Viewing entries tagged
maintenance

Cleaning up after the house builders

Cleaning up after the house builders

Sometime opportunities just appear and you have to make the most of them. Recently, our good friend Stephen Turfrey invited us out to watch a bioretention basin being cleaned out (thanks mate!). The system had been filled with a large amount of sediment (that washed off the yards of houses being built in its catchment). Cleaning sediment out of a bioretention system might sound easy, but there are a few key things that you have to get right. This contactor was doing a good job!

Interested in visiting this bioretention system? You can find it on The WSUD Map (it's bioretention system B00423)

Cheers

Jack

Zero additional maintenance WSUD 3

Zero additional maintenance WSUD 3

Hi there,

You know when you've had some really great discussions with people. Through these discussions you are collectively but almost accidentally developing an idea that you with will be great.

Yep?

What about the feeling of excitement you get when you realise that someone already did it!

And they did it five whole years ago!

That's what this episode is about. A cool low maintenance bioretention approach that I was shown in New Zealand by Robyn Simcock.

If you're interested in more low maintenance bioretention, check out:

Cheers

Jack

Trusting the process and finding funding

Trusting the process and finding funding

You may remember back in episode 102 we heard from Andy Reese about American stormwater utilities, and the potential benefits of this stormwater governance model. In this episode we continue the discussion with Hector Cyre. I met Hector at the New Zealand Stormwater Conference, where we both presented keynotes. We spoke about the potential of stormwater utilities to provide a stable funding source for stormwater management.

Cheers

Jack

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Several years in

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Several years in

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - The wood for the trees

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - The wood for the trees

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Networks

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Networks

Oooops... it turns out that the last episode isn't the last episode in this mini series looking at how local governments can obtain a budget to maintain their WSUD assets.

As the previous episodes went to air we were contact be heaps of people with additional ideas and info to share in this series. So... let's share them. At this stage, that means 3 more episodes.

In this episode, inspired by suggestions from Emma O'Neill, was talk about the power of networking to assist in obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget.

Come in part way through this mini series? Why not check out: 

Cheers

Jack

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Trending in the right direction

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Trending in the right direction

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Our preference of contractors or in-house crews

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Our preference of contractors or in-house crews

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Our preference of department

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Our preference of department

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Implementation and continual improvement

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Implementation and continual improvement

Time for part seven of our mini series looking at how local governments can obtain a budget to maintain their WSUD assets. Getting it done. Implementing the first budget and continual improvement over time.

Come in part way through this mini series? Why not check out: 

Cheers

Jack

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - United briefing up

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - United briefing up

Time for part six of our mini series looking at how local governments can obtain a budget to maintain their WSUD assets. This is where things start to feel very real. Briefing up to managers and politicians.

Come in part way through this mini series? Why not check out: 

Cheers

Jack

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Contractors or in house crews

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Contractors or in house crews

Time for part five of our mini series looking at how local governments can obtain a budget to maintain their WSUD assets. When maintenance first begins, should the Council use contractors or in-house crews?

Come in part way through this mini series? Why not check out: 

Cheers

Jack

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Building a business case

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Building a business case

Time for part four of our mini series looking at how local governments can obtain a budget to maintain their WSUD assets. This time, how to make the case for funding.

Come in part way through this mini series? Why not check out: 

Cheers

Jack 

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Overview

Obtaining a WSUD maintenance budget - Overview

I have been fortunate to spend time with, and get to know, a bunch of people working hard in local governments to make sure that our WSUD assets get maintained, and work as they were designed to. In this time, I have had the opportunity to observe a pattern in how local governments who obtained a maintenance budget for their WSUD assets did it. This episode begins a series exploring the common threads of what worked.

Cheers

Jack

From America with ideas - funding stormwater maintenance

From America with ideas - funding stormwater maintenance

Hi everyone,

Has anyone else had this experience?

You have a good idea.

It might be work related. It might be related to a hobby. It might be related to something else. It doesn't matter.

You tell people about it. They sort of get it, but aren't really interested.

You tell more people. They are a little interested, but not in any meaningful way.

You continue telling people, and at some point someone gets it. They get excited. Then more people get your idea. You're not sure what changed, but something did.

That happened recently for me.

I had been considering an idea that I termed a 'stormwater levy'. Essentially the idea was to stop funding stormwater management from local government rates (i.e. based on property value), and instead fund it from a levy based on the amount of impervious area on people's properties.

Then, Andy Hornbuckle from SPEL Environmental gave me a call. He told me that he had an American fellow that he wanted me to meet. Andy Reese. He told me that Andy had experience setting up 'stormwater utilities' in America. Stormwater utilities, Andy told me, fund stormwater management through a user charge based off impervious area. They can be, but don't have to be a standalone organisation.

What you need to realise is that Andy Hornbuckle didn't know that I'd been considering a stormwater levy. It was quite the coincidence that he rang me.

"Really?" I said, "That sounds a lot like this stormwater levy that I have been considering."

Fast forward to October this year and I had the opportunity to present alongside Andy Reese in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

This episode of Ideanthro was recorded in Brisbane, It is Andy's presentation followed by my presentation. It is well worthwhile taking a look at Andy's presentation. Andy talks in detail about his experience establishing stormwater utilities in America. There is a lot that we can learn from the American experience. Why they are popular. How much they cost. How to make a compelling case for one.

A big thank you to:

  • Andy Reese - for being very generous with your time and sharing a lot of your experience with me over several days
  • Andy Hornbuckle - for giving me a call in the first instance, for allowing me to present alongside Andy Reese and for providing the videos of our presentations

What do you think of the idea of a stormwater utility?

Cheers

Jack

Researching maintenance of stormwater control measures

Researching maintenance of stormwater control measures

Hello!

Last week at the Stormwater 2016 conference on the Gold Coast I had the opportunity to meet Andrew Thomas. When I found out that Andrew is conducting research into the maintenance of stormwater treatment devices (or stormwater control measures as Andrew and many others refer to them) I couldn’t help but arrange a time for us to sit down and discuss his research on camera.

During our conversation Andrew puts out a call for data on the condition of stormwater control measures owned by local governments. Andrew’s research will benefit greatly from such data. If you have this data, you can contact Andrew at thomasa2@unimelb.edu. A quick word of warning though. For Andrew to be able to use the data he needs to make sure that it comes with the appropriate permissions. So, if you have data, send him an email saying that you have access to data, and you can both take it from there.

Thanks for tuning in!

Cheers

Jac

Paying to maintain water sensitive assets

Paying to maintain water sensitive assets

Hi there,

Last week at Stormwater 2016 (Australia's national stormwater industry conference) we caught up with Martin O'Dea from Clouston Associates. He presented a really interesting paper, and we spoke to him about his thoughts on mechanisms for funding the maintenance of water sensitive assets.

You can find Martin at Clouston Associates and on LinkedIn.

The gardens and wetlands of Annecy

The gardens and wetlands of Annecy

Hi everyone,

Tay and I were in Annecy in France recently and we were fascinated by the sheer volume of gardens. Private gardens, streetscape gardens. Gardens in public space. Window gardens. It got us thinking about how the city managed to make that happen, and what we might be able to learn from that in an Australian, WSUD context.

Cheers

Jack