BRAIN STORM: Tamworth council and the construction community swapped ideas about how they can work together to save treated water. Photo: Peter Hardin

BRAIN STORM: Tamworth council and the construction community swapped ideas about how they can work together to save treated water. Photo: Peter Hardin

Water wise brain storm for builders

Local council works with industry to reduce water usage

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Tamworth council and the construction sector swapped ideas about how they can work together to save water.

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COUNCIL has held round table meetings with the city's tourism, retail and construction industries, to find out how they can help the region's businesses be more waterwise.

Council water director Bruce Logan said Tamworth's water use was split evenly between residential and commercial use.

"Tamworth's a pretty unique situation, where there's a 50-50 split between residents and businesses," Mr Logan said.

"We've done about as much as we can on the residential side, but it's also important that businesses play a part."

Many in the construction industry have already begun to cut their water use back to the bare minimum wherever possible.

Read more: NSW MP vows support for councils recycling wastewater into drinking water

"We don't waste water on dust suppression anymore - if the conditions aren't right, it's too windy, we won't work on that site," one builder said.

One way council was looking to help, was making bore water available to the construction industry within the coming month, at the bottom of Marius and Swan streets.

Normally, raw bore water is not allowed to be transported off site, however council has sought an exception from the Water Minister.

Council's sustainability coordinator Tracey Carr urged businesses to get in touch with the council if they had an idea about how to save water.

"For example, it came to our attention that car yards get a financial incentive from the manufacturers for washing cars when they're taken in for a service," Ms Carr said.

"So we've written to car manufactures and asked if they can give an exemption to drought affected areas, because it's making the car dealers choose between using treated water or taking a financial hit and we don't want them to be in that situation.

"We've had some response and some of the manufacturers are willing to provide that respite. That's just one little example. There are probably thousands of other ways we can work out a solution to help reduce your treated water use."

Council has also opened up its waterwise rebate scheme to businesses and commercial operations.

Previously, rebates for water efficient equipment, such taps, toilets and shower heads, were only available to residential properties.

The story Water wise brain storm for builders first appeared on The Northern Daily Leader.

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