding some key environmental issues. Their members include Prof Tim Flannery, Prof Peter Cullen, and Prof Mike Young.

The Wentworth Group have released a number of significant documents including their Blueprint for a Living Continent in 2002 and their Blueprint for a National Water Plan in 2003. You can also find a brief article about the Wentworth Group's contribution to the water debate here.

Today’s Adelaide Advertiser reports the Wentworth Group advocating the expansion of Adelaide’s municipal water supplies by means including potable and non potable water reuse and urban stormwater harvesting (see below).

I haven’t yet found the actual source document where the proposed strategies are described. Please let me know if you come across it…

A State of Emergency
By Cara Jenkin
The Adelaide Advertiser
September 05, 2007

SOUTH Australians need to drink recycled sewage, recycle stormwater and consume 50 per cent less to safeguard water supplies for the future, the Wentworth Group of Scientists says.

They have called for reliable sources to be established as a matter of urgency to replace SA's reliance on the River Murray.

The group's four water experts, University of Adelaide Professor Mike Young, former Adelaide Thinker in Residence Peter Cullen, University of Sydney Emeritus Professor Bruce Thom and CSIRO environmental adviser Peter Cosier have outlined several strategies.

The use of recycled wastewater and stormwater, limits on groundwater use, a buyback of water licences and an overall reduction in consumption was necessary.

Professor Young said all the options to source water must be examined.

"We need to put sewage recycling strongly on the table as an option, for both drinking and for outdoor use, and evaluate (all the options) carefully and thoroughly," he said.

Professor Cullen said 50 per cent of the water allocated from rivers would be less reliable as climate change took hold.

"We need to put controls on groundwater bores right across the Adelaide Plains," he said.

"We are pumping vast amounts out of our reserves when we might not have anything come out of the taps this summer."

Professor Thom said there was a "tremendous loss" when stormwater was being discharged out to sea.

Mr Cosier said State and Federal Government reforms to allocate water more stringently and sustainably had also failed to make progress in the past three years.

"One of the big criticisms SA had in the past was asking others to do what they weren't prepared to do themselves," he said.

1 comment:

Sam said...

It would be good if Peter Cullen had made similar statements about IPR when approving the Kurnell desalination plant through his independent panel. $1.76 billion (or a portion of) would be much better spent on some large scale recycling.

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