European Water Utilities Striving to Reduce their Carbon Footprint, finds Frost & Sullivan

Posted: Thursday 27th June 2013

Unsustainable levels of energy consumption push the water industry towards innovative, environment-friendly practices.

Concerns about steep increase in the carbon footprint of the water industry are rising. Population growth, tightening of legislative standards resulting in further treatment needs, resource scarcity, and deteriorating quality levels are, however, resulting in ever increasing energy consumption. This is highlighting the importance of innovative, environment-friendly practices across the value chain of the water industry.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (http://www.environmental.frost.com), Carbon Footprint Reduction Opportunities in Networks and Treatment Plants of European Water Utilities, provides an overview and examples of efforts to reduce the carbon footprint in water/wastewater treatment facilities and networks in Europe.

Water treatment processes are highly energy- intensive and energy usage is only set to intensify with an ever increasing tightening of regulations requiring additional levels of treatment. As in the water industry, future carbon emissions, especially from wastewater treatment are poised to increase.

“There are a number of areas in carbon-neutral water/wastewater treatment that show promise,” notes Frost & Sullivan Energy & Environmental Research team. “These include off-grid and on-site generated renewable energy, on-site production of energy and electricity through biogas from wastewater, advanced treatment and energy efficient equipment especially in the biological treatment processes and smart plant processes aimed at plant optimisation.”

Efforts are also ongoing to develop low-carbon water/wastewater networks. Smart metering and leakage monitoring and detection systems as well as energy-efficient pumps in water and wastewater networks are attempting to ensure greater sustainability in energy consumption.




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