The WA State Government is securing Perth’s groundwater supply for decades to come with the first turn of the sod on the city’s new advanced water recycling plant.

More than 18,000 cubic metres of earth will be moved, 1,000 cubic metres of concrete poured, 70 kilometres of cabling pulled, and 15 kilometres of pipe laid to construct the State Government’s first $124.6 million full-scale Groundwater Replenishment Scheme.

State Water Minister, Mia Davies, turned the sod at the Craigie site earmarked for the scheme’s 14 billion litre per year advanced water recycling plant.

“It’s fitting that work starts this week during National Water Week to construct the plant and mobilise the first rig to drill new monitoring and recharge bores into the Leederville Aquifer at the Craigie site,” Ms Davies said.

National Water Week is an annual event to build awareness and understanding of water issues across the country.

“Once complete, the scheme will recycle water, treat it to drinking water standards, and recharge it back into existing groundwater supplies,” she said.

At its peak, there will be about 180 construction jobs on site.  Once complete, the plant will require 13 staff in operations, maintenance, and support.

The Minister said the plant was scheduled for completion in late 2016 and could be expanded to a capacity of 28 billion litres over several years as demand increased.

Another major part of the new scheme, a 754 metre deep recharge bore into the Yarragadee Aquifer, was completed last month at the Craigie site.  This will recharge a quarter of the recycled water produced by the scheme each year.

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