According to The Australian (10/03/2007, p.5), Brisbane was set to become the first capital city with level-5 restrictions when forced to join the rest of the state’s southeast next month in further slashing water consumption in the face of what Brisbane Lord Mayor Campbell Newman described as a "terrible situation".
Water prices set to rise: The Queensland Water Commission (QWC) revealed the Beattie Government’s $7 billion plans to improve water infrastructure would be funded through water bills with bill for an average home rising by $71 next year. It is estimated that average annual householder’s water bill would increase from $355 to $876 by 2012.
Mayor is not pleased: Newman described the rises as outrageous and warned that the region’s mayors would not be used to do the state’s "dirty work" to fund infrastructure it should have provided long ago. "This is a ruthless cash grab on the ratepayers of southeast Queensland," Newman said.
No town supply for swimming pools: Under level-five restrictions, newly built swimming pools cannot be filled from the town supply. Owners will pay between $2500 and $4000 to fill them from tankers.
More to come: level 6 and 7: Level-six restrictions could be in force as early as September, with level-seven restrictions coming into effect in April next year.
What level 5 entails: The aim of level five is:
to halve from 280 to 140 litres per person per day the amount of water used;
Halving allocations for Brisbane Valley irrigators using Wivenhoe Dam water,
Installation of water-efficient urinal systems; and
restrictions on the washing of business vehicles and building surfaces and windows.
Householders face the axe: Elizabeth Nosworthy, chair of QWC, defended the onus of level-7 restrictions being put on householders instead of industry. She said 70 per cent of water was used domestically, and the commission had to be mindful of job losses.
Power plants too face the axe in wake of reduced flows to storages: The commission announced on Wednesday that water supplies to the Tarong and Swanbank power stations would be slashed. Water flows to southeast Queensland storages last year averaged 100 megalitres a day – just 4 per cent of averages in catchments over the past 108 years.
The Australian, 10/3/2007, p. 5
Source: Erisk Net