Using water more wisely is becoming a worldwide tenet, and the City of Greater Geraldton is looking at innovative ways to become a more water sensitive city particularly in the maintenance of public open spaces.
Changing rainfall patterns and the fact many shallow bores the City uses to irrigate public open spaces have become saline, has prompted the need to review the way the City uses this finite resource.
City Director of Sustainable Communities, Phil Melling, said the City has been changing its ways and becoming smarter about water use with more sensitive urban design.
“An example is the Geraldton Foreshore where water is sourced from near the CBH grain silos; stormwater from the silos and hardstand area recharge the shallow aquifer in that area and this is where the water is then drawn from,” he said.
To achieve this, the City works closely with land developers to create new public open spaces that use water efficiently.
“The City discusses with land developers the benefits of water-wise landscaping and smart irrigation systems. Where possible, they are also encouraged to retain or restore natural bushland. Native plant species not only require very little or no irrigation, they also provide habitats for wildlife,” said Mr Melling.
“This is important work as once the development is finished the City is then responsible for maintaining the parks and if they feature exotic plants that require a lot of water and there isn’t a shallow bore available the City is forced to use scheme water to keep it green which simply isn’t sustainable over time.”