Catchment health is key to water quality


Friday, 23 October, 2015

Not-for-profit organisation Healthy Waterways has released the 2015 Healthy Waterways Report Card, providing an understanding of the current pressures on waterway conditions and what needs to be done to enhance the benefits they provide.

This year’s report recognises the increasing amount of sediment entering South East Queensland waterways as the number one issue affecting water quality. The CEO of Seqwater, Peter Dennis, was particularly pleased the report card addressed this pressure on water quality as well as its impact on the social benefits of waterways.

“As growing amounts of mud and silt are washed into our dams, it becomes more difficult to treat water, which increases the cost and duration of treatment,” Dennis said.

“Caring for our catchments really is one of the best ways to protect the security of our drinking water supply.”

Healthy Waterways CEO Julie McLellan added that the report card’s monitoring program was this year expanded to focus on the amount of sediment in the region’s waterways.

“The 2015 report card highlights the need to accelerate our efforts to reduce sediment run-off in both rural and urban areas,” she said.

“In addition, our new Waterway Benefits Rating provides an understanding of how social and economic benefits, such as waterway recreation, are impacted by changing environmental conditions, and what needs to be done to protect and enhance these benefits.”

Dennis said more than 2.7 million people visited Seqwater’s dams, lakes and parks last year, “so it is important we also address the conditions which can impact activities at our lakes”.

“Healthy catchments will continue to provide desirable locations for people to enjoy recreationally, in addition to ensuring a safe and reliable drinking water supply for the region.”

For further detail about the 2015 Healthy Waterways Report Card, visit http://healthywaterways.org/reportcard/#/overview/condition.

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