wastewater plant

Global water management company Veolia has secured a EUR42.5m (US$48m) deal with Swedish utility Borås Energi och Miljö (BEM) for a wastewater to energy project.The contract was secured through the company’s subsidiaries VA-Ingenjorerna and Kruger and is expected to be completed by November 2018.

The plant will be co-located with the utility’s bio gas power plant at the Energy and Environmental Center in the Swedish city of Boras.

The co-location of the two plants will allow a cost effective recycling of the sludge produced from the water treatment plant into electricity.

The project falls under BEM’s plans to convert energy from the city’s waste streams into electricity for grid efficiency at the same time reducing carbon emissions in an energy efficient manner.

The plant will therefore be equipped with an energy management solution developed by Canadian based, water management software provider, Star Utilities to monitor and manage energy consumption of the plant in a bid to reduce operation costs.

In a combined statement, the companies said the energy management platform which is based on online surveys will also allow flexibility of the plant enabling it to adapt to changing conditions caused by climate variations.

The project forms part of a long-term collaboration between the two companies which included the construction of a meter tank to store the heat produced by a biomass plant during periods of low consumption and use it to cover peak demand.

By smoothing peak consumption, Veolia’s solution reduces the need to use fossil fuels and the city's carbon footprint.

Funding of wastewater management projects

Meanwhile in the UK, United Utilities secured GBP500m in funding from the European Investment Bank to support investments toward development of the region’s water infrastructure.

The 18 year loan will fund the upgrade of water and wastewater networks under the utilities’ GBP3.5bn capital investment programme for the 2015 to 2020 regulatory period.

In a press statement, Russ Houlden, chief financial officer at United Utilities said the funding is a huge contribution towards the company’s plans to benefit customers, the environment and to improve firm’s ability to cope with climate change. [EIB ups financial backing for smart water projects]

"We aim to do this at the lowest sustainable cost possible in order to keep bills down,” added Houlden.

The EIB has for the past 12 years provided the utilities organisation with GBP2.25bn in funding directed to projects such as the completion of a GBP200m programme for the extension of the Liverpool wastewater treatment plant.

United Utilities will receive GBP250m  this year, with the remaining funds to be received as the programme progresses.

Jonathan Taylor, vice president of the EIB reiterated that the bank will continue engagement with the utility, which is currently serving 7,2 million domestic and business customers, to ensure that water infrastructure can cope with the UK's growing population and business sector.