Modelling the impacts of water efficient technologies on energy intensive water systems in remote and isolated communities
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Essential service providers face unique challenges that are specific delivering a secure and safe water and energy supply to remote communities such as islands and isolated mainland townships. Many remote communities rely on energy intensive water supply systems which are inherently costly to operate. Water demand management programmes such as retrofitting households with water-efficient devices and appliances are one way of reducing the water-energy costs in these communities. This paper presents modelling results from a comparison between business as usual and a scenario where water-efficient strategies were retrofitted in households in three remote communities in Northern Australia. The modelling demonstrated considerable savings to both the water and energy average daily consumption and associated economic costs though reduced reliance on desalination plants and bore pumping. The retrofit scenario was shown to reduce water demand by between 14 and 39 ML/y and total energy demand in off-grid communities by between 83 and 208 MWh/y. Cost reductions for delivering treated water to households ranged between around AUD$11,000 and AUD$70,000 per year, depending on uptake rates of the retrofit programme by each community. This paper forms part of Stage 1 of the Remote and Isolated Communities Essential Services (RICES) project. Stage 2 will confirm many of the assumptions underlying the modelling and build on the smart metering datasets and community engagement process currently underway in Stage 1. The overall outcome of the RICES project is to ensure that such strategies are practical to implement on a broader scale to ultimately achieve more sustainable water and energy efficient off-grid communities.
Clean Technologies and Environmental Policy
© 2016 Springer Berlin / Heidelberg. This is an electronic version of an article published in Clean Technologies and Environmental Policy, 2016, Volume 18, Issue 6, pp 1713–1723. Clean Technologies and Environmental Policy is available online at: http://link.springer.com// with the open URL of your article.
This publication has been entered into Griffith Research Online as an Advanced Online Version.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Environmental Knowledge
Environmental Engineering Modelling