The region’s bulk water authority, Seqwater, has released the inaugural Water Outlook for South East Queensland December 2013 on behalf of the region’s water industry.
Seqwater Acting CEO Peter Dennis said the Outlook detailed the impact of the past 12 months on drinking water supplies and consumption.
It also outlined the likely effect of the Bureau of Meteorology’s (BoM) three monthly seasonal forecast from December 2013 to February 2014.
“Based on the BoM’s seasonal forecasts, we are looking at a warmer and dryer summer than we experienced last year or the year before,’’ Mr Dennis said.
“The good news is that we coming into this summer off a three-year high in terms of our water security with the combined capacity of our 12 main drinking supply dams remaining above 90%.
“This, combined with our continued modest consumption levels, means that even in a worst case scenario our levels are likely to remain above 90% at the end of summer.’’
However, Mr Dennis said with a near average cyclone season also forecast by the BoM it was important the region was well prepared for the wet season.
“We all saw what happened in January this year with Cyclone Oswald coming down our coast line. The role of the water sector is to ensure we are prepared for all possibilities,’’ he said.
The Outlook outlines actions undertaken by the region’s water sector to get ready for the 2013-14 summer, including:
Conducting pre-summer risk assessments of all Seqwater dams, water treatment plants, reservoirs and pipelines in readiness for the storm and cyclone season.
Updating and testing the water sector’s Emergency Response Plan involving all water service providers, the Department of Energy and Water Supply and Queensland Health.
Readying experienced crews to respond to water quality and supply emergencies around the clock, including contingency plans to assist critical water customers in emergencies.
Launching dam and weir summer safety campaigns to educate the community about the importance of taking care in and around the region’s lakes this summer.
“Even with the warmer and drier weather forecast, the summer season generally brings with it higher and heavier rainfall than the rest of the year. The region’s water service providers have been working hard behind the scenes to get ready for the summer ahead,’’ Mr Dennis said.
The Water Outlook for South East Queensland (December 2013) reflects the preparations for the 2013-14 summer as well as key improvements to the region’s water and sewerage systems undertaken by Seqwater, Queensland Urban Utilities, Unitywater, Redland City Council, Logan City Council and the City of Gold Coast.
Download the Water Outlook for South East Queensland – December 2013