|December 2006||National Research Flagship||Water For A Healthy Country|
International recognition for our WRON initiative
While this sounds like some of the issues the Water for a Healthy Country Flagship team face building an Australian Water Resources Observation Network (WRON), it happens to be the picture painted by David Maidment of problems his colleagues in the United States are currently tackling.
Maidment, Director of the Center for Research in Water Resources at the University of Texas at Austin, was recently in Canberra (Nov. '06) to share knowledge with CSIRO staff collaborating on the WRON, and to jointly host a briefing on WRON development for the Australian Government and water industry at CSIRO's Black Mountain laboratories.
As head of the Hydrologic Information System (HIS) program of the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science Inc (CUAHSI), Maidment and colleagues from 116 universities across the US are working on issues such as the collection and housing of water data information.
The issues facing Maidment's CUAHSI colleagues echo the Australian situation –some states share and collaborate with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to collect and house water data information, while many other states choose their own methods and locations for collection and storage, with few arrangements in place to share information between states.
The recently developed CUAHSI website pulls this hydrologic information from sources including the USGS (US Geological Survey), EPA, NCDC (National Climatic Data Center), NASA, NWS, while compiling observatory data with a common data window for viewing and accessing information.
The site grew out of a review of the USGS National Water Use Information
Program, conducted by the National Academy of Sciences and Chaired by
Maidment, which surveyed water use data collection in all 50 US states.
Drawing on Maidment's experiences in the US, CLW Chief Rob Vertessy set the scene for the future of Australia's water resources, while CLW Environmental Sensing Prediction and Reporting Theme Leader Stuart Minchin discussed the technical challenges our staff face in making a Water Resources Observation Network a reality.
The National Water Commission's Colin Chartres led two discussion sessions with many of Australia's key water industry players present, including those from the Murray-Darling Basin Commission, eWater CRC and various irrigation bodies sharing their own thoughts.
In a time when the future of Australia's water resources makes almost daily headlines, the afternoon was both timely and focusing for our WRON team, giving them food for thought as they make progress delivering on the National Research Priority of developing an Environmentally Sustainable Australia.
View Rob Vertessy's address Australia's water resources information imperative and the role of the WRON [PDF, 5MB]
View David Maidment's presentation Hydrologic Information in the United States [PDF, 4.7MB]
View David Maidment's presentation HIS-Australia: Building a National Hydrologic Information System for Australia [PDF, 3.4MB]
View Stuart Minchin's address WRON Technology [PDF, 2.7MB]
For more information on the WRON, visit www.wron.net.au or contact
Ross Ackland: 02 6216 7044
IN THIS EDITION:
the Flagship's new Science Director
one of our
The Water for a Healthy Country Flagship is a CSIRO initiative and part of the National Research Flagships program that aims to deliver scientific solutions to advance Australia's most important national objectives. One of the largest scientific initiatives ever mounted in Australia, it aligns closely with the Federal Government's National Research Priorities. The initiative brings together our national research resources to deliver breakthroughs in fields ranging from healthcare to light metals and the environment.
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a Healthy Country
Editor: Leane Regan
CSIRO Black Mountain Laboratories,
Canberra, ACT, 2601
Phone: +61 2 6246 4565
Fax: +61 2 6246 4564