Aquatech Amsterdam showcases industrial action on water sustainability

Leading industries, including household names like Shell, Total and Nestlé, shared their successes in implementing sustainable water use at the 2017 Aquatech Amsterdam exhibition. Companies across the key segments of oil and gas, food and beverage, paper, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals inspired others with practical examples of how to better manage water in ways that benefit the environment and make business sense.

After its successful introduction in 2015, the Industrial User Experience programme returned to Aquatech Amsterdam, providing an opportunity for audiences to hear about the challenges of undertaking changes in the way industries use water first-hand.

Building on the success of 2015
“We introduced the Industrial User Experience in 2015 and received great feedback. Industries are more and more aware of the critical impact of how they manage water resources. They are seeing the value in sharing experiences and learning from each other by participating in the Industrial User Experience, and it provides an opportunity for exhibitors to connect with these end users,” Marieke Leenhouts, Exhibition Manager for Aquatech Amsterdam, said. “The Amsterdam International Water Week includes attention to industry, especially at the strategic level. The Industrial User Experience complements this with its practical and technical focus.”

Water reuse progress in the oil & gas sector
Projects that featured in the Industrial User Experience programme included, for example, a water reuse scheme at the Tarragona petrochemical plant of Dow Chemical Company. Cooling tower water for the site had been drawn from the river there, but a major reuse scheme has allowed a partial switch to use of reclaimed municipal wastewater instead.

“Water stress is expected to increase over the coming decades and companies will need to move to a more circular use of resources such as water. One aim of this presentation is to help give confidence to others that they can use reclaimed water in this way,” Dr Jordi Bacardit of Dow Water & Process Solutions, and who gave a presentation on the Tarragona project, said. “The circular economy approach in water management is a necessity. My presentation will help show that it is possible.”

Industry as a driver of innovation
“In my experience, industry takes much more risk with innovation, solely based on a sound business case, compared to the municipal sector,” Professor Cees Buisman, Scientific Director of Wetsus, Aquatech’s partner for the Industrial User Experience, commented. “Industry is often a more important generator of innovation, meaning the Industrial User Experience is an ideal feature for an event that is a global platform for water innovation.”