Rain gardens to reduce pollution in Melbourne
Researchers at IWC partner university, Monash, have developed "rain gardens" that filter Melbourne's storm water, preventing chemically-tainted urban run-off from polluting Port Phillip Bay and local streams.
With research partners, the scientists have developed rain garden biofilters through which rain run-off is channeled and filtered through soil and plants. The run-off is then collected for re-use in irrigation, or piped back into the storm water drain network.
The rain gardens mean cleaner water will trickle into Melbourne's bay - free of pollutants such as nitrogen and heavy metals.
The Director of Monash's Institute of Sustainable Water Resources, Dr Tim Fletcher, said dirty storm water was the most significant threat to the health of Port Phillip Bay.
"The government's environment strategy is to protect the Bay from nitrogen, and to reduce pollutants in the Yarra River, because their sustainability depends on that," he said.