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2010 Clean Technology – Harnessing Opportunities


2010 Clean Technology Award

Mini-Hydro Project
Melbourne Water Corporation, VIC

Melbourne Water’s Mini-Hydro Project, with zero CO2 emissions, is setting a new international benchmark for reducing the environmental impact of large water supply systems.

 With seven mini-hydro generators now operational, the scheme is set to produce 54,500 megawatt hours of renewable energy per year or 19% of Melbourne Water’s current electricity needs. This is enough to offset more than 66,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide or the equivalent of taking 16,500 cars off the road.

Even during its first year of commissioning in 2009-10, the scheme generated an impressive 11,852 megawatt hours of renewable energy or 4.1% of Melbourne Water’s annual electricity use. This was achieved with only five of the seven plants operational and at a time of reduced flows and lower than average water use due to strict water restrictions.

Comments from the Judges

Although making common sense, the judges were struck by the leadership and innovation in utilising water flows to generate renewable energy, setting a new standard not only in Australia but internationally. Furthermore, as energy generation is not part of Melbourne Water’s core business the project required a visionary approach and commitment.”