Case Study:
Water Wise Winners
 
The aluminium industry is a significant user of water and Alcoa is setting tough targets to reduce its water use.
 
As part of Alcoa’s Water Conservation Strategy in Australia, we are focused on reducing our overall consumption of water, increasing water use efficiency and replacing high grade water sources, which are used by the broader community, with lower grade sources.
 
We’ve made great progress so far with Alcoa’s operations in the Barwon Water region of Victoria, reducing their domestic water consumption by 60 per cent since 1990.
 
Now we’ve set a tough new target for a further 70 per cent reduction by 2010 and we’re working with Barwon Water, Greening Australia and the Geelong Manufacturing Council on implementing a new water strategy to achieve it.
 
We have also supported the community in their water conservation initiatives with funding from the Alcoa Foundation.
 
In 2007 Alcoa announced its support of a comprehensive study into rural water usage which aims to reshape water saving attitudes.
 
The innovative research study is a partnership between Wannon Water, Deakin University, the Alcoa Foundation, Portland Aluminium and the Victorian Government ‘SmartWater!’ Fund. 
 
It will identify water usage behaviours in regional and rural settings, and be an invaluable tool for water authorities in Victoria and Australia-wide in developing sustainable water use strategies.
 
The $US55,000 Alcoa Foundation grant is vital support for sustainable water conservation activities in the Wannon Water region.
 
While the Wannon water region hasn’t had the same level of water scarcity that other regions in Australia have suffered, it will help to understand Australian attitudes to water in good times as well as bad.
 
The research will include in-depth interviews and surveys with both rural and regional water uses, culminating in the development and evaluation of a behaviour change strategy pilot program.
Our West Australian mining operations have also been successful, reducing total water use by 22 per cent since 2000 while also increasing waste water recycling and storm water capture.
 
In 2007 our McCoy Crusher Facility at the Huntly bauxite mine in Western Australia was awarded the Water Recycling Award by the Department of Water and the Water Corporation.
 
The McCoy facility was specifically designed to maximize water harvesting and recycling. 
 
Storm water runoff and treated wastewater are collected in a purpose built reservoir and used for haul road dust suppression.  This leading edge design was created from a range of industry best practice engineering solutions and successful innovations. To find out more about Alcoa's water management progress, go.
 




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Alcoa’s operations in Victoria are working to cut water consumption by 70 per cent by 2010 with the help of Barwon Water, Greening Australia and the Geelong Manufacturing Council.