Veolia wins contract for rum distillery washwater treatment facility

CHRISTIANSTED, St. Croix, USVI, July 21, 2009 -- Diageo USVI has awarded a contract to Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies for the turnkey design, build, and start-up of the washwater treatment plant that will support its planned Captain Morgan rum distillery on St. Croix, USVI...

CHRISTIANSTED, St. Croix, USVI, July 21, 2009 -- Diageo USVI, has awarded a contract to Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies (VWS) of the United States for the turnkey design, build, and start-up of the washwater treatment plant that will support its planned Captain Morgan rum distillery on St. Croix, USVI. The washwater treatment plant will be located in the western half of the 25-acre building site at the St. Croix Renaissance Industrial Park.

In March, Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies, a recognized leader in washwater treatment, completed the preliminary engineering phase of the washwater plant. Now, in this construction phase, which launched with a ceremonial groundbreaking on May 6th, VWS, through its U.S. businesses of Biothane and N.A. Water Systems, will implement its designs and proceed with the construction of a treatment plant with capacity to process approximately 150 million gallons of washwater annually.

The VWS washwater treatment process will take by-products from the distillation process and turn them into clean water and biogas for green energy. This process enables Diageo to recycle water, provide a clean source of energy to its distillery, and create a rich fertilizer that can be used by public/private organizations. Diageo is already in talks with organizations that are interested in using the fertilizer.

The Diageo USVI rum distillery will be constructed with Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) principles. Some of the 21st century ecological and environmental controls incorporated into the design include a closed-loop water system that will eliminate the need for any washwater disposal into the nearby Caribbean Sea. The company is also incorporating organic solids reclamation and stormwater best management practices into its construction plans and its daily operation.

"Veolia was a reliable and highly-valued contractor for us in the preliminary design and engineering phase of the rum distillery project, accommodating our need to design an environmentally sound washwater treatment facility," said Dan Kirby, Vice President of Supply for Diageo USVI. "We look forward to the development and completion of our washwater facility."

"It's been a real pleasure working with the Diageo USVI Team. It's enjoyable to participate in a project with an environmentally conscientious customer, that's willing to go the extra mile to be a good neighbor, and also improve the surrounding area," stated Denise Johnston of VWS. "Diageo's approach to projects is based in collaboration. Their practices foster outstanding communication among all of the suppliers which will result in an on-time and efficient project."

The Diageo USVI distillery project is part of a public-private initiative with the USVI Government for the construction and operation of a high-capacity distillery. This 30-year commitment will provide a major economic stimulus for the entire Territory of the U.S. Virgin Islands. Once in operation in 2010, the distillery will have the capacity to distill up to 20 million proof gallons of Captain Morgan rum per year and is expected to generate an estimated $100 million in new tax revenue for the Virgin Islands Government.

During the construction phase of the project, Diageo USVI estimates that its project contractors, including VWS, will create 200-300 construction-related jobs. Once the distillery is complete, Diageo USVI will create up to 70 jobs. Diageo USVI and its contractors will post all positions with the USVI Department of Labor.

Diageo (Dee-AH-Gee-O) is the world's leading premium drinks business with an outstanding collection of beverage alcohol brands across spirits, wines and beer categories. These brands include Johnnie Walker, Guinness, Smirnoff, J&B, Baileys, Cuervo, Tanqueray, Captain Morgan, Crown Royal, Beaulieu Vineyard and Sterling Vineyards wines.

Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies is the technological subsidiary of Veolia Water and is a world leader in engineering and technological solutions in water treatment for industrial companies and municipal authorities.

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