Sweden has some of the world’s best drinking water. Stockholm Vatten, a water and waste water management company, is responsible for its delivery to more than one million people
Writer: Emily Jarvis
Project Manager: Dave Alexander
Stockholm Vatten AB (the Stockholm Water Company) is an environmental and engineering company that produces and supplies drinking water to more than one million people in Stockholm and Huddinge, and to a further nine neighbouring local councils. The company is characterised by its holistic approach and the desire to create the necessary conditions for adequate delivery of water and an improved waste environment, not only in the Baltic region, but also through its cooperation with other local councils in the Stockholm region and through international joint projects.
“We have some of the world’s best drinking water, which is always carefully controlled and purified in several stages. This gives us drinking water of the highest quality, according to the Swedish National Food Administration,” says the company.
As a municipally-owned organisation, Stockholm Vatten houses two divisions, one which handles the operations of water and wastewater treatment, and the second running other business operations such as the selling of biogas back to industry. The company own and operate the Norsborg and Lovö waterworks and the two sewage treatment plants at Henriksdal and Bromma, as well as the tap water and sewage mains networks, pumping stations and water reservoirs in Stockholm and Huddinge.
“We take care of and purify our sewage water in the most advantageous way possible from an environmental point of view,” says the water company.
This eco-cycle concept involves resource recycling where waste products are recycled into usable bi-products that assist in creating a more sustainable society.
Further, the company’s operations are wholly financed by water and sewerage rates and charges, and some of this finance goes towards the organisation’s responsibilities in water conservation and restoration of local lakes.
Norsborg Water Works
Norsborg’s waterworks is one of the largest in the Nordic countries and has been supplying drinking water to Stockholmers since the early 20th century. Over the years, Norsborg Water Works has been rebuilt and improved. Although much of the technology used today is not much different from when the waterworks was first built, one thing that has always remained the same is where it came from – Lake Mälaren.
“We keep careful watch over the health of our lakes in the Stockholm region. Not only this, we are responsible for the many kilometres of pipes that carry sewage water to sewage treatment works, where the water is purified before being discharged into the Baltic Sea,” highlights the company.
Norsborg’s waterworks delivers water to the central and southern parts of Stockholm. Lovö waterworks, supplying water to the northern and western districts of Stockholm, lies beside Lake Mälaren a little further north. Together the waterworks distribute good, clean drinking water to over one million people every day. Additionally, several neighbouring municipalities and nearby districts enjoy Stockholm’s excellent tap water.
Henriksdal Waste Water Treatment Plant
The Henriksdal waste water treatment plant, which serves Stockholm, Huddinge, Haninge, Nacka and Tyresö, is today one of the largest and most modern in Europe. Opened in 1941, the Henriksdal plant is just one of two treatment facilities servicing Stockholm, Huddinge and six other neighbouring local countries.
“We work have to ensure your sewage water is made as clean as possible. Our top position in surveys conducted by international trade organisations is testament to this goal,” emphasises the company.
Located two kilometres from Slussen on the boundary between Stockholm and Nacka, Henriksdal is one of the world’s largest underground treatment plants. It covers approximately 300,000m2, and it has around 18 kilometres of tunnels. The whole of the basin block lies inside chambers blasted into the rock. The surface facilities include the control centre building, mechanical treatment, the sludge tanks, the upper parts of the sludge thickeners, the digesters, gas holder, the gas collection plant and gas storage. The ventilation chimney is 80 metres tall and seven metres in diameter. Sludge treatment takes place in a separate facility at Sickla, located about two kilometres from Henriksdal.
With a team of leading experts across the water and sewage sectors, the Stockholm Water Company has successfully developed efficient and careful methods to ensure the provision of the highest quality drinking water. On the flipside, the company continuously innovate in order to use 100 percent of all waste materials in what the business calls “maintaining a functional ecological cycle”, which is a vital aspect of the production process: “Many of these bi-products are able to make a useful contribution to our society such as agricultural fertilisers, biogas for buses and district heating for households,” the company says.
As a city grows and lifestyles change, little thought is given to the water supply which is built into our infrastructure and a crucial part of everyday life. Therefore, it is Stockholm Vatten’s responsibility to keep up with these trends in growth and take the measures necessary to ensure the effective treatment of both drinking water and sewage water. “People living here have almost unlimited access to clean drinking water. When we turn on the tap we pour a world-class provision directly into our glasses.
“We are expected to keep on providing this same high quality service to the local people now and into the future. The infrastructure here in Sweden enables us to work with world-class water systems in an efficient manner that benefits Stockholm and the surrounding areas,” concludes the company.
For more information, visit: www.stockholmvatten.se