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New Victorian partnership for the Australian Water Quality Centre

The Australian Water Quality Centre (AWQC) is set to begin a three-year partnership with Yarra Valley Water for the supply of field sampling, testing, analysis and reporting services across the utility’s network.

AWQC is a commercial business unit of SA Water dedicated to maintaining public health by offering cost-effective and environmentally-responsible solutions for water and wastewater services.

Over the past four years, it has begun multi-year contracts with Tasmanian utility TasWater, Wannon Water in south-western Victoria and Melbourne Water.

While the COVID-19 crisis has necessitated some changes to how its teams work, AWQC Senior Manager of Laboratory Services Karen Simpson said the company had seized the opportunity to demonstrate its adaptability.

“Although some parts of our lives have essentially been on hold, people still needed access to safe, clean drinking water and a reliable sewer service, so we have continued to play our role in making sure these services are maintained for all the clients we serve,” she said.

“A laboratory is intrinsically one of the most hygienic locations to work in, but like all those in the water industry, we have adopted extra measures such as social distancing to ensure both our and the community’s health.”

Simpson said adaptability had always been key to AWQC’s projects, with the team working through unique challenges for various water providers to create tailored advice. 

“Our scientists provide a comprehensive service tailored to the needs of each of our clients, and it’s our specific water industry expertise that enables us to go beyond routine requirements and provide valuable advice and insight to help our partners solve specific challenges,” she said. 

“Our Melbourne site is the base for the new contract, with our Adelaide team supporting the work with various specialised services and technology. 

“Managing labs in two separate states with two different and changing sets of travel and community restrictions means we’ve had to be quite flexible in the way we work, but we’ve risen to the challenge and are excited to now officially be working with Yarra Valley Water.”

AWQC’s work with Yarra Valley Water will include the collection of more than 7000 water, wastewater and recycled water samples, as well as performing around 60,000 tests each year.

Yarra Valley Water Managing Director Pat McCafferty said he looked forward to the two organisations working together over the next three years. 

“This is an exciting partnership that will help Yarra Valley Water to achieve great outcomes for the health and wellbeing of our customers and the environment,” he said. 

https://omny.fm/shows/australianwater/gary-hallas-on-identifying-bacterial-contaminants