David Templeman

David Templeman

Minister for the Environment; Climate Change; Peel

    New oxygenation technology to improve Swan River health

    5/08/2008 12:00 AM

    A new ‘Turbolox’ oxygenation plant was unveiled today as part of a revolutionary approach to caring for the Swan and Canning rivers, and combating the effects of climate change.


    Environment Minister David Templeman said the new oxygenation plant was part of the Carpenter Government’s $40million Healthy Rivers Action Plan.


    “The Healthy Rivers Action Plan is a comprehensive ‘catchment to coast’ approach to protecting the future of our rivers by improving water quality,” Mr Templeman said.


    “The plan has been given a significant boost thanks to a landmark deal brokered by the State Government with the Burswood Casino, to ensure a portion of the gaming machine levy goes towards river protection strategies.


    “This will see around $15million go towards river protection and I thank the Burswood Park Board for its co-operation.”


    The Minister said recent studies into climate change impacts on the Swan-Canning river system found oxygen levels in the upper stretches were likely to decrease in coming years.


    “The Swan River is the very heart and soul of our community,” he said.


    “Our deep cultural links with the river - including its important role in Aboriginal history - and its countless environmental and recreational qualities continue to fuel our love affair with this iconic waterway.


    “Just like other rivers around the world, the Swan and Canning rivers are susceptible to algal blooms, low oxygen levels and seasonal fish deaths, and these are exacerbated by the onset of climate change.


    “The Healthy Rivers Action Plan establishes a new, more integrated approach to ensuring future generations can continue to enjoy that strong connection with our rivers.


    “Since 1999, the Swan River Trust has used oxygen as an intervention technique on the Canning River, successfully reducing the risk of algal blooms and fish deaths.


    “The new Turbolox unit will work more efficiently in the upper Swan than its predecessor, by adapting to river conditions to spread oxygen further.


    “It is essential that we continue to develop and adopt innovative technologies to deal with river water quality issues, and oxygenation is just one technique we are using.


    “This is yet another example of how the Carpenter Government is acting now for our future.”


    For more information on the Healthy Rivers Program or oxygenation, contact the Swan River Trust on 9278 0900, or visit http://www.swanrivertrust.wa.gov.au.


    Minister's office - 9220 5050