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Australia’s Extreme Weather Threatens Mains Water Supply

Many take for granted the main water supplied to their property. According to an international investigation and report, Australian water utilities need to adapt to extreme weather event to protect vulnerable water supplies and ensure clean drinking water into the future.Australias Extreme Weather Threatens Mains Water Supply

The report found that extreme weather events like we are experiencing more of, from droughts to bushfires and followed up by cyclones, heavy downpours and flooding, all take their toll upon the quality of surface water.  Real examples cited by Dr Stuart Khan from the UNSW School of Civil and Environmental Engineering include:

  • Sydney’s Warragamba Dam in August 2007 received very heavy rainfall which cooled the water and stirred up nutrients, triggering an algae outbreak. This adversely affected the quality of the water in the dam.
  • Melbourne’s in 2009 were lucky to avoid a water supply catastrophe after the large bushfire. Barely escaping the fire, the water supplies would have been in serious danger if a large downpour followed. The rain would have brought phosphorous and ash from the burnt vegetation, including pathogens and other toxic substances.
  • Brisbane’s Wivenhoe Dam in 2013 overflowed in the Brisbane River and threatened a repetition of the floods from 2011. The city almost ran out of drinking water as the treatment plants were unable to cope with the muddy water stirred up. Thankfully, the city was able to tap into the Gold Coast’s desalination plant at the time.

What if Mains Water Failed?

The impact of extreme weather upon water utilities and the supply of mains water, leads us to consider the question: What would we do if mains water supply failed?

While extreme weather conditions may threaten Australia’s water system, there are also other possible threats. With terrorism an increasing concern, and tensions across the world between countries that could lead to war, not to be alarmist, but what if scenarios of the destruction of dams and crucial mains water infrastructure become more real.

Many often consider rainwater tanks in combination with a mains water supply as a backup. It also works the other way, if something ever happens to your mains water supply, either through extreme weather conditions, an act of terror or during war, then your water storage tanks actually end up becoming your backup water supply.

Protect Against Mains Water Disruption

If you are interested in safeguarding your household against a worst-case scenario affecting local water utilities, then it makes good sense to install water tanks. In the process, you’ll be helping the environment and also stand to make some savings over time. Clark Tanks are a known and trusted manufacturer of poly tanks and we would be happy to provide you with a great deal.


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