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WATER & WASTE TREATMENT INDUSTRY FOCUS


Mikael Khan, CTO at Arvia Technology, discusses the global water gap, and shows how the industry can begin to tackle the issue through the use of solutions that are able to treat water without the need for chemical dosing


P


ublic concern about the dangers of polluted water has never been more


prominent. From Blue Planet II to Sky’s Ocean Rescue, national campaigns have voiced public concerns about the legitimate problem of depleting water supplies. In alignment with the wider issue, there


is growing political will in the UK, and across the world, to tackle water pollution of all kinds, and the dangers it poses to the environment and public health. According to the 2030 Water Resources


Group, the global demand for water will outstrip supply by 60% in just 11 years time, meaning businesses and consumers must begin to tackle the problem. By its very nature, an issue of this


magnitude has no catch-all solution, however greater emphasis needs to be placed on the water management processes in order to avoid the inevitable. Wastewater discharged by businesses poses a threat to the environment as ppm level organics and micropollutants enter our waterways. Effective wastewater treatment at the


source can dramatically reduce the levels of such contaminants, leaving water safe for discharge into the environment. Businesses will help to alleviate the


potentially catastrophic effects of polluted wastewater and can also benefit financially from the environmental changes. Water used in manufacturing processes


in pharmaceutical, oil and gas, chemical and agricultural industries is often discharged into the environment rather than being reused. This has inadvertently created a demand


for technology which allows industries to effectively treat water, allowing it to be recycled for those same manufacturing processes. By reusing water in a closed-loop system, rather than sourcing new ‘raw’ water, businesses can help reduce the consumption of our finite clean water reserves. Against the backdrop of an increasingly concerned public, effective wastewater


BALANCING THE SCALES TO REDUCE THE GAP


The onus now falls on businesses to reassess their wastewater treatment processes to ensure they are using the most environmentally-friendly and cost-effective options, such as the Nyex solution


treatment can improve a business’ sustainability, along with improving their reputation. Although water treatment offers one


part of an overall solution to reducing the water gap, the process itself comes with drawbacks and limitations which require careful consideration. For example, you would assume that any process designed to treat wastewater would be inherently beneficial to the environment, however this is not the case. Startlingly, many


Mikael Khan is CTO at Arvia Technology, a provider of advanced tertiary water and wastewater treatment systems


commonly used tertiary wastewater treatment processes such as Ozone with Hydrogen Peroxide and Fentons use large doses of chemicals to eradicate ppm level organics. These chemicals bring


‘Solutions now exist which allow


pollutants to be selectively targeted without the creation of a toxic by- product’


with them a unique set of environmental challenges. ‘Chemical dosing’ can produce a toxic


sludge as a by-product which requires transportation and specialist secondary treatment. Unsurprisingly, it also comes at a high price. This has created a demand for more economical and environmentally-friendly solutions, as in most cases, these processes are not sustainable long-term options.


Solutions now exist which allow pollutants to be selectively targeted without creating a toxic by-product. Arvia’s Nyex solution combines adsorption with electrochemical oxidation to provide an alternative solution to treat water without chemical dosing. Chemical compounds are selectively targeted, adsorbed and oxidised, leaving the wastewater stream safe for discharge


/ PROCESS&CONTROL


to the sewer or the environment. When some of the most problematic organics are adsorbed onto the surface of a specific granular Nyex adsorbent and then exposed to a carefully regulated electrical current, electrochemical oxidation occurs. By alleviating the necessity for chemical dosing, businesses can reduce costs in terms of transportation of chemicals and specialist waste disposal. Conveniently, the system capable of effecting these changes can ‘bolt-on’ to a conventional water resource recovery facility, requiring minimal manpower and only occasional replenishment or


maintenance. Rather


than treating the whole body of water,


organisations can now be more selective, targeting the


problematic compounds with smaller operating costs. The versatility of the unit means it can


be modified to suit specific treatment requirements for reuse or effluent discharge. Ultimately, ensuring water quality for


this and future generations will necessitate collaboration between governments, industry and water treatment providers. Water treatment which facilitates water reuse is one segment of a widespread issue which needs to be tackled by governments, businesses and consumers alike. Working in unison, the water gap can be reduced, balancing the scales between demand and supply.


Arvia Technology www.arviatechnology.com


PROCESS & CONTROL | MARCH 2019 23


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