Industry and ecology are not always the most comfortable of bedfellows. In fact, all too often, the two seem to be at loggerheads, competing for the same pieces of land and each with very different needs and agendas.
Wrexham Industrial Estate is refreshingly different. The largest industrial estate in Wales, this former World War Two munitions plant covers 550 hectares. As well as being home to more than 300 businesses, it is also a sanctuary for over 1,000 species of wildlife. Wrexham Industrial Estate is a shining example of how the needs of business, wildlife and the local community can all be met in a shared space.
At System Uvex, we are proud to play a role in helping to maintain this balance, and earlier this year we fitted a new water treatment unit to treat refrigeration cooling towers.
Since 2014, businesses, landowners and the local community have been working alongside North Wales Wildlife Trust on the Wrexham Industrial Estate Living Landscapes project. In just seven years, they have transformed the estate into a greener, more sustainable environment.
As well as providing a haven for thousands of species of fauna and flora, the project has created a healthier and more rewarding environment for the 8,000 or so people who work here. It is also a place where local residents can come to observe wildlife through birdwatching and other special events that take place throughout the year.
Ensuring safe water
So where does System Uvex come in? Like any wildlife reserve, this one is highly dependent on its natural water courses, which are now complemented by the newly restored Marchwiel Lake. Ensuring that water is free from chemical pollutants is vital, and is naturally a particular cause for concern when so much industrial activity is taking place nearby.
In 1994, a cold storage facility was constructed at Wrexham Industrial Estate, and although this was 20 years prior to the Living Landscapes project, environmental impact was already high on the agenda. This is why it was decided to install a chemical-fee UVEX water treatment unit for the refrigeration cooling towers.
That system provided safe and reliable service over the subsequent 26 years, but by 2021, it was time for a replacement. Technology has come a long way since the early 1990s, so the new unit we installed brings many advantages. It features a powerful UV, hi-rate sand filtration, two-stage conductivity control and various 4-20 ma signals to enable connection to a BMS.
All this means better monitoring capabilities coupled with the comfort of knowing that the very latest technology is in place to treat the cooling water effectively. The operators will continue to benefit from the reduced costs that a UVEX system brings. After all, there’s no need to purchase chemicals and PPE equipment, and staff do not need the specialist training that accompanies chemical systems.
Most important of all, continuing to provide the best possible protection to the tower without the use of aggressive chemicals is aligned with all that the Living Landscapes project stands for. We are proud to play our small part in this important and inspirational initiative.