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Water Corporation powers up its solar capabilities

Water Corporation is taking steps to reduce the energy it consumes while pumping water and wastewater across 2.6 million square kilometres of Western Australia (WA).

The utility will install solar panels at nine sites over the next few months, including offices, workshops and depots. The panels will be able to generate up to 50% of the total power required to run each site.

It is expected the shift to solar will reduce Water Corporation’s annual emissions by 450 tonnes.

WA Water Minister Dave Kelly said water utilities must lead by example when it comes to reducing greenhouse gas emissions that accelerate climate change.

“What’s important is that we don’t wait, but take every opportunity now to reduce energy use and greenhouse gases, in the context of rapid climate change,” Kelly said.

"Adopting new technology and applying it in the field allows us to learn what works best and make critical efficiency improvements.”

Water Corporation has also started construction on a renewable energy generator at its Beenyup Wastewater Treatment Plant in Craigie.

The generator will use biogas to produce renewable energy to supply the Stage 2 Advanced Water Recycling Plant, which is part of Water Corporation’s groundwater replenishment scheme.

“Water Corporation’s adoption of solar and other green technologies will accelerate in the years ahead, particularly as technology improves and costs come down,” Kelly said.

Melbourne Water is also focusing on solar power as part of its commitment to become carbon neutral by 2030, while Wannon Water installed a large-scale solar power system at its Hamilton Water Treatment Plant in November 2017.

Hear more about energy management at Ozwater’19 with a dedicated session on Thursday, 9 May. View the program here.