Our planet

The Greater Melbourne Alternative Water Plan

The RHAA is pleased to present this blog authored by Urban Water Cycle Solutions and Thirsty Country. Building design can fundamentally change how Melbourne households use water and how urban water is provided.

Rainwater Harvesting Design Specification

This is a joint project between Urban Water Cycle Solutions and the Rainwater Harvesting Association of Australia to promote effective rainwater harvesting in the community. The design specification is for an above ground rainwater tank providing indoor and outdoor rainwater to a residential home.

The new economy of rainwater harvesting, stormwater management vs traditional water management

two storey house with rainwater tanks  Water Sensitive SA and the Rainwater Harvesting Association of Australia held a thought-provoking seminar in the Adelaide Town hall on 15 December with a keynote address by Professor PJ Coombes. The discussion brought together the elements of economics, rainwater harvesting and stormwater management and potentially leading edge Australian integrated water policy.

Christmas 2016 Chairperson Address

At the Sydney RHAA break up event our new Chairperson, Stuart Heldon of Kingspan Environmental reported on a productive year including the following highlights.

Rainwater Harvesting Myths

Rainfall during the millenium drought in BrisbaneThere are a series of myths about rainwater harvesting that do the rounds and get recycled every couple of years. We thought it might save time if we listed them here and provided  a response.

Integrated Water Management in 21st Century Business

Mark Stephens PhotoThe next RHAA business breakfast is on 21st October 2016 at the University of Queensland in St Lucia, Brisbane. Over the last five years we have seen a significant shift in sustainable technology and design, from alternative and idealistic, to mainstream and accountable. This breakfast event looks at how leading edge South East Queensland commercial development has integrated rainwater harvesting, stormwater and sustainable water management. We have three excellent speakers contributing their expertise on this important topic, Mark Stephens from Stockland, Ben O’Callaghan from Ecodesign and Sally Boer from E2DesignLab. Head over the Rainwater Harvesting website to make a booking.

Rainwater Harvesting 2016: Resilience and Independence

disruption posterThe RHAA presented to the Association of Rotational Moulders on the surprising significance of rainwater harvesting as a major and affordable source of residential water in Australia but with a whole series of synergistic benefits at a regional level for energy use, catchment yield and stormwater management. The presentation concludes with the launch of a joint RHAA/ARMA project on Independent Water, which is the rainwater providing 69% of all household use outside capital cities and is the only source of water for over 2 million Australians.

How to live in your house

Rooftop with solar panelsSaving water and energy is a consistent element of the every sustainable house in Australia. But sustainable houses are often stereotyped as unusual, as if the houses and their inhabitants are somehow not like the rest of us and have achieved something we cannot do. And yet over one million houses in Australia have solar panels and 2.3 million houses have a rainwater tank. The following home owners show that caring about our impact on the planet and the future for our children puts money in your pocket and is easily achieved with existing technology. 

Rainwater Health Debate

Steel Roofby Michael Smit and Prof PJ Coombes An important debate in this country is about the health of people using rainwater, however much of the commentary is funded by water monopolies who have a centralised water distribution perspective quite different to how rainwater harvesting works.  One of the recent rebuttal papers by PJ Coombes has just been published and we thought we should discuss some of the issues, as much to demonstrate there is a difference of opinion.

Sustainable Households, Systems Insights, Real Data

By Professor PJ Coombes and Michael Smit When most people talk about sustainability they talk about and analyse separate elements, a rainwater tank, solar panels, recycling, orientation, cross ventilation. How much does that element cost, what will that element produce, how much will that element save?