While Matraville plant is using a 50% mix of recycled water and town water in their manufacturing process, in Altona, Melbourne they are using 100% recycled water in their manufacturing process when it is available.
Melbourne has just come out of one of the driest periods in 30 years and the process of recycling water is part of a larger plan to achieve both sustainability and cost benefits.
Three years ago, the Altona Plant received funding to install a ‘heat recovery system’ under the Victorian Sustainable Energy Authority’s Business Energy Efficiency Initiative. This new energy-saving technology will help the plant to reduce greenhouse pollution by 1,600 tonnes – the equivalent of removing 370 cars from Victoria’s roads.
The heat recovery system also can recover some of the evaporated water and re-introduce it back into the process. The estimated recovery rate now is 2.5 mega liters per annum. The heat recovery system also has the potential to save up to eight percent of the site’s natural gas consumption – resulting in energy cost savings of up to $80,000.00
Potentially we could save up to 30% of our water requirements by a combination of recovered rainwater and water recovered from the dryer heat recovery system. This is about 20 mega liters a year.