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Latest news blog

Keeping waterways healthy

The Hon Lisa Neville, Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water, last week launched action plans for a pair of volunteer-led ‘citizen science’ programs to monitor the health of our local waterways.

L to R: Corangamite Catchment Management CEO Gareth Smith and Chair Alice Knight, Water Minister Lisa Neville, Barwon Water Chair Jo Plummer and MD Joe Adamski.

Ms Neville joined representatives from Barwon Water and Corangamite Catchment Management Authority to launch Victoria’s Waterwatch and EstuaryWatch plans.

The plans map the direction of the programs for the next 8 years with the aim of increasing participation and providing data to inform decisions in waterway management.



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Holiday season trading hours 2015-2016

Our customer contact centre is closed over the Christmas / new year period from Thursday 24 December. We will resume normal hours from Monday 4 January 2016.

For water or sewerage related emergencies and faults (such as a burst or leaking main), we are always available though our 24-hour hotline: 1300 656 007.

We would like to wish all our customers a safe and happy festive season and all the best for the new year.

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Colac water supply upgrade fast-tracked

We have fast-tracked a planned upgrade to Colac’s water supply following an updated water security assessment.

The Colac water supply system is expected to be connected to the greater Geelong network by July 2017, two years ahead of plan.

The upgrade will increase supply diversity and security, effectively doubling the capacity of Colac’s supply. The upgrade caters for growth and reduces the threat of reduced catchment inflows in very dry years. It also offers protection against the risk of bushfires, land slips and failure of the existing Otway ranges pipeline .

The project includes a connection with the Wurdee Boluc channel near Murroon, a new 50 million litre storage basin and pumping station at Barwon Downs, and an 11-kilometre pipeline to the existing Colac supply pipeline.

Colac will continue to receive water from the West Gellibrand and Olangolah reservoirs, with the supplementary supply drawn from the West Barwon catchment via the Wurdee Boluc channel. As a further security measure, the upgrade allows for groundwater sourced from the Barwon Downs borefield under extreme dry conditions.

Construction is set to begin in the second half of 2016 following an extensive stakeholder and community engagement program which included a community survey, information kiosks, and the formation of the Colac Community Reference Group.

  Media release: Colac water supply upgrade fast tracked

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New Anglesea outfall pipeline towed into position

Anglesea’s new recycled water outfall pipeline was successfully installed at the weekend following a major land and sea operation. The outfall had been damaged earlier this year when a section of cliff collapsed.

Anglesea’s new recycled water outfall pipeline was successfully following a major land and sea operation.

Early on Sunday morning, the 700 metre welded polyethylene pipeline was moved on rollers and across the beach at Point Roadknight, attached to a boat and towed out to sea. The pipe was moved into position and lowered 10 m underwater to align with a pre-drilled bore hole. Finally, the pipe was pulled through the bore, emerging at the Anglesea water reclamation facility on the clifftop.

Work will continue at the reclamation plant to finalise the connection. The project is scheduled for completion before the busy summer holiday period.

  More photos on our Facebook page

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Anglesea outfall repairs underway

Replacement of the Anglesea outfall pipeline has begun.

The pipe was damaged when a section of cliff collapsed in August. The repair has been fast-tracked ahead of the busy summer period.

It’s a challenging task with significant onshore and offshore work. Specialist engineering and construction teams need to consider the cliffs, beach, ocean floor and tides.

A drill rig is currently boring from the water reclamation plant through the cliff. It will continue below the cliff base and ocean floor to emerge about 500 metres offshore.

Almost 700 metres of pipe are now being welded and pressure tested on land before being towed across the water to the outfall end point.

From there, the pipe will be attached to the drill head, lowered 10 metres under water and pulled back through the bore hole to the plant.

We’re working closely with local residents throughout the project. Customers will not experience any disruption to sewerage services during the works.

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New Board announced

Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water Lisa Neville today announced the new make-up of Victoria’s water corporation boards.

The Minister announced six new appointments to Barwon Water’s Board, including new Chair Jo Plummer.

Ms Plummer is joined by new members Elaine Carbines, John Gavens, Christopher Lovell, Jason Mifsud and Bernard Walsh.

Jodi Heath was re-appointed, and Rebecca Leonard, who was appointed in October 2013, continues her 4-year term.

  Management and Board

  Board director profiles

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Lorne office closure

Barwon Water's customer service counter in Polwarth Road, Lorne will close permanently on Thursday 1 October 2015 due to very low demand for over-the-counter services.

You can pay your water bill (and most other bills) over the counter at any Australia Post Outlet. The Lorne Post Office is located at 154 Mountjoy Parade (Great Ocean Road). There are more than 50 post offices located in our service region.

You can also pay your water bill over the phone, online, or by a Direct Debit payment arrangement.

You can contact us on 1300 656 007 during business hours (or 24×7 for emergencies).

Payment options

  Lorne Post office

  Post office locator


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Head office refurb begins

Lisa Neville, Minister for Water and Labor Member for Bellarine, today marked the commencement of Barwon Water’s $29 million Ryrie Street head office refurbishment.

The building will be gutted and updated to meet modern standards. The revitalised site will feature a community hub and pedestrian link connecting Ryrie Street to the arts precinct including the new library and Geelong Performing Arts Centre.

Barwon Water Managing Director Joe Adamski and Water Minister Lisa Neville at this morning's project launch.

We will hand over the site to construction contractor Monaco Hickey this week, with demolition work to begin before the end of the month. Construction is scheduled to start later this year and is scheduled for completion by mid-2017.

The project will see up to 100 jobs to be created during construction in a boost to the regional economy. Monaco Hickey has sought to engage local trades where possible.

Consolidating our corporate activities under one roof will bring savings of up to 45% on energy, maintenance and operational costs.

Importantly, the project will be price-neutral, funded by operational savings and consolidation of buildings.

  More information: Ryrie Street office refurbishment

  Media release: Victorian Government "Barwon Water head office refurbishment commencing"

  See photos on our Facebook page

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Not so flushable wipes

Popular ‘flushable’ wet wipes don’t break down quickly, unlike regular toilet paper. Instead, they are increasingly becoming a source of sewerage system blockages.

The wipes tend to clump together (or accumulate around tree roots that have invaded pipes) where they trap grease and oil, causing a blockage. Blocked sewer pipes can be costly and difficult to repair, and may even cause unpleasant overflows.

Barwon Water is working with a Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA) industry group to develop appropriate ‘flushability’ standards for wipes manufacturers.

In the meantime, we urge our customers to dispose of wet wipes in the bin instead.

  Media release issued 4 August 2015: “Flushable wipes”

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Anglesea outfall fast-tracked

Barwon Water has accelerated plans to replace the Anglesea outfall pipeline replacement after it was damaged when a section of cliff collapsed late last month.

The pipe carries Class B recycled water. It connects the Anglesea water reclamation plant – located on the coastal cliffs – to the outfall on the sea floor. Due the recent rock fall, the pipe was damaged and recycled water is flowing onto the beach. Although the flow rate is low and the water is treated to a very high standard, we advise people to avoid contact. Signs are erected in the vicinity.

Plans were already underway to replace the pipe when it was damaged. A replacement pipe will be bored from the plant, beneath the cliff, and approximately 185 metres out to sea. The new pipe will not be prone to cliff erosion, as it will be drilled well below the cliff base.

Scoping work is underway, and the project is expected to be complete before summer.

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