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Interwaste launches R100m leachate, effluent treatment plant in Delmas

Interwaste's new leachate and effluent treatment plant

Interwaste's new leachate and effluent treatment plant

Photo by Interwaste

10th April 2024

By: Sabrina Jardim

Creamer Media Online Writer


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Waste management company Interwaste on April 10 launched its R100-million leachate and effluent treatment plant in Delmas, Mpumalanga.

The company says the plant is the first of its kind in South Africa, noting that it marks a leap forward in environmental stewardship and resource recovery.

The plant also provides an opportunity to actively drive innovative ways to support South Africa’s water conservation requirements, as well as address the water shortages facing the country, the company adds.

With this in mind, Interwaste CEO Jason McNeil said at the launch event that, given the water shortages being experienced in the country, alternative solutions for water reticulation, water recovery and water recycling, based on circular economy initiatives, were sorely needed.

The company says the leachate and effluent treatment plant represents a paradigm shift in the treatment and processing of various liquid waste streams and is designed to accept and treat various effluent waste across two categories.

These are leachate produced by Interwaste’s own facilities or other waste disposal facilities, and liquid waste streams from various industries such as manufacturing, mining, oil and gas.

“On one hand, we identified that there was a gap in terms of leachate management solutions in the country, but we also wanted to be fully autonomous in terms of managing our own leachate because from our side, this is our commitment to demonstrate that we only operate waste management facilities in a sustainable way and having . . . an efficient and sustainable solution for leachate [is part of that] purpose.

“On the other hand, we also wanted to address some of the needs and requirements from our clients, who are also looking for efficient liquid waste treatment solutions for the waste that they are generating,” Interwaste waste treatment facilities head Antoine Deffay pointed out.

The plant boasts advanced technologies that treat these waste streams – 43-million litres of effluent a year – and also recovers 80% to 90% as clean, reusable water.

The company says the clean water produced by the plant exceeds the Department of Water and Sanitation’s safe discharge limits and will produce about 36-million litres of clean water a year.

“A lot of what's happening in the waste management industry [involves new] regulations being introduced, not only in South Africa, but across the globe. These regulations are being implemented to address problems which weren't considered problems historically and, as a result, we need to develop new solutions,” said McNeil.

The Interwaste leachate and effluent treatment plant employs a multi-stage treatment process that ensures the efficient removal of contaminants while maximising water recovery.

By using cutting-edge technologies and adhering to stringent quality standards, the company says the plant sets a new benchmark for environmentally responsible waste treatment.

Key features of the Interwaste leachate and effluent treatment plant include flexibility to treat and process a range of liquid waste types, including leachate.

Additionally, bespoke pre-treatment processes which balance pH levels and remove elements such as suspended solids, pollutants and oils to ensure the optimal blend is created, enabling the facility to operate within safe conditions, minimising risk and ensuring maximum output.

Other features include refined concentration methods that separate salts from water, advanced filtration systems to remove remaining constituents from the water and continuous monitoring and control systems to ensure optimal performance and compliance with regulatory standards.

The treatment plant is also designed with sustainability in mind.

The company says minimal waste generation and responsible chemical use are integral aspects of its operation, further underscoring Interwaste's commitment to environmental stewardship and reaffirming its position as a leader in innovative waste management solutions.

“The effluent treatment plant facility is our commitment to ensure and to develop . . . the circular economy solutions that contribute positively to our environments, and also to our natural resources, and in this case, water.

“Finally, the effluent treatment plant solutions and benefits are also aligned with the group strategies to promote and to develop sustainability through the circular economy, the reduction of carbon emissions, reduction of water usage and the promotion of biodiversity, which is at the heart of the Séché group,” said Interwaste plant manager Moipone Maseko.

Interwaste is a subsidiary of the Séché Environment Group.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter



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