Executive water engineer Mick Varidel told the APPEA conference that there were two different approaches to water issues, but producers should adopt a multi-faceted plan.
“There’s the single option approach, to basically come up with an answer ... but an alternative strategy based on a bit of financial theory is a portfolio solution,” he said.
“So rather than just having one shot in your gun, you’ve got a couple of different alternatives that you can look at.
“This is very important to look at the beginning of course because the cost of implementing a [water] solution is high, and there are long delivery lead times that make it very difficult to change once you’ve actually gone and built the system.”
He said to make the water program cost-effective, producers must have “all your ducks in a row”.
SKM highlighted a number of points that needed to be factored in when looking at water outlets.
These included load sharing between treatment plants, viewing treatment plant capacity as a tradeable item, installing robust treatment processes at the start, and enabling the blending of raw and treated water.