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Press Release

New Water Treatment Plant on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Provides Safer Drinking Water with GE Technology

April 07, 2016
  • City of Nanaimo’s New Plant Uses GE’s ZeeWeed Technology to Remove Bacteria and Stop Boil Water Advisories
  • Plant Meets New Canadian and British Columbia Surface Water Treatment Regulations
  • Grand Opening Celebration Held Today in Nanaimo

TREVOSE, PA.-April 7, 2016-The city of Nanaimo on Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada, today inaugurated a new water treatment plant featuring GE's (NYSE: GE) ZeeWeed* membrane technology to purify water from the Nanaimo River into drinking water. Prior to the opening of the new plant, the city had experienced boil water advisories due to elevated turbidity. Operating since December 2015, the South Fork Water Treatment Plant meets new regulations to prevent waterborne illnesses and provides safer drinking water for the 90,000 residents of Nanaimo with GE’s ultrafiltration system.

To meet new regulations, the city was required to build a new facility that would filter the source water to screen out minute particles, bacteria and pathogenic disease-causing organisms such as cryptosporidium and giardia. Nanaimo’s new water plant features GE’s ZeeWeed 1000 and ZeeWeed 500d membrane technology, which produces high-quality, safe drinking water.

“Our new water treatment plant provides Nanaimo residents and businesses safe, clean, purified drinking water that tastes amazing. The innovative membrane system provides a hard barrier to protect the health of our citizens. Being the only plant in Canada that exclusively uses gravity to siphon water through the membranes is an exciting and highly efficient innovation,” said Bill Sims, manager, water resources for the city of Nanaimo. “We have secured a healthy and safe drinking water supply for multiple generations in Nanaimo.”

The city’s previous system was a single form of treatment involving coarse and fine screening of water to remove large debris followed by chlorine injection. The new system using GE technology is a multibarrier approach to safe drinking water with a fine-screening, two-stage siphon membrane system and chlorine disinfection. The first membrane stage consists of seven trains of ZeeWeed 1000 modules. The second stage, consisting of four trains of ZeeWeed 500d membranes followed by ultraviolet disinfection, treats the backwash water from the first stage to increase overall plant recovery to more than 99 percent. The plant is capable of treating up to 116 million liters per day (30 million gallons).

The South Fork of the Nanaimo River watershed covers 230 square kilometers-an area three times larger than the city. Its two storage lakes, Jump Lake and South Fork Lake, collect water, rain and snowmelt flowing from the mountains. Raw water quality can be severely impacted by weather events such as heavy rainfall or rapid snow melt, and GE’s ZeeWeed membranes enable the city to meet the drinking water quality criteria while reducing chemical and power consumption and minimizing the production of waste from the facility.

“Stricter regulations and the desire of municipalities to produce safe and reliable drinking water are driving more creative and innovative water treatment solutions. GE’s ZeeWeed technology for the Nanaimo plant is a change from the city’s previous water treatment approach to a membrane-based water treatment facility. This multibarrier approach will filter out contaminants and bacteria for a safer water supply,” said Kevin Cassidy, global leader, engineered systems-water and process technologies for GE Power.

GE's ZeeWeed technology is an advanced filtration technology that separates particles, bacteria and viruses from water or wastewater. Nearly 1,000 plants worldwide use this technology to produce superior quality water. Its unique ability to handle high large volumes of water in a small footprint, combined with the highly efficient process with low energy and low chemical usage, makes it ideal for treating raw water sources and producing drinking quality water for cities and populated areas.

About GE

GE (NYSE: GE) is the world’s Digital Industrial Company, transforming industry with software-defined machines and solutions that are connected, responsive and predictive. GE is organized around a global exchange of knowledge, the "GE Store," through which each business shares and accesses the same technology, markets, structure and intellect. Each invention further fuels innovation and application across our industrial sectors. With people, services, technology and scale, GE delivers better outcomes for customers by speaking the language of industry.

About GE Power

GE Power is a world leader in power generation with deep domain expertise to help customers deliver electricity from a wide spectrum of fuel sources. We are transforming the electricity industry with the digital power plant, the world’s largest and most efficient gas turbine, full balance of plant, upgrade and service solutions as well as our data-leveraging software. Our innovative technologies and digital offerings help make power more affordable, reliable, accessible and sustainable.

For more information, visit the company's website at Follow GE Power and GE’s water business on Twitter @GE_Power and @GE_Water and on LinkedIn at GE Power.

* Trademark of General Electric Company; may be registered in one or more countries.

Howard Masto
Masto Public Relations
[email protected]

Beth Coffman
Soteryx Corporation
[email protected]
+1 518 886 1076

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