Rainwater Harvesting News…and other stories

Why use a rainwater specialist for your tank and pump problems?

A conversation with a new customer this week highlighted the benefits of engaging a rainwater specialist for your rainwater tank and pump problems. It’s all about water, pumps and plumbing, so calling your usual maintenance plumber to help is a pretty standard approach, right?

While a rainwater storage system does involve plumbing, there’s so much more to ensuring the best possible outcome.  The difference is focus, experience and a wholistic approach to your rainwater system.  At Water Tactics we only deal with rain water and everything to do with rainwater capture, storage and use.  Assuming you already have your water tank installed, the main reason you will seek help is when something goes wrong with the pump.

The Pump

The selection of your tank water pump is crucial to balance performance and cost effectiveness. Water pumps, like so many consumer items these days, vary in the function, quality, life expentancy and of course, cost.  Ensuring the pump chosen is fit for purpose is key to effectiveness.  This means understanding the intended uses – now and in the future – and selecting a pump with correct flow rate and performance within your allocated budget. Due to the volume of tank water pumps we install and service, we are in a position to offer competitive pump pricing. Once the pump selection is made, understanding and following simple instructions in how best to care for and maintain your water pump increases the longevity of the pump and return on your investment in water conservation.

The Experience

Jim has built over 15 years of practical experience and maintained hundreds of rainwater system configurations.  Every one is unique.  Every rainwater installation has its own characteristics and requires a specific maintenance regime in order to keep it operating an maximum efficiency.  Understanding this is key to ensuring your rainwater system provides maximum water conservation efficiency and maximises your return on investment.  Everything from considering your rainwater catchments, potential capacity, tank location, water pump specification, taps, plumbing outlets, water filters and the importantly, the way you want to use your rainwater are all factors in the success of your rainwater system.

The Difference

The difference with engaging a rainwater professional like Jim is that he works with you not only to solve your tank and pump problems but also achieve the best outcome to ensure you can continue to practise rainwater conservation and sustainability for the long term.

Water Tactics are located on the Gold Coast in South-East Queensland and provide rainwater services, tank installation and pump sales and service to areas where this form of water conservation is widely used.  This includes areas around Coomera, Pimpama, Ormeau, Gilston, Reedy Creek, Nerang, Mudgeeraba, Currumbin and urban areas of the Gold Coast.

Rainwater Harvesting role in Climate Change

As the world leaders meet in Glasgow, Scotland for the COP26 round of Climate Change talks, rainwater harvesting will be on the agenda.

Rainwater harvesting is already being impacted by the changing patterns of rainfall around the world.  Changing climate conditions and rainfall are also evident here on the Gold Coast of Queensland, Australia with torrential downpours and extended drought periods over time.  How can you plan for the uncertainty climate change will bring to rainfall across the country?  No doubt decentralised rainwater harvesting must play a part and the capture and use of rainwater for non-potable purposes in urban environments is one small way a vast majority of the population can contribute to water conservation.  Larger scale water security and fair access to clean, healthy water will remain a major challenge in the future.

The International WaterCentre, Griffith University (Brisbane and Gold Coast) are closely montoring outcomes at COP26.  We came across this interesting article written by Bronwyn Powell – water and development specialist with the International WaterCentre – regarding issues pertinent to the Asia-Pacific region and the participation of the Australian Water Partnership in the forum.

We look forward to hearing the outcomes of COP26 and particular consideration of the role of rainwater harvesting in adapting to and mitigating effects of Climate Change.

Bushfires and rainwater tank safety

Here in South-East Queensland, we have recently heard much of the role of rainwater tanks in bushfire zones; providing a water source to fight fire and protect properties while waiting for help. Many of those living in bushfire prone areas rely on rainwater as their only water source. Not only do they have the challenge of conserving water, but they also have the added concern of potential contamination of tank water due to the smoke and fallout debris from the fires.

The Queensland Government has produced information highlighting the risks; strategies to mitigate those risks and recommendations for re-establishing a safe water source after the bushfire risk has passed. That’s wher rainwater tank cleaning and water sanitisation are needed to restore the safety of the rainwater supply.

Converting a swimming pool to a rain water tank

Ever thought about converting your swimming pool to a rain water tank?  While the backyard swimming pool is an iconic part of life in Australia, there may come the time when pool use dwindles and the cost of operation, maintenance and repairs start to outweight the appeal.  Just think how much fresh rain water you could capture if you converted the pool into a rainwater storage tank.  Take a look at this article from Brisbane City Life for information on how to actually go about it and the experince of people who have succeeded in converting a swimming pool to a water tank.

Queensland drought: why rainwater tanks matter

 The current Queensland drought is a reminder that history repeats and why rainwater tanks matter at all times and in all conditions.  

Back in 2013 the Brisbane City Council determined it no longer mandatory to install rainwater tanks for new residential constructions and many other Queensland Councils followed that lead.

At the time,   Queensland Minister for Housing and Public Works stated that the mandatory installation of rainwater tanks and other energy conservation measures “… add an unnecessary cost to homeowners and place an unwanted drag on the construction industry.”  Whether either the cost of construction was reduced or the construction industry significantly benefited from this action is difficult to measure.  Even harder to measure, but perhaps more critical, is the effect this may have had on future-proofing water supplies in some of the areas now experiencing severe water restrictions.

What was not considered when that decision was taken, was the long-term benefit of water conservation by tank owners; how every raindrop captured and used helps conserve the mains water supply.  Rainwater use ensures the catchment waters are conserved for longer into the next inevitable drought period.  

To declare that uban rainwater use for non-plumbed purposes was not contributing significantly to water conservation (as the Brisbane Lord Mayor said at the time) was short-sighted. When rain is plentiful, abundant tap water is squandered on garden watering, car and house washing and other domestic purposes, where rainwater can do the job and conserve water in the dams. 

This won’t be the last drought in Queensland, and our Governments need to rethink and acknowledge the role of rainwater tanks in broader public participation in responsible conservation of the precious resoure of water. 

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