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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage

10 August 2001

MANLY STORMWATER TO QUENCH THIRSTY NORFOLK ISLAND PINES


Manly's heritage-listed Norfolk Island pines will soon be irrigated with recycled stormwater after today's Commonwealth Government announcement to begin construction of a major stormwater recycling initiative at Manly's Ocean Beach.

"A consortium including Manly Council, hi-tech Australian companies and Sydney Water has received $545 639 Commonwealth funding under the Urban Stormwater Initiative to treat and reuse polluted stormwater at Manly," Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill said.

"Until now thousands of litres of polluted stormwater has been piped into Ocean Beach from large stormwater drains. This project will capture, treat and store stormwater for irrigation on the long-lived pines, improving beach water quality and saving valuable drinking water.

"Improved street cleaning will help to enhance environmental management in an area where a high population density and large numbers of tourists contribute to litter and stormwater problems.

"A consortium member, the Beverage Industry Environment Council, will develop a public education campaign as part of the initiative, to encourage people to bin litter or take it home to improve Manly's coastal waters and the area's scenic qualities.

"Stormwater litter traps will be fitted on drains to stop litter and sediments from roads flowing to the beach, and oils and grease will be caught by innovative porous paving on a nearby road and carpark.

"Underneath pavers at the carpark, stormwater will be treated by a special soil containing pollution-eating microbes, before being piped to a treatment tank prior to irrigation."

Senator Hill said the consortium also comprises government agencies, industry associations, the Sydney Coastal Community Group and the Ocean Beach Community Forum.

The Urban Stormwater Initiative is funded under the Commonwealth's Living Cities program, the first national strategy to target diverse issues facing Australia's urban environment. These include air and water quality, waterways, waste, chemicals and urban vegetation.

10 August 2001

Media contact: Megan Bonny (Senator Hill's Office): 0404 823 018
Garry Reynolds (Environment Australia): (02) 6274 1684

Commonwealth of Australia