Aquadata is the public interface of Shoalhaven City Councils ESdat Online system; providing greatly enhanced community access to the results of water quality monitoring completed by the Council.
Field and Laboratory data (from ALS and NSW Health) are automatically uploaded into ESdat Online, and on being approved by a Council Manager automatically appear in Aquadata for community access. The decision was made to provide the community with actual up to date monitoring results, so that members of the community could have transparent access to the actual water quality data. Greg Howarth, the Council Project Manager, explains:
“Aquadata has been designed to improve the sharing of water quality monitoring results with the community and to assist consideration of water quality data within the catchment planning and catchment management decision making process.”
Aquadata features a map interface with water sampling locations clearly displayed on a familiar Google Maps background. Clicking on a water sampling location within the map generates tables and graphs of water quality data for that location. The tables and graphs can then be downloaded and printed.
The benefits of the new system include freeing up Council resources, previously dedicated to compiling results and responding to community requests for water quality information.
Greg Howarth, the Council Project Manager:
“ESdat Online saves Council time and resources that we can now spend serving our customers”.
Council has extended the use of ESdat Online beyond the data presented in Aquadata. Council also use ESdat Online to centralise management of lab testing data associated with the day-to-day operations of important Council infrastructure, such as water treatment facilities.
“The ability of the ESdat Online system to automatically email staff informing them that a reading is outside the expected range is a great asset in assisting rapid responses to time critical issues.”
Shoalhaven City Council received the Local Government Award for Excellence in Overall Environmental Management at the prestigious United Nations of Australia World Environment Day Awards. See this article for the part that Aquadata played.