Small towns' meter savings begin to stack up
Several New South Wales councils have reported good results from a high-tech upgrade to their water meters, pushing more locals to get into digital monitoring.
New funds have been awarded to the Goldenfields Water County Council, which will spend the $1 million grant installing a data network on every one of the water meters across a 22,000 square kilometre region.
A trial has been underway for over six months to test the water meter transmitters in the towns of Cootamundra, Junee and Temora.
Goldenfields General Manager Andrew Grant says the system automatically collects information on flows and water use times.
Mr Grant says savings come in many ways.
“We will be able to notify people if they have got a leak, say on one of the larger rural properties, where leaks might go unnoticed for weeks or months,” he said.
“We will be able to ring, go out and have a look.”
The system may even be expanded to gather information on other livestock movement, soil moisture, rainfall or other factors.
“We'll be concentrating on our water network at the start, but if people approach us, and want services at some distance from the main we will look at putting a receiver in there to provide service for particular needs,” Mr Grant said.
He predicts the improvements will be vast.
“Those people who used to do the meter reading, we can now re-divert those resources to doing physical things in the network and that is a saving for a start,” he said.
“And probably one of the most important ones is about leaks, and that I envisage we will probably get 100 megalitres of water back.
“Which is a lot that is water for a decent size town, back in losses,” Mr Grant said.