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Sydney Water has commenced construction on its $1.2 billion Upper South Creek Advanced Water Recycling Centre (AWRC), located in Western Sydney. 

The facility will supply wastewater services to 400,000 new dwellings in the rapidly growing Western Sydney Aerotropolis Growth Area. 

The facility, which will also service parts of the Camden, Penrith and Liverpool LGAs, will help cater for growth until 2056.

The AWRC is a significant step forward in the sustainable development of Sydney’s Western Parkland City and will be one of the southern hemisphere’s most advanced wastewater recycling facilities, offering more than 1,000 jobs during the construction phase.

The infrastructure is a landmark investment in Western Sydney and will help provide cool, blue-green spaces for the community to enjoy.

Sydney Water Managing Director, Roch Cheroux, said the facility will be a foundation for the circular economy in Western Sydney that will help deliver whole-of-community socio-economic benefits estimated to add $10 billion in value across the region.

“With Western Sydney Airport due for completion in 2026 and Liverpool fast becoming the city’s third CBD, the Upper South Creek AWRC will create greater resilience by catering for wastewater needs for decades to come,” Mr Cheroux said.

“This facility will use state-of-the-art technology to provide wastewater services and high-quality recycled water for a range of reuse applications locally.

“When operating at maximum capacity, it will treat around 70ML of wastewater each day and produce advanced-quality treated water that protects local waterways, is suitable for sustainable use in homes and businesses across western Sydney, and produce biosolid products for use in agriculture,” Mr Cheroux said.

One-hundred per cent of the biosolids produced by the AWRC will be used as fertiliser. There is also the potential to expand this to generate even more energy from food waste.

A 4MW solar array and future biogas energy will be used to power the site. The solar farm will generate approximately 8GW hours of energy per annum, or enough to power approximately 1,400 households for an entire year.

The solar array will power the facility in the early years. As energy requirements grow, a circular economy precinct featuring biogas energy will be constructed to help meet future needs.

The Upper South Creek Advanced Water Recycling plant is due to be operational in 2026.

Featured image: First sod turned at Upper South Creek Advanced Water Recycling Centre. Courtesy of Sydney Water.

Assistant Editor, Utility magazine

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