The Colac Otway Shire’s innovative proposal to reuse water from the Black Rock Water Reclamation Plant for regional projects, including sustaining Lake Colac, warrants further investigation, the Member for Corangamite, Libby Coker, said today. 

Ms Coker said up to 25 billion litres of water is potentially lost into the marine environment from the recycling plant – water that might otherwise be used to ease environmental, industrial and agricultural water shortages.

While acknowledging the idea of capturing and reusing water is still being developed, Ms Coker said the potential gains were definitely worth exploring.

“At first glance, an Economic Feasibility and Cost Benefit Analysis has merit. The Colac Otway Shire Council has already taken the first step, via resolution, to make this happen,” Ms Coker said.

“Certainly the possibility of providing relief to our water stressed region and potentially opening up new opportunities and new jobs for our agricultural and recreational sectors is worthy of further analysis.”

Ms Coker called on all interested parties to work in collaboration with local and state government, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, Barwon Water and the Corangamite Catchment Management Authority.

“This visionary idea could potentially support regional growth opportunities. I understand that there are plans for extensive government, business and community consultation and this should take place.”

“At a time when rural and regional centres are battling water shortages, the potential to reuse up to six billion litres, or 2400 Olympic sized swimming pools, is a great idea. The proposal put forward by the Colac Otway Shire provides a good concept in principal and is definitely worthy of investigation.” Ms Coker concluded.