Published in: 2015
International Water Association (IWA), London, United Kingdom
Holmgren, K. E. et al.
Increasing population growth leads to increased resource (water, food, chemicals and energy) demand. Concomitantly, increasing volumes of ‘used resources’, commonly considered waste, are produced. There is a growing awareness that the resources that could be potentially recovered from these used streams or wastes represent economic value and should not be lost. One of the greatest challenges is pursuing sustainable and economically responsible management of all resources, primary as well as used ones.
In this context, the resources present in 'used water' deserve to receive fresh attention. Indeed, some of them (including energy and phosphorous) have already become of interest. Yet overall, the feeling that 'making the things which are present in used water dissipate, or disappear as much as possible' is still the safest and economic line of work. This is particularly so for waters contaminated with faecal matter. The cultural 'disgust' towards unhygienic matter is certainly founded on longterm sanitation practices. Nevertheless, as we are entering an era of cyclic economy that is aware of the need for integrated sustainability, it is important for the International Water Association (IWA) to demonstrate its commitment to resource recovery, in all aspects. The creation of a specific cluster over arching all specialist groups in the IWA is demonstrative of th is willingness to act. This compendium aims to provide a preliminary assemblage of what can be on the agenda or could become of critical importance to get things going. The subsequent chapters thus try to raise awareness of the issues involved, and are particularly meant to activate readers from different backgrounds towards the conceptual but also pragmatic approaches of "cleantech" in the water business.
Holmgren, K. E. et al. (2015). State of the art compendium report on resource recovery from water. International Water Association (IWA), London, United Kingdom
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