Shell Australia refinery moves to 95% recycling

An agreement to construct a major water-recycling plant at Shell Australia’s Geelong refinery has been approved by the company and Barwon Water.

Barwon Water will own and operate the Northern Water Plant to recycle sewage and trade waste from homes and industry in northern Geelong, including the Shell refinery.

Most of the Class A recycled water produced will be used by the refinery, but the resource will also be available for community facilities, including sports fields. The plant will save 2 million m³/y of drinking water currently used by the refinery – equivalent to 5% of Geelong’s total water consumption.

Shell Geelong refinery general manager Huck Poh said, “We already recover and reuse more than a third of the water used in our processes – the Northern Water Plant is a further step towards more responsible water use. When the Northern Water Plant is turned on in 2012, 95% of the water we use will be recycled and that is a great outcome for Shell and the Geelong community.

Shell Australia will invest about Aus$ 45 million (US$ 31.6 million) in the project, with Barwon Water, the Federal Government and the State Government also contributing around Aus$ 45 million between them.