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Byron Shire
May 22, 2022

Casino’s winning tap water ways

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Casino’s Water Treatment Plant is in the good hands of Shannon Clapham, Sandeep Chugh, Serena Tomkins, Michael MacRae and David Cash. Photo supplied.

Yesterday the winners of the Water Industry Operators Association of Australia’s Ixom 2021 Best Tasting Tap Water in Australia competition were announced putting interstate rivalry to the ultimate test. The winner was New South Wales with Casino being named as the official home of Australia’s best tap water.

Representing NSW, Richmond Valley Council beat out Queensland, Victoria, South Australia, West Australia and Tasmania and will now go on to represent Australia at the annual Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting Competition held in West Virginia, USA.

The annual competition was held virtually, with a judging panel assessing samples from six water treatment plants on colour, clarity, odour and mouthfeel.

The state representatives were:

ACT/NSW – Richmond Valley Council – Casino Water Treatment Plant
SA – SA Water / SUEZ – Anstey Hill Water Treatment Plant
WA – Water Corporation – Wyndham Water Treatment Plant
VIC – Westernport Water – Ian Bartlett Water Purification Plant
TAS – TasWater – Rocky Creek Water Treatment Plant
QLD – Mackay Regional Council – Marian Water Treatment Plant

The competition was held in Hobart at Risdon Brook Dam, Risdon Brook Park, Grasstree Hill Road, Risdon Vale and was live streamed from the TasWater Facebook

Tap water samples were judged during blind taste tests, according to the Water Tasting Wheel which outlines the attributes that water professionals use when judging water.

Think wine tasting without needing to spit out the samples and you won’t be far wrong.

Last year’s winner was from the Rossarden Water Treatment Plant in Tasmania, and went on to win the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting Competition.

RVC’s award winning team

Richmond Valley Council’s Director Community Service Delivery Angela Jones said she was proud of the entire team at the Water Treatment Plant, who all worked hard to provide a quality service to Casino and surrounds.

Ms Jones said the town water supply was pumped through more than three kilometres of rising main to reach the treatment plant, just on the outskirts of Casino. ‘Servicing a community of more than 11,000 people, the plant is monitored 24 hours a day.

‘Winning this award is a huge honour for both our Casino Water Treatment Plant crew and the organisation as a whole,’ she said. ‘Like most water suppliers, we continue to experience numerous challenges from natural disasters to changes in water regulation, which impact the way water service providers, including councils, supply and manage water and wastewater within their communities.

Six megalitres a day

Ms Jones said the plant averages a supply of six megalitres a day, with capacity to provide 23 megalitres.

‘The plant is a standard coagulation-flocculation-sedimentation process, with the filter media being a standard sand and filter coal configuration.’

Ms Jones said pumping from the Richmond River source brought its own sets of challenges, including blue-green algae and manganese. ‘We are full-time dosing with activated carbon to alleviate taste and odour issues associated with the Richmond River,’ she said. ‘We also increase the activated carbon dose during summer months when dealing with blue-green algae. Potassium permanganate is periodically dosed for manganese issues.’

Ms Jones said the plant was in the process of trialling enhanced coagulation to further reduce natural organic material. ‘The benefit is having to use less chlorine and minimising by-products in the drinking water,’ she said. ‘This award motivates us to further improve our processes at the treatment plant.

‘I’m very proud of our small but dedicated crew.’

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  1. Say “thank you Kyogle for your non-toxic land use and management in the catchment”.

    Now, as Andrew said, no incinerator to spill heavy metals across the catchment

  2. Well done RR and Kyogle Shires !
    If they can successfully filter blue-green algae out – you can filter any other toxic substance out.


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