Australian Leadership Awards Delegation 2008
Mekong Sub-Region delegates attend an ICE WaRM Professional Development Programme - July-August 2008
ICE WaRM has proudly hosted two groups of senior industry and government leaders from the four Mekong River countries for a Professional Development Programme (PDP) with the common goal of boosting their water resources management skills.
The PDP, held through July and August, comprised a series of intensive short courses, field studies, seminars and workshops.
The 45 Australian Leadership Award recipients from Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos studied issues including computer modelling of groundwater and surface water (rivers and floodplains), integrated catchment management, maintaining water quality and water re-use.
The programme focused field studies on a number of innovative projects in South Australia and upstream states of the Murray-Darling river basin.
One of the operating schemes the groups studied was at Parafield wetlands and water re-use sites in Adelaide. The unique project uses natural processes to treat urban storm water naturally through the wetlands, which are home to rare wildlife – preventing polluted storm water from flowing into the ocean and damaging the local aquatic and marine ecosystems. Some treated storm water is stored in the groundwater aquifer for later re-use during dry periods.
Through facilitated workshops, the ALA Fellows also started work on a series of action plans, applying the knowledge and skills gained in Australia to their local water resources situation. Many of the action plans remain works-in-progress and will involve ongoing co-operation with each other, and with international water resources specialists, including Australian experts.
Other highlights of the programme included field trips to the Barossa and South Para Reservoirs and to the Cox Creek Catchment in the picturesque Adelaide Hills; and, in a first for many of the delegates, an Australian BBQ at ICE WaRM’s headquarters in Adelaide to welcome them to Australia.
The Australian Leadership Awards (ALA) are funded by AusAID and are a chance for current and emerging leaders in the Asia-Pacific region to develop their skills and to gain further experience in their chosen fields. For more information see www.ausaid.gov.au/scholarships
Click here to download Channel 7 news clip from Parafield Wetlands