SINCE the desalination expansion was touted in the state government’s 2017 metropolitan water plan why then does NSW Government (aka NSW INC) announce this in the Christmas holiday period …
IS that to ensure as few constituents as possible have their say?
–total water storage across greater Sydney is at 43.1 per cent,
BUT dams are depleting at a faster rate than during the Millennium Drought, when levels plummeted to 33.8 per cent in February 2007.
SO what is the SMOCO Government doing to address this?
IS VISA MANIPULATION … backdoor IMMIGRATION … contributing to dams depleting at a faster rate than the Millennium Drought?
FURTHER FROM A CAAN COMMENTATOR:
THERE IS NOTHING SURER THAN our water bills will rise because of Desal privatisation fees …
WHY do you reckon we have the high immigration and visa manipulation population growth?
IS this about creating ‘Cash Cows’ for their so-called ‘Smart’ Slum City high energy and water intensive THERMAL MASS wastelands?
DOES this not seem criminal? At the same time the Stamp Duty Coffers overflow to benefit money launderers
The Warragamba Dam has dropped 20% to a little over 40% in 6 months … in another 6 months it will be at 20%!
Where is the urgency for grey water recycling for every home, and water efficient tapware and appliances?
WHY don’t we have waste water captured for toilets and gardens?
FOR anyone who questions the viability of water produced by HYDROPANELS … this comment from a CAAN Contributor:
‘My dehumidifier is producing litres of water with humidity over 80% it needs to be on. I am putting it on the garden. Free water.’
HYDROPANELS provide a more environmentally friendly and far less expensive solution! View:
Sydney desal plant to expand to provide more drinking water
By Alexandra Smith
January 8, 2020
The Berejiklian government will fast-track an expansion of Sydney’s desalination plant, which will double it in size to provide more than 30 per cent of the city’s drinking water.
With dam levels dropping to 43 per cent on Wednesday, NSW Water Minister Melinda Pavey has directed the operators of the plant to prepare for an expansion “as quickly as practicable”.
Ms Pavey said the expansion of the plant in Kurnell, in Sydney’s south, was a “key element in protecting Sydney’s water security”.
“The expansion of the plant should be undertaken as quickly as practicable and in a prudent and efficient manner to deliver at least an additional 250 megalitres of drinking water per day averaged over a 12-month period,” Ms Pavey said.
Ms Pavey said securing water supplies for the city was critical.
“We need to be as prepared as we can so we aren’t left flat-footed should this drought continue – which is why we are looking at this as one of Sydney’s insurance policies,” she said.
“We have never seen dam levels drop this fast in Sydney, so we need to move as fast to shore up our supply.”
The pricing regulator has also been asked to investigate the pricing impact of the expansion, as dam levels dropped to 43.1 per cent on Wednesday.
*In a letter to the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART), Ms Pavey said the desalination expansion was touted in the state government’s 2017 metropolitan water plan.
Ms Pavey said it was important to ensure water bills do not rise. “We need to make sure we do this in a prudent and transparent way to minimise customer bills which is why I have written to IPART to do this review,” she said.
But the expansion will come three years earlier than anticipated in that plan, the blueprint for water in Greater Sydney that was developed before the crippling drought.
The plan says “stage 2 detailed planning” for the expansion of the plant should start when dam levels drop to 45 per cent and construction should start when levels are as low as 35 per cent.
The total water storage across greater Sydney is at 43.1 per cent, but dams are depleting at a faster rate than during the Millennium Drought, when levels plummeted to 33.8 per cent in February 2007.
“Sydney’s desalination plant can be increased in size if water supplies need a significant boost in the future,” the plan says.
Play video0:30Warragamba Dam time lapse
How our dam’s levels have changed since 1984.
“In the unlikely event that the region experiences an extreme drought, the capacity of the desalination plant can be doubled. This will increase water production from 90 billion to 180 billion litres a year.”
The plan says there are a “series of trigger levels for augmenting the Sydney Desalination Plant”.
“This staged approach means that the final decision to construct the augmented plant can be delayed until absolutely necessary, allowing time for it to rain and the dam levels to recover.”
A government source said it was likely a desalination plant would also be built in the Illawarra.
SYDNEY TOWARDS 2030
The waste and water crisis facing a growing Sydney
Ms Pavey has asked IPART to assess the capital costs and expenses of “preparing, negotiating, submitting and finalising plans for the expansion”.
IPART will also “make provision for a water usage charge that is to apply to any water produced from the expanded plant and any other charge that may be required in relation to the expansion”.
The government is also looking at a range of other measures to boost water supplies in Sydney, including the expansion of the recycling of water from toilets for public spaces, backyards and gardens.
Level two water restrictions for Sydney, the Illawarra region and the Blue Mountains were also brought forward, with the government citing the “rapid rate of decline of our dam levels”.
Sydney could move to level 3 restrictions, which would see very limited or no use of water for outdoor uses and a voluntary per person water use target, within months.
Alexandra Smith is the State Political Editor of The Sydney Morning Herald.