VIC Water Awards Honour Roll

2019 Victorian Water Award Winners

The winners of the 2019 VIC Water Awards were announced at the Victorian Water Awards Luncheon on 5 December held at ZINC Federation Square. For more information about the 2019 award winners click here.

Photo Gallery

2018 Victorian Water Award Winners

Research Innovation Award
Driving Change from Conservatism to Pragmatism – Better use of Biosolids and Recycled Water by Using Research to Challenge Guidelines – South East Water
Through this project, South East Water explored changes to existing regulations around biosolids and recycled water. Using rigorous research, the project team delivered regulatory changes that significantly streamlined storage requirements for both biosolids and recycled water. These changes are now driving major efficiency gains for the industry both in Australia and beyond.

Program Innovation Award
Enhancing Our Dandenong Creek – Melbourne Water
Melbourne Water’s commitment to working with the community and other agencies to achieve exemplary outcomes is clear in the Enhancing Our Dandenong Creek program. The project has seen measurable on-ground benefits, through the reintroduction of two nationally threatened fish species, and world leading waterway renewal works.

Highly Commended
A Day at the Zoo – Engaging Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Communities – City West Water
The objective of ‘Day at the Zoo’ was to increase City West Water’s understanding of newly arrived community members who may be facing language or cultural barriers. The program gives them the opportunity to understand the water cycle, the safety of the water supply, and how their daily activities in the home impact the efficient use of water. The collaborative approach of the program has allowed participants to feel they are valued members of the community.

Infrastructure Project Innovation Award
Internet of Things Site Monitoring Solution – SAGE Automation and Melbourne Water
SAGE’s solution enabled Melbourne Water to monitor previously unmonitored low-lying sites at low cost, low energy, and high speeds. This project is a clear example of the Internet of Things in practice and provides a blueprint for the water industry in leveraging new digital technologies and associated capabilities to address future challenges.

Student Water Prize
Impacts of Hybrid Water Supply Systems on Water Resources and Infrastructure – Mukta Sapkota, University of Melbourne
Mukta developed a comprehensive framework designed to support the implementation of decentralised and centralised hybrid systems by assessing the interactions between the two systems. The results of the study can help water managers to make informed decisions involving the combination of decentralised and centralised systems under a variety of population and climate scenarios.

Young Water Professional of the Year Award (sponsored by TRILITY)
Casey Furlong, Integrated Water Management Consultant, GHD
Over his seven-year career in the water sector, Casey has worked in the public sector, academia and the private sector. Before becoming a consultant with GHD, Casey was completing a PhD and Post-Doctorate as well as helping establish the Resilient Melbourne Integrated Water Management working and alignment group. Casey’s research, which includes 9 international journal papers, a book chapter, and an article in The Conversation, have been read collectively over 16,000 times. Casey takes every opportunity available to support undergraduate and postgraduate students with career advice and supporting their interest in the water sector and is very deserving of the 2018 Young Water Professional of the Year Award.

Highly Commended
Emily Darlison, Partnerships Coordinator, Project Lead, Climates
Emily is a passionate advocate for water, the environment and people’s rights – especially those whose voices aren’t easily heard. She is currently living and working in Fiji for not-for-profit organisation, Climates, and has partnered with Engineers Without Borders on a mentoring network for female engineers in the Pacific. Emily displays strength in advocating for climate change policy and determination to support our neighbours in the Pacific.

Water Professional of the Year Award 
Andrew Forster-Knight, Operational Technology Manager, South East Water
Over the last 15 years, Andrew has pioneered the development of a range of technology-based innovations that have delivered efficiency and reliability benefits to water network operators and helped to increase liveability and affordability for water utility customers.
Andrew’s proudest achievement is the development of a data logging and visualising system to help businesses monitor water and energy consumption during Victoria’s Millennium Drought. As a result, water consumption was reduced by 22%. Andrew’s collaborative approach to problem solving and his willingness to share knowledge both within the water sector and beyond has resulted in significant industry progress both domestically and internationally.

For more information download the Media Release below:

Download PDFVictoria's most innovative recognised in 2018 Victorian Water Awards

Event Photos:

Vic Awards Luncheon Photos

2017 Victorian Water Award Winners

Research Innovation Award
Emerging Contaminants: Innovative Technology for Treatment and Removal – Arup
Identifying the top ten substances most likely to impact industry in the future, Arup’s research investigates the global issue of emerging waterborne contaminants and outlines innovative technologies for their removal. Led by Gabby Butera, the work was undertaken by Arup through the Invest in Arup program.

Program Innovation Award
Ballarat City Integrated Water Management Plan – Central Highlands Water, Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, E2Designlab & RMCG
The Ballarat City Integrated Water Management Plan brings together water cycle planning, collaborative partnerships and a shared community vision to guide investment. It demonstrates how ‘a greener and more prosperous water future’ can be achieved at a city scale and represents a prototype for other urban areas and regional cities.

Infrastructure Project Innovation Award
Warrnambool Roof Water Harvesting Project – Wannon Water
The Warrnambool Roof Water Harvesting Project is a leading example of integrated water management. The project creates a new water catchment by capturing water from roofs that would otherwise be lost in run-off, supporting more liveable and sustainable cities. Wannon Water's innovative project is a first in Australia.

Student Water Prize
Quantifying Wastewater Dewaterability for Improved Water Recycling – Samuel Skinner, The University of Melbourne
Sam has undertaken a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering at the University of Melbourne. He has investigated the dewaterability of biofouling in filtration processes. This has led to the first quantitative correlation between the extent of digestion and filterability. He has also shown that compressibility is the cause of rapid transmembrane increases in membrane bioreactors.

Young Water Professional of the Year Award
Priyani Madan, Water Consultant, Arup
In her three years as a water consultant, Priyani has been involved in a variety of projects, presentations and pro bono work, contributing to the water sector in Australia and internationally. Priyani is the Engineers without Borders representative for Arup in Australasia and is an award winning WASH engineer. She is a true leader demonstrating real passion in her field and is also a champion for women in the water sector, especially women from culturally diverse backgrounds. Her work and contribution to the industry have set Priyani apart from her peers as a future leader.

Water Professional of the Year Award
Ciara Sterling, Head of Community Inclusion, Yarra Valley Water
With over 15 years’ experience in the water industry, Ciara is an industry leader in supporting customers experiencing vulnerability, hardship and family violence. She is the driving force behind Yarra Valley Water’s extremely successful WaterCare initiative and Head of the Thriving Communities Partnership, a cross-sectoral collaboration of organisations tackling the root causes of hardship and inequality. Through her advocacy and passion, Ciara has been relentless in her support for vulnerable customers and exemplary in her ability to bring people together towards a common goal.

For more information download the Media Release below:

Download PDF Victorian Water Award winners announced

Event Photos:

Vic Awards Luncheon Photos

2016 Victorian Water Award Winners

Over 130 guests attended the 2016 Victorian Water Awards ceremony at Crown on Thursday, 1 December.  

2016 Water Professional of the Year
Dr Melita Stevens - Melbourne Water

Melita is a microbiologist with a background in public health and risk assessment. She has been involved in the development of risk-based management systems for drinking water and recycled water, including contributing to both World Health Organization and Australian drinking water guidelines and the Australian Guidelines for Water Recycling. Melita was an author of the WHO document Water Safety Plans which introduced HACCP systems for the management of water supplies.

Dr Stevens is a Director of Water Quality Research Australia and a member of the Water Services Association of Australia Liveable Communities Committee as well as the Chair of the Research Managers Network. She has a PhD in Microbiology from the University of Sydney and is an Adjunct Professor at RMIT and an Honorary Senior Fellow at Melbourne University. She is currently the Principal Scientist at Melbourne Water. Melita is an ambassador for Water Aid.

Michael Tasker - Taylors
Water Professional of the Year

2016 Young Water Professional of the Year
Rhys Anderson - Arup

Rhys is the Water Business Leader for Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania and a senior process engineer at Arup. Rhys is recognised for his technical ability and dedication to the water sector including in relation to innovative projects – he has contributed in significant ways to the Main Outfall Sewer and Yarra Pool projects for Melbourne Water and in taking a lead role in the Yarra Park recycling facility. He has taken on a number of voluntary roles, including as a guide for the Yarra Park plant and working with disadvantaged students. He has recently been appointed Water Business Leader at Arup, recognition at a young age of his technical expertise, experience and enthusiasm.
Young Water Professional of the Year

2016 Student Water Prize
Damien Modie and supervisors, Professor Dayanthi Nugegoda and Dr Bradley Clarke, RMIT University
Investigating Bioaccumulation of Chemical Pollutants Adsorbed to Microplastics in the Terrestrial Environment

Microbeads derived from personal care products contaminated by persistent organic pollutants, are a ubiquitous feature of the waste-stream. They are present in both terrestrial and aquatic environments. This research focussed on the fate of microbeads post the wastewater treatment process, exploring implications for re-use of biosolids and contaminant loads in the environment.

David Leonard, Swinburne University of Technology
Flood Mitigation Benefits of Rainwater Tanks
Student Water Prize

2016 Program Innovation Award
Greening the West
City West Water

The winner of the Program Innovation Award is City West Water for the Greening the West program. This project demonstrates so many outstanding features of innovation and program excellence. It has the potential to significantly enhance the lives of over a million people living in the west of Melbourne, improving health and recreation outcomes, reducing the heat island effect, improved biodiversity and ultimately improving property values and contributing to improved self-esteem and psychological well-being. The program is outstanding for the way it has brought together a large number of players from across the west and in effect 'leveraged' the initial commitment and investment of City West Water staff to produce a far greater result than would otherwise be possible. A million trees and still counting.....

Lal Lal Mini Hydro Electric Generator
Central Highlands Water, Barwon Water and the State Government of Victoria

Central Highlands Water was awarded a commendation for the Lal Lal Mini Hydro Electric Generator.  A joint initiative between the State Government, Central Highlands Water and Barwon Water to construct a mini hydro-electric generator that will generate clean energy from environmental water releases at Lal Lal Reservoir. Power generated will be used to operate the Lal Lal Water Treatment Plant with excess electricity being fed back into the grid.

The Victorian Water Register (Web Enhancement Program)
Dept of Environment, Land, Water and Planning

A commendation also goes to Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning for the Victorian Water Register upgrade.  The department has undertaken an upgrade to the Register to improve its functionality including – online water allocation trading, online broker portal, and online bore licence processing.  These improvements have resulted in near instant processing of trades, including from mobile devices, exceeding the COAG processing time targets under the Basin Plan. 

Maryborough Water Quality Enhancement Project - Central Highlands Water
Vulnerable Customers Program - City West Water 


2016 Program Innovation Award

Central Highlands Water

Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning

2016 Project Innovation Award
Amaroo Main Sewer Project - Yarra Valley Water and John Holland

The winner of the Infrastructure Project Innovation Award is the Amaroo Main Sewer Project by Yarra Valley Water and their construction partner John Holland, design partners GHD and Jacobs.  
This project involves an 8 km sewer to service part of the northern growth corridor, one of Yarra Valley Water's largest and deepest mains, at 1.6m diameter, and up to 20m deep. It involves pipejacking, tunnels at up to 8m below the water table and deep shaft excavation up to 22m deep. Not only the usual road and creek tunnels, but tunnelling under an operating pub.  The project has led to innovations in manufacturing and demonstrated that Australian glass reinforced plastic pipes can withstand the rigours of pipe jacking. Yarra Valley Water has shared the learnings from this project across Australia but also into Auckland and Buenos Aires.

Merri Creek Main Sewer Project - Early Works - John Holland-KBR Joint Venture and Melbourne Water

The judges would also like to commend the Merri Creek Project for innovation in adopting traditional hand techniques rather than conventional trenching. The project by John Holland-KBR Joint Venture and Melbourne Water, was delivered by using a combination of modern engineering and traditional construction techniques, which ensured safe and quick construction of a new 16m pipe to divert flows to the Merri Creek Reliever Sewer, rehabilitation of manholes and decommissioning of approximately 300m of the sewer. It involved hand tunnelling between two live sewers under an environmentally sensitive reserve where access was extremely tight.
2016 Project Innovation Award

Merri Creek Main Sewer Project - Early Works - John Holland-KBR Joint Venture and Melbourne Water

VicWater Emerging Leader Award
Kim Mosse, Melbourne Water

Congratulations to the recipient of the VicWater Emerging Leader Award; Kim Mosse, Senior Process Engineer – Service Delivery Wholesale Services at Melbourne Water. Preparations will now commence with Kim to organise her exciting placement with Veolia Water in 2017. Kim has extensive experience in wastewater and drinking water operations, has a PHD in reuse of winery wastewater: effects on soil and plant health. Kim was also identified in 2009 as one of Australia’s Top 100 future leaders. Kim stood out to the VicWater Board due to her clear vision for the future and the challenges facing the industry and her positive approach to meeting these challenges from a whole of industry perspective.
VicWater Emerging Leader Award


Sponsor Acknowledgements

Victorian Water Authorities   Trility


2015 Victorian Water Award Winners

The following winners were announced at the 7th Annual Victorian Water Awards on Thursday, 3 December 2015 at Crown. 

2015 Undergraduate Water Prize
The Preliminary Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Rainwater Tanks in Greater Melbourne, Victoria from Swinburne University of Technology Andrew De Silva, Joshua Rock & Anil Thayalan.

This paper researches the effectiveness of rainwater tanks related to roof and garden areas. The paper assesses the impact on water consumption of around 6,300 households with water tanks compared to another 6,300 households without water tanks during the last drought. Detailed analysis correlates the roof area and garden size with water savings. The results provide information capable of being provided to householders to demonstrate the benefit or the use of tanks and the payback period. The paper demonstrates some innovative thinking about the issues associated with water tank use.
2015 Undergraduate Water Prize Winner

2015 Postgraduate Water Prize
Comparison of biofilm activity on filtration media - implications for municipal water treatment and contaminated land and fuel spill, from Melbourne University, Benjamin Freidman with Dr Kathy Northcott, Ms Peta Thiel, Dr Kathryn Mumford, A/Prof Sally Gras, Prof Ian Snape, Prof Geoff Stevens.

This project examines the formation processes of iron and manganese biogenic minerals on granular water treatment media. Globally, heavy metals and organic pollutants including hydrocarbons remain problematic contaminants in water. The study compares the findings of activated carbon filter media at water treatment plants with filter media for absorption and bioremediation of metal and petroleum contaminants. Benjamin undertook a series of studies at local treatment plants in central Victoria as well as at Casey Station in Antarctica and Macquarie Island to test for low nutrient conditions and low temperatures. The project will produce models for biofiltration processes to predict water treatment efficiencies under a range of conditions. The results point to the increased use of bacterial species capable of oxidising iron and manganese across all filter media regardless of geographical location and climate to deal with heavy metals and hydrocarbon contaminants.
2015 Undergraduate Water Prize Winner

2015 Infrastructure Project Innovation Award
Sunraysia Modernisation Project, Lower Murray Water

The Sunraysia Modernisation Project is a major irrigation renewal project which has used an innovative delivery model and is acting as a catalyst for major on-farm irrigation upgrades. The project is producing significant water savings (in the order of 7GL per annum) and part of these savings are contributing to improved environmental outcomes for the Cardross and Woorlong Wetlands. The project adopted an innovative procurement and delivery model, using a design and construct approach with multiple contractors competing to achieve a number of pre-determined robust specifications for key deliverables. This allowed contractors to adopt innovative design and construction approaches tailored to the conditions in different parts of the irrigation area. The outcome is a 365 day per year operational system. Improved irrigation reliability is stimulating new investment in on-farm irrigation and diversification into new crops which were previously unsustainable due to the lack of year round irrigation.
Commendation: M102 - North Essendon to Tottenham Pipeline Renewal - Maribyrnong River Crossing, John Holland-KBR Joint Venture and Melbourne Water
Finalists: Smartpipe, Skilltech Consulting Services
2015 Project Innovation Water Prize Winner

2015 Project Innovation Water Prize Winner

2015 Program Innovation Award
Urban Water, City of Melbourne and State Government

The City of Melbourne 'Urban Water' website is an innovative approach to the sharing of information regarding IWCM water projects. This is something that AWA has been suggesting for a couple of years. The website documents in detail with drawings, photos, construction tips and lessons learnt, each of a dozen or so projects from around the City. This is an approach that could be applied across a wider area by DELWP or other agencies to foster sharing of information across a much wider range of contexts (eg outer growth areas, middle suburbs etc). The documentation is comprehensive and the tips and comments are very useful for anyone seeking to replicate the projects. There is a refreshing degree of honesty in the way the site identifies things that could been done better to improve the outcome or shorten the time taken to implement the projects. Importantly, this includes the involvement of other disciplines and liaison with other departments to ensure smooth implementation.
2015 Program Innovation Water Prize Winner

2015 Research Innovation Award
Water Markets Reporting and Price Modelling, Aither

Aither has filled an important gap in the water market since the demise of the NWC left an absence of consistent water sales data analysis. Aither stepped in and has produced a series of reports, available free on line, which report water market data, provide annual comparisons and provide an outlook. The report enhances outcome for water market managers, market participants, MDB communities and environmental water holders by providing high quality information in an accessible form. The reports have been endorsed by DELWP and other market players. The benefits of the reports have been particularly noted this year with significantly higher prices in some areas.
2015 Research Innovation Water Prize Winner

2015 Outstanding Contribution to Research Award
The Smart Water Fund

Since 2002 the Smart Water Fund has been the collaborative research vehicle for the Victorian Water industry. As an 'industry-lead' fund it was created to encourage innovation and research to improve the knowledge base and performance of the water sector as a whole. Over 12 years the fund has supported a wide range of projects including recycled water, water efficiency and water conservation, and biosolids. More recently the focus has included smartcities/integrated water, intelligent networks and climate change. Projects of note include the Melbourne Water Atlas, methane capture, Mitchell River ASR project, Troups Creek wetland dual supply project and a range of projects directed at water policy. All the projects funded are featured on the Clearwater site. This program has made a significant contribution to the water sector.
2015 Outstanding Contribution to Research Award Winner

2016 VicWater Emerging Leader Award
Danny Ivanoski from Yarra Valley Water

The VicWater Emerging Leader Award recognises and encourages emerging leaders from within the Victorian water industry and provides the successful nominee with international work experience. It is open to all Victorian water industry employees (i.e. all employees of the Association’s member businesses). Danny is a Mechanical and Electrical Contract Manager from Yarra Valley Water and is excitedly planning his international placement in 2016.
2015 VicWater Emerging Leader Award Winner

Sponsor Acknowledgments

Victorian Water AuthoritiesVision Super

2014 Victorian Water Awards Winners


The 2014 Victorian Water Awards were announced at a special luncheon on Thursday, 4 December 2014 at Crown. View the photos.

First delivered in 2009, the Victorian Water Awards promote outstanding work by individuals and organisations in the water industry and recognise innovation and excellence in the technology, business and delivery of water projects. Along with the prestige of being recognised as ‘the best in Victoria’ winners of a number of the Victorian Water Awards* will automatically be entered into the equivalent AWA National Award category.  

Young Water Professional of the Year 

Sylvia Campbell 

Melbourne Water

The 2014 winner is a passionate ambassador of the water industry both professionally and outside work. She has demonstrated exceptional leadership within her career to date. She strives to drive improved outcomes, implement innovative solutions to technical problems and transfer knowledge to colleagues and peers. She has demonstrated a commitment to the professional development of other staff in her organization by setting up a Community of Practice to support other engineers seeking chartered professional engineering status. In addition she is recognized for her dedicated efforts to raise the profile of careers in the water industry as well as raising water awareness in the community through her involvement with the AWA Young Water Professionals and Engineers without Borders which involved organizing an international study tour.  The judges were particularly impressed with Sylvia’s commitment, flexibility and passion as well as her involvement in a wide range of water industry activities. 
Finalist - Blake Haslam GWM Water 




2014 YWP Sylvia Campbell

VicWater Leadership Development Award

Nathan Epp
Goulburn Valley Water
Congratulations to Nathan Epp, the Senior Engineer of Energy and Commercial Projects Business Innovation and Efficiencies at Goulburn Valley Water, who was selected as the VicWater Leadership Development Award winner for 2015. Nathan impressed the VicWater Board with his broad vision for the industry and his entrepreneurial attitude to inspire and motivate others to think differently about how to create opportunities and solve problems. The focus and intent in selecting a winner for this Award is to recognise and reward up and coming leaders from the Victorian water industry and to select someone that will be an impressive ambassador for the industry.  It has been noted by Thames Water that the calibre and character of the past two winners is a credit to the industry. The VicWater Board are confident that Nathan will benefit enormously from the opportunity to work in the UK next year and that what he learns will benefit him from a leadership perspective as well as benefitting Goulburn Valley Water and more broadly the Victorian water industry. The VicWater Board are also confident that Nathan will be a stellar ambassador for the Victorian water industry.

2014 Awards VicWater

Research Innovation Award  

Upper Dandenong Creek Catchment Project 

Centre for Aquatic Pollution Identification and Management, Dept of Environment and Primary Industries and CSIRO Land and Water

The winner of the 2014 Research Innovation Award has significantly advanced the understanding of the causes of ecosystem stress within catchments. This innovative research has resulted in the ability to pinpoint sources of pollution thereby presenting a clear remedial path for environmental managers. The results of this research have been widely communicated through research summits, newsletters, conferences and journal papers to benefit the whole water industry. The water industry have accepted and recognized this research and are currently implementing the outcomes to improve the ecological condition and amenity of the Upper Dandenong Creek Catchment.  The judges believe that this project is significant for the water industry in terms of its ability to monitor catchment condition and identify point sources of environmental concern.



2014 Awards Research

Program Innovation Award 

Farm Water Program 

Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority on behalf of the Farm Water Program Consortium
The Farm Water Program provides co-investment opportunities for irrigators within Victoria’s Goulburn Murray Irrigation District to achieve significant farm water savings by modernising their on-farm irrigation infrastructure to enable more efficient water use, with the water savings shared between farmers and the environment. The program is creative and flexible and allows farmers to select the technology that best suits their farms enterprise whilst ensuring that each individual modernisation is designed and implemented to meet best management practice standards.  This program is highly innovative, sustainable and relevant to the water industry. It showcases environmental and water resource benefits to Australia’s largest river system by contributing to the significant amount of water to be returned to the environment under the Murray-Darling Basin Plan in excess of 764 gigalitres. In addition the Farm Water Program is expected to create far reaching social benefits for both farmers who will experience greater productivity and communities in the Murray-Darling Basin which will be positively impacted by the extra water returned to the environment.  The judges were very impressed by this program and feel that this approach if widely embraced will ensure longer term water sustainability. 




 2014 Awards Program

Program Innovation Award - Commendation

Revive Recycled Compost 

Gippsland Water

This innovative program entered by Gippsland Water takes unwanted waste streams from over 800 businesses including the water sector, local government and industry and turns it into a valuable and sustainable compost product which is Australian Standard compliant and is utilised by the agriculture sector across the Gippsland Region. Designed and developed on a large scale by Gippsland Water after significant research and field trials, this organic recycling facility receives over 150,000 tonnes of biosolids, organic green waste and prescribed waste annually. The facility provides a sustainable solution for the large ongoing volumes of sludge created by wastewater treatment processes as the sludge is the key component of the compost. Revive Recycled Compost is commended for providing key sustainable, social, economic and environmental benefits to the Gippsland region.   




2014 Awrads Program Commendation

Infrastructure Project Innovation Award

Western Treatment Plant 55E Cover Renewal 

Melbourne Water & Jacobs

In an ambitious and challenging project, the world’s largest open ended cover for anaerobic lagoons has been developed for the Western Treatment Plant by Melbourne Water. The innovative cover, the first to be designed and built in 11 arc shaped segments, was developed to allow greater operational and maintenance flexibility. The convex shaped segments are able to operate collectively or be individually isolatable for maintenance and replacement without affecting the robustness of the remaining segments. The new cover increases biogas capture and helps to reduce odours. The increased biogas generates additional electricity whilst the improved odour management allows surrounding land development to continue with confidence of the local amenity demonstrating significant environmental and social benefits. Sustainable design principles were of high importance when selecting the appropriate material from which to construct the cover. The selection of HDPE was based on extensive investigations, accelerated exposure trials, membrane testing and a multi-criteria assessment and enables the 20 year design life to be met. Additionally, HDPE is a material that has good prospects for recycling. This impressive project has set a new benchmark for anaerobic cover design in difficult scum and sludge applications and is highly relevant to the water industry.  The judges were particularly impressed by this project which appears to enable greater scope for innovative features and sustainable design to occur which can be of benefit to the water industry more broadly. 

Storm Pesticide Model
- Storm Consulting, ECOS Consulting and Atura Pty Ltd 

Barwon Water Biosolids Management Project - Barwon Water, Water infrastructure Group and Plenary Environment 

Rochester Water Treatment Plant Upgrade Coliban Water, Aquatec Maxcon Pty Ltd and Beca Pty Ltd

Five Towns Drinking Water Supply Project - GWMWater

Peninsula ECO Project - South East Water





Recipients of the AWA Victorian Branch Awards will be automatically entered into the AWA National Awards to be announced at Ozwater’15 in Adelaide.


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Awards Sponsors:  

2013 Victorian Water Awards Winners

The 2013 Victorian Water Awards were announced at a special dinner on Tuesday, 22 October 2013. View the photos

The AWA Victorian Branch is committed to acknowledging and promoting the outstanding work achieved by individuals and organisations in the water sector in Victoria.  First delivered in 2009, the Victorian awards have been designed to showcase excellence and leadership in the Victorian water industry. 


2013 Young Water Professional

Jane La Nauze

The 2013 winner is a credit to her profession and has demonstrated exceptional leadership within many facets of her career to date. 

Jane willingly embraces opportunity including overseas opportunities and is a recognized and respected member of MWH’s Melbourne office. She has also excelled at sport including many roles as Captain and Coach.

The judges were particularly impressed with Jane’s commitment, flexibility and passion as well as her involvement with and commitment to support local community projects and initiatives.

2013 Awards - YWP
John Riddiford DEPI, Jane La Nauze MWH,
  Robbert van Oorschot, GHD and Mark Bartley, AWA Vic Branch President
2013 Program Innovation Award

Water Babies, Western Water

One of the key judging criteria for this award is innovation.  For 2013 the winner of the Program Innovation Awards was certainly innovative in a way not before seen by the judges.  The winner had to think differently for how to engage with and pass on a water and cost saving message to a customer segment traditionally one of the most disadvantaged and very hard to successfully communicate with.  The winner has and continues to achieve their aims reaching out to thousands of families each year within their region.

Water babies is a hard cover picture book for babies and toddlers and their parents and carers, with colourful pictures of children using water alongside practical advice on saving water and managing water bills.  This innovative program aims to connect with a difficult-to-reach customer segment: young families in new housing developments.

 2013 Awards Program Innovation
John Riddiford DEPI, Neil Brennan Western Water,
and Jonathan McKeown, AWA Chief Executive
2013 Project Innovation Award 

Eastern Treatment Plant Tertiary Upgrade

The successful completion of a 700 MLD capacity advanced tertiary treatment upgrade to Melbourne Water’s Eastern Treatment Plant makes it one of the largest and most sophisticated treatment facilities of its kind in the world. The plant’s multiple barrier treatment approach includes ground breaking use of ozone and biological media filtration treatment and is based on more than five years’ research and tests at the plant’s purpose built trials facility.

Through the Eastern Tertiary Alliance, Melbourne Water has achieved its strategic objective of improving the marine environment and creating a high quality recycled water product for present and future generations.

The judges were impressed by the ground-breaking trials program which led to the innovative treatment process adopted as well as the local and international precedents set by this project. The large scale of this project also greatly impressed the judges as well as the fact that it has addressed what has been a decades-long major social and environmental issue.
 2013 Awards Project ETP
Brett Rogers, Melbourne Water
and John Riddiford DEPI
 2013 Project Innovation Award 

Victorian Desalination Project

The $3.5 billion Victorian Desalination Project (VDP) is one of the State’s largest infrastructure projects, delivered for the Victorian Government and AquaSure by the Thiess Degrémont Joint Venture.

VDP provides a rainfall-independent water source, capable of producing 150 billion litres annually if required.

Featuring advanced environmentally-sustainable design, it includes a two-pass reverse osmosis desalination process plant, marine structures and tunnels, 84km water transfer pipeline, 87km underground power supply and 225ha ecological reserve. The plant’s landscaping and earthworks design and massive living green roof minimise visual impact on the coastline. Renewable energy certificates offset the plant and pipeline’s operating power requirements.

By any measure this project is truly amazing. The judges were impressed by its many innovative features in both design and construction as well as the completed appearance, environmental and sustainability features and surrounding extensive nature reserve.  The project boasts the largest “green roof” in the southern hemisphere at 26,000 square metres.
 2013 Awards Project VDP
John Riddiford DEPI and Phil Cormick, Thiess  
Highly Commended - 2013 Project Innovation

Northern Water Plant

Through an innovative partnership, the NWP was developed to help Barwon Water and the Shell refinery in Geelong to meet strategic objectives of sustainable water treatment and water reuse.
The $94 million Northern Water Plant (NWP) is a 7.5 ML per day water reclamation plant, coupled with a five ML per day Class A advanced recycled water plant to supply the refinery and freeing up approximately five per cent of Geelong’s water demand.
The project was delivered on time and to budget. It also meets stringent environmental requirements, including boundary odour prevention, mitigation of plant noise and minimal aesthetic disturbance.

The judges were very impressed with the innovative outcome that addressed and solved a number of major issues within the one project as well as saving a significant amount of potable water.
 2013 Awards - Preject Commendation
John Riddiford DEPI  and Paul Northey, Barwon Water 
Finalist - 2013 Project Innovation

Balcombe Creek Sewer Diversion and Pipe Bridge Demolition

The benefits of this project include:


  • The prevention of sewage spills into Balcombe Creek impacting on significant flora and fauna;
  • Removal of an ageing 170 metre long MSCL sewer pipe and pipe bridge and associated infrastructure improving the aesthetics of surroundings for boardwalk users and wider community; and
  • Removal of an easement to increase potential land development.


Key innovations on the project included:

  • Use of restrained joint PVC Sewer pipe and;
  • Implementation of soft demolition method incorporating a purpose built pontoon.
2013 Awards - Project Finalists  

 2013 Undergraduate Water Prize

James Buxton and James Czyczelis

The 2013 Undergraduate Water Prize was awarded to James Buxton and James Czyczelis from Swinburne Institute of Technology for their project Post construction assessment of a constructed wetland.

Constructed wetlands are known to reduce or remove contaminants from stormwater. While the effectiveness of constructed wetlands are monitored after construction, on-going monitoring is frequently lacking. The winner’s research assessed the current performance of University Hill Wetlands constructed in 2008 to reduce pollutant concentrations generated by stormwater runoff. The research presents the reductions in pollutant levels and assesses compliance. The outcome levels were compared to the reported levels in 2008. MUSIC modeling was also undertaken to improve the overall performance of the wetland.

James Buxton is currently undertaking his final year of study of a Bachelor of Civil Engineering at Swinburne. James Czyczelis is currently undertaking his final year of study of a Bachelor of Civil Engineering/ Bachelor of Business double degree at Swinburne University of Technology, with a major in Management.

The 2013 Undergraduate Water Prize was awarded to James Buxton and James Czyczelis from Swinburne Institute of Technology for their project Post construction assessment of a constructed wetland.

Constructed wetlands are known to reduce or remove contaminants from stormwater. While the effectiveness of constructed wetlands are monitored after construction, on-going monitoring is frequently lacking. The winner’s research assessed the current performance of University Hill Wetlands constructed in 2008 to reduce pollutant concentrations generated by stormwater runoff. The research presents the reductions in pollutant levels and assesses compliance. The outcome levels were compared to the reported levels in 2008. MUSIC modeling was also undertaken to improve the overall performance of the wetland.

James Buxton is currently undertaking his final year of study of a Bachelor of Civil Engineering at Swinburne. James Czyczelis is currently undertaking his final year of study of a Bachelor of Civil Engineering/ Bachelor of Business double degree at Swinburne University of Technology, with a major in Management.


The winners of the 2013 Victorian Water Awards were automatically entered into the AWA National Awards - announced at OzWater’14 in Brisbane on 30 April 2014.



Dinner Sponsor  

 YWP of the Year Award  

Undergraduate Award 
 Yarra Valley Water  GHD  Melbourne Water