Wastewater as a resource

Context- Recently, a report prepared by Global Wastewater Initiative (GWWI), a global platform bringing together UN agencies, NGOs, the private sector etc. to tackle wastewater pollution,
“Wastewater – 
Turning Problem to Solution” was released.
 • This report follows up on the Sick Water report from 2011 and aims to address the urgent need for sustainable water and wastewater management.
What is Wastewater?

 • Wastewater refers to water that has been used and contaminated through various human activities, such as domestic, industrial, or agricultural processes. Key Messages of the Report
• Wastewater reuse could supply more than ten times the current global desalination
• To unlock this potential, public perceptions and concerns about wastewater resource recovery and reuse must change.
• Elevating wastewater reuse in international policy is crucial to addressing climate, nature, and pollution crises.
• The huge potential of wastewater: It could serve as an alternative energy source for up to half a billion people, reduce global fertilizer use by over 10%, and irrigate around 40 million hectares of land.
• Raw source for Industries: Wastewater can be a source of raw materials for various industries, including paper, polymers, pesticides, rubber, paint, biodiesel, food additives, and more, contributing to economic and environmental sustainability

The Issues

• Improper wastewater management is a global challenge, exacerbated by population growth, urbanization, and climate change.
• By 2030, domestic and municipal wastewater production is estimated to rise by 24-38%
• Only 11% of domestic and industrial wastewater is currently being reused, indicating
untapped potential.
• Untreated wastewater remains a significant issue, with approximately 50% of it entering
the environment.
• Vulnerable groups, especially women and children, are disproportionately affected bypoor wastewater management.
• Sustainable wastewater management offers co-benefits like improved environmental and human health, reduced dependence on synthetic fertilizers, and energy
• Barriers to wastewater resource recovery include inadequate political support,governance issues, data deficits, financing challenges, and cultural perceptions