Research agreement to benefit water resources

A strategic research partnership between Griffith University, the University of Queensland (UQ) and Seqwater will provide long-term benefits for South East Queensland’s water resources.

The partnership will pave the way for an extensive collaborative research program, which will deliver improved and more cost effective water delivery to South East Queensland.

Griffith University Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian O’Connor said the Strategic Research Partnership would strengthen the University’s collaboration with Seqwater.

“It will enable us to focus on strategic, long-term research goals, with a particular focus on the whole of the water supply chain from managing the catchment and reservoirs, to treating the water,” Professor O’Connor said.

“We look forward to a long partnership beyond the initial five-year agreement.”

Seqwater CEO Peter Borrows said the Research Partnership would support and broaden the research expertise available to Seqwater to progress strategic research priorities.

He said it would assist the organisation to manage the most open catchments in the country for drinking water supply as well as water treatment infrastructure.

“This partnership will build on the outcomes from the individual partnership arrangements that Seqwater has had in place with both the University of Queensland and Griffith University since May 2007,” Mr Borrows said.

“The key outcomes and achievements from these current partnership arrangements include an improved ability to meet regulatory requirements including environmental obligations; embedding research in a rapid response to lungfish deaths; the management of risks to water quantity and quality, and the development of autonomous sampling technologies.

UQ Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Greenfield said the partnership indicated the importance of finding research-based solutions to secure Queensland’s water supplies.

“The University of Queensland and Griffith University are acknowledged research leaders in water and environmental sciences and joined forces recently to form the Australian Water and Environmental Research Alliance,” Professor Greenfield said.

“Working together with Seqwater, we have the facilities and expertise to advance research into how we can better manager our precious water resources for future generations.

Planning for the Strategic Research Partnership began in July 2010 and culminated in a planning workshop earlier this year which comprised about 30 participants, including Seqwater and WaterSecure managers, researchers and project sponsors, and key representatives and researchers from Griffith University and UQ.

The workshop established partner expectations for the Strategic Research Partnership and the strategic research priorities.