10 Sep 2015

Ireland pioneers Dutch wastewater treatment solution

Ireland’s first wastewater treatment plant using Royal HaskoningDHV’s revolutionary Nereda® technology is now in operation in Clonakilty. Producing clean water using much less energy, the technology is being introduced into Ireland through a partnership between Royal HaskoningDHV and leading Irish water treatment company EPS. Two more Nereda plants are under way.
Nereda® WWTP Clonakilty, Ireland

Aerial view of the Nereda WWTP in Clonakilty, Ireland

EPS Technical Director, Mr Jim Palmer, said: “We are delighted to provide Nereda as the next generation wastewater treatment technology to our clients. Nereda is a cutting-edge development which offers very low cost of ownership to end-users of wastewater treatment plants.” 

Royal HaskoningDHV’s Global Director for Water Products and Innovation, Mr René Noppeney is proud that EPS has joined the global network of Nereda partners. “Together we are providing a sustainable solution to towns and cities facing challenges associated with urbanisation and the demand for good sanitation,” he said.

The innovative Nereda biological treatment process brings performance benefits alongside cost and sustainability advantages. The new plants will therefore help Irish Water meet the requirements under the European Union Urban Wastewater Treatment Directive to improve health, water quality and the integrity of the environment.

All three Nereda plants will be in County Cork, the second most populous county in the south of Ireland. The Nereda plants will be purifying the wastewater of a quarter of the county’s population and bring an end to untreated discharges and unpleasant odours.

Ireland’s first Nereda plants

Ireland’s first wastewater treatment plant using Nereda technology is Irish Water’s Clonakilty plant in the south of the country. The old plant has been completely overhauled and the Nereda technology is quadrupling its capacity to 20,000 population equivalent (PE). It treats the effluent to a far higher standard than the original plant using significantly less energy and produces less sludge. The lower nitrogen and phosphorus content in the effluent brings to an end the problem of unpleasant odours in Clonakilty Bay. 

A second Nereda plant is under construction in Carrigtwohill, some 65 kilometres north east of Clonakilty. The design capacity of phase 1 is 30,000 PE with provision for future extension to 45,000 and 60,000 PE in phases 2 and 3. Increased loads and more stringent discharge standards were behind the decision by Irish Water to upgrade this facility. 

A third installation is under way at Shanbally to service the Cork Lower Harbour area. The Cork Lower Harbour plant will have a capacity of 60,000 PE. Currently much wastewater is discharged untreated into the harbour, so completion of the plant in early 2017 will bring with it a significant improvement in water quality. This will positively impact the local community and economy as the harbour has a proud industrial background and a rich maritime history.

Nereda in a nutshell

Nereda is an award-winning innovative technology that purifies water using the unique features of aerobic granular mass. It requires less energy and chemicals and has a smaller footprint than conventional water treatment systems. The technology was invented by the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands and developed in a unique public-private partnership between the University, Royal HaskoningDHV, the Dutch Foundation for Applied Water Research (STOWA) and the Dutch Water Boards. After twenty years of research and development this innovative biological solution is now proving itself as the leap forward in wastewater treatment technology. 

Nereda plants are being built or in operation across the globe in countries including Australia, Brazil, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, South Africa, Switzerland and more. 


Visit the Nereda® website