Our projects » Northern Water Plant

Northern Water Plant

A new, state-of-the-art water recycling facility will reduce Geelong's drinking water demand by around two billion litres a year.

This major water-saving initiative produces Class A recycled water suitable for industrial and community use in Geelong's northern suburbs.

The plant uses cutting-edge treatment technologies including biological treatment, ultra-filtration, and reverse osmosis.

Construction began on the plant in March 2011. It was officially opened in April 2013, on time and on budget.



  • An immediate 2,000 million litre reduction in Geelong's drinking water use (5% of current demand, equivalent to the water used in 10,000 homes).
  • High quality Class A recycled water will replace drinking water used by the Shell Geelong refinery.
  • A 10% reduction in the volume discharged to the ocean at the Black Rock Water Reclamation Plant.



Project cost: $94 million, funding from:

  • Australian Government: $20 million  
  • Victorian Government: $9 million
  • Shell: $47.5 million
  • Barwon Water: $17.5 million


Location and appearance

The plant is built on industrial land adjacent to Station Street, Corio. The site borders crude oil storage tanks at the Shell Geelong Refinery.

The construction site has been revegetated with indigenous plants, and is set back from the street to minimise visual impact.


How it works

The Northern Water Plant uses a biological treatment process to breakdown sewage. Naturally occuring microscopic organisms digest the sewage under ideal conditions.

The treated water is further refined through ultra-filtration and reverse osmosis systems, removing microscopic particles and resulting in high quality Class A recycled water. For more information see our videos, below.

Northern Water Plant: Ultrafiltration
Northern Water Plant: Reverse osmosis



News and updates

13 November 2013: Northern Water Plant open day
30 April 2013: Northern Water Plant officially opened
14 August 2012: Commissioning begins at Northern Water Plant
19 June 2012: Northern Water Plant nearing completion
14 March 2012: Northern Water Plant construction progressing well
8 December 2011: Northern Water Plant construction update
12 August 2011: Construction underway on the Northern Water Plant
18 March 2011: Construction begins on the Northern Water Plant
19 May 2010: Northern Water Plant works approval
13 May 2010: Northern Water Plant information kiosk

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