Brisbane Water will start a $35 million upgrade at its Wynnum Wastewater Plant to pipe the recycled supply to the city’s second-largest water consumer.
The project will enable Caltex to reduce consumption of water from Wivenhoe Dam by 4.5 megalitres a day, which amounts to 85% of the refinery’s total water consumption. The recycled water will be used in the refinery’s cooling towers and boilers.
Brisbane Mayor Campbell Newman said supplying Class A+ water to Caltex required building a micro-filtration and reverse osmosis plant, and the project would also reduce the amount of treated wastewater discharged into Moreton Bay.
“This project will replace the use of drinking water with recycled A+ water for the Caltex Petroleum refinery,” he said.
Brisbane City Council will contribute $23.2 million towards the project and the State Government another $11.7 million, with an additional $4 million to come out of Caltex’s pocket to install delivery pipeline control and chemical dousing systems at the refinery.
Deputy Premier Anna Bligh said with Level 5 water restrictions now in effect throughout southeast Queensland, it was pleasing to see industry embrace the large-scale use of recycled water.
“I would hope to see other big business follow the lead of Caltex and investigate potential options for reducing their reliance on our drinking water supplies,” she said.
“The ongoing drought has placed a huge burden on the state’s water supplies and we cannot afford to continue the large-scale use of our drinking water for industrial purposes.”
Brisbane City Council has contracted the Brisbane Water Enviro Alliance (BWEA) to carry out the work.