$1.3m project to provide quality water for Clermont
Clermont residents can expect a more consistent quality of water through a $1.36 million project to dredge Theresa Creek Dam.
Isaac Regional Council has engaged a contractor to remove 12,000 cubic metres of the dam’s built-up sediment by the end of May.
Mayor Anne Baker said the essential project was one of many that would improve critical water infrastructure needs in Clermont.
“Council is very proud to have partnered with the Queensland Government to bring these works into fruition,” Cr Baker said.
“The dredging process will allow for full access to available raw water at different levels of the water tower.
“This means more consistent quality of water can be obtained for the supply to the water treatment plant, and delivery to the Clermont community.”
The current water intake tower at Policeman’s Creek channel has four portals for the pumping of raw water to the water treatment plant, which supplies the township’s water source.
The project will return two of the lower portals which are silted over, into service.
This comes after locals spoke out about the ongoing issues with the water supply, with many homes dealing with discoloured water regularly since before 2018.
CQUniversity water expert Dr Adam Rose said many towns across regional Queensland battled water discolouration due to increased levels of Manganese (Mn) in the water.
A recently published paper revealed the health impacts of manganese in drinking water, particularly for bottle-fed babies and pregnant women.
“If you are pregnant, I would recommend using bottled water, at least until Mn levels have reduced,” Dr Rose said.
“And if you are currently bottle-feeding your infant, I would recommend using bottled water, as the combination of tap water high in Mn and the additional Mn found in baby formula has the potential to expose the young one to increased levels of Mn.”
Dr Rose said recent research had shown that increased levels of Mn in the system contributed to impacts on pregnant women, infant size and mortality, and intellectual function in children as well as in the elderly.
“The primary source of Mn in natural catchments is the surrounding soils, bedrock and organic matter washed into the water bodies that ends up increasing the levels in our regional water supplies,” he said.
Dr Rose said it remained unclear as to whether or not short-term increases in Mn concentrations could contribute significantly to long-term exposure from drinking water, particularly when age-specific drinking water intake was considered.
The Theresa Creek Dam desilting project is a joint initiative of Isaac Regional Council and the Queensland Government.
Deputy Premier and Minister Local Government Steven Miles said the works were funded with the help of the $59 million 2019-21 Local Government Grants and Subsidies Program (LGGSP).
“This program is designed is to help local governments deliver priority infrastructure and essential services that meet the identified needs of their communities,” Mr Miles said.
“The Queensland Government has allocated $900,000 to the Theresa Creek Dam Water Storage project, which the Isaac Regional Council estimates will create or support 24 local jobs.”
Initial stages have commenced, including preparing the site, earthworks and installing a bypass pump before dredging begins after Easter.
The dredging is expected to be completed by May.