Water is life. An average person can survive up to three weeks without food, but only four days to one week without water.
Every day, we use 10 billion tonnes of freshwater worldwide – and about four trillion cubic metres of freshwater globally every year, according to figures by The World Counts.
We use this much water, even though the Earth’s freshwater supply is only about 3%, the rest being ocean water. And not all that freshwater supply is available for human consumption – about 2.6% is locked in glaciers and snowfields, or polluted and unfit for human consumption, leaving us with approximately 0.4% of accessible freshwater to share with 7.6 billion people on the planet.
Additionally, aggravating factors such as rising population, accelerated urbanisation, climate change, water scarcity, pollution and energy generation are putting further pressure on our dwindling freshwater supply.
By 2050, the demand for water will increase by one-third, according to the United Nations.
The World Bank estimated that 70% of our freshwater supply is used for agriculture, and by 2050, there will be nine billion people to feed, requiring a 50% increase in agricultural production and a 15% increase in water withdrawals.
All these numbers tell one thing – our freshwater supply is very limited, but our global population and demand for water is growing. How can we then cope?
Implement the circular economy system in water consumption
The way we consume our water resources should change – from the traditional linear model to a circular water system, where wastewater is also viewed as a resource.
In his 2015 article for McKinsey, entitled Rethinking the Water Cycle, water management expert Martin Stuchtey advocated that water should be integrated in a circular economy, “where it retains full value after each use and eventually returns to the system.”
He added that the focus should not only be on water purification, but also on preventing contamination and creating a closed loop system where water can be circulated and repeatedly used. Stuchtey served as director at McKinsey’s Munich office and led the McKinsey Center for Business and Environment at the time of the article’s publication.
The International Water Association (IWA) echoes the same insight – the water pathway should follow a closed loop system with different water quality options for specific uses. For example, clean water for human use, greywater for irrigation, and wastewater for energy generation.
To enable this, existing water systems must be re-engineered to prevent water loss, pollution, waste and misuse throughout the cycle.
How Visionscape’s Water and Wastewater Treatment Solutions Support Circular Water Systems
Our water and wastewater treatment solutions at Visionscape facilitate and promote water recycling and reuse, thus helping to reduce dependence on freshwater supply and ensuring water is fully maximised as a resource throughout its life cycle.
We continue to explore the latest technologies and advancements in water treatment to provide market-leading solutions to the communities we serve.
Our range of water treatment solutions also uphold our commitment to realising our Sustainable Development Goals:
Goal 6 – Clean Water & Sanitation
More than 80% of wastewater resulting from human activities is discharged into rivers or seas without any pollution removal. Ensuring access to safe and affordable drinking water for all by 2030 requires we invest in adequate infrastructure, provide sanitation facilities, and encourage hygiene at every level.
Goal 12 – Responsible Consumption & Production
Achieving economic growth and sustainable development requires that we urgently reduce our ecological footprint by changing the way we produce and consume goods and resources. The efficient management of our shared natural resources, and the way we dispose of toxic waste and pollutants, are important targets to achieve this goal. Encouraging industries, businesses and consumers to recycle and reduce waste is equally important, as is supporting developing countries to move towards more sustainable patterns of consumption by 2030.
Visionscape aims to substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse in our servicing communities, and ensuring people have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development and lifestyles in harmony with nature.
The water and wastewater treatment solutions of Visionscape are geared towards the responsible and sustainable sourcing, distribution, use, disposal and treatment of water as a valuable resource.
As a multifaceted environmental utility conglomerate, our goal is simple: To push for the wide adoption of circular water systems while preventing water waste and pollution, in order to preserve our limited water resources for future generations.