This Committee is providing expert advice on recreational water quality. 

The NHMRC Recreational Water Quality Advisory Committee (RWQAC) provides expert advice to NHMRC on public health issues related to recreational water quality.

The primary role of RWQAC is to review and update the Guidelines for Managing Risks in Recreational Water.  Other activities in RWQAC’s Work plan are outlined below.  

RWQAC members provide expertise in the fields of water quality risk assessment and management, microbiology, toxicology, aquatic ecotoxicology, environmental and public health microbiology in wastewater treatment, environmental epidemiology and science, and river health. 

RWQAC members are members of professional networks and consult within and outside these networks to provide expert advice on recreational water quality issues nationally and internationally.

RWQAC convenes working groups to focus on targeted work plan activities and may source additional experts where appropriate.  

Terms of Reference

The NHMRC’s Guidelines for Managing Risks in Recreational Water (the Guidelines) provide a nationally consistent best practice approach for managing recreational water quality. The Guidelines were released in 2006 and last amended in 2008, and will be revised with oversight of the Recreational Water Quality Advisory Committee (the Committee). 

Recreational water quality is an important issue requiring a specialist committee to provide technical advice and expertise to NHMRC. 

The Committee will:

  1. Develop a risk management framework for recreational water for inclusion in the Guidelines
  2. Oversee and provide expert advice on the evidence evaluation (reviews) to inform the updating of the Guidelines.
  3. Provide rapid scientific and technical advice to the CEO of the NHMRC on current and emerging health issues relating to recreational water quality in Australia, as required.

In consultation with NHMRC, the Committee may source expertise from outside the Committee to conduct its activities, if required.

The Committee will report to Council of NHMRC.  Appointments to the Committee commence on 27 September 2018 and conclude on 31 August 2021.

RWQAC Members 

Chair,
Professor
Stuart
Khan

From the Water Research Centre, University of New South Wales. Areas of expertise: Trace chemical contaminants in water; Risk assessment and risk management.

Dr
Ben
van den Akker

A research wastewater scientist at SA Water and serves as Adjunct Lecturer in the School of the Environment at Flinders University as well as in the School of Chemical Engineering at Adelaide University. Expertise in Environmental and public health microbiology relating to wastewater treatment and reuse. 

Dr
Meredith
Campey

Manager Beachwatch Programs Office of Environment & Heritage. Expertise in environmental impact assessments, environmental science advice/consultancy. 

Dr
Christine
Cowie

Environmental epidemiologist and Senior Research Fellow with the UNSW South West Sydney Clinical School and the Centre for Air Quality and Health Research and Evaluation (CAR). Expertise in Environmental epidemiology (former Head of NSW Health water unit). 

Dr
Dan
Deere

Independent consultant from Water Futures, The University of New South Wales. Expertise in water quality and risk management; Data analysis, interpretation and modelling; Auditor.

Ms
Sarah
Holland-Clift

Former group coordinator at Parramatta River Catchment. Expertise in environmental consultancy program coordination, weed management, carbon and emissions in agriculture & river health. 

A/Professor
Andrew
Humpage

Previous position: senior scientist (chemical contamination) customer value & water quality research group, Australian Water Quality Centre, SA Water Corporation. Expertise in toxicology, chemical contaminants of drinking water and recycled waters. 

Dr
Greg
Jackson

Director, Water Unit, Prevention Division, Department of Health, Queensland. Expertise in regulation. 

Dr
Muriel
Lepesteur-Thompson

Senior Health Risk Advisor - Microbial at the Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA). Expertise in environmental management, risk management and quality management systems. 

Dr
Richard
Lugg

Dr Richard Lugg was a public health physician with the Department of Health WA and is the long-term chairman of the Advisory Committee for the Purity of Water. Expertise as a public health physician. 

A/Professor
Susan
Petterson

Director of Water and Health Pty Ltd. Expertise in quantitative microbial risk assessment specialist and risk assessment software tool development. 

Ms
Rachael
Poon

Senior Scientist, Water Unit Health Protection Branch | Department of Health & Human Services. Expertise in regulation. 

A/Professor
Anne
Roiko

Associate Professor & Discipline Lead in Environmental Health, School of Medicine, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia and Researcher with The Hopkins Centre & the Cities Research Institute. 

Dr
Jenny
Stauber

Chief Research Scientist, CSIRO Land and Water, Lucas Heights. Expertise in aquatic ecotoxicology and human toxicology. 

Dr
Cameron
Veal

Technical Coordinator - Catchment Water Quality. Expertise in evaluating the application of microbial source tracking with quantitative microbial risk assessment to characterise health risks in recreational water. 

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