There’s an increasing need to treat and manage more water. This is as a result of tightening environmental regulations and growing human populations across the globe. Not only do we need more drinking for consumption, but it also takes a lot of water to handle all of the crops and livestock needed to feed us all. In addition to these problems, mining takes huge amounts of water and results in wastewater that requires filtration to become useful and less harmful.
What do the water filtration companies need to do to grow in this kind of market? A report published by Global Water Intelligence reviewed the existing trends and explored in detail the technology gaps that are opening up opportunities for new solutions in all water filtration markets.
The market for industrial water is the fastest growing area of the global water market, according to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization. The market for industrial water treatment technology alone is set to expand by more than 50% over the course of the next few years. It's estimated to grow from around $7 billion in 2015 to over $11 billion in the year 2020.
This industrial sector is seen as a more dynamic group than the conservative utility market. The water technology companies will find major opportunities in the market if they can solve the problems of industrial water users. They can accomplish this by coming up with more cost-effective, innovative solutions that will improve efficiency.
Food and Oil Industries
The report also found that the upstream oil/gas and food/beverage industries will lead the way when it comes to capital spending on water, as well as wastewater treatment technologies. These three major industries will account for more than half of the total water treatment spending.
The market for the oil industry is set to double to $4.5 billion in 2020, dependent upon the recovery of oil prices. This will help create opportunities for desalination technologies because of the need for enhanced oil recovery methods. It will also help deal with challenging wastewater streams for zero liquid discharge.
In the food and beverage industry, researchers are developing anaerobic treatment technologies that are more efficient and easier to operate. This technology is something that industrial facility operators can use to take advantage of gas productions as well as reduce energy costs.
Innovations in Water Treatment Technologies
Much of the innovation in these treatment technologies is occurring in the area of dissolved solids removal. This is in an attempt to improve the efficiency of the reverse osmosis process. These technologies will attempt to reduce energy use and deal with the high TDS (total dissolved solids) water of RO waste from unconventional oil and gas wells.
There will also be strong growth in technologies that allow industrial users to make use of marginal sources of water like reused wastewater. This will benefit companies facing tough discharge regulations, such as miners.
With all of the technological advancements, there will be increased investment in biological processes for the removal of non-organic substances such as selenium compounds, mostly from FGD (flue gas desulfurization) wastewater in the power and mining industries.
UV radiation and ozonation will also see a strong growth, while advanced oxidation processes will occupy a niche market. Particular applications will be created for supercritical water oxidation in refining as well as catalytic oxidation in upstream oil and gas.
While some of these technological advancements may take longer than others, they are all sure to make the water that flows into your home and business the cleanest that it can be all while making the process more energy efficient overall. It will also help reduce water pollution that comes from industrialized runoff.
Here, Advanced Water Solutions has gone over some of the more technologically advanced water filtration methods on the horizon. If you’re also interest in learning about some of the oldest water systems in history, check out AWS’s blog here!