Gold Coast desalination plant producing water again

The major phase of final works at the Tugun desalination plant on Queensland’s Gold Coast in Australia has been completed, the minister for infrastructure and planning, Stirling Hinchliffe, announced on 10 September 2010.

Water production ceased temporarily on 4 June 2010 to allow for final works prior to finalisation and handover in the second half of 2010, said a release from the minister’s department. Finalisation of final works and handover is expected in coming weeks.

The plant originally shut down in April 2009, soon after its opening, for rectification of a number of defects that arose during commissioning, including corrosion and excessive vibration.

“The major phase of final works is complete, the Tugun Desalination Plant is again producing water and the large works platform visible from shore is scheduled to depart on Monday,” Hinchliffe said.

“These works will now be thoroughly tested to ensure all aspects of construction meet the Government’s strict guidelines before the plant is formally accepted from the constructor,” the minister added. “The State Government will not accept the plant until all contractual requirements are met, but finalisation and handover are expected in coming weeks.”

Since February 2009, the 125,000 m³/d Tugun Desalination Plant has produced and distributed more than 27 million m³ of drinking water to the South East Queensland Water Grid. The Aus$ 1.2 billion (US$1.11 billion) project was delivered by SureSmart Water (government owner), Veolia Water (process design and operation), John Holland (construction), Sinclair Knight Merz (desalination plant and marine intake/diffuser engineering) and Cardno (networks engineering), under an alliance contract arrangement.