BoM makes water data flow freely

New data format self-validates, blocks incomplete forms

The Bureau of Metrology has developed a new data standard which promises to eliminate the need to clean up hundreds of non-compliant forms on available water resources.

The Bureau collects data from local councils and state government bodies into a central repository to give clearer information on the water resources. The format specifies a standard encoding for information about groundwater observations, transfers of water between storages, observation sites and samples, water quality, channel profiles and time-series streamflow observations, as well as conversion tables.

Added functionality prevents organisations from submitting forms with missing or invalid data.

Bureau of Meteorology water data services assistant director, Tony Boston, said some commercial applications have embedded the Water Data Transfer Format (WDTF).

“The web-based WDTF has been developed to allow data providers to efficiently deliver water observations data to the bureau in a format that is more easily loaded into the Australian Water Resources Information System,” Boston said.

“These tools will help streamline water data delivery by organisations, while providing the assurance and confidence that their data delivery solution is commercially available and supported by the water IT industry.”

The format was developed last July in conjunction with the CSIRO. A new version release will be released in July this year.

The bureau is also developing a public website of centralise information on 250 water storage sites, including daily updates on important water supply systems. It will also compare national volumes of water and information on drainage and supply systems.

Separately, an $80 million Federal Government grant under the Modernisation and Extension of Hydrologic Monitoring Systems Program has entered the fourth round of funding to modernise and extend water monitoring systems for water storage holders. The program is designed to improve the accuracy and transfer of real-time data to the bureau website.

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