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Three examples of wastewater reuse after reed bed treatment, Dubai, Industrial Zone - Case study of sustainable sanitation projects

Sievert, W., Schlick, J. (2009)

Published in: 2009

Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA)

Sievert, W., Schlick, J.

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Content - Summary

This case study discusses three examples of treatment and reuse of wastewater in commercial buildings (workshops, offices, car washing...etc) in Dubai.

Waagner Biro Gulf is a construction company specialized in steel, bridge and marine constructions with a special branch for environmental technologies, and has demonstrated innovative solutions in the field of closed loop wastewater treatment to its clients in different settings.

The main aims of a range of different projects are:
• Demonstration of generally applicable wastewater reuse options for private companies and municipalities in sub-tropical, arid climates.
• Climate-specific testing of reed bed treatment for greywater (reed beds are a specific type of constructed wetland, see Section 5), sludge dewatering with reed beds and sub-surface drip irrigation with pre-treated blackwater.

A qualitative sustainability assessment is provided below:
• Technical sustainability: As described above, the treatment results are even better than in colder climates. Once started, the system does not need additives, has low energy input and requires little maintenance.
• Ecological sustainability: Beyond the practical issues related to wastewater treatment, a reed bed system does consume only little energy but saves natural resources, it produces biomass as valuable by-product, it can serve as biotope and – because it is clearly visible - it often raises awareness concerning the subject of wastewater.
• Financial sustainability: Preconditions for the system are an available area of a certain size, some design and coordination efforts in the beginning to adapt the solution to the particular context, and an investment comparable to a conventional activated sludge treatment plant (for this region and for sizes up to 15,000 people). The cost benefits become evident after some years through power saving and low maintenance. Hence, a mid term financial perspective is necessary to compare possible solutions.

As long as ecological education and awareness as well as consideration of macro-economical terms are not sufficiently developed on the decision making levels, the most powerful means to support sustainable systems are political and legislative regulations.

Bibliographic information

Sievert, W., Schlick, J. (2009). Three examples of wastewater reuse after reed bed treatment, Dubai, Industrial Zone - Case study of sustainable sanitation projects. Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA)

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Case studies in SuSanA template Constructed wetlands English Greywater or wastewater Middle East & North Africa Urban (entire city)


Three examples of wastewater reuse after reed bed treatment, Dubai, Industrial Zone

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