The Port of Hualien Water Bank System is built to cope with the high secondary water demand at the port. The water is mainly used by tenants to suppress air pollution from dry bulk cargoes such as sand, coal and wood chips. Therefore, the Water Bank System is essentially a strategy to reduce air pollution and save water.
The project took three stages to complete:
- (a) 2007 Water Bank V1.0 (Incentive) Project: Water costs for quarries were reduced, incentives to attract investment increased, and the water saving rate was approximately 53%.
- (b) 2015 Water Bank V2.0 (Stability) Project: To respond to water depletion and to ensure reliable water supply; the water saving rate increased to approximately 88%.
- (c) 2018 Water Bank V3.0 (Profitability) Project: To expand the use of the water bank and to increase revenues; the water saving rate increased to approximately 95%.
The total cost of the project was about USD 850,000 over the course of 11 years, and now it’s making about USD 7,500 each year.
In order to optimize water usage, the Port of Hualien replaced the port area tap water with harvested ground water. It harnesses the gravity from the height difference in landscape and pulls the water from the water harvest reservoir. As it virtually uses no energy to collect water, the system also saves energy. Using the Water Bank System, the port is able to save about 95% of its total water usage, which is about 380,000 tons of water each year.
Besides dust suppression, the water is also used for other usages such as dust removal at ship repairing grounds and cooling for buildings at the port during summer. The cooling of buildings helps save about 28,000 kWh of electricity, which amounts to 39,580kg of CO2 each year.