2003 Public/Private Partnership Awards

City of Honolulu and US Filter Services Group: Honouliuli Water Recycling Project

In the late 1990's the City and County of Honolulu faced a federal consent decree that required the municipality to recycle 10 million-gallons-per day (MAD) of water by July 2001 and limit the amount of wastewater effluent discharge into the Pacific Ocean or face stiff penalties for non-compliance. The island of Oahu, where Honolulu is located was also suffering from a three-year drought. If left unchecked, this would seriously limit the islands economic and residential growth.

In order to meet the federal consent decree, the City and County of Honolulu faced millions of dollars in capital costs to construct a facility and the prospect of selling irrigation water at a cost below what it cost to produce. The City and County partnered with US Filter and selected a design-build-finance-operate method for construction. This method combines engineering, construction and operation under one selection process promised lower costs, guaranteed performance and on-time product delivery.

The agreement between USFilter and HBWS guarantees high purity water for industrial and non-portable use over the next 20 years. The plant costs will be paid for by the revenues received through the sale of recycled water. USFilter, HBWS and the City and County of Honolulu embarked on an aggressive campaign to educate residents on the safety of recycled water.

According to the city, this partnership has saved them more than $35 million in water development costs. These savings can be channeled into other capital projects, such as improving water distribution and sewer collection systems. The city and county no longer face limits on growth. Recycled water is preserving the islands most valuable resource, drinking water. Furthermore, a guaranteed supply of water is now available to attract businesses and industry that require a reliable water source at a specified level of quality.

The Honouliuli Water Recycling Project earned The City of Honolulu and US Filter an Outstanding Achievement Award from the Mayors Business Council in 2002. For more information, contact Christie Kaluza, Marketing Communications Manager, US Filter, 281.985-5482; kaluzacm@usfilter.com or Carol L. Costa, City of Honolulu, 808.523.4740; csd@co.honolulu.hi.us.