Golf club ensuring water security

June 01, 2017

Golf club resort CEO Richard Hogg (left) with Federation Council’s General Manager Chris Gillard and Mulwala’s sewerage treatment plant, a Par 4 distance, in the background.

Yarrawonga Mulwala Golf Club Resort is about to embark on an environmental project, in conjunction with Federation Council, which will be of benefit not only to the golf course, but also its surroundings and the Murray River.

This initiative involves taking reclaimed water from nearby Mulwala Sewage Treatment Plant to irrigate the golf course and to provide water features throughout the facility. These water features will attract significant numbers of bird life and provide habitat for them and for native water plants.

“Regulatory approval will be sought from the Federation Council to provide the golf club resort with the reclaimed water outflow from the adjoining sewage treatment plant,” the club’s Chief Executive Officer Richard Hogg told the Yarrawonga Chronicle.

“This water is currently being discharged across golf club land and into the Murray River.”

The water re-use had been seriously considered by the club about 10 years ago. “The idea has been reintroduced now that we have a new and efficient irrigation scheme with the pumping infrastructure situated quite handy to the council’s treatment plant,” Mr Hogg said.

“Based on preliminary discussions with council, we now seem to be very well set-up to receive and efficiently irrigate our golf facilities within the expected requirements for reusing recycled water reuse.

“While we would appear to have sufficient water rights to irrigate the facility in an average rainfall year, it makes sense to utilise this resource so close to our property.

“Our club is currently equipped with solar power and other energy and waste saving projects so this opportunity fits well with our club’s environmental values.”

The CEO recently inspected Federation Council’s modern $9 million sewerage treatment plant and was impressed with the facility, its operations and the quality of water it is turning back into the environment.

“It would be fantastic to see this project be successful, as it would help with the club’s security of water supply essential for the course during times of drought,” Mr Hogg said.

He said currently only 20% of the club’s water rights are guaranteed with the balance allocated by government authorities depending on inflows and believes the use of recycled water would approximately double the guaranteed water supply.

“It would be sufficient to keep the courses in great condition during periods of drought,” Mr Hogg said.

“At 45 holes, our club is the largest public access course in Australia and one of the leading tourist attractions to our region. Keeping the course in great shape is therefore good for our wider community.”

The volume of recycled water discharged varies throughout the year and is at its highest in the summer when the club requires water the most. The total average annual discharge is 250ML.

Federation Council General Manager Chris Gillard said Federation Council seeking regulatory approval to provide the Yarrawonga Mulwala Golf Club Resort with its water outflow from its adjoining sewerage treatment plant made sense.

“The infrastructure required to transfer the water is relatively simple and the club is well set up to receive, monitor and distribute the water with what they have done with their irrigation system in recent years,” he said.

“There are strict guidelines and conditions attached to recycled water reuse in NSW and to commission such a project we will be liaising with regulatory authorities in establishing and meeting conditions attached to an approval.”

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