The Hanson concrete batch plant in Port Hedland has raised the bar for water saving in regional industry through a series of initiatives to collect rainwater and recycle water used in its operations.

Key achievements

  • 50% water use reduction
  • Shared our water efficiency methods and achievements
  • 60 kilolitre water tank installed

Why we acted

"When we replaced our old plant, we decided there were better ways to do a range of things, including reducing our scheme water use. We have been operating here for a long time and needed to reduce our environmental footprint" James Douglas-Henry, Plant Manager.

We were upgrading the physical plant located in Wedgefield and took the opportunity to start over and build a plant that was in line with our core building blocks which are:

  • Most reliable
  • Best customer focus
  • Best team
  • Most responsible

We strive to care for the environment and operate in a manner that is sustainable. The design of the plant took this into account and now we capture all water that is used on site for re-using in the production process and we also have large storage capacity for capturing any rain events. The expense was quite high as we paved most of the yard however we do expect that this will pay dividends financially in the long term.

How we did it

The water saving features are more advanced than those at Hanson’s Karratha plant, particularly the use of automatic submersible pumps in water collection pits. These are operated by float switches at any time they are needed.

We also installed a 60,000 litre tank fed from three stormwater collection areas around the plant’s 8,000 square meter paved area. This supply replaces or supplements scheme water to condition, or dampen, aggregate to make it suitable for mixing, and to make the concrete mix.

We also recycle water used for agitator truck washing and dust suppression water is also collected and reused. Water used to condition aggregate where storage bins have protection against wind and sun evaporation is also recycled. Conditioning only takes place at night in a further move to avoid water losses through evaporation.

What we are doing now

We will proactively share the water efficiency methods and achievements with the rest of the business. We are continuing to monitor our water use and are currently in the process of installing further catchment ponds for concrete washout water that will be pumped back into holding ponds to save further use of potable water.