A project to rid Bathurst of its dirty water woes was officially commissioned at the local water filtration plant yesterday.
It has been four years and around $5 million since council started working on its manganese removal project.
Undertaken by Bruce Godd-ard’s local company EODO, it is the biggest capital works program at the plant in two decades and yesterday’s ceremony was descri-bed as a watershed moment.
Its aim is to get rid of the manganese that causes discolouration at the water treatment plant before it is released into the local network for residents to use.
A series of trials was held at the facility in Water Works Lane at Gormans Hill to ensure the project was a feasible option to address the problem before council decided to press ahead.
Mayor Gary Rush said yesterday construction officially started on site one year ago and followed extensive trials.
“We have installed state-of-the art technology to treat the city’s naturally manganese-rich water supply and prevent further manganese from entering the water network,” he said.
“With the completion of the work, council will continue to flush the water supply network to remove manganese that has previously been deposited on the wall of the water pipes.
“It will take some time to completely remove the built-up deposits of manganese that still exist in the water pipes, but we will continue to work with the community as the flushing program continues.”
Cr Rush said it was a watershed moment in Bathurst’s history.
“Brown water has been a problem for decades and today’s commissioning ceremony will start us on the path to solving this long running issue,” he said.
“It’s not going to happen overnight though. Council will be running trials where the system is flushed and then we will measure the manganese content which will give us an indication of how low the count is.”
The process may take anything from 12-18 months to completely rid the pipes of the manganese as there is 120 years of build up.
“Water is a key asset for Bathurst and a real selling point for the city, so this initiative goes a long way to ensuring our water quality is of the standard people would expect,” he said.