Drinking water quality in regional Hunter New England, New South Wales, Australia, 2001-2015

Jaravani, Fidelis Godfrey, Butler, Michelle, Byleveld, Paul, Durrheim, David N., Massey, Peter D., Collins, Julie, Judd, Jenni A., and Oelgemöller, Michael (2020) Drinking water quality in regional Hunter New England, New South Wales, Australia, 2001-2015. Australasian Journal of Water Resources, 24 (1). pp. 73-83.

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Abstract

The objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of drinking water quality verification monitoring as a means of improving preventive measures on drinking water quality management in regional New South Wales (NSW), Australia. Water sampling and E. coli detection data were obtained from the NSW Drinking Water Database. Statistical analysis was performed using Incidence Rate Ratios to compare the relationship between the proportion of samples collected to the tests allocated based on population served (sampling adequacy), E. coli detection and the relationship between sampling adequacy and E. coli detections over time. Sampling adequacy and E. coli detections significantly improved during the study period. Sampling adequacy was significantly lower in smaller populations (IRR = 0.83, p = 0.036). E. coli detections were significantly increased in smaller communities (IRR = 4.3, p = 0.01) and in summer (IRR = 2.7, p = < 0.001). There was a strong inverse correlation between improved sampling adequacy and decreased E. coli detections (Spearman’s rho = −0.821; p < 0.0001). This research has highlighted the value of continued assistance to water utilities in the implementation of drinking water management systems to improve drinking water safety.

Item ID: 63729
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2204-227X
Keywords: drinking water quality, drinking water monitoring, sampling adequacy
Copyright Information: © 2020 Engineers Australia
Date Deposited: 07 Jul 2020 02:19
FoR Codes: 03 CHEMICAL SCIENCES > 0305 Organic Chemistry > 030505 Physical Organic Chemistry @ 50%
03 CHEMICAL SCIENCES > 0305 Organic Chemistry > 030599 Organic Chemistry not elsewhere classified @ 50%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970103 Expanding Knowledge in the Chemical Sciences @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9607 Environmental Policy, Legislation and Standards > 960706 Rural Water Policy @ 25%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9609 Land and Water Management > 960907 Forest and Woodlands Water Management @ 25%
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