South Africa launches water recycling project

A demonstration project on water recycling in Robertson, the South African region famous for its wineries, will explore the possibilities of water reuse in a dry area where water is scarce.

A demonstration project on water recycling in Robertson, the South African region famous for its wineries, will explore the possibilities of water reuse in a dry area where water is scarce. NORIT NV, based in Hengelo, The Netherlands, will map water flows of wineries in the area of Robertson and advise on ways to reduce water consumption. NORIT plans to promote the use of grey water for sanitation but not for drinking water purposes. The company will also realise pilot plants where wastewater is treated by membrane technology to reuse water for wine production and irrigation.

The project forms part of the South African-Netherlands co-operation OnWater management program, set up by the Department of Water Affairs (SANOW) and Forestry of South Africa and the Frisian Water Alliance of the Netherlands. SANOW goals are to demonstrate and promote water conservation and water demand management in South Africa to stimulate social and economic development.

The wine industry, one of the most important industries in South Africa, demands large amounts of water for production. Until now, valuable drinking water is used in several stages of the production process and a lot of wastewater is consequently produced. Most of this untreated effluent is being used for irrigation. New legislation forbids this method and demands treatment of this effluent.

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