Water as a global resource

Published on 05/13/2020 | by Waterline Admin

As featured in waterline Spring 2020

Water as a global resource

Caroline Summers, Myriad Compliance Ltd

When many of us think of our planet and the environment we think of the rising sea levels and increasing warmer temperatures. Most believe this to be a pressing issue concerning us all and realise the need to focus on planning for a different future.

This article will address the way in which we manage water as a resource through changing our behaviour, and how the industry will need to adapt to this challenging situation for water supply and the removal of contaminants in waste water.

Traditionally most countries collect fresh water through the water cycle, i.e. rainwater running into rivers, lakes etc. With warmer temperatures being reached for longer periods during the summer and humidity levels too low, the earth is drying out. The good news is that water is a finite resource, but instead of harvesting rainwater we will increase the use of desalination from the oceans and recycle wastewater from sewerage water, both of which are more complex and expensive operations.

The demand for domestic water supply has doubled since the 1960s due to the rising population, while the agricultural industry still demands the largest percentage of water in order to keep up with food supply (World Resources Inst).

The cost of producing clean and safe drinking water with the removal of contaminants in wastewater is rising. A quarter of the world’s countries are facing high water stress where 80% of the available water is consumed, in particular South Africa, India and Italy with the Middle East and Northern Africa being the highest regions. (Water Resources Institute 2020) These areas are naturally more dry being so close to the equator.

In the South West of America, the Colorado River supplies 40 million people serving numerous farms and has recently reported a 20% reduction in the flow to outreaching reservoirs during the last century. These are providing freshwater and hydropower to homes and have been impacted by the decrease in rainfall and snow to supply the river while warmer temperatures have added significantly to its reduced flow. (Advancing Earth and Space Science 2014).

With demand overshadowing supply the need to drill for groundwater has been brought to the forefront to replenish supply. During the period 2004 – 2013 the water drilled under the ground accounted for 50 km3 of the 65 km3 freshwater loss (Advancing Earth and Space Science 2014). There will be a greater focus on recycling water as the demand for freshwater increases. However there is always the risk of pollution. Pollution in freshwater consists of bacteria, organic matter, chemicals and salts and 80% of wastewater today goes untreated (UN Tackling global water pollution 2019).

In 2016 an assessment in Latin America, Africa and Asia exposed severe bacterial pollution in one in three of its rivers, one in seven had severe organic material and one in ten had severe salinity content (UN Tackling global water pollution 2019). There is a higher economic cost to treating water this way but our attitude to conserving water needs to change to recognise it as an essential natural resource that we need to survive.

Back in the UK and during the ‘big stink’ in London 1858 Sir Joseph Bazelgette was responsible for the creation of a brick Victorian sewerage system. The system could cope with 4 million people but due to huge present demand the sewer currently overflows into the Thames when it rains.

The Thames Tideway Tunnel which is a new 25 km super sewer system has reached the half way point of completion; hopefully completion in 2024 will replace the system currently in place. The project runs from the west to the east of London.

Ammonia and bacteria levels are affecting the river ecology by disrupting the balance between plant and animal life. The reduction of oxygen reduces fish population and bacteria levels can cause disease. There has been significant green space created and regenerated along the Thames during the project to counteract this issue. By this time you may ask how much this is costing? Well, £3.8 billion will be needed to complete the project, whilst another £1.1 billion was allocated for preparation work. All thanks to Thames Water customers.

So, in the future there needs to be less reliance on rainwater supplies and more consideration put into rethinking the ways to recycle water supplies to an increasing global population.

Resources

World Resources Institute 2020
www.wri.org/blog/2020/02/growth-domestic-water-use

Advancing Earth and Space Science 2014
agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/2014GL061055

UN Tackling global water pollution 2019
www.unenvironment.org/explore-topics/water/what-we-do/tackling-global-water-pollution

Advancing Earth and Space Science 2017
news.agu.org/press-release/colorado-river-flows-will-keep-shrinking-as-climate-warms/

Product Spotlight

Effective Thermal Disinfection at POU

By using the readily available system temperature hot water supply (>60C), the patented ILTDU, In-Line Thermal Disinfection Unit, from Horne Engineering facilitates the only effective thermal disinfection of showers, taps, TMVs, their associated pipe-work feeds, ancillary fittings, mixed water deadleg and terminal outlet fitting. In conjunction with high velocity flushing, which shears excess biofilm from internal pipework surfaces (and represents 95% of the water system’s total bio-load) thus improving water quality, regular operation of the ILTDU further aids the risk-management of retrograde pathogens, e.g. opportunistic Pseudomonas Aeruginosa, Non-Tuberculous Mycobacteria and others. http://b.link/Pathogen-Control

Baclyser® neo S sterile shower filter

The disposable point-of-use water shower filter with a service life of up to four months. As a CE-marked medical device this can be used in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes and wherever water filtration is important. The hollow fibre membrane with a proven retention efficiency of 7 log steps complies with the FDA definition of sterile filtered water. Unique RetroGuard concept: Maximum protection against retrograde contamination. Thanks to Metalskin Medical® as a coating at the jet disc an antibacterial efficacy is given at the outlet. Learn more: www.aqua-free.com/en

Xiveillance Remote Temperature Monitoring

Real-time monitoring for water systems and more; presenting essential compliance data at your fingertips. Know how often and for how long your outlets have reached their desired temperature. Get instant alerts for any non-compliant outlets. Drive efficiency and value with effective management of site visits and flushing regimes. Based on the latest low-powered IoT technologies. A credible, cost-effective, and money-saving alternative to a traditional BMS. Xiveillance.co.uk

Compliance. Complete.

Introducing the X-POT Compliance Pack - Controlled – Including our Easily Commissionable Pre-settable PICV removing the complexity of many PICV’s. - Maintainable – Our industry leading X-POT Side Stream Filter allows for Quick and Easy Maintenance without affecting system operation. - Monitored – Our Updated PD Monitor features MODBUS allowing you to monitor your X-POT Installations via your BMS systems. - Energy Efficiency – Supplied with our Custom Insulation Jackets. - Selection Made Simple – Our Compliance Packs are matched to our X-POT’s.

HM&V Utilities Ltd – Helping you stay compliant

HM&V Utilities Ltd are a LCA Registered Water Hygiene and Utility Specialist based the South of the UK. We provide comprehensive packages to help clients stay compliant with their obligations under current legislation and law. From the initial Risk Assessment to corrective remedial actions, we have you covered. We are LCA registered and ISO9001 accredited to carry out Legionella Risk Assessments, Cleaning and Disinfection services as well as Sampling & Analytical Services.

EndoSan Stabilised Hydrogen Peroxide Disinfectant

EndoSan is a stabilised hydrogen peroxide disinfectant with a broad spectrum of efficacy. Due to its unrivalled stability EndoSan is the ideal water disinfectant. EndoSan is proven to kill legionella bacteria and is a highly effective biofilm remover. No harmful by-products are formed in the disinfection process, instead EndoSan simply degrades into water and oxygen. EndoSan is a compelling alternative to chlorine-based disinfection products. Use disinfectants safely. Always read the label and product information before use.

Single Syringe Test Kit

The world’s fastest Legionella test! Get results on site for the strain of legionella that causes practically all legionnaires’ disease cases and outbreaks in only 25 minutes. On site results removes the risks associated with transportation of samples. Simple to use, no specialist training required. Why would you wait days for test results? Contact us at Wycombe Water a Hydrosense distributor.

Neptune Water Safety

Neptune is an enterprise-grade, web-based water safety monitoring system which uses discrete, wireless multi-probe thermocouple devices that are easily attached to water assets in order to help maintain the safety of an organisation’s water system. By continually monitoring and analysing temperatures and flow events over time, Neptune helps identify conditions likely to create harmful bacteria such as Legionella or cause freeze or scald risk, improving safety for building users.

PrimeLab Photometer

The PrimeLab photometer hand-held Bluetooth® device is expandable and portable, developed for ultimate flexibility for use in a range of water systems. With only one light source and the JENCOLOR multi-spectral sensor used exclusively in the PrimeLab, it is possible to measure all water parameters where the water sample is visibly discoloured after addition of a reagent. Key Features of PrimeLab Photometer: The first and only PrimeLab photometer with just 1 LED / 1 JENCOLOR sensor, covering the 400 wavelength (380nm-780nm). More than a 100 different parameters available. Activation of add-on parameters is possible even after purchase. Powerful PC-software and app with free cloud service. Creating reports and dosage recommendations by just a click, using your individual water treatment chemicals.

MM2050 - PT100 Thermometer

Four/three/two wire measurement, Max/min functions, Hold function, Dual display, °C/°F/°A selectable, Simultaneous display of real time and max/min/hold measurement, Self calibrating.