System Repair Treatment Train
The treatment train approach to improving water quality enables water to pass through multiple chambers to reduce nutrient, sediment and pesticides before exiting to the waterways. Treatment trains have a number of chambers including first flush or capture basins, a shallow zone with aquatic or semi aquatic macro-phytes and then generally another additional chamber or two. The larger chambers detain the water which is required to drop out sediments and break down pesticides. All pesticides decay over time so the longer they can be detained within a treatment train the less toxic they will be when they enter the surrounding waterways and marine environment. The Macro-phyte zones are particularly effective as they develop biofilms which adhere to the surface to the plants. Biofilms are particularly effective at absorbing nutrients and are an effective way to reduce nutrient as the water flows through the zone.
Bakers Creek Treatment Train
The Bakers Creek treatment train project on a sugarcane property adjacent to Bakers Creek property and the Racecourse sugar mill wetland restoration are two examples of the works currently being undertaken in the region. These projects improve water quality by providing multiple chambers to detain and treat the water. The project also provide additional benefits to the grower and mill by providing additional water which can be utilised for commercial purposes.
Reef Catchments has been developing and delivering treatment trains in the more developed sub catchments within the region as an effective way to reduce pollutant to the Reef.
Funded under the Australian Governments Reef Programme, the Pioneer Basin System Repair project focuses on improving water quality leaving farms in the most intensively farm area in the Great Barrier Reef Catchments, which consists of the Pioneer River, Bakers and Sandy Creek catchments.