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Victorian Water Award winners announced

Australian Water Association Chief Executive Jonathan McKeown has congratulated the winners of the 2017 Victorian Water Awards as they were announced last Thursday at the Victorian Water Awards Luncheon in Melbourne.

“These awards recognise the outstanding contribution of individuals and organisations in the Victorian water industry across innovation, research, infrastructure and the delivery of water projects,” Mr McKeown said.

“This year saw a number of award submissions from water utilities, universities and government departments, plus inspiring individuals in the sector.

“As an industry we congratulate the dedication, passion and enthusiasm shown by our Victorian members who are genuinely making a difference to our industry and communities.”

The winners of the Victorian Water Awards will automatically be entered into the equivalent National Australian Water Awards category, which will be presented at Ozwater’18 in Brisbane next year.


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.

Hear from Victorian Water Professional of the Year 2017, Ciara Sterling: