Water/Watersupply and other stuff

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Joined:Wed May 09, 2007 6:23 pm
Location:Victoria, Australia
Water/Watersupply and other stuff

Post by davidg » Tue May 15, 2007 9:05 am

OK now on to rambling about stuff

Water & other stuff, I thought there might be some interested people in some of this stuff.

A bit of Trivia:- On the news tonight in Melbourne it has just become official that we have had the lowest rainfall for the last 12 months since records began, not good.

Just 316mm, which is less than half normal average rainfall for the state, and then what do you know, it rains tonight since late this afternoon we have had a little over than 3.2mm thats over 1000L (220G) added to my rainwater tanks.

The reasoning behind building my bio-filter project, etc. This is a 40+ year old house which represents a challenge, but it is a challenge that a lot of home owners may need to face in the next few years, so I'm not only doing this out of self interest and trying to more eco-friendly and soon on, but also to prove it can be viable to do it.

Retro fitting a 40+ year old house takes time and effort. Oh well onwards we go with this part of the project, the overall target of my project is try to achieve at least what is called in Australia a 6star+ energy rated house, nothing as good as your "bioshelter" would be but much better than it is at the moment which is about 2.5 star. The energy rating take into account all things including water usage so this should at least add a couple stars to start off with.

Other things we have to do or are doing is replacing all lighting with low energy lighting, solar hot water, improved insulation, better shading for cooling during summer we get temps upto 45C (115F) on some days and regularly 35C+ during summer and autumn.

We have just had the longest run of days that exceeded 20C for more than 40 years in the month of May.

I do agree with you about the eco-issues, water one of the most important there is, the drought we have here is one of the longest ever in Australia and certainly the longest in my lifetime.

We have a block of land about 15 acres at a place called "Bonnie Doon" it is supposed to be near the shore (1/2Km by road) of a dam called "Eildon Weir" the dam holds when full over 3.3 million mega-litres of water, it is currently down to 5.5% approx 282K mega-litres. This is a big problem as it supplies all the irrigation for the entire Goulburn region. There is not enough water left to supply irrigation and keep the river "alive" for next year, if there is not enough rain and for the first time in history of the dam it would go dry. We are running out of water here in Victoria, a lot of people have finally realised that the "state government" is acting irresponsiblely when it come to water and restrictions to ensure it lasts longer. They are actually still allowing people to water gardens Twice a week in the morning for 2 hours, we are supposed to be on level 4 restrictions which also means no watering of gardens at all using city water supply.

Melbourne has approx 3 million people. I would not like to out of water in a city of this size. Our household demand on town water is now down by at least 20%, we do not use any water at all for the garden. and have not for a sometime now, yet our garden is super green thanks "grey-water" but too much of it has gone there and it is wasted to some extent, we are about to drop another 20%-40% at least in the next few weeks as the bio-filter and constructed wetland/s come online, I hope to achieve at least 80% reduction. if I can fit another 45KL on-site of course then it has to fill up but that's a separate issue. If it does fill then with all the other measures we should be able to get to at least 99%+ while still keeping space for the kids to play.

How bad is the water situation here well recently we have actually had reports on the news of water tanks and actual water thefts taking place a several times now.

Believe it or not just a few years ago we were not allowed to have large capacity water tanks or any pretty much any water tanks on our property just a few years a go, hows that for ironic, we wanted to put 10KL (2200G Imperial) in back 1999, the council would not let us, now they are falling all over themselves to get people to install rainwater tanks.

The original stupid reason was that they wanted the storm water to wash out the gutter & storm water pipe system.

Now we know that this sort of water rush is bad for rivers and creeks and it causes erosion loss of habitat and so on, mind you it is equally bad for the habitat when the creeks have been turned into concrete channels well thats complete destruction for the likes of frogs just to name one.

Now if you have the space and can afford it the bigger the better it would appear now a days.

Well I've rambled and vented enough.

Bye to all for now.

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Joined:Tue Jul 03, 2001 11:01 pm
Location:Willow, Alaska USA

Post by Bob » Tue May 15, 2007 9:19 am

Thanks for the background, David.

I think we will be hearing about and reading about similar situations all over the world with increasing frequency. A few years ago I put together a quick & dirty water catchment system calculator aimed at designing water catchment systems for dry side lots on Hawai'i that might be of interest.

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