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Scholars from around the world visit Inverurie Waste Water Treament Works

By Lewis McBlane

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HIGH-flying scholars visited Inverurie Waste Water Treatment Works (WWTW)

The Hydro Nation Scholars on location at the Inverurie Waste Water Treatment Works.
The Hydro Nation Scholars on location at the Inverurie Waste Water Treatment Works.

Members of a Scottish Government scheme, Hydro Nation Scholars, which helps develop new water experts, visited the £21 million facility to learn about its state of the art technology.

In total, 20 Hydro Nation Scholars made the trip to Inverurie, including Rita Moussa from Lebanon, who is doing a PhD at the University of Aberdeen on Waste Water Treatment.

Ms Moussa said: “It was exciting to get the chance to attend a Waste Water Treatment Works, especially one as advanced as Inverurie.

"It definitely gave us a better understanding of the waste water process and how this site operates.

"These visits are so important for our learning and development and I am very grateful for the opportunity.”

The Hydro Nation scholars programme is part of the Scottish Government’s Hydro Nation strategy, which seeks to boost the economic, environmental and social value of Scottish water.

The programme is supported by The Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW) at the Hydro Nation International Centre in Aberdeen.

Inverurie’s new WWTW, officially opened in 2019, uses an innovative technology called Nereda, in a Scottish first.

The group were shown the reduced site footprint and lower energy use enabled by this technology.

The site visit was hosted by Eric Davidson, Scottish Water's waste water operations team leader for the area.

Mr Davidson said: “I am always very proud to showcase our Inverurie Waste Water Treatment Works and it was brilliant to see such enthusiasm from the group, who clearly have a passion for water and waste water treatment."

During a summer tour, the group visited many Scottish locations to broaden their knowledge, including Forsinard Flows Nature Reserve, Glenmorangie Distillery and Scottish Canals.

Tackling climate change was also a key focus of the Inverurie WWTW.

The advanced technology used at the site is part of Scottish Water’s journey to achieve net zero emissions by 2040.

When opening the site in 2019 Cabinet Secretary Mairi Gougeon said:

“While treating waste water isn’t something people probably like to think about too often, it is something that is absolutely vital to protect not only our health and sanitation, but also the environment.

“Developing new, more efficient ways of treating waste water through the deployment of new technology, is hugely important as Scotland takes decisive steps towards tackling the climate emergency we are facing around the world.”

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