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New recycled water whets appetite of large businesses in Alice Springs – 1 March 2013

Large businesses and institutions south of Heavitree Gap in Alice Springs will soon be taking advantage of recycled water at their properties.

The Alice Water Smart Reuse Project aims to reduce consumption of potable (drinking) water by replacing it with recycled water for horticultural and irrigation purposes.

Les Seddon, Alice Water Smart Project Manager says the upgrades will save around 220 million litres of potable water per year, equivalent to 100 Olympic sized swimming pools.

“The project will add treatment processes at the Alice Springs wastewater treatment plant to improve the quality and quantity of recycled water, as well as a new recycled water storage tank.”

“We’re currently expanding the recycled water pipe network by 3.5km between Heavitree Gap and the Kilgariff subdivision along the South Stuart Highway, and across John Blakeman Bridge to Palm Circuit, to deliver the treated water direct to new recycled water users.”

“There is considerable potential demand for the recycled water for irrigation use and Power and Water Corporation is in discussions with businesses and institutions south of Heavitree Gap who currently uses large volumes of potable water for irrigation.”

“Participation in the scheme is voluntary and Alice Water Smart will be helping with connections and management of the use of the recycled water.” 

“The recycled water will be significantly cheaper than potable water ensuring it is a ‘no brainer’ cost wise.”

Brendan Heenan, owner of MacDonnell Range Caravan Park on Palm Circuit said the initiative will go a long way to Alice Springs becoming a water smart town.

“Having the option to access cheaper water for irrigation would substantially reduce our water bills and allow us to maintain an attractive Park for visitors, without the need to use drinkable water.”

New flocculation, filtration and disinfection systems are being added to existing treatment facilities to provide a better quality recycled water product.

“The filters will act like one of those water filters on your kitchen tap, only on a much bigger scale”, says Les Seddon.


“Effluent will be dosed with chemicals to bind particles together, then bubbles are inserted to float ‘clumps’ to the surface of the Dissolved Air Flotation tank before being scraped off. The water will then pass through special sand in the new filters to remove any remaining solids, and at the end of the process there is an extra level of treatment with UV disinfection lamps.”

After an extensive validation period to test the recycled water, new users will start to receive recycled water towards the end of 2013.

Alice Water Smart is supported by the Australian Government Water for the Future Initiative.


For further information contact Laurelle Halford from Creative Territory on 0417 222 211 or