Contract extension through 2038 builds on the nearly 20-year relationship between the city, county, the community and Veolia
The Honolulu Board of Water Supply (HBWS) is extending its partnership with Veolia Water North America – West, LLC (Veolia) through 2038. The extension, in effect on July 1, 2017, will continue to deliver value and environmental benefits to rate payers, business and industry near and around the Honouliuli Water Reclamation Facility.
The City and County of Honolulu hired Veolia in 1998 to build the reclamation plant and then operate it. The facility is designed to treat 13 million gallons of wastewater effluent to produce 12 million gallons of reclaimed water for beneficial reuse. The facility is the largest reclamation plant of its type in the Hawaiian Islands and employs state-of-the-art technology to treat secondary effluent previously discharged into the Pacific Ocean.
The processes generate two qualities of water; high-purity reverse osmosis (RO) water, which is sold to industrial users for power and petrol-refining uses at nearby Campbell Industrial Park; and R1 water, which is used for irrigation of golf courses and communal areas in nearby developments including the burgeoning city of Kapolei.
By dedicating this non-drinkable supply to industries that can use it, the community is preserving its limited potable water resources through stringent treatment and reuse of wastewater, generating a lasting benefit for rate payers, the city, the environment and a number of businesses that will have a guaranteed supply of quality water.
“The environment, our ratepayers and local business and industry have seen the benefits of our long-term relationship with Veolia,” said Barry Usagawa, Program Administrator, HBWS Water Resources Division. “This extension allows us to continue to protect valuable water resources and, at the same time, remain an environmental leader, demonstrating how creative thinking and resource management can be a win for everybody.”
The initial contract with Veolia allowed the City and County to meet the terms of the 1995 consent decree signed with the U.S. EPA, spread construction and mobilization costs out over the life of the agreement, and saved an estimated $35 million. The industrial customers benefit from considerable cost savings using reclaimed water by lowering operating costs of chemicals and labor.
“This contract renewal reaffirms our mission as an environmental services provider and steward of valuable natural resources and we’re pleased to continue this successful partnership with the City and County,” said John Gibson, President and COO of Veolia’s Municipal & Commercial Business. “Our team and our company remain committed every day to the circular economy in support of Honolulu’s efforts to promote the use, reuse and repurposing of water and energy, and the generation of additional value.”The circular economy is based on designing out waste and reusing and recycling everything produced. In Honolulu, this critical infrastructure and forward thinking allows the surrounding community to grow without lacking in potable water and endure potential shortages brought on by changing climates. The HWRF has been recognized by the WateReuse Association through its 2003 award for Outstanding Contribution to Sustainable Water Use, and also by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, which honored the project with its 2002 Outstanding Achievement Award.