Automation in Water & Wastewater

Increased automation helps water & wastewater industry improve business processes

ARC believes that the water & wastewater industry represents one of the greatest opportunities for the automation business through the next 20 years. Throughout much of the developed world, including North America, Western Europe, and Japan, the existing water & wastewater infrastructure is aging rapidly and often suffering from neglect.

UntitledAccording to ARC’s recent reportAutomation Expenditures for Water & Wastewater Industry Global Market Research Study”, automation expenditures in the water & wastewater industry will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.8 percent over the next five years. The study team for this study includes Allen Avery, G. Ganapathiraman, David Clayton, and Piyush Dewangan. According to Allen Avery, Senior Analyst and co-author of this study, “Both developed and developing regions are seeing improving economies and thus are looking to either upgrade or install new water and wastewater treatment and distribution systems.”

In addition to market analysis and forecasts, the study covers the current market nuances, strategic issues, and the future outlook. The report also highlights the factors that influence the global water & wastewater market and its dynamics.

The Energy-Water Nexus
Water is not only essential for producing fossil fuels and for generating electricity from both conventional and non-conventional energy sources; water withdrawal, treatment, and distribution are all highly energy-intensive activities.

On the energy supply side, water is critical for developing the increasingly important, non-conventional oil and gas resources (such as shale gas and oil sands), for growing biomass for biofuels, and for cooling electric power generating plants.

On the energy consumption side, transporting and treating water are both highly energy-intensive activities, requiring a significant amount of water to operate pumps, motors, and filtration systems.

Automation Suppliers Can Help Utilities to Overcome Challenges
Strategic planning for water & wastewater infrastructure investments and transitioning the operation and management of existing assets to incorporate new advances in technology is critical. Challenges and issues the water & wastewater industry must address include:

  • Aging infrastructure and increased demand for water supply
  • Inadequate and/or ineffective wastewater infrastructure in many parts of the world
  • Funding for large projects during periods of economic uncertainty
  • Privatization and public/private partnerships (PPP) require efficient transition of legacy systems to meet new demands from all stakeholders
  • Increasing concern over security issues
  • Increasing demands upon the aging, shrinking, internal workforceAutomation suppliers can play a major role in providing solutions to overcome the above challenges.
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