Australia

Sydney told to expect water restrictions ‘soon’ as dam levels dive – Sydney

The Berejiklian government will review planned water restrictions for Sydney with the possibility that curbs on use will be tougher than presently detailed in the city’s Metropolitan Water Plan.

Cabinet is expected to review the water plans next Monday to determine its response to plunging reservoir levels as the dry spell intensifies.

Most of NSW has had very much below average rainfall for the past two years, and Sydney’s April-May period is on track to be its second driest in 160 years, the Bureau of Meteorology said.

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Desalination plant restart ahead of schedule as dam levels slide – Sydney

The restart of Sydney’s desalination plant is proceeding faster than expected, helping to slow the drawdown of the city’s reservoirs amid the ongoing drought.

The $2.3 billion plant, which resumed operations in January, has been supplying water to Sydney’s network for about six weeks. Production is now between 300 and 400 million litres per week.

“In line with our operating licence, [the plant] has until September to reach its maximum capacity of producing 250 million litres per day of water – or about 15 per cent of Sydney’s drinking water requirements,” Keith Davies, the facility’s chief executive, said.

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Sydney desal plant restart ahead of schedule as dam levels continue slide – Sydney

The restart of Sydney’s desalination plant is proceeding faster than expected, helping to slow the drawdown of the city’s reservoirs amid the ongoing drought.

The $2.3 billion plant, which resumed operations in January, has been supplying water to Sydney’s network for about six weeks. Production is now between 300 and 400 million litres per week.

“In line with our operating licence, [the plant] has until September to reach its maximum capacity of producing 250 million litres per day of water – or about 15 per cent of Sydney’s drinking water requirements,” Keith Davies, the facility’s chief executive, said.

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Solar Powered Desalination Offers Hope of a Global Shift in Agriculture – Australia

Australia’s ability to reliably produce food for an ever-increasing population is a growing concern amid droughts and increasingly volatile climate conditions.

Australian agriculture practices rely heavily on groundwater, even though this water source is becoming increasingly saline at many locations, making it impractical to use.

To combat this issue and make fresh water readily available to the farming sector irrespective of the quality of the local groundwater supply, UNSW’s Global Water Institute (GWI) is developing an innovative, solar-powered version of a desalination technology called Capacitive Deionization (CDI).

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Solar scrapping makes nuclear a real option – Australia

A $650 million solar thermal power plant planned for Port Augusta will not go ahead after the company behind it failed to secure commercial finance for the project.

The Conservative Party says a reliable, zero-carbon proven power mode using a resource we have in abundance in South Australia should now appeal to those who want to bring back common sense.

Nuclear power could not only solve our energy reliability and climate alarmist CO2 concerns, it could also irrigate great swathes of South Australia.

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Ash from fires threatens Melbourne’s water as large desal order placed – Melbourne

Bushfires in Gippsland have burnt 13 per cent of the forest around the Thomson Dam, Melbourne’s major water catchment, leaving blankets of ash that threaten to pollute the city’s water supply.

Heavy rain, while desperately needed after an extremely hot and dry summer, would only worsen the city’s water outlook, as it would wash the fire refuse into the vast reservoir, rendering it unusable for months.

Up to five per cent of the forest around the smaller Upper Yarra reservoir east of Melbourne has also been burnt.

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Cities turn to desalination for water security, but at what cost?

Removing salts and other impurities from water is really difficult. For thousands of years people, including Aristotle, tried to make fresh water from sea water. In the 21st century, advances in desalination technology mean water authorities in Australia and worldwide can supply bountiful fresh water at the flick of a switch.

Achieving water security using desalination is now a priority for the majority of Australia’s capital cities, all but one of which are on the coast. Using the abundance of sea water as a source, this approach seeks to “climate proof” our cities’ water supplies.

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Water restrictions, desal warning for Melbourne after blaze near dam – Melbourne

Melburnians could be drinking water from Victoria’s desalination plant – or even be put on water restrictions – if a fire on the banks of a major water catchment east of the city is not quickly brought under control, the Water Minister has warned.

Lightning sparked a bushfire about a week ago in thick forest in the Baw Baw National Park, about three hours’ drive east of Melbourne.

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Desalination plant should be reserved for extreme occasions – Sydney

This weekend brings a bittersweet moment when Sydneysiders are reminded that we don’t live on just those sweet rains from heaven. After six years of trouble and tempest, we’re getting our desalination plant back.

The plant, at Kurnell, is designed to be used when Sydney’s dams fall below 60 per cent capacity, a (water) mark expected this weekend.

When running at full tilt, in six to eight months from switching on, the plant will produce 250 million litres a day – or about 15 per cent of Sydney’s drinking water.

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Sydney desalination plant just days from starting up as dam levels dive – Kurnell – Australia

Sydney households will have up to $35 added to their annual water bills to cover the restart of the city’s desalination plant, the Berejiklian government says.

On Tuesday, Sydney and Wollongong’s dams were 60.3 per cent full, marginally above the trigger point for switching on the desalination plant. On current projections, the sub-60 per cent mark is likely to be crossed this weekend.

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