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Rapid Population Growth & Urbanization and Stringent Water Treatment Regulations

   July 29, 2022

Government regulations regarding the treatment and disposal of wastewater are becoming increasingly stringent. Numerous wastewater treatment chemical solutions, such as the removal of solid particles, pH adjustment, odor control, disinfection, foam prevention & removal, and sludge removal, are used to meet regulations and industry standards for chemical effluents and pollutants. The utilization of water and wastewater treatment chemicals is on the rise due to growing environmental concerns and the increasing prevalence of waterborne diseases, such as amoebiasis, giardiasis, and toxoplasmosis. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 80% of diseases worldwide are waterborne. According to the WHO, in up to 33% of India’s 600 districts, the water available is deemed unfit for drinking, with dangerous levels of fluoride, iron, salinity, and arsenic. About 65 million people suffer from fluorosis, a crippling disease caused by excess fluoride. The condition is commonly found in the Rajasthan state in northern India.

Moreover, according to Washington DC-based World Resources Institute’s World Resources Report, 70% of India’s water supply is polluted. The United Nations also ranked India’s water 120th among 122 nations in terms of the quality of water available for human consumption. In response to such concerns, governments of various countries are undertaking initiatives. For instance, in April 2019, The World Bank implemented the initiative ‘Wastewater: From Waste to Resource’ in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC). This initiative aims to increase the reclamation and utilization of wastewater, underscoring the potential public health and environmental benefits of smarter wastewater management.

Global population growth, particularly in metropolitan areas, continues to be a key driver of industrial development. In the next 40 years, metropolitan areas, particularly developing regions, are expected to account for most global population expansion. As populations become more centralized, urbanization increases the burden on water resources. Development-driven increases in per capita water use boost the demand for water and increase the pressure on the local water supply. According to the United Nations World Water Development Report, nearly 6 billion people are anticipated to lack access to potable water by 2050 due to the increasing demand for freshwater, a reduction in water resources, and increasing water pollution, driven by dramatic population and economic growth.

Regulations governing wastewater treatment and disposal are becoming more stringent. The EU’s Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive’s primary goal is to safeguard the environment from the damaging impacts of wastewater discharges. Rivers, lakes, estuaries, transitional waters, coastal waters, and groundwater are all protected by the Water Framework Directive (2000/60/EC), which has also established a framework for doing so. It strives to ensure that all bodies of surface water are in good chemical and ecological condition and show little evidence of the effects of human activity. As a result of rising industrialization, population growth, and urbanization, the demand for wastewater treatment is increasing, driving the growth of the global water and wastewater treatment chemicals market.

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