5 September 2005

The smart re-use of water is among key issues to be addressed by University of Queensland (UQ) experts at the 8th International River Symposium today.

The re-use of water and management of waste water is a major issue for south-east Queensland with water levels in catchment areas at dangerously low levels.

UQ water researchers involved in the Brisbane event commencing on 5 September will also tackle concerns about coastal and marine health, the relationships between land and water and water resource management in the minerals industry.

River Symposium chairman and UQ Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Greenfield said the discussion of water related issues is more critical now than ever before.

“While water flows from the tap we often overlook the fact that our major river systems are being sucked dry or having their flows reduced so far that they become unhealthy,” he said.

“It is not all doom and gloom though because the symposium’s breadth of presentations shows how good science and community action can improve the water situation.

“Partnerships can improve the health of river systems, help develop new technologies to maintain water quality, while knowledge can be used to sustain community needs with adequate environmental flows.”

The theme of the 2005 Riversymposium is ‘Water and Food Security – Rivers in a Global Context’ and it will examine the challenges of meeting human needs for water while keeping our river systems healthy.

Other major topics to be discussed at the forum of experts include drought, sediment and pollution issues. The event attracts water scientists, natural resource managers and land-use professionals from around the world.

The Riversymposium is part of Brisbane’s annual Riverfestival and the public will have a chance to listen to opening addresses at the forum on September 5 from 1pm-3pm at the Plaza Terrace Room, Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.

For information, booking and registration details visit: www.riversymposium.com.

For media information:
Tiffany Lippett, Senior Communications Officer, Phone: (07) 3365 2049


Professor Jurg Keller
Director of the Advanced Wastewater Management Centre (AWMC)
Phone: (07) 3365 4727
Email: j.keller@awmc.uq.edu.au

- Smart re-use of water; recycling and desalination processes
- Environmental biotechnology
- Biological nutrient removal process development
- Anaerobic treatment technologies
- Bio-process characterisation

Professor Helen Ross
Rural Community Development
School of Natural and Rural Systems Management
Phone: (07) 5460 1648
Email: hross@uqg.uq.edu.au

- Understanding relationships between land and water
- Interactive relationships between people and environments
- Environmental management
- Cultural specialisations
- Research methods

Dr Norm Duke
Principal Research Fellow
Centre for Marine Studies
Phone: (07) 3365 2729
Email: n.duke@uq.edu.au

- Marine botany
- Coastal plant communities
- Environmental/ecological assessment of mangrove vegetation
- Environmental monitoring of mangrove ecosystems

Professor Christopher Moran
Director of the Centre for Water in the Minerals Industry
Phone: (07) 3346 8702
Email: chris.moran@uq.edu.au

- Cumulative impacts on mining in regional communities
- Advanced water management strategies for the minerals industry
- Frameworks and strategies to assist the mining and minerals industry meet sustainable environmental regulations