Managing our water supply
Water projects and investment to secure future growth.
Secure water supplies are essential for communities to thrive. Being remote from natural water sources, Parkes’ water supply would be vulnerable without managed intervention. In addition, key sectors that underpin the local economy such as mining and agriculture are heavy water users, placing additional demand on our supply.
Parkes Shire Council has been proactively working towards future-proofing water security for the Shire. To address recurring water shortages, aging infrastructure, and to plan for vulnerabilities that arise from being
largely rainfall-depended in a changing climate, Parkes Shire Council became one of the first LGAs to undertake an Integrated Water Management Strategy (IWCM) in 2004. The IWCM identified water management issues and potential solutions.
After a decade of forward planning and extensive community consultation, Council embarked on the Parkes Integrated Water Infrastructure Renewal Program; a once-in-a-lifetime overhaul of Parkes urban water supply and wastewater schemes in one package of works.
The program began with the Lake Endeavour Safety Upgrades in 2016. These upgrades improved water security, and strengthened the Dam to ensure the long term stability and integrity of the structure. The project also involved enhancing the Dam for increased flood security.
A Lake Endeavour Early Warning System website and dashboard was developed. This allows Council and residents to monitor the water level, prepare for spills, and provide sufficient warning for potential flood events. See link at the top of this page.
The Parkes Integrated Water Infrastructure Renewal Program has included the following works:
- Construction of a new Water Treatment Plant
- Construction of a new Sewage Treatment Plant
- Refurbishment of Bore 8; a new bore was sunk to deliver a better spread for the aquifer
- Lachlan River Intake upgrade; the upgrading and formalisation of the temporary pumps
- an Active Leak Detection Program and upgrading of raw water pipes; to allow for increased capacity
- The establishment of a Recycled Water Scheme to deliver a consistent, high quality and safe recycled water source for municipal irrigation year round.
These combined projects will optimise power usage, allow for remote monitoring and reuse of a limited water supply. Securing water for Parkes will allow for the sustainable growth of the town and support current and future expansion, both residential and industrial/commercial.
The environmental benefits of the program have been recognised with a number of prestigious awards. Parkes Shire Council was awarded a Sustainable Systems Award at the 2017 Blue Star Awards. Parkes Shire Council was also given top honours in the Water Management category at the 2017 Local Government NSW Excellence in the Environment Awards.