Woolworths Moorebank – PFAS Water Treatment Plant

Moorebank, NSW

Richard Crookes Construction

May 2022 – June 2022

The Woolworths Moorebank Regional Distribution Centre (MoRDC) project includes the design and construction of a new 71,790m2 automated warehouse facility scheduled to open in 2024. Due to the historical land use at Moorebank, trace per-and poly-fluoroalkyl (PFAS) contamination was present in the sub grade throughout the MoRDC Stage 2 Site. Stormwater run-off from rain events became contaminated with PFAS and required capture in various holding ponds to avoid contamination of the surrounding rivers/creeks.

To maintain holding capacity for future rain events, Richard Crookes Construction (RCC) engaged SciDev to design, construct and operate a water treatment plant (WTP) to treat and discharge the captured contaminated water to the environment.


  • The water treatment plant, with a nameplate capacity of 400kL/day, treated 14.1ML of surface water run-off and enabled the safe discharge of treated water, meeting strict environmental regulations.
  • During the construction of the distribution centre, Moorebank experienced long periods of heavy rain. As a result, on-site water storage was at risk of uncontrolled discharge. To mitigate against this, the WTP was mobilised and fully operational within four business days.
  • The treatment process consisted of four major steps: Clarification, Physical Filtration, Adsorption and Discharge.
  • The WTP treated total PFAS to below the concentrations required by the Site-Wide Environmental Protection Licence. Each sample was sent to a NATA accredited lab to analyse the discharge water for PFAS concentrations under the conditions of the EPL.
  • The project has benefited from this ability to treat larger volumes than initially expected.