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Latest news blog


Pipes delivered for Melbourne to Geelong Pipeline

Construction of the biggest project in our 100 year history moved a step closer as the first pipes for the Melbourne to Geelong Pipeline were delivered to Geelong.

 

The 59 kilometre pipeline will link Barwon Water's Lovely Banks basins with the Melbourne network at Cowies Hill near Werribee.

It headlines a $900 million investment in water and sewerage infrastructure over the next 5 years, and is among key projects that will boost Geelong's supply by 75% of current demand and meet forecast growth.

The fibreglass pipes are 800 millimetres in diameter and 12 metres long, and are supplied under contract by South Australian manufacturer, Fibrelogic.

The construction contract for the pipeline has been awarded to Australian construction company, Abigroup.

Construction is due to begin in September 2010, and the project is expected to create around 200 jobs.

 

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Water restrictions eased

Water restrictions will be scaled back from Stage 3 to Stage 2 in the greater Geelong region from Wednesday 1 September 2010.

Residents will be able to water their gardens, vegetable gardens and trees at any time and wash their cars at home for the first time in 4 years. Sporting grounds will also benefit from an additional allocation of water.

The easing of restrictions follows our biggest storage increase in over 5 years.

Record capital investments and community water-saving efforts have been rewarded.

Detailed information on Stage 2 water restrictions will be posted online next week.

 

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Storage levels at 5-year high

If recent wintry weather has damped your spirits, take comfort in the news that Geelong's water storages are in their best shape since 2005.

Almost 100 mm was recorded at the West Barwon Reservoir in the Otway Ranges yesterday, the catchment's biggest daily rainfall event in over 5 years, boosting the reservoir level by 5 percentage points.

Combined with above-average flows in the Moorabool catchment, the recent rain has added around 5 billion litres to our combined storages, and is a valuable boost for our parched rivers and creeks. With more rain forecast for the weekend and our catchments damp, further inflows are expected next week.

Yesterday's rain pushed totals above the monthly average for West Barwon Reservoir. The August average is 144 mm. Already, 166 mm has been recorded for the month.

 

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Australian Business Awards win

We've won the 2010 Australian Business Award for "recommended employer" in the water supply sector.

Another day at the office fo Field Services staff Jacob Flanagan and Matthew Foote.

More than 140 businesses entered the recommended employer category, which recognises stimulating and supportive workplaces.

The win rewards the sucess of our cultural change journey that began with a staff survey in 2008, and has seen a raft of new innovations across Barwon Water in the past 2 years.

We pride ourselves on an open and honest culture, and a workplace that embraces teamwork, flexibility and fun.

We're commited to maintaining our position as an employer of choice, both within the Geelong region and across the water industry.

 

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National Water Week

For this year's National Water Week  we're once again hosting the ever-popular state-wide poster competition for primary school students, and introducing a brand new photographic and digital image competition for secondary school students.

Great prizes are on offer in both competitions, including a school clinic hosted by AFL footballer Joel Corey and World-record holding paralypian Kelly Cartwright

National Water Week (17–23 October 2010) aims to raise public awareness and improve understanding of water issues in Australia. 

  

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Melbourne to Geelong Pipeline contract awarded

Victorian Government Water Minister Tim Holding has announced that Australian-owned company Fibrelogic has won the contract to supply pipes, valves and fittings for the Melbourne to Geelong Pipeline project.

The pipeline will form part of the state water grid and plays a critical role in meeting the region's future water demand.

The biggest project in Barwon Water's history, the interconnection will deliver up to 16,000 million litres of water a year, or around half of the region's current water usage. The design-phase has created jobs for 60 people and will create an estimated 200 more jobs during construction.

 

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WaterSecure Home open to all

Our WaterSecure Home program is now open to residents across the region, following a successful pilot program in Geelong.

WaterSecure Home is a subsidised water conservation program for householders.

A licensed plumber will fix minor leaks and fit tap flow regulators.

A licensed plumber will fix minor leaks and fit tap flow regulators.

Sign up, and a licensed plumber will visit your home, conduct a full water audit, check for and repair minor leaks, and fit a range of simple water-saving devices such as low-flow showerheads, tap aerators and toilet cistern weights.

The 12 month trial targeted 2500 homes across Geelong. The program is now open to all Barwon Water customers across the region including Geelong, Colac, the Surf Coast, the Bellarine Peninsula.

 

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New Board Directors appointed

The Minister for Water Tim Holding has appointed two new Directors to the Board of Barwon Water and re-appointed a third Director.

Hugh Gleeson and Jodi Manion will begin their terms from 1 July 2010 along with John Bugg, who has been re-appointed for a third term.

Hugh Gleeson is Chief Executive Officer of United Energy and natural gas distributor Multinet Gas. He has extensive experience in the public and private electricity industry and is a member of the Energy Network Association.

Jodi Manion is General Manager for Telstra Geelong and the Surf Coast and a member of the Committee for Geelong and Deakin Alumni Community.

Hugh and Jodi replace retiring Directors Claire Higgins and Des Powell.


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We are building for the future

Projects worth more than $766 million over the coming years will secure water supplies for our next generation.

Projects such as the Anglesea borefield, Northern Water Plant, Black Rock Recycled Water Plant and the Melbourne-Geelong Interconnection will increase our water supplies by more than 75% of our current demand.

To deliver these vital solutions, we must invest heavily in this infrastructure. As a result, price rises over the next three years will go toward funding crucial water, sewerage and recycled water projects.

 

Your bill is changing

From 1 July 2010, prices will increase by 10.09%

This increase has been approved by the independent Essential Services Commission (ESC).

 

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Anglesea borefield reflections

Barwon Water youth and environment Ambassador Joel Corey shares his experiences following a visit to the Anglesea borefield.

I met Project Engineer Peter Palmieri at bore 6, where the Anglesea Borefield pre-treatment plant is located. The groundwater, located up to 400 metres below the surface is pumped into an aerator tank where it is mixed with air. There is a smell of sulfur — a result of the groundwater lying dormant in the aquifer for more than 1000 years.

Youth and environment ambassador Joel Corey and community engagement officer Donna van Staden at the Anglesea Borefield pre-treatment plant.

The water is then piped to the first of 3 flocculation tanks. A bit like an electric mixer, the water is churned around, then stopped to allow particles to settle. The top 30 centimetres of water is skimmed off the top and piped to the next tank. The water becomes clearer as sediment and particles are removed as it moves through the tanks. The groundwater exits the third tank and is released into the settling basin.

The settling basin is set up like a long queue at the movies. The water takes about a day to snake up and down the basin until it reaches the front of the line. From here, it is pumped to Wurdee Boluc Reservoir where the water treatment process continues.

We then went and visited 2 bores; the first of which was under construction. The drilling contractors were working to drill 600 metres deep. The second bore is 1 of 5 bores currently operating.

A lot of effort has gone into ensuring the area is restored. Topsoil removed during construction has been returned, and native plants propagated from seeds from the site have been planted and are growing well. 


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