FAQ Water Pipeline Project

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www.armidaleregional.nsw.gov.au Page 1 of 6 FAQ Water Pipeline Project Project Overview Why is there a plan to build a pipeline? Armidale Regional Council is looking to build a pipeline connecting Malpas Dam to the Guyra Water Treatment Plant. This will ensure there is security of water supply to residents and businesses in Guyra, particularly during times of severe drought. Why is this pipeline important? The pipeline is critical to ensure secure water for economic development in the Region. It is also an important link to secure water during times of severe drought. Currently there are two dams supplying Guyra with water. These dams contain 450 million litres combined. During periods of good rainfall, these dams can adequately supply Guyra’s average yearly demand of 420 million litres. In times of severe drought however, these dams fall dangerously low. The 2014 drought resulted in negative outcomes for our river systems and for agricultural and horticultural businesses in the region, with farmers experiencing significant reduction in productivity and livelihood. Water supply can be secured by constructing a pipeline which will connect Malpas Dam with the Guyra Water Treatment Plant. When and how would the pipeline be used? The pipeline will be activated to ensure water supply to the residents and businesses of Guyra. Severe drought is an extreme event that occurs every 10 to 20 years, but when it happens can be devastating to both the environment and economic development within the region which can take years to recover. The last severe drought within the Region was in 2014, and there is no doubt this will occur again in the future. The pipeline would be activated to supply Guyra with potable (drinkable) water, ensuring residents and businesses are able to continue their life and work without the devastating consequences of drought. Malpas Dam to Guyra Water Treatment Plant

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Transcript of FAQ Water Pipeline Project

FAQ Water Pipeline Project
Project Overview Why is there a plan to build a pipeline? Armidale Regional Council is looking to build a pipeline connecting Malpas Dam to the Guyra Water Treatment Plant.
This will ensure there is security of water supply to residents and businesses in Guyra, particularly during times of severe drought.
Why is this pipeline important? The pipeline is critical to ensure secure water for economic development in the Region. It is also an important link to secure water during times of severe drought.
Currently there are two dams supplying Guyra with water. These dams contain 450 million litres combined. During periods of good rainfall, these dams can adequately supply Guyra’s average yearly demand of 420 million litres.
In times of severe drought however, these dams fall dangerously low. The 2014 drought resulted in negative outcomes for our river systems and for agricultural and horticultural businesses in the region, with farmers experiencing significant reduction in productivity and livelihood.
Water supply can be secured by constructing a pipeline which will connect Malpas Dam with the Guyra Water Treatment Plant.
When and how would the pipeline be used? The pipeline will be activated to ensure water supply to the residents and businesses of Guyra.
Severe drought is an extreme event that occurs every 10 to 20 years, but when it happens can be devastating to both the environment and economic development within the region which can take years to recover. The last severe drought within the Region was in 2014, and there is no doubt this will occur again in the future.
The pipeline would be activated to supply Guyra with potable (drinkable) water, ensuring residents and businesses are able to continue their life and work without the devastating consequences of drought.
Malpas Dam to Guyra Water Treatment Plant
www.armidaleregional.nsw.gov.au Page 2 of 6
Funding and Costs How will this project benefit the region? Estimated benefits to the region over 30 years are $32.7M from the pipeline, from a total cost of $13.6M, which includes construction plus operation and maintenance. Net financial benefit to the region is estimated at $19.2M. Additional benefits include:
• Drought security for Guyra;
• Consumer benefits from the growth in consumption in townships;
• Economic value added from the use of the water for irrigated horticulture;
• Avoiding water restrictions as levels of service improves.
Further work undertaken on the business case completed for Council through the NSW Office of the Regional Infrastructure Coordinator has shown the Guyra Pipeline proposal having a Benefit Cost Ratio (BCR) of 2.8, which means for every dollar invested in the project, $2.80 will be returned in new economic growth and benefits to the local community.
The project makes good economic sense.
Will this affect council rates, now and in the future? There will be minimal impact on charges to ratepayers from the operation and maintenance requirements of the pipeline. Any increases will equate to the current annual CPI increase in rates and water charges already in place.
It is envisaged the construction of the pipeline will be 100% funded by State and Commonwealth Funding. Armidale Regional Council has applied for funding from NSW State Government and the Commonwealth for the project.
Detailed estimates outline a total construction cost of $12.8M, to be funded 50% by the State and 50% by the Commonwealth.
When were the NSW and Federal Funding applications submitted? The funding application to the NSW State Government was submitted on 1st November 2017, to Infrastructure NSW and to Crown Lands and the Water Safe and Secure Program. A decision is expected by the end of November 2017.
The Commonwealth funding application was submitted on 21st September 2017 to the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, with a decision expected in February 2018.
What if the State and/or Commonwealth funding is unsuccessful? The Council is committed to the success of this project, and will investigate other funding sources for the capital contribution, should the applications be unsuccessful.
The evidence presented by experts in the field of water security pointed to the pipeline as the most effective long term option to secure the region’s water supply.
This evidence, coupled with overwhelming community and industry support, ensures the Council is confident the funding applications will be successful.
Will extra resources be required to operate and maintain the pipeline? Routine operation and maintenance of the pumping station and pipeline, including power costs was estimated in business case at approximately $90,000 per annum.
The pipeline will be administered within the current Council infrastructure, resources and budget.
www.armidaleregional.nsw.gov.au Page 3 of 6
The Pipeline Route Can we see the proposed route on a map? A graphic depiction of the 19.8km route is available below, and on the Council Web Page.
Council is currently talking to willing landholders about access to their properties to shorten the distance of the pipeline. Upon finalisation of these discussions, the proposed routes via public and private land will be released for public viewing.
What studies are being done for social, indigenous/cultural sites and environmental impacts of the pipeline? A desktop environmental review has been undertaken to identify any significant environmental issues and this will be
expanded on in the concept design state.
Further detailed environmental assessments considering environmental and cultural heritage impacts along the pipeline route will be undertaken. Full results of these studies will be available on completion.
Can the water be accessed from the pipe by landowners? The pipeline is a water supply for Guyra and is for emergencies during times of drought. It will not be available on demand to the community or industry.
The pipeline will ensure there is security of water supply to residents and businesses in the region during times of severe drought. It will provide a secure and reliable source of good quality water during a drought.
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The Options What other options were looked at? The Council, supported by a number of the state’s water experts have investigated potential options to provide water security to the region. Detailed studies into other options have occurred using NSW State Government water management benchmarking regulations.
These options include:
• Raising one of the existing dams in Guyra by 3 metres to increase water supply
• Building another dam in Guyra to increase water supply by a further 500 megalitres
Each of these options were estimated to cost $10M to construct. Modelling indicated that they are short term solutions and wouldn’t provide the same level of long term future proofing for the region as a pipeline linking Malpas Dam and Guyra Water Treatment Plant.
Two key documents will be available online viewing and at Council offices during the community engagement phase.
Construction Why is the Council advertising for Expression of Interest to construct before funding is confirmed? It is important to commence the expression of interest process at this stage of the project to ensure there are no delays, that is “shovel ready’ and that Council is in a position to deliver this project should funding be announced.
The evidence presented by experts in the field of water security pointed to the pipeline as the most effective long-term option to secure the region’s water supply. This evidence, coupled with overwhelming community and industry support, ensures the Council is confident the funding applications will be successful.
What does the pipeline look like? The project will consist of the construction of an underground 200mm diameter pipeline, or 300mm if budget feasibility allows, from the new intake at Malpas Dam to the balance tank at the Guyra Water Treatment Plant. The pipeline will be laid in a trench about 600mm wide and 1 metre deep.
How long will it take to build? A fully functional pipeline will take between 12 and 18 months to construct. The following timeline will be used as a guide for the completion of the project, though dates could change pending funding approval.
How will it be built? The pipeline will be built in the following phases.
Component Key Requirements
A new pumping station at Malpas Dam to be constructed
A new power supply to the pumping station to be constructed
A pipeline from the new intake at Malpas Dam to the balance tank at the Guyra Water Treatment Plan 19.8km in length, follows the Malpas Dam Road and New England Highway to Guyra, along Cameron, Sandon, Starr, Pearson, Manse, and Prisk Streets and the Guyra-Ebor Road.
Pipeline sized to transfer a maximum of 2.1 ML/day (24.1 L/s). The pipe is to be sized with a 200mm diameter, or 300mm if budget feasibility allows,
Modifications required at the balance tank
Event Start Finish
Prepare detailed design and construct tender specification
Call and review tenders
Review of Environmental Factors
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Will the Council be using local suppliers during construction? Council strives to support local industry within the Armidale Regional Council shire on all projects. Therefore, suitable local suppliers and labour will be considered for the completion of this project.
Due to the specialist nature of this water sector project and the expertise required in this field, the most important factor is the ability of the supplier to provide the product, service and work to the standard expected, as outlined in the tender specifications.
Water Quality Will the pipeline be filled with untreated water in-between uses? The pipeline would only be operated when water levels drop in the Guyra Dams to critically low levels. The pipeline will be flushed between uses, and maintained on a regular basis.
Dam Capacity and Drought Is there enough water to last the whole region? On average, the annual demand of water for the entire region is 3400 million litres. Demand is steadily increasing with population and industry growth.
Malpas Dam is able to store 12,000 million litres and has the ability to supply the region with water for 18 to 24 months without substantial rainfall.
Currently, Guyra’s water supply is not reliable by contemporary standards and levels of service including reliability, volumes and quality and does not meet the 5/10/10 design rule. The pipeline has been developed within the context of the need for NSW town water supplies meeting the official “5/10/10” rule. The key aspects of the 5/10/10 rule are:
1. Water restrictions are in place for no more than 5% of the time
2. Water restrictions occur on average once every 10 years
3. During water restrictions, demand is reduced by 10%
How often will it be used? This is a water supply for Guyra and will be used on an as required basis particularly in times of drought. Severe drought is an extreme event that occurs every 10 to 20 years, but when it happens can have a devastating impact on the environmental and economic development within the region.
At what point during a drought will the pipeline be activated? The water pipeline will be activated when the water storages of the region fall to critical levels or when a drought is declared..
A drought is categorised by severe rainfall deficiency, which is when rainfall is among the lowest 5% of records for region. Severe drought is an extreme event that occurs every 10 to 20 years.
Does this mean there will be more water for environmental flows during a drought? Council may be able to consider some release of waters from the Guyra Dam for environmental flows during drought.
Other It feels like this project has been moving very fast with little consultation. Why is that? The successful Council merger and appointment of new Councillors, meant the community consultation process on this water pipeline project was interrupted.
The opportunities to submit State and Commonwealth funding applications presented themselves unexpectedly and the Council acted quickly in the best interests of its ratepayers.
A comprehensive stakeholder and community engagement approach is currently being adopted and will include numerous opportunities to be further educated and consulted about the project through pop up kiosks, community events and online material.
What is happening now on the project? The funding application to the NSW State Government was submitted on 1st November 2017, with a decision expected by the end of November 2017. The Commonwealth Government funding application was submitted on 13th September 2017 and a decision is expected in February 2018.
Once funding is finalised, detailed design of the pipeline will commence, with a view to appointing contractors to begin construction by August 2018.
A comprehensive stakeholder and community engagement approach is currently being adopted, where Councillors and interested parties are educating, informing and listening to constituents across the region.
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Guyra Water supply options
Guyra Dam #2 – raised 3 m
Cost: $10M
Cost: $12.8M
460 ML
Water restrictions every 5 years
Does not meet secure yield Does not meet secure yield Exceeds secure yield
1000 ML
12700 ML