(11-04-17) Water Pollution
Water is an essential natural resource. Conserving and maintaining water quality is especially important in Australia, the worlds driest inhabited continent. Preventing or reducing water pollution protects our water quality and is essential to maintaining the health of our environment and our own quality of life.
Everyone should employ correct storm water management to ensure that storm water runoff originating from their property is of a quality that ensures downstream environmental values and water quality objectives are protected or enhanced.
If a person or company does not take appropriate erosion and sediment control measures, they can receive on-the-spot fines. Prosecution and court penalties for major development and environmental offences may exceed one million dollars.
Interesting facts about water:
- Less than 1.5% of the Earth’s total supply of water is accessible fresh water.
- Every year, polluted water kills more than 24 million people in the developing world. Most of those killed are children.
- Industry is only one source of water pollution. Other sources include sewage treatment plants, households, streets and footpaths.
- Sediment and soil erosion from building and development sites is a major source of water pollution.
- Individuals pollute water by littering (including cigarette butts), pouring oils down drains and using chemicals on their gardens. These pollutants are then washed or blown into stormwater drains and local waterways.
Council only has jurisdiction to act on certain complaints, and shares the responsibility of water pollution issues with other government bodies.