Fears for river water quality

Kenneth Keesing, from CRREPA, stands above a large drain pipe at Shelley Park Beach. Picture: Matthew Poon d402336
Kenneth Keesing, from CRREPA, stands above a large drain pipe at Shelley Park Beach. Picture: Matthew Poon d402336

Mr Keesing, who is a member of the Canning River Residents Environment Protection Association (CREEPA) is involved with the Bull Creek Water Quality Improvement Plan and says residents need to me more aware of what they place into their drains.

The local catchment plan is focused on improving the water quality that flows into the Canning River, by reducing nutrients and non-nutrient contaminants from the catchment.

Swan River Trust River Systems manager Mark Cugley said one the major issues in the catchment was nutrient inputs such as phosphorus and nitrogen.

‘Non-nutrient contaminants including hydrocarbons and heavy metals in both sediment and water within the catchment are also a concern,’ Mr Keesing said.

‘Specific issues include fertiliser use, the impact from previous land uses, contaminated sites and farming, impact of light industry and septic tanks.

This year, CRREPA has been involved in the initial implementation of the plan.

The main aims for the project are to identify water quality issues, identify the environmental bodies and the water quality objectives required to protect them and to use cost effective management measures to maintain the values and objective.

‘Existing storm water drains discharging directly into the river are converted to ‘living drains’ or filtration swales,’ Mr Keesing said.

‘The sedges, which were planted into these, strip nutrients from the storm water and also enhance the beauty and natural habitat of the foreshore.

The plan is funded by the City of Canning and approved by the Swan River Trust.