The water event in October last year on Karragarra Island, saw the water supply cut for nearly two days to the islands of Karragarra, Macleay and Lamb Islands.
The line break was due to a burst pipe in the Seqwater-owned trunk main from Russell Island to Karragarra Island.
The situation brought to the attention of the islands a critical resource, about which most islanders know very little.
We sought information on our water supply from Redland City Council, which is responsible for water to the islands in association with SEQ Water.
But who does what, and how does it all work?
Islanders will be pleased to know that our water supply to the Redlands Coast comes from multiple sources, one of which is North Stradbroke Island.
It also happens to be one of the best sources of quality water, just about anywhere!
The supply to the Southern Moreton Bay Islands in particular is primarily from North Stradbroke Island.
It gets to our islands via a pipeline that crosses Canaipa Passage to Russell Island, then via smaller submarine trunk mains to each of the other islands.
The water from North Stradbroke Island is collected from Herring Lagoon, which is a perched lake, and also from bores that draw water from underground aquifers.
The water is then treated at the North Stradbroke Island water treatment plant.
This includes disinfection before being distributed to the network.
The water quality from North Stradbroke Island is very high, particularly due to the island topography and the natural filtration of the water through the sand.
The lake ecosystem is explained by the lake's location in the landscape in relation to the large regional aquifer contained within the sand mass of North Stradbroke Island.
It is interesting to note that the popular Blue Lake is a 'window' into this aquifer and, as such, receives a constant inflow of chemically stable groundwater.
In regard to the water network across Redlands Coast, Redland City Council is responsible for the distribution network that provides the water supply to individual properties and customers, both residential and commercial.
This water is carried by a series of pipelines and is metered at the boundary of each property.
Council charges the property owner as per the consumption recorded on their property’s water meter.
The quarterly charge, sent out with the Council rate notice, identifies both the Seqwater charge and Council’s distribution component.
The State Government’s bulk water authority for south-east Queensland, Seqwater, is responsible for the treatment and delivery of bulk treated water.
Seqwater owns and operates the collection sources, dams, bores etc. in south-east Queensland as well as the water treatment plants.
The water is treated to meet the Australian Drinking Water Guideline (ADWG), which covers a range of parameters for aesthetics and quality.
The treated water is then supplied to the distributor – in this case, Redland City Council – via trunk water mains.
Seqwater charges Council for the bulk water supplied per month.
• How our water system works