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The Hon Dr Mike Kelly AM MP
Parliamentary Secretary for Water

Simon Corbell MLA
ACT Minister for the Environment, Climate Change and Water

ACT leads the way on stormwater capture

Joint media release
8 May 2009

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The Australian and ACT Governments are investing more than $17 million in the Canberra Integrated Urban Waterways program, which will establish the ACT as a leader in innovative projects to reduce the use of drinking water for irrigation.

Parliamentary Secretary for Water, Dr Mike Kelly AM MP, and ACT Minister for the Environment, Climate Change, and Water, Simon Corbell MLA today announced the start of construction of the second stage of the Flemington Road Ponds project.

"The Australian Government has committed more than $10 million on this ground-breaking project in the nation's capital through the Water Smart Australia program," Dr Kelly said.

"This project is just one component of the Canberra Integrated Urban Waterways program which has the long-term aim of conserving 3 billion litres of drinking water supplies each year by reusing collected stormwater for urban irrigation.

"It provides a clear demonstration of different levels of government working together to support and encourage the development of Water Sensitive Urban Design in established urban areas."

Mr Corbell said the Flemington Road Ponds was the start of a network of stormwater ponds, aquifer storage and recovery schemes that would distribute water suitable for irrigation via pump and pipes to irrigators in the area

The ACT Government has provided $13.9 million in the 2009-10 Budget, to develop an additional two ponds developed in Dickson and Lyneham to further reduce demand on potable water supplies.

"The development is designed as a demonstration to test the issues involved with administering new sources of more reliable non-potable water and will take Canberra in the positive direction of reducing potable water use for irrigation," Mr Corbell said.

"Through the Canberra Integrated Urban Waterways project we will focus on integrating urban waterway management by investigating opportunities for sustainable investment in stormwater harvesting ponds and aquifer storage and recovery."

The Australian Government has contributed $10.2 million and the ACT Government $6.8 million to commence this initiative. The project is funded under the Water Smart Australia program, which forms part of Water for the Future, the Australian Government's $12.9 billion program to secure our future water supplies.

"I would like to thank the Commonwealth Government for their contribution toward this important project," Mr Corbell said.

Commonwealth of Australia