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Veolia inaugurates the world’s largest sludge treatment and recovery plant in Hong Kong

Press release: Asia - Wastewater. Paris, Hong Kong, May 31, 2016 (700.29 KB)

Selected by the Hong Kong government to build and operate a plant to treat all the sludge from the 11 wastewater treatment plants in this Territory of 7.2 million people, Veolia is now at the controls of a plant that is exceptional on several counts: environmental, technological and societal. A concentrate of innovation, water and energy self-sufficient, this plant reconciles urban ecology with the art of living. It is an example of the circular economy serving economic development and the environment.

It is the world’s largest sludge incineration plant: 2,000 metric tons of sludge from Hong Kong’s 11 wastewater treatment plants is treated here each day. On the seven-hectare site facing Deep Bay and Shenzhen, Veolia’s 360-meter long and 50-meter high plant is clearly a match for the environmental standards demanded by the Hong Kong government under its sustainable waste management strategy. As the plant discharges no wastewater and transforms the sludge into electricity, it provides a totally clean and ecological solution to one of the most difficult-to-treat forms of urban pollution.
Commissioned following four years of design and construction, this ‘site of excellence’ reflects the cutting-edge expertise of Veolia Water Technologies, our technology subsidiary that engineered and built the plant; the French architectural firm Claude Vasconi, which designed and totally integrated the concept into its surrounding landscape between sea and mountains; and our teams in charge of operating this plant for the next 15 years.

While the plant’s main structures are the incineration furnace-boilers generating steam to drive the electricity turbines, and the flue gas treatment units operating in accordance with the most stringent emission standards, the treatment and sludge incineration technology used reduces the final waste by 90%, thereby helping protect the natural environment. 

The electricity generated from the sludge treatment process covers the plant’s needs, and a seawater desalination plant provides the process water required for the site’s operation. Its performance is such that, in addition to being an industrial site, this plant is also a remarkable ecological site and environmental learning center. It includes an ecological garden showcasing the local biodiversity and a discovery center for visitors to learn about the plant. There is also a café with a view over the sea, a heated pool, a conference room and even an observation deck. 

Turning waste into a source of renewable energy, this facility is a prime example of the circular economy that gives value to materials previously considered worthless. By closing the loop in the material, water and energy cycles, this ‘other’ economy provides an effective solution to the growing scarcity of raw materials and fossil fuels, and climate change: all challenges faced by China and Asia–as indeed by all continents. This is why the circular economy is one of the main areas of focus for Veolia’s growth. 

“The story of this plant is the story of a project that has become a reference in the water industry,” says Antoine Frérot, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Veolia. “It shows what the water treatment plants of the future will be. The result of fruitful cooperation between Company entities and several partners, not least of which the Hong Kong government, this plant is a prime example of the revolution under way in the environmental industries, one in which Veolia plays a pioneering role,” adds Antoine Frérot.


About Veolia
Veolia group is the global leader in optimized resource management. With over 174 000 employees worldwide, the Group designs and provides water, waste and energy management solutions that contribute to the sustainable development of communities and industries. Through its three complementary business activities, Veolia helps to develop access to resources, preserve available resources, and to replenish them.
In 2015, the Veolia group supplied 100 million people with drinking water and 63 million people with wastewater service, produced 63 million megawatt hours of energy and converted 42.9 million metric tons of waste into new materials and energy. Veolia Environnement (listed on Paris Euronext: VIE) recorded consolidated revenue of €25 billion ($30.3 billion) in 2015.


Veolia Group Media Relations
Laurent Obadia   -  Sandrine Guendoul
Stéphane Galfré  -  Marie Bouvet
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