Enlarged Cotter Dam Wins IPWEA Award

Enlarged Cotter Dam, a project registered for IS Rating, has won the inaugural IPWEA Sustainable Solutions in Public Works Award. We congratulate ISCA member ACTEW Water for this achievement.

The Sustainable Infrastructure category and also the overall Winner Awards were presented to ACTEW Water at the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia's (IPWEA) Sustainability in Public Works conference held on the Gold Coast last week.

Accepting the awards, Kirilly Dickson of ACTEW Water explained that the newly constructed Cotter Dam will increase Canberra's water supply by 35%, helping the city cope with future droughts and climate change.

She said: "The project team is particularly proud of

  • several technical innovations that speeded up construction of the dam
  • the 7km long artificial reef built within the dam to protect ACT's last population of endangered Macquarie perch
  • community open days held during construction attended by 200,000 residents
  • no deaths or serious injuries during the two years of the dam's construction."

'The project will be one of the first in Australia to be certified under the new national infrastructure sustainability rating scheme,' Kirilly added.

Orange City Council won the Sustainable Communities category award for its 50-year water supply strategy, which was developed in response to the severe water shortage during the last drought that threatened the local economy and many local jobs. The award judges liked the strategy's strong efforts to gain community support and reduce water demand.

The award was accepted by Council's Chris Devitt, who explained: "The strategy includes both physical works and measures to reduce water usage. It aims to encourage economic growth and make Orange's water supply more resilient to climate change."

The winner of the Climate Change Resilience category award was the Climate Change Adaptation Best Practice Guidelines developed by City of Canada Bay Council in Sydney and the Australian Centre of Excellence for Local Government. This provides guidance on embedding climate risk considerations into council business through a step-by-step framework and 70 adaptation case studies from around Australia and overseas. The guide shows, the award judges noted, that despite the uncertain policy environment many local councils are showing leadership in 'getting on with the job' and making climate change 'business as usual'.

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