In light of the ongoing tribulations concerning water in South Africa, it seemed fitting to hold an event regarding water sensitive design as it pertains to the landscape.
On the 29th of May, ILASA held a Water Sensitive Design seminar was at the University of Pretoria. The presentations provided the attendees with varied and vital insight of water sensitive strategies, which could be considered or adopted in future decision making.
The first speaker Meagan Donnelly from Rand Water focused on grey water and its role in water conservation. Grey water is one of many topics her and her team at Water Wise and Research at Rand Water undertake – research which drives and informs much of the educational work done by Water Wise. The presentation provided important information to landscape architects on the benefits and applications of grey water in landscapes.
Leslie Hoy, Manager of Environmental Management Services at Rand Water, followed with a presentation which touched on his current PhD studies focusing on the topic of “Modelling Landscape Plant Water Use in South Africa.” Leslie’s presentation provided valuable information on landscape water use and planting. His research will culminate into an amenity landscape water use model for South Africa – taking into consideration design, environmental, climatic, edaphic and management factors. This model will also include a useful plant database – the prospect of which was met with great enthusiasm and sure to be very beneficial to built environment professionals in future.
Finally, Sheldon Hutchison from Controlled Irrigation provided a compact and informative presentation explaining different irrigation systems and their effectiveness, before discussing water sensitive irrigation approaches. Because of environmental pressures, the irrigation market is ever-adapting – Sheldon provided awareness into the latest irrigation technologies that not only save water but also money in the long term.
ILASA would like to thank the speakers for taking the time and effort to share their indispensable knowledge and expertise on the complex topic of sensitive water use in the landscape.
This occasion was a great opportunity for built environment professionals to be conscious of the developing issue of water and the many ways it can be used sustainably.