Gold Coast Desalination Plant, Queensland
South East Queensland Desalination Plant
Veolia Water, in a joint venture with John Holland designed, built, and is now operating and maintaining the 125 million litres per day Gold Coast Desalination Plant in Queensland on behalf of Seqwater under an Alliance Agreement.
The plant helps to provide a safe, reliable, long term water supply to South East Queensland.
It was the first large scale desalination facility on Australia's eastern seaboard and has the capacity to provide drinking water to 650,000 people.
The first desalinated water was produced from the plant in November 2008. Throughout 2010, heavy rainfall filled the region's dams to full capacity. In December 2010, the Queensland Government placed the planty into 72 hour standby - with capability to return to full production within 72 hours if needed to maintain water supply or quality across the Water Grid.
The plant is capable of supplying water to the network to meet the requirements of the Queensland Water Commission.
The plant is a key part of the Queensland Government's South East Queensland Regional Water Strategy which includes the A$9 billion Water Grid. This grid enables water to be transported from surplus areas to those in shortage.
The grid includes new pipelines, dam upgrades, a major water recycling project (the Western Corridor Recycled Water Project) and the Gold Coast Desalination Plant.
Seawater is treated using reverse osmosis which pushes seawater through a membrane. Salt and any other impurities are removed, producing fresh water.
The Gold Coast Desalination Plant is among the most energy efficient in the world, with an average efficiency of 3.58kWh/m³ and dual work exchanger energy recovery devices situated at each reverse osmosis train. These recover approximately 97 per cent of the energy required to convert seawater to permeate. Renewable energy certificates are also purchased to fully offset the plant's power consumption, making the Gold Coast Desalination Plant one of the greenest desalination plants on earth.
The marine's environments around the plant's inlet and outlet structure are closely monitored to ensure both a healthy ocean environment and to meet the strict environmental licence requirements.
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To take a virtual tour of the Bundamba Advanced Water Treatment Plant and Gold Coast Desalination Plant visit: