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[SLUG] Can Open Source/ linux GRASS 5, PHP/PostgreSQL, etc. cut the crap?
- To: SLUG <slug@xxxxxxxxxxx>
- Subject: [SLUG] Can Open Source/ linux GRASS 5, PHP/PostgreSQL, etc. cut the crap?
- From: Bob Irvine <irvine.r@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Mon Oct 21 23:23:02 2002
- Reply-to: Bob.Irvine@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Good Day Sluggers
I am sort of following up some not so recent discussion about the adoption of open source 'computer' operating systems and software tools by government and particularly for skill development in schools and affordable access to information.
Can Open Source/ linux systems and information management software (e.g. GRASS 5, PHP/PostgreSQL, etc.) provide an effective and affordable platform for a low cost sanitation information and risk assessment system for local councils and communities?
For my sins (or so it seems) I work on the nsw septic safe program, and the link between sewage management and open source software involves some background reading so please, if the topic isn't of interest, quit now!
for topical news, read on
Report of an Australian Sanitation Study
The NSW Department of Local Government (Australia) recently commenced Stage 2 of its SepticSafe Program with a full scale regional trial of an on-site sewage risk assessment system (OSRAS) to be conducted in partnership with State Government agencies and 18 councils in the Hawkesbury Lower Nepean River Basin.
The purpose of the HLN_OSRAS regional pilot project is to assess and specify the extent of sanitation risks associated with the estimated 45,000 septic systems currently in use in the Hawkesbury Lower Nepean River Basin (below the main water supply impoundment for greater Sydney) so that limited community resources can be directed to the areas of highest risk for priority action.
Being a bit interested in the capability of open source systems and software I had a quick look about and found some open source tools available, but then, I am a linux novice and a sanitarian. I am not computer literate (at least I have to rely on a lot of help) I am not a GIS specialist, and I know barely nothing about vi and emacs.
But the tender brief does seem to allow an open source approach and I hope that may be of interest to some .
Is this a genuine opportunity for a public tender bid from an open source consortium? Can the austrailan open source community/ industry in partnership with independent soil scientists and alternative technology groups present a practical affordable strategy proposal and are suitably qualified people interested and available? This is a public tender process so anyone interested should know the answer some time in November.
Background to the HLN_OSRAS pilot project - off topic?
The model On-site Sewage Risk Assessment System (OSRAS) is a software neutral [i.e. open source friendly] management information system intended to help local council and community river health and drainage basin managers assess and monitor the impact of sewage effluent from private sewage and grey-water facilities. The OSRAS is intended to be used as an aid for assessing likely sewage pollution risks and for modelling community sanitary service needs. Spatially referenced natural resource management and infrastructure data are compiled in a GIS to generate standardised sewage export hazard maps for premises and 'risk of impact' estimates for effluent accumulation and concentration at identified receptor points.
The model OSRAS aims to provide the sanitation services focus required for broad scale systematic sanitation risk assessment by councils and communities and is intended to complement other catchment load measurement models and development assessment information systems as they become available. [mostly winnt systems?]
The request for tenders for a consultancy to pilot the OSRAS methodology in the Hawkesbury Nepean River Basin was published in the NSW Government Tender Announcements, Sydney Morning Herald, Monday 14th October, 2002 (RFT 0202281). The tender brief and details are available from the NSW Dept. Public Works & Services web site (tenders menu button) http://www.dpws.nsw.gov.au/Home.htm until late October, 2002.
A primary objective is to enable councils to achieve a degree of real time risk reporting (i.e. annually) about community sewage management outcomes (a bit like beachwatch). A practical, affordable approach is needed. The project is a pilot. The aim is to trial a regional council/ community access information system and generate a trial sanitation risk assessment to learn as much as possible about how to it sensitively, accurately, affordably and well. There is a low budget of $350,000 but this excludes the cost of acquiring data usage rights and some processing costs (see brief).
The project has an educational element and includes development of user guides for the pilot system and provision of advice on means to establish technical training (e.g. local government vocational courses) and means to ensure community access and public accountability.There is a Workshop for the project participants and interested tenderers on Thursday, 24th at Bankstown. Registration details are in the tender docs.
The model OSRAS is described in the On-site Sewage Risk Assessment System Handbook, DLG 2001, deposited as a publication and distributed to most Australian university libraries, and also available from the SepticSafe web site at: http://www.dlg.nsw.gov.au/dlg/dlghome/dlg_osras.asp (PDF, about 12Mb,
only available for download in parts, as yet).
Some further information about the NSW SepticSafe program, the OSRAS and the HNL_OSRAS pilot project is on the web site http://www.dlg.nsw.gov.au/dlg/dlghome/dlg_InformationIndex.asp?areaindex=SEPTIC &index=150 (This site was set up to facilitate access by remote councils with poor internet bandwidth so it can be a bit frustrating, sorry. The tender docs include a 20Mb zip file of the publications and can be accessed as a single file until October 31.)
Thanks for reading all this.
So, any debate on the question?
regards to all
more CRAP http://www.acfonline.org.au/docs/publications/rpt0027.pdf