Apr 28, 2016

Raring to Reuse

Elisabeth Lisican

Industrial water reuse is gaining ground, and yielding some pretty impactful results. For example, recent applications have proven successful in reusing water not only for landscape irrigation, but for lesser-known applications such as cooling towers and boiler feed systems.

There has been a lot of buzz around industrial reuse, especially on March 22 (World Water Day) at a water summit at the White House. Multiple solution providers in attendance pledged to devote more effort and resources toward industrial reuse innovation. For example, Evoqua will invest $50 million in research and development to further expand water reuse and reclamation efforts across both municipal and industrial applications. The company also pledged to double its capacity to treat water for reuse and reclamation by 2021. Pentair will establish two centers in the next three years to bring innovation to industrial water reuse in manufacturing and water stewardship to food and beverage processing.

Likewise, the WateReuse Research Foundation has devoted special attention of late to furthering industrial reuse efforts, in the form of two research reports on the drivers and barriers to water reuse. This issue of iWWD includes an article on those projects from the association, on page 8.

CDM Smith is another company devoting content to industrial water reuse, in the form of a list of 10 questions that can be asked when choosing whether or not to incorporate reuse efforts into industrial facility operations. The questions, which are detailed in full on the company’s website, are:

1. What water quality is needed for reuse?
2. What are the water flows?
3. What are the future water demands and sources available?
4. Can wastewater segregation be achieved?
5. Is flow equalization needed?
6. What is in the wastewater?
7. How much space is available?
8. What sludge disposal options are available?
9. Where will reject water be disposed?
10. What are the potential costs and savings?

I have a few questions of my own, to readers: What are some innovative industrial water reuse applications you have come across? What are some of the greatest barriers to industrial water reuse you’ve experienced? Sound off via email or W&WD’s social media channels. 

Industrial water reuse has countless sustainability and community benefits; however, it’s important to be fully cognizant of the challenges and potential roadblocks before embarking on an industrial reuse journey.

About the author

Elisabeth Lisican is editor-in-chief of Water & Wastes Digest. Lisican can be reached at [email protected] or 847.391.1012.