The council-owned water services company, Wellington Water, and Veolia have signed a 10 year, $17 million per year contract to operate and maintain the four wastewater treatment plants that serve metropolitan Wellington.
Wellington Water's chief executive Colin Crampton said the contract marked the start of a new and exciting focus on managing wastewater for Wellingtonians.
"Veolia already has a long history of involvement in the region, having operated Wellington City’s Moa Point and Western wastewater treatment plants since 2004.
"We'll progressively be bringing all four treatment plants under one contract. This will not only provide better value for the region, but increase opportunities for improved services in the future. We need to start thinking of wastewater treatment by-products as a resource, and Veolia is a leading company in this area."
Alexandre Lagny, General Manager - New Zealand for Veolia, said he was delighted Veolia would be extending its commitment to the Wellington region and to delivering better environmental outcomes.
Mr Lagny stated, “Veolia operates approximately 3,000 wastewater treatment plants globally and we look forward to bringing our international expertise in this area to Wellington. Wastewater treatment is actually the area where the greatest technological innovation is taking place, when it comes to three waters management.”
Mr Lagny also affirmed Veolia's commitment to engaging with the communities it works in, and in particular mana whenua, as it takes up the operational responsibilities for the four plants. This process will begin with the Porirua Treatment plant, and a ceremony with Ngati Toa, in early July.
Moa Point and the Western treatment plant are already under Veolia management, and the remaining plant, in Seaview, Lower Hutt, will transition in June 2020.
The population of Wellington, Lower Hutt, Upper Hutt and Porirua combined produce about 165 million litres of wastewater every day. This water is treated at one of four plants, two in Wellington, one in Porirua and one in Lower Hutt, before being returned to the environment.
Veolia provides water, waste and energy management services to more than one million people in New Zealand, and employs over 300 people across the country.