As the world grows and the climate changes, the demands, and stresses placed upon the water and wastewater industry and infrastructure that powers it increases with each passing year. Avoiding lapses in productivity is detrimental to longevity, and avoiding these growing pains is vital to success.
Implementing innovative solutions for the water and wastewater industry will provide the groundwork for establishing a successful and reliable business model moving forward, tackling common challenges that are currently plaguing the industry.
Frequent Challenges within the Water and Wastewater Industry
At the core of the water and wastewater industry is an aging infrastructure falling further into disrepair or inadequate maintenance. As this infrastructure continues to grow older, additional problems may arise, including:
- Breakdown in System Resilience – As infrastructure breaks down, services are more unreliable. In such a vital industry, problems in reliability can spell even greater problems in industries relying on the successful and reliable treatment of water, such as agriculture.
- Higher Operating Costs – As infrastructure and vital systems age, the equipment and systems themselves become far less efficient than they had been previously. Without proper efficiency, costs of operation will continue to rise for your company.
- Larger Environmental Footprint – As an increasing emphasis is placed on environmental protection, aging infrastructures will prove problematic. Inefficient systems will use much more energy and won’t produce the highest quality water to users.
Aging infrastructure and unreliable systems can put upward pressure on costs, reduce operational efficiency, and even cause failures in specific systems. Other common challenges experienced within the water industry include:
- Rising population growth and higher demand
- Rising energy costs
- Skill shortage and an aging workforce
Rising Population Growth
As the world population closes in on 8 billion people, urbanization is also rising, with over 55% of people choosing to live in cities rather than rural areas. This creates a far greater demand for reliable, treated water and improved wastewater system management than ever before.
As demand continues to rise, this can:
- Put higher strain on aging systems
- Require improved production capabilities
- Demand higher levels of efficiencies and reliability
Higher demand from population centers will impact your business, but agricultural systems will also require greater quantities of water to keep up with demand.
Rising Energy Costs
Another major issue correlated with a rising global population is the increased strain and demand for energy. As energy demand increases, the cost of obtaining energy increases as well. Many municipal governments have estimated that water treatment facilities account for 30 to 40% of total energy consumed in any given area.
Industrial power costs have also increased, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Your company can offset these costs by increasing systems’ efficiency and cutting energy consumption by up to 30% in some circumstances.
A significant skill shortage will occur due to an aging workforce, and no sound replacement looms on the horizon for the water and wastewater industry.
As the present workforce ages out, this can lead to:
- Considerably higher labor costs to attract workers
- Significant drops in productivity
- Disruptions in service
- Lack of necessary maintenance and skill needed to keep systems operational
Solving Identified Industry Challenges with Innovative Solutions
Those in the water and wastewater industry consistently struggle with the lack of capital required to buy new equipment, poor maintenance of existing equipment, the ever-present aging workforce, and a changing climate. That’s why ensuring your systems are as up-to-date as possible is crucial to ensure that services remain in check.
Countering industry challenges requires innovations that lead to:
- More efficient/reliable production
- Lower operating costs
- Less energy dependency
By integrating the following innovations, your business can ensure higher efficiency, reliability, and quality rates to meet the increasing demand for water services
- Flow Measurement
- Radar solutions
- Gas detection
- Vibration monitoring
- Pressure solutions
- Wireless monitoring
Investing in Innovation Today Reduces the Challenges of Tomorrow
The water and wastewater industry is one of the most competitive markets in the world. You can’t afford to wait to innovate. You have to push the technology envelope and be the first to market. Don’t let your competitors come to you with innovations that you pay for later. Instead, invest in innovation today, and reap the benefits tomorrow.
Learn more today about how your company can meet new and existing challenges with the proper instrumentation and application solutions.