Next stage in Sustainable Leachate Treatment Strategy Underway

Last year, we launched our first Sustainable Leachate Wetland Treatment System.

“What’s that?” I can hear you ask; basically in the simplest terms it is a wetland that cleans waste water (leachate).

To better understand what it looks like and how it works, check out this video that shows you this first wetland system:

Thanks to its success, as it is treating leachate to a very high quality, the regulator has a greater level of confidence and has permitted Sydney Olympic Park Authority to move forward with our next stage in our Sustainable Leachate Treatment Strategy.

This next stage is the construction of another Sustainable Leachate Treatment Wetland. It is currently being built north of Boundary Creek, near Tom Wills Oval:

Red line shows the location of the new sustainable leachate treatment wetland

Red line shows the location of the new sustainable leachate treatment wetland

This project will treat leachate to a standard that is safe to use for irrigation back over the landfill. This treatment system provides an even higher level of sustainability, reducing Sydney Olympic Park’s reliance on recycled and drinking water for irrigation. The process goes…

Contaminates are generated by landfill > contaminates treated by wetland system > clean water produced used to irrigate the vegetation on top of the landfill mound

Construction of new sustainable leachate treatment wetland underway

Construction of new sustainable leachate treatment wetland underway

What are the benefits of this project?
There are a lot of things that make good sense about this project:

• offers a more ecologically-sustainable solution to leachate treatment
• utilises low energy consumption
• requires low maintenance
• reduces need to dispose leachate off-site
• provides a new source for irrigation
• provides new locally indigenous plant species to the area
• creates new wetland habitat for native flora and fauna

Why does Sydney Olympic Park have to deal with leachate?
Sydney Olympic Park continues to deal with the legacy of managing the largest environmental clean-up in Australia’s history.

Contaminants found on site are contained within large mounds across the Park that holds the material in safe storage. These mounds produce waste water known as leachate that is collected and, until now, has relied upon treatment at an industrial waste treatment facility, an expensive process requiring the leachate to be transported off-site for treatment.

The Sustainable Leachate Treatment Strategy aims to manage leachate in a more environmentally and financially sustainable way by treating leachate locally using natural wetlands. It’s an innovative approach delivering good environmental outcomes.

About

Communications & Community Engagement Coordinator, Sydney Olympic Park Authority

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