Goulburn-Murray Water (GMW) was presented with the Engineering Excellence Award 2014 in the Environment category at the Victorian Engineering Excellence Awards (VEEA) event recently. The project was one of Australia’s largest environmental works, which aimed to revive the drought-ravaged Hattah Lakes.

“Reviving the Hattah Lakes was a visionary project to restore better health to the Hattah Lakes system of semi-permanent freshwater lakes within the Murray Darling Basin,” GMW Acting General Manager of Construction Marc Lon Ho Kee said.

“River regulation and a changing climate reduced the lakes’ natural flooding patterns; rare and threatened species were under pressure to survive, cultural sites were exposed and ancient river red gums were dying.”

“The result was one of Australia’s largest environmental works projects, which included the construction of a permanent pump station (1000ML/day), four regulators, and three environmental levees. The works have created a more natural flooding regime in a permanent and sustainable way, making it possible to top up natural floods by gravity or pumping.”

The project was implemented by GMW as the constructing agency for Murray-Darling Basin Authority under the direction of Mallee Catchment Management Authority and the Department of Environment and Primary Industries.

The lakes are one of Australia’s most environmentally and culturally significant sites and form part of the 48,000ha Hattah-Kulkyne National Park on the River Murray.

The Victorian Engineering Excellence Awards recognise and reward Victoria’s outstanding engineering projects and pay tribute to organisations that combine excellence in engineering with commercial viability, innovative solutions and contribution to the community.

For more details see our in-depth articles on the Hattah Lakes Project, Flooding the forest and A flood of ideas.


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