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Water Reuse Project of the Year

For the project, delivered during 2014, that represents the most significant advancement in terms of water reuse.

Silicon Valley AWTP, USA

What is it?

The largest advanced water treatment project in Northern California, the Silicon Valley Advanced Water Purification Center (SVAWPC) uses microfiltration, reverse osmosis and ultraviolet disinfection to clean secondary treated municipal wastewater to stringent reuse standards.

Who is responsible?

Black & Veatch provided design services, construction support and start-up services. Doosan Hydro supplied the membrane system, using CSM membranes. Xylem’s Wedeco division furnished the UV system. J.R. Filanc was the general construction contractor. The project was a collaborative effort between the Santa Clara Valley Water District (SCVWD) and the City of San Jose, California.

What makes it special?

The plant’s initial water treatment capacity of 8MGD (30,283m3/d) is just the beginning, as a sea change in water management gets underway in the San Francisco Bay area. As the drought continues unabated across California, Silicon Valley is harnessing its technical prowess to reduce its dependence on imported water from the Sacramento/San Joaquin Delta, which depends on fast-receding mountain glaciers. The SCVWD intends to expand Santa Clara County’s use of recycled water from 5% of total demand to 10% by 2025.

Much of the treatment plant’s importance stems from the precedent it sets. Initially the clean effluent will be blended with recycled water from other sources and used for irrigating crops, watering golf courses and parks, and for industrial uses, including cooling towers. With potable reuse on the cards in the long term, the plant is designed to be a key component in the fight to overcome historical ‘toilet-to-tap’ fears.


By reducing its reliance on the energy-intensive process of importing water over vast distances, SCVWD is reducing both its water and its carbon footprint. As the first wastewater reuse facility in the area, it also greatly reduces effluent discharge into the waters of San Francisco Bay.


Kooragang Industrial Water Scheme, Australia

What is it?

A groundbreaking wastewater recycling scheme featuring a 9,000m3/d advanced water treatment plant which polishes treated municipal wastewater from the Shortland wastewater treatment plant and supplies the clean water via an 8km pipeline to industrial users on Kooragang Island.

Who is responsible?

The Hunter Treatment Alliance – a partnership involving CH2M Hill, Lend Lease (formerly Abigroup) and Hunter Water Corporation – designed and built the A$40 million plant for Hunter Water, with the help of A$4.2 million from the government’s Water for the Future programme. Veolia will operate the facility going forward. Pall and Hydranautics respectively provided the MF and RO membranes.

What makes it special?

The effect of this scheme has been truly transformational for lead offtaker Orica. The chemicals manufacturer, which had been Hunter Water’s most prolific consumer of drinking water, helped secure the financial viability of the project by committing to a long-term offtake agreement in advance. Through the use of recycled water it has boosted its sustainability profile, moving it from the largest consumer in the region to the 19th-largest overnight.

With 8% of all sewage processed in the Hunter Valley now being cleaned and sold on, the region is rapidly unlocking long-untapped revenue streams. Demand for the reused water is high across the commercial spectrum, with power stations, dairy farms and golf courses all competing for the new water source. Kooragang is a taste of things to come in New South Wales.


Australia’s commitment to driving sustainability remains unmatched. Even as it champions the value inherent in wastewater, Hunter Water has also kept its eye on the environmental impact, planting 300,000 native trees to ensure the new infrastructure offsets its carbon footprint.

The Global Water Awards 2018 is proudly sponsored by:

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