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Application of Source IMS Lake Tai – China Dave Waters

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Application of Source IMS Lake Tai – China Dave Waters. Lake Tai (or Taihu). Lake Tai (or Taihu), is the 3rd largest freshwater lake in China (southern part of Yangtze River delta). Total area of Lake Tai approx. 2,338 km 2 , average depth of 2m

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Application of Source IMS

Lake Tai – China

Dave Waters

lake tai or taihu
Lake Tai (or Taihu)

Lake Tai (or Taihu), is the 3rd largest freshwater lake in China

(southern part of Yangtze River delta).

Total area of Lake Tai approx. 2,338 km2, average depth of 2m

The lake provides water to 30 million residents.

Lake Tai has been increasingly polluted due primarily to rapid economic growth and increased population in the basin area

water crisis in lake tai
Water Crisis in Lake Tai

Large algal bloom outbreaks in Lake Tai since 1990.

The most significant algal bloom broke out in 2007 in Mei Liang Bay near the Wuxi City, and led to the " Wuxi City Water Crisis”.

Wuxi City

Yixing City

Suzhou City

Lake Tai


Huzhou City

(Google Earth)

2007 water crisis in lake tai
2007 Water Crisis in Lake Tai

- Water quality worse than Class V of the Surface Water Quality Standard (GB3838-2002).

- Tap water supply in Wuxi City had to be temporarily terminated due to the crisis.

- Led to the development of the Lake Tai Master plan 2008

  • Australian China Environmental Development

Partnership (ACEDP)

  • 5 year, $25Million Aust Gov. AusAID initiative
  • Aimed at supporting and enhancing Policy development in China
  • Working in areas of mutual interest

– focus on water resource management

aus lake tai cluster
Aus Lake Tai Cluster

AUS Cluster Lake Tai Team include:

Earth Systems

Melbourne Water

DSE Victoria

EPA Victoria

Hyder Consulting

Extension Activities:

  • Existing AUS partners +
  • DPI Victoria
  • eWater Cooperative Research Centre
  • Hunter Water Corporation
chinese lake tai cluster
Chinese Lake Tai Cluster
  • Lake Tai Basin Authority, China
  • Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, Chinese

Academy of Science (NIGLAS)

  • Environmental Research Institute, Suzhou
  • Agricultural Bureau, Suzhou
the lake tai project
The Lake Tai Project
  • Demonstration of eWater tools November 2010
  • Resulted in a 1 year project - commenced March 2011
  • Workshops China/Australia 2011
  • Base models and scenario development
  • Final meeting January 2012
source ims project objectives
  • Building capacity within the Chinese working group
  • Apply Source IMS model to a pilot area (Dongshan Peninsula)
  • Model demonstration to improve non point source nutrient management into the lake and inform policy
model development
Model Development
  • Pilot Area Dongshan Peninsula (82 km2)
  • Modelling water Quantity, Nitrogen, Phosphorus
  • 7 landuse categories of interest
  • Assessing relative contribution for each


  • Running a range of scenarios to look at management

options to reduce nutrient export to Lake Tai


Upland Trees

High Density Urban

Low Density Urban



Aquaculture Ponds

modelling challenges
Modelling challenges
  • Data access
  • Data availability
  • Replication of aquaculture pond management
  • Replication of gate closure/pumping of rainfall runoff to lake
  • Relocation of STP plant
  • Conversion of remaining 20% septics
  • Major wetland construction
  • Improved management of inputs
  • Project has provided great exposure for eWater
  • Source IMS flexibility key to success
  • Versatility to be able to model rural/urban and regulated areas and simplicity attractive features to Chinese delegation
the lake tai project1
The Lake Tai Project

Activity Objectives:

Contribute to successful environmental governance mechanisms at Municipal, Province and Basin levels.

Assist greater use of science-based planning, management and interventions to support lake and river basin management to improve lake conditions

3) Contribute to a substantial decrease in the frequency and intensity of algae blooms as a result of specific and modern IRBM, science and management technologies.