Australia's Water Resources: From Use to Management by John Pigram

By John Pigram

Australia s Water assets seeks to discover the situations underpinning the profound reorientation of attitudes and relationships to water that has taken position in Australia in contemporary a long time. The altering emphasis from improvement to administration of water assets maintains to adapt and is mirrored in a sequence of public coverage projects directed in the direction of rational, effective and sustainable use of the nation's water. Australia is now regarded as a pace-setter in water reform. Administrative restructuring, water pricing, water markets and exchange, built-in water assets administration, and the emergence of the non-public region, are gains of a extra economically sound and environmentally appropriate water undefined. it's important that those adjustments are documented and their purpose and effectiveness defined. This well timed paintings offers a major synthesis of those concerns. This revised paperback variation is a completely corrected reprint which has additionally been up-to-date to take account of the appointment of Malcolm Turnbull as Minister for the surroundings and Water assets, and the Commonwealth Government's initiative in regards to the administration of the Murray Darling Basin.

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In addition, the location of water resources and their availability in space and time, relative to agricultural and industrial resources and population concentrations, are most relevant to their potential in national development. The imbalance in magnitude of run-off is reflected in marked variations in stream discharge. As might be expected, none of Australia’s rivers is large by world standards. For example, the combined annual discharge of the Fly and Sepik rivers in Papua New Guinea is almost as great as the total discharge of all Australian rivers.

In the arid regions of Australia, excessive evaporation rates and variable stream flow, mean that it is not always possible economically to construct storages that will provide a reliable long-term water supply. However, where subsurface supplies can be harnessed to compensate for surface water deficiency, smaller storages, operated in conjunction with groundwater aquifer capacity, may be adequate. In these circumstances, the use of surface water reservoirs in conjunction with groundwater storage may increase total water yield and the reliability of supply (Zare and Howell 1983).

Rainfall in the wake of cyclone ‘Wanda’ caused widespread flooding in the coastal regions of south-east Queensland. Parts of the Brisbane River catchment received as much as 1000 millimetres (approx. 40 inches) and floodwaters in Brisbane City, Ipswich and along the Gold Coast reached their highest levels in eighty years. The material damage was immense, causing hardship and shock to those seriously affected. Whereas most damage was related to direct economic losses to public and private property, indirect economic costs included loss of time in production and emergency relief measures.

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