Southern Rural Water - Sustainability
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 Page Last Updated:
 Monday, 5 August 2013
  


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Southern Rural Water is committed to a sustainable business and environment.

Water
As a water supplier, we are constantly reminded of the need to manage water resources wisely for today and into the future.

Southern Rural Water was actively involved in developing the Central, Gippsland and Western Region Sustainable Water Strategies. We have also been actively involved in a range of other local and regional initiatives designed to achieve more efficient use and management of water:
 
 Channel automation in the MID - designed to achieve the more efficient supply of water throughout the Macalister Irrigation District,
 The MID2030 Project - providing future direction for the Macalister Irrigation District,
 WID Recycled Water Scheme - supplying treated waste water from the Western Treatment Plant to the market gardens at Werribee South, and
 Rural Water Awards - designed to raise customer awareness of efficient water use
 

Energy and greenhouse
The earth’s climate is changing with rising temperatures attributed to increased greenhouse emissions, which may in turn mean:
 
 Victoria's water resources are likely to become increasingly vulnerable to climate change, due to projected drying trends over much of the state,
 The demand for water may grow as a result of increasing population, warmer temperatures and higher evaporation rates,
 Water quality may be affected by changes in the number and types of organisms, water temperature, carbon dioxide concentration, transportation of water sediment and chemicals, and the volume of water flow, and
 Decreases in stream flow, impacts on coastal underground water and intertidal habitats, and increased salinity will be critical issues for the management of our water supply and natural resources.
 

Southern Rural Water is also responding to the challenge and is undertaking the following to reduce its greenhouse impacts:
 
 we purchase accredited 'green' power for all of our offices,
 we use videoconferencing to significantly reduce travel
 we have developed vehicle purchasing guidelines to promote the use of more energy efficient vehicles,
 we offset our vehicle emissions by subscribing to Greenfleet,
 we have installed solar powered gates throughout the Macalister Irrigation District,
 we have hydro power being generated at Glenmaggie and Blue Rock reservoirs, and
 we are investigating the potential to generate additional electricity from micro-hydro power stations in appropriate locations throughout our network.
 

Combined, these initiatives are enabling us to significantly reduce our greenhouse gas emission as we move towards becoming a carbon neutral organisation.
 
River health and biodiversity
Southern Rural Water is committed to the sustainable management of our land and activities to protect the natural environment. In doing so:
 
 we work closely with DEPI, CMAs and local communities to maintain biodiversity and protect the quality of the land
 we regulate the release of water from our storages to provide environmental flows and support river health
 we have been monitoring water temperatures in our storages to ascertain the thermal impacts of reservoir releases on aquatic life
 we have worked with CMAs on projects such as the Land and Water Use Change Study for Victoria’s southwest and the Macalister Land and Water Management Plan
 we have prepared management plans (including the control of pest plants and animals) for our storages
 we assess the environmental impacts of all projects
 

Resources and waste
Southern Rural Water is not a major generator of waste. Nonetheless we recognise that by reducing waste, we can save resources, save money and potentially reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Each major office is developing a waste management plan centred around the need to minimise the amount of waste produced, to reuse and then to recycle.

The plans are being supported by the development of ‘green’ procurement guidelines including the purchase of recycled photocopy paper.

 
More information
For more information, please contact us.
 

   
   
 

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