How water reuse tech is saving Durban industries and ratepayers millions each year

06 November 2019 | Web Article Number: ME201917052

Forestry, Pulp & Paper
Government & Municipal
Green Industries & Renewable Energy
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Water & Effluent Management
How water reuse tech is saving Durban industries and ratepayers millions each year

MANY industrial companies in South Africa are using water recycling technologies to reuse their process water cycle. In minimising their water bill, these companies have been able to optimise production costs, while reducing environmental footprint, to improve business performance.

That’s according to water production and sewage treatment multinational, Veolia Water Technologies, which believes there is significant scope to upscale such processes in South Africa, with both an abundant supply of treatable effluent in the form of municipal wastewater, as well as large, concentrated industrial basins with suitable process water demands.

Durban is leading the way in this respect.

“The effectiveness of such a scheme is demonstrated by the Veolia-built and operated Durban Water Recycling Project, which recycles 47.5 ML of municipal sewage per day to a near-potable standard for direct reuse by SAPREF and Mondi Paper,” Veolia said in a statement.


“These companies benefit not just from a more than 60% saving in water tariffs, but also a significantly enhanced drought supply security. The benefits to the city are similarly immense. At capacity, the plant reduces the city’s water consumption by 7%; the volume of potable water saved each day can be redistributed to 220 000 households. It has also therefore delayed capital investment requirements for future bulk potable water supply infrastructure, as well as for expanding marine outfall pipeline capacity.”

According to the company, it has also created a long-term revenue stream from a levy raised on the production of recycled water an reduced the city’s operating costs, with the subsequent reduced cost of water services to Durban’s citizens.

“And beyond its economic, social and environmental benefits, the DWR Project remains a model of success for public-private partnerships in Africa’s water and sanitation sectors. With greater financial pressure on both industry and municipalities to do more with less, there is great potential to replicate such a PPP in many other towns and cities across South Africa.”

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