La Presa, a water treatment plant with more than 150 years of history that looks to the future with „the latest technology”

Valencia, 25 March. (Europe Press) –

Valencia was a pioneer in Europe in providing clean and safe water in the mid-19th century, while important cities such as Paris began to do so, thanks to the opening in Manises of the La Bresa water treatment plant. , with a history of 150 years, is the only one in Europe that supplies water 24 hours a day to an entire metropolitan area, seven days a week.

Its hallmark is the fusion of industrial heritage and innovative projects, with old decanters turned into solar panels and centuries-old warehouses preserved as witnesses of the past. At its entrance there are still houses where some workers lived. A municipally-owned complex managed by Emiwasa that covers 13 hectares framed by pine forests, the bed of the Duria River, and the Duria-Zugar canal, it captures the water that is then transferred.

To commemorate World Water Day, the facilities opened their doors this Monday to promote all the work behind the daily gesture of turning on the tap. Carlos Mundina, Head of Metropolitan Hydraulic Services (EMSHI) and Councilor of the Comprehensive Water Cycle, participated in the visit; Dionisio García, CEO of Global Omnium and Director of Emivasa and Emimet, and President of La Bresa, Bura Almenar.

From the water treatment plant, 2,000 liters of water flow out every second, which is added to the Realón de Picassent water treatment plant to supply drinking water to EMSHI's 47 municipalities in Valencia and its metropolitan area. , a population of about 1.6 million people requires 3,700 liters per second.

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Councilor Carlos Mundina has highlighted how La Bresa has been able to „adapt” over time, with processes using the „latest technology”. In line with the city's commitment to achieve 85% decarbonisation by 2030, „a scale of investment to modernize infrastructure to be less dependent on external sources” and reduce both the plant's consumption and its greenhouse gas emissions.

„The plant is at the forefront in terms of technology, while being able to adapt from the industrial heritage from the last century to the most modern technologies now used in drinking water treatment,” he highlighted.

In the same way, Dionisio García pointed out that water treatment is a system in „sustainable evolution and investment”, thanks to the contribution of citizens in their proportion, which allows for long-term planning. Additionally, he highlighted Emimet's ambitious plan to interconnect Picacent and Manises plants within two to three years.

Likewise, Garcia highlighted a commitment to produce 35% of the energy consumed by the plant through solar panels „in the short term.” energy prices in the market”, because energy expenditure is 30% of water expenditure.

A century of history that began with a lineage

In 1856, at a time when epidemics and especially cholera were spreading through sewage, the dam opened its doors, where there was no effective freedom between sewage and water. Since then its development has not stopped and over time different technologies have been „merged” into it.

The impetus for the decision to upgrade the infrastructure was the legacy of Canon Mariano Linnone, who bequeathed 28,000 turos to his brother on the condition that he provide clean water to the city. The priest's inheritance was reduced, but led to the creation of a commission to build La Bresa, with a final investment of six million reais and contributions from companies and individuals.

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Between 1845, the weir and the settling pond began to be built and in different periods, activities and improvements took place. In 1900, the pipes reached the whole city and, little by little, the first steam pipes were converted to electric motors.

Beginning in the 1960s, sophisticated technological investments in energy efficiency, circular decanters and rapid filters came to meet the population growth, although in 1978 a second plant was commissioned to cover all demand. Now, solar panels are installed on their land and provide 20% of the total consumption of the 'water factory'. „We've gone from an era of zero communication to one of computer regulation,” Bura Almenar highlighted.

Water's Journey: From River to Home

The plant works as a 'T' shaped structure and is traversed by channels that carry water through all treatment steps and a pump system. There are two catchment canals that take water from the Duria or Duria-Zugar Canal. The plant has the capacity to tap ground water in emergencies in case of drinking water problem in Jhugar or Duria.

First, the water is used to remove coarse elements (plastic, fish, branches) through ponds from different periods, dating back to the 70s. Then, the granules are filtered through activated carbon to remove the particles. Now you can see the works of the new decanter which is 12 meters deep and has a capacity of thousand liters per second.

Next, the water is disinfected with chlorine, according to Spanish regulations, but La Bresa adds one more step to what is required by law: Advanced treatment with ultraviolet light „eliminates 99% of surviving bacteria,” he said. Detailed Almenar said.

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From there, clean water leaves La Bresa through a pumping room connected to the high-pressure network, a plumbing system that connects the stations to the municipalities with pipes with a diameter of 1 .6 meters.

The dam, according to its manager, is a zero-discharge plant, so sludge and wastewater from its processes go to a center where they are homogenized and centrifuged. 3% of the water is unused and returned to the plant, while the sludge is used for agriculture.

„Message of Peace” on Drought

The president of EMSHI and the councilor of the water cycle insisted on sending a „message of peace and security” about the distribution, because even though the drought affects some parts of Spain, Jucar and Duria are „in a moment of normality” and the plants „guarantee the quality and quantity of water for all people.”

Dionisio García assured that although this is a normal situation, „we cannot rest on our laurels” and „we must continue to invest, raising awareness that water is a precious resource, without water there is no life, we have it”. We need to take care of it well and sustainably for ourselves and for those who come.”

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