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History of Melbourne's water supply system
History of Melbourne's water supply system
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Melbourne: Department of Mines, Victoria, 1975.
Physical Description:
4p. : 8 appendices, 1 document.
Geological Survey of Victoria Unpublished Report 1975/77
General Note:
(Reference Abstract -- Abstract ) Melbourne was first settled in 1835, some 47 years after Sydney. Melbourne's location has several major geographical advantages, one of which, easy access from and excellent harbour. Northwards through the Great Dividing Range renders it far more suitable than Sydney to be the major city of Australia. Indeed if Port Phillip Bay had been discovered by Cook and the first settlement placed there, it is likely that there would have been only one state on the eastern coast of Australia instead of three. Another major geographic advantage of Melbourne is location on the Southern Western edge of the Victorian Alpine region one of the few parts of Australia with a net water surplus and with perennial streams fed in winter by rain on the lower slopes and in summer by melting snow from the tops. However in common with the rest of this very arid continent summer temperatures can be very high. There can also be a long period in summer without adequate rain. Also the Victorian Alps are not above the permanent snowline and do not necessarily get snow every year. There is therefore considerable fluctuation in the flows of the streams and it is necessary to provide a much larger volume of water storage per person than in countries such as Great Britain. From the time of settlement in 1835 Melbourne has grown to a present population of 2.7 million with major growth taking place at two periods, the first in 1861-65 owing to the gold rush and the second from 1948 to 1970 owing to the post war immigration policy.

(Appendix Contents -- Appendix Content ) 1. Historical events water supply sewerage and planning tabulated (from MMBW Diary) 2. Mr Fitzgibbon Father of the Board (from living city 1974/16) 3. Antidrought insurance policy (from living city) 4. Water future altematives (from Living City 1974/15) 5. The development of Melbourne's water supply system (from Report on environmental study into Thomson River and associated works.) 6. Rates for 1975-76 (from MMBW newsletter June 20 1975) 7. Analyses of accounts to 30th June 1969 8. James Blackburn (Living City 1973/14)