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Power and Water Corporation will soon begin an intensive monitoring program in Buffalo Creek and Shoal Bay to assess water quality as part of a timed wastewater discharge trial.

The trial is part of Power and Water’s sewage treatment strategy aiming to improve the performance of the region’s wastewater treatment and disposal facilities.

The aim of the monitoring program is to assess the influence of a change in wastewater discharge strategy. Currently, treated wastewater is discharged into Buffalo Creek on a continuous basis from the Leanyer Sanderson Wastewater Treatment Plant.

The trial will introduce timed discharge and monitor how this might affect water quality and nutrient transport in Buffalo Creek and Shoal Bay.

Over a period of four months, various phases of the trial will take place. These include the pre-trial deployment and testing of monitoring equipment, followed by alternating control and test periods. Control periods will include monitoring of continuous discharge operations while the test period will include monitoring of timed discharge. The monitoring program will conclude at the end of October.

The Australian Institute of Marine Science has been engaged to facilitate real time continuous monitoring and the capture, quality control and management of the data received through remote telemetry. Three purpose built buoys will collect and transmit the data. The buoys will be tracked by GPS throughout the trial to ensure they remain in position.

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