21 march 2017

Veolia will be at the centre of World Water Day 2017 on the theme of “Wastewater, an untapped resource”

Tomorrow, on World Water Day, the United Nations will present its annual report entitled "Wastewater: The Untapped Resource" in Durban, South Africa. The event will be an opportunity for Veolia to highlight its expertise in wastewater treatment and recycling, serving cities, populations and industry.

World Water Day 2017
Antoine Frérot

According to Antoine Frérot, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Veolia, “insufficient hygiene linked to a lack of sanitation is the leading cause of mortality and disease worldwide. On a global scale around 1.8 billion people drink polluted water, the cause of 842,000 deaths each year. The decision to make wastewater treatment the theme of this year’s United Nations World Water Day is excellent news. It is recognition by the international community of the public health and environmental protection issues associated with collecting and treating wastewater.

In Durban, South Africa, Veolia recycles 98% of the city’s wastewater, which is then re-injected into the production processes of several local industries. This system reduces new water withdrawals from the environment and increases the amount of drinking water for its inhabitants by 40,000 m3 per day (equivalent to 11 Olympic swimming pools).

Veolia recycles wastewater across the world

Worldwide, 63 million inhabitants are connected to a sanitation system by Veolia which manages 3,303 wastewater treatment plants and recycles 371,500,000 m3 per year.
Recycling wastewater creates new uses:
  • in Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates), the Group recycles 300,000 m3 of wastewater every day for irrigation and watering;
  • in Marseilles (France), Veolia recovers the heat in the city’s wastewater to heat the famous Cercle des Nageurs swimming pools to 27°C; 
  • in Milwaukee (United States), wastewater is recovered to produce 50,000 tonnes of fertilizer per year; 
  • in Tianjin (China), 30% of the Tianjin Soda plant wastewater is reused in its cooling systems;
  • in Tarbes (France), the reuse of wastewater allows the production of cereals (maize, barley);
  • in Windhoek (Namibia), 35% of drinking water (21,000 m3 per day) consumed by the population is produced thanks to recycled municipal wastewater.

More :

World Water Day on 22 March
Veolia’s water management expertise
> “Durban reuses wastewater!” on Veolia’s climate blog
Press release: Wastewater - Durban-Paris, March 20, 2017