Adelaide first water at end of July, says minister

The intake and outfall tunnels for Adelaide’s Aus$ 1.83 billion (US$ 2 billion) seawater desalination plant in Australia have been completed and first water is expected at the end of July.

South Australia’s minister for water Paul Caica inspected the completed underground tunnel shafts on 21 April 2011 before they were due to be flooded.

Once the tunnel system is commissioned, the intake will be able to draw raw seawater from 1.4 km offshore into the plant’s pretreatment area before it runs through the reverse-osmosis (RO) process. Following the treatment process, a 1 km outfall tunnel will then disperse the brine to sea in line with SA Water and AdelaideAqua’s environmental management program.

“We are advised the desalination plant is on track to produce first water by the end of July and overall completion of the 100,000 m³/d plant by the end of 2012,” said Caica, who also marked the final installation phase of the RO rack that will be desalinating the first water from the plant.