Beca showcases renewable energy, community water solutions and dairy processing innovations at international water conference

Beca technical experts are once again sharing their knowledge at the upcoming Ozwater'16 Conference (10-12 May in Melbourne) - Australia's highly regarded annual international water conference run by the Australian Water Association. They will discuss important topics currently facing the water industry and a summary of each paper is outlined below.

'Opportunities for renewable energy in the Australian water sector - the water energy nexus': Paul Collier (Principal - Business Advisory)

In 2015, Beca was commissioned by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) to undertake a study to investigate the opportunities and barriers to the use of renewable energy in the Australian water sector, in order to identify areas where ARENA may be able to have the most impact on improving the use of renewable energy within the water sector. As a result of the investigation process, four proposed priority areas were recommended to provide the framework for informing ARENA's investment and knowledge sharing activities within the Australian water sector, including:

  • Renewables in water pumping and irrigation
  • Bioenergy in wastewater treatment
  • Storage technologies and demand management
  • Water specific renewables including mini-hydro, floating solar and small-scale renewable desalination.

Details: Starting at 1.15pm, Tuesday, 10 May - Stream 4: Liveable and sustainable cities of the future - 'Renewable Energy'.

'Success factors for implementing small community water supplies in the far north of New Zealand': Francesca Nicklin (Mechanical Engineer - Water)

Providing safe drinking water to small communities is regarded as a challenge all over the world. This paper looks at the issues experienced by small communities in the Far North of New Zealand and how sustainable solutions were found. Several factors affect the success of a water supply scheme for a small rural community: strong community support and engagement; acknowledging, empowering and working with the communities' cultural drivers and aspirations; a good quality source water that can be treated with simple and affordable technology; simple and robust systems that are within the financial and technical capabilities available in the local communities; and financial support and assistance from central and/or local government towards capital and operational costs.

Details: Starting at 1.15pm, Wednesday, 11 May - Stream 4: Water for rural, remote and regional communities - 'Rural and Remote Success Stories'.

'Innovations in water reuse and recycling in dairy processing': Rachael Shaw (Senior Associate - Process Engineering) co-presenting with Tom Bamford (Fonterra)

The Fonterra Pahiatua Milk Processing Factory was expanded in 2015 to triple production of milk powder. The expansion included a third new dryer (P3) capable of processing approximately 2.5 million litres of milk per day, a new gas fired boiler, expanded dry store, expanded milk reception, new offsite waste water treatment plant with associated storage pond, and expanded farm irrigation and farm management regime. This paper addresses some of the innovations implemented by Fonterra to improve sustainability and to minimise the environmental effects of the new expanded facility.

Details: Starting at 4:00pm, Wednesday, 11 May - Stream 4: Sustainable industries - 'Innovation, Sustainability and Efficiency'.

For more information visit www.ozwater.org.