Rainwater harvesting could save Australia billions, according to Rainwater Harvesting Association
Reduce Reliance on Centralised Infrastructure
Citing work from Dr Peter Coombes, the Rainwater Harvesting Association Australia says that applying water efficient measures, such as rainwater harvesting systems, into new buildings in Victoria could reduce the net present costs of water cycle management to 2050 by $6 billion, and save $3.5 billion in South East Queensland between now and 2056.
“When you turn the tap on in your house, it comes from a dam or another water source through big pumps and pipes and storage reservoirs until it gets to your house. The water you don’t use is then discharged by another set of pipes and infrastructure to the wastewater system,” said Dr. Coombes in an interview.
“But if you put a rainwater harvesting tank on that house, you’re using rainwater rather than getting it from the water supply system. That means a certain proportion of water is no longer travelling through all the centralised water infrastructure, so you’re deferring that cost, and that saves money.”
Case for a National Stormwater Policy
Dr Coombes has argued for the creation of a national stormwater initiative, which would lead to the development of ‘a modern national stormwater policy’.
In its report dated December 2015, and after considering submissions by Dr. Coombes and others, the Environment and Communications References Committee of the Commonwealth of Australia Senate wrote that:
“The committee considers that the Australian, state and territory governments should develop a National Stormwater Initiative, which would establish a national policy framework for stormwater management. The Initiative will provide a mandatory national agenda for stormwater management that seeks to realise economic and environmental benefits from the increased utilisation of stormwater and which incorporates whole-of-water-cycle principles. The Initiative will also outline the structure for funding, co-funding, conditions for funding, incentives, policy setting (using agencies like the Productivity Commission, Bureau of Meteorology and the Australian Bureau of Statistics) and data collection.”
To Learn More:
To download a copy and read the complete story as posted online by Eco-Business in December 2015 about the work of Dr. Peter Coombes, click on Rainwater harvesting could save Australia billions
To download the report by the Environment and Communications References Committee of the Commonwealth of Australia Senate, click on Stormwater management in Australia