Sociedade Central de Cervejas e Bebidas (SCC), a brewery in Vialonga near Lisbon, Portugal, has significantly reduced water usage by improving operating performance and reliability with help from GE’s (NYSE: GE) advanced membranes and water chemical technology. The site reused wastewater to its cooling towers, which enabled it to reduce its yearly water discharge by 72 million liters and reduce its annual fresh water consumption by the same amount. It also increased production performance by 40 percent in the tertiary treatment.
Front perspective of Sagres Plant
GE has awarded SCC an ecomagination award to recognize the company for its noteworthy reductions in fresh water consumption and wastewater discharge. GE’s ecomagination award recognizes the achievements of industrial users for striking a positive balance between today’s environmental, industrial and sustainability challenges. It is given to the top GE customers in environmental and economic performance.
“At SCC we strive to continuously improve the environmental impact of our brands and business; empower the people and the communities where we operate; and positively impact the role of beer in society. Brewing beer is water-intensive, and we are committed to increase sustainability and use less water, which is a precious resource,” said Ronald den Elzen, CEO of Sociedade Central de Cervejas e Bebidas, part of the HEINEKEN Group. “We are honored that GE has recognized us for an ecomagination award.”
SCC has some groundwater available at the site, but it was not enough to meet the needs of the brewery. The other option was to use extremely expensive city water. In addition, Portugal is at a high risk of water scarcity over the next decades, so SCC turned to GE to help develop a solution using GE’s advanced water technology.