2014 National Awards Winner

We are delighted to announce the winners of the 2014 National Water Awards. The winners were announced at  Ozwater'14 in Brisbane.

Australian Stockholm Junior Water Prize

This Prize is for high school students focusing on projects aimed at improving the quality of life through improvement of water quality, water resources management, water protection, and water and wastewater. The winner of this Award will represent Australia in Stockholm for the International Prize. 

This Award is sponsored By Xylem.

Winner: Lewis Nitschinsk
For his project on optimal reclamation point of phosphate from an industrial waste water treatment facility through chemical precipitation using Calcium Chloride.

Undergraduate Water Prize

Open to final year students (in any faculty) in Australian Universities, who carry out a thesis or project related to water. This award rewards students for excellence in the field of water studies and research, and provides a forum for students to display their academic excellence and research findings to future employees, clients and the water industry.

Winner: Anna Wilson, Flinders University
Anna's thesis was entitled Rapid Tools for Cryptosporidum Species Identification. Her work evaluated and improved published polymerase chain reaction assays for Cryptosporidium species identification and developed a novel typing assay.

Young Water Professional of the Year

This award honours young water professionals for their contribution to the water industry and is an opportunity to recognise those individuals who have the potential to be future water leaders. 

Winner: Liz Pattison (WA)
Liz Pattison has been awarded young water professional of the year due to her extensive work raising awareness of water and wastewater servicing requirements for remote aboriginal communities. 

Liz works tirelessly above and beyond what is required in her role as Operations Manager of the Remote Area Essential Services Program at Parson Brinckerhoff. This is demonstrated through her involvement in the development of the Western Australian Guideline for Remote Service Level Standards (RSLS).

As well as being very passionate, Liz provides strong leadership in the field of remote water supply provision. This is emphasised through her work setting up both state and national networks for professionals working in remote community essential services delivery.

Water Professional of the Year

This award honours individuals who have displayed a sustained passion and continued commitment to the water industry, and who have demonstrated outstanding leadership and influence in the water sector. 

Winner: Professor Graeme Dandy (SA)
Professor Graeme Dandy has made a significant contribution to the water industry in South Australia and internationally through his leadership, teaching, research and professional activities. He has been Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Adelaide since 2000 and has taught water resources management and optimisation to many hundreds of engineers who are now leaders in the water industry in South Australia and interstate. He has co-authored 2 research books, 12 book chapters, 71 journal papers and 130 conference papers in the fields of water resources and water supply. Together with his co-workers, he has also attracted more than $4.7m of funding to support research in these fields.

Graeme is also co-founder, director and technical consultant for Optimatics Pty Ltd, a software and consulting company based in Adelaide that has undertaken more than 260 studies into the optimisation of water supply and sewerage systems in the USA, Canada, the UK, Australia and New Zealand. 

Water Industry Safety Excellence Award

The objective of this annual award is to acknowledge outstanding initiative and team contributions in considering and playing an active part in the area of safety improvement and injury prevention across the entire water industry. 

Winner: Gosford City Council
The Water and Sewer Directorate at Gosford City Council is responsible for operating Mangrove Creek Dam. One of the structures at the Dam is the Intake Tower. The Intake Tower has a central wet well that is a vertical shaft with an unobstructed drop of approximately 47m. One of the tasks is to install and remove racks (i.e. barriers) into slots within the wet well and this involves removing flooring to open the shaft and visually aligning the racks into the slots. The physical actions required to perform the work potentially exposes workers to a fall of approximately 47m.

The Council designed a rolling grate floor that moves on tracks, has installed fixed handrails, brakes, and a stop-pin to secure it into place. It can be rolled back to expose the opening of the shaft and rolled forward to close the shaft. 

Workers are able to work closely to the shaft from all sides to visually align racks into their slots without risk of falling into the shaft.

Program Innovation Award

Providing recognition of significant and innovative environmental or sustainability programs within the water industry. 

Winner: BMT WBM, Moreton Bay Council, Unity Water and Bligh Tanner
Moreton Bay Regional Council’s Total Water Cycle Management Plan (TWCM) has been developed to help sustainably manage waterways in the Moreton Bay Region. It provides a framework for balancing growth with the needs of the local environment, and identifying strategies for the long-term management, health and quality of local waterways.

The plan includes waterways, water supply, stormwater and wastewater networks in the region’s 13 catchment areas. It considers factors such as climate, geography, population growth, urban development, agriculture, industrial activities and local initiatives to improve the region’s water efficiency. The plan is the first of its kind in South East Queensland.

Infrastructure Project Innovation Award

Rewarding significant and innovative infrastructure projects and initiatives within the water industry. 

Winner: Interflow
Interflow’s project specified structural renewal of 1.2 kilometres of 900mm diameter sewer pipeline some 20 metres deep in a built up residential and industrial area which included running under Silverwater Road. Renewal was completed while the sewer remained in full service. 

Its location and condition made it one of the most demanding projects that Interflow has undertaken. Completing the project required the development of new and innovative materials, equipment and work methods.

The project resulted in the sewer being completely renewed, with its structural and flow capacity fully restored. It should not need further maintenance for 50 or more years. 

Research Innovation Award

Encouraging innovation, constant environmental improvement and sustainable management of Australia's water resources.

Winner: Department of Water (WA)
The Department of Water and its predecessors have worked more than 20 years to reverse high stream salinity in the upper catchment of the south-coast’s Denmark River. This involved facilitating the revegetation of 6,500 hectares of land including 5,800 hectares of timber plantations and innovative scientific modelling. In 2012, the State Government announced the river’s average salinity levels had dropped to 470 milligrams per litre making it the first time in nearly 40 years that levels were below World Health Organization guidelines for drinking water. This is the first time an Australian river has reversed salinity levels to become fresh.