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Latest news blog

Northern Water Plant construction progressing well

Construction of the $94 million Northern Water Plant is progressing well, with more than 60% of the project complete.

The facility is taking shape, with earthworks and structures mostly finished. Attention has now turned to mechanical and electrical fit-out inside the buildings.

Installation of the water treatment and Class A recycling equipment has started. Most of the components have been manufactured in Australia but some specialist items are being imported from Germany.

Commissioning the plant will begin mid-2012 once construction has been completed and all systems have been checked and tested.

  Northern Water Plant

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Managing Director will not renew contract

Michael Malouf is leaving Barwon Water after nearly five years as Managing Director.

Mr Malouf has advised Barwon Water's Board he does not intend to renew his contract.

In a joint statement with Chairman Dr Michael King today, Mr Malouf said after more than 20 years as a Chief Executive, he wanted to devote more time to his family.

Mr Malouf joined Barwon Water in September 2007, after executive roles with Pratt Holdings. Previously, he was Chief Executive of the Carlton Football Club, Melbourne City Council, City of Greater Geelong, City of Melton and City of Wyndham.

Dr King said the Board accepted Mr Malouf's decision and acknowledged his contribution, particularly in the crucial areas of water supply, recycled water and cultural change.

Mr Malouf is expected to leave Barwon Water on Friday 30 March 2012.

Barwon Water's Board will begin seeking a replacement as soon as possible.

The Board has appointed Joe Adamski, General Manager Strategy and Technology, as acting Managing Director.

  Media release: MD not to renew contract

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Work begins on the new Black Rock Recycled Water Plant

A symbolic sod-turning ceremony has marked the start of construction on the new Black Rock Recycled Water Plant.

The state-of-the-art facility will produce high quality Class A recycled water for new residential growth centres including Armstrong Creek and Torquay North, plus improved Class C water for agriculture and recreation.

The recycled water plant will be located adjacent to the existing water reclamation facility in Connewarre, part of the Black Rock Environmental Precinct.

The sod-turning ceremony was attended by Member for South Barwon Andrew Katos MLA, Member for Western Victoria Region David Koch, as well as local leaders and Barwon Water board directors.

The project, due for completion in 2013, is a major milestone in our expanding recycled water network. It will slash recycled water discharges to Bass Strait, provide new recycled water markets, and free up vital drinking water supplies to meet growth and demand.


More information

  Black Rock recycled water plant

  Recycled water for residential customers

  Recycled water for business customers

  Media release: New recycled water plant to serve growth centres

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Don't miss your native plant and bucket: exclusive offer for Geelong Advertiser readers

Get your native plant and bucket this weekend at our Sustainable Home and Garden Expo.

Pick up a copy of the Geelong Advertiser this Saturday 10 March, cut out the official coupon, and present it at our Sustainable Home and Garden Expo in exchange for a native plant and bucket.

Youth and Environment Ambassadors Kelly Cartwright and Joel Corey with the native seedlings.

The Sustainable Home and Garden is Barwon Water's flagship annual event.

Join more than 50 exhibitors and an array of special guests for 2 days of interactive displays, hands-on activities, sustainable living ideas, an exciting on-stage program, and fun for the whole family.


Saturday 10 – Sunday 11 March 2012 (Labour Day long weekend)

10.00 am – 4.00 pm daily


Steampacket Gardens, Waterfront Geelong

Cost: Entry is free


Choice of plants

Geelong Advertiser readers can choose from one of three native Australian seedlings (subject to availability):


Kangaroo grass (Themeda triandra): a small, hardy grass that thrives in full sun or part shade and sandy to clay soils. Small brown flowers on long stems September-February.

  Kangaroo Grass information card (PDF 422 KB) 


Rock Correa (Correa glabra) a tall shrub that likes well drained soil and grows well in full sun and part shade. Drought and frost tolerant. Can be pruned to shape or used as a low hedge. Small read and green bell-shaped flowers May-October.

  Rock Correa information card (PDF 499 KB)


Sticky Hop-bush (Dodonaea viscose) is a medium to large shrub. It likes well drained soils and full sun to part shade. Drought and frost tolerant. Red flowers August-December and distinctive reddish brown papery fruit capsules.

  Sticky Hop-bush plant information card (PDF 351 KB)


More information

  Sustainable Home and Garden Expo 2012


The fine print

  • Total value of Geelong Advertiser, native plant and bucket is $4.70.
  • Cost of the Geelong Advertiser (Saturday edition) is $1.70.
  • Bucket and plant only available with official coupon.
  • One plant and one bucket per coupon only.
  • Only original coupons will be accepted (no copies).
  • No exchange will be permitted.
  • Strictly while stocks last.
  • Two day offer only.

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Water Supply Demand Strategy: Draft for public comment

We are seeking feedback from our community on our draft Water Supply Demand Strategy (WSDS).

The WSDS outlines actions required to manage demand for water across our service region, ensuring sufficient water supplies are sourced to meet residential, agricultural, business and environmental needs well into the future.

This strategy is a 50 year plan, updated every 5 years in response to a constantly changing water outlook.

  Water Supply Demand Strategy 2012-2062

Our short-term actions outlined in the WSDS focus on the Colac region, with analysis indicating that demand may exceed supply by 2017. Long-term analysis of water supply and demand for the rest of our serviced areas indicates that we are water secure well into the future.

Your feedback on the draft document will be used to finalise the Water Supply Demand Strategy.

Feedback is welcome until Friday 9 March 2012

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Board positions 2012: Expressions of interest

The Victorian Government invites suitably qualified and experienced people to register an expression of interest for board director positions for the 19 Victorian water corporations, including Barwon Water, Melbourne Water and the three Melbourne metropolitan retailers.

The terms of 55 board directors, including 7 chairs, expire in 2012, and this is an opportunity for people with leadership and vision to be considered for these positions.

The terms of office for directors will commence 1 October 2012. Expressions of Interest close 9 March 2012.

For more information, please visit the website below.


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Black Rock Water Reclamation Plant open day

Our Black Rock Water Reclamation Plant is opening its doors to the public.

This facility treats some 50 million litres of residential and industrial sewage every day of the year, and produces recycled water for irrigating crops, golf courses and more.

The Black Rock Water Reclamation Plant in Connewarre.

The Black Rock environmental precinct will soon be home to a new biosolids drying plant and a new recycled water plant.

The new Black Rock Recycled Water Plant will supply high quality recycled water to new residential developments at Armstrong Creek and Torquay North.

Join us for a guided tour of the facility and learn about our exciting plans for the future.


11 am — 3 pm

Sunday 18 March 2012


Black Rock Water Reclamation Plant

Black Rock Road, Connewarre (Google map)

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Anglesea sewer pipeline complete

A new sewer pipeline beneath the Anglesea River is fully operational after a major replacement project.

The project was completed on 22 December 2011, ahead of its Christmas deadline.

The pipeline was laid out and welded together along Bingley Parade, Anglesea, before being drawn through a pre-drilled tunnel beneath the Anglesea River.

The pipeline was fast-tracked to meet the demands of the summer tourist influx in Anglesea. Flows to the Anglesea treatment facility have already increased more than 4-fold in January.

We're now finalising the re-instatement of the construction site and contributing funds to a Surf Coast Shire project to lay new turf in the area.

Barwon Water would like to thank Anglesea residents for their cooperation, patience and understanding throughout this project.


Timeline of the project

August 2011: Barwon Water staff detected a leak in the original pipeline in August 2010 by checking logs of flows to the Anglesea Water Reclamation Plant. A tear was discovered in the pipeline, beneath the Anglesea River.

The pipe was shut down and sewerage was transported by truck to the treatment plant.

We considered a number of repair options but none proved feasible due to the difficult location of the leak and concern for the surrounding environment. The decision was made to replace the entire river crossing. The Barwon Water Alliance was engaged to undertake the work.

September 2011: A temporary above-ground pipe was laid through walking paths in Coogoorah Park.

November 2011: A drilling rig was set up on the west side of the river to tunnel 12.5 metres below its deepest point. Lengths of pipe were laid out on the east side and welded together to form a continuous 330 metre pipeline.

December 2011: The pipeline was drawn though the tunnel and connected. Work began on re-instatement of the site, including levelling and laying top-soil.

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Sustainable Home and Garden Expo 2012: call for exhibitors

Barwon Water is once again hosting the Sustainable Home and Garden Expo at Steampacket Gardens on the Geelong waterfront, 10–11 March 2012 (the Labour Day long weekend).

Limited spots are still available for exhibitors across the home and garden sectors, but hurry as applications close soon.

Corporate sponsorship packages are also available.

The Sustainable Home and Garden Expo provides businesses and not-for-profit organisations with opportunities to showcase, promote and sell their sustainable products and services.

Last year, our flagship sustainability event attracted around 18,000 visitors. This year's expo is shaping up to be even more spectacular with popular renovating duo Josh and Jenna among an array of special guests including Gardening Australia's Jane Edmanson, Channel 31's Vasilii Kanidiadis plus MCs Denis Walter and Catriona Rowntree.

This year, visitors can expect an even greater range of exhibitors, entertainment, giveaways, refreshments and more.

Want to be part of the region's premier sustainability event? For more information, an exhibitor application or sponsor pack, please contact event coordinator Alex Hamilton on 1300 656 007 or email info@barwonwater.vic.gov.au.

  Sustainable Home and Garden Expo 2012

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Recycled water release in Bannockburn

An investigation into the emergency discharge of recycled water into Bruce's Creek at Bannockburn found no adverse impact on the creek or the Barwon River.

Around 31 million litres of treated Class C recycled water was released from the Bannockburn Water Reclamation Plant to Bruce's Creek between August and November 2011 when the plant's storage lagoon reached capacity and other options had been exhausted.

The release was coordinated with and approved by EPA Victoria, subject to a range of conditions including regular inspections and sampling.

Monitoring of the receiving waters of the Barwon River showed no detectable impact on water quality during the discharge. An independent assessment by an aquatic ecologist concluded negligible or low risk to the river environment and no lasting impact on Bruce's Creek or the Barwon River.

The event has highlighted areas in which we can improve such as reviewing emergency discharge options, conducting risk assessments for inland treatment plants, and working with community interest groups.

The Bannockburn Water Reclamation Plant is currently being upgraded. An increase in the facility's treatment and storage capacity, due for completion in mid-2012, will ease pressure on the plant and cater for future growth.

A summary of the report provided to the EPA, including background information, results and future actions can be downloaded below. If you would like more information, or a copy of the full report, please contact us.


  Summary report: Recycled water release into Bruce's Creek Bannockburn (PDF 156 KB)

  Media release: recycled water release (Friday 30 December 2011)

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