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Self-Inflicted Water Shortage

Water is the most precious resource on earth! Water is the key ingredient to everything, whether it is to grow, manufacture, consumed, clean, or anything else, it cannot be performed without water. Despite 71% of the earth being covered by water, only 3% is fresh water, which can be used for the aforementioned uses. Various technological advancements have been made to utilize the remaining 97% of seawater. Israel among other nations has developed state-of-the-art desalination technologies, which can transform seawater into drinking water. Our focus during this article will however remain at the 3% of freshwater that we have as a planet. We further narrow our investigation beyond wastewater, greywater, or any other untreated water. We focus on drinking water going to waste through leaks, bursts, or any other impaired infrastructure resulting in losses of water, also known as Non-Revenue Water (NRW).

Non-Revenue Water (NRW) is the percentage of water on which municipalities do not generate revenue. Thus, this can be described as water lost through leaks in infrastructure and broken and burst pipes- resulting from negligence in the maintenance of infrastructure, sabotage of infrastructure, and natural disasters among other causes. nevertheless, a lack of maintenance is the main cause.

Repercussions of infrastructure negligence:

When considering the repercussions of burst pipes or leaks, it is important to differentiate between heterogeneous countries. When considering the UK, utilities get very large penalties per liter of water that goes to waste through bursts or leaks. One utility accumulated £32 million in fines over the course of 4 years, for leaks, bursts, and other sewage pollution-related reasons.

Another approach to the costs of non-revenue water is to pass the cost on to the consumer or the end user of the water. Thus, consumers see the price of water as higher than the actual cost of water due to the NRW cost which is incorporated into the total price that consumers pay.

Further, it is essential to note that nothing happens in isolation. Every drop of water that goes to waste, reached the leak or burst pipe through energy-intensive pumps transporting the water over long distances. Thus, if your NRW figure is up to 40%, it means that the utility’s electricity bill is also 40% higher than it should be in the absence of leaks! Further, taxes are also levied on the NRW, increasing the cost of the water.

Therefore, a reduction in the levels of NRW will vastly decrease the cost of water, due to the water and electrical cost encapsulated in the cost of the water. We started this article by emphasizing the importance and the multi-discipline application of water, which entails a reduction in the cost of water that will lead to an increase in the standard of living. Considering the marginal cost of NRW, we examine the current empirical global and regional cost of NRW.

A Global View on Non-Revenue Water (NRW):  

The global volume of NRW has been estimated to be 346 million cubic meters per day or 126 billion cubic meters per year. Conservatively valued at only $0.31 per cubic meter, the cost/value of water lost amounts to $39 billion per year (Liemberger & Wyatt:2019). This roughly equates to the annual Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the South American country of Paraguay.

Based on these figures caused by the laxity of maintenance, it is visible that deteriorating water infrastructure is a problem, however, deteriorating infrastructure is not an exclusive phenomenon. Water leaks can be observed on all continents. NRW in North America accumulated between 20% and 30% (Xylem: 2022). NRW in China, adds up to 20%, whereas in Western Europe averages between 10% and 40% (AVK:2017).

We observe that NRW is not limited to one country or one continent. Next, in our investigation, we scrutinize Africa. NRW in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is around 14 million cubic meters per day. This totaled an astonishing amount of $1.4 billion per year. As mentioned before, nothing happens in isolation. SSA is already facing vast water limitations. 1 in 3 Africans face water scarcity, this is approximately 400 million people. Reducing the NRW in SSA can already make a substantial difference in the stride to achieving Sustainable development goal (SDG) 6: Clean water and sanitation.

Non-Revenue Water (NRW) is not the eschaton. 

Various countries successfully turned around the deterrent. The city of Manilla, the capital of the Philippines, triumphantly reduced its NRW in the city from 63% down to 11% in 16 years. Our second example focuses on the Middle Eastern nation of Israel. Situated in the middle of a desert. Israel is soon to obtain 90% of its water supply through seawater desalination. Further, 80% of wastewater produced by households is recycled. Thus, water is not wasted in Israel. This is further reflected in the total NRW which was reduced by 75% in 6 years, from 8% to 2%.

In conclusion, we review the disruptive Israeli technologies that enabled this vast reduction in NRW:

Aquarius Spectrum – Aquarius Spectrum develop acoustic solutions that enable water utilities to perform proactive monitoring of their underground assets and detect background leaks in their initial stages of development and repair the leaks before they surface and cause serious damage, Aquarius also assess the real condition of the pipes. These solutions are based on sensitive fixed and mobile sensors with advanced correlating algorithms, which can be applied to all types of pipes.

Takadu – TaKaDu’s new predictive maintenance solution facilitates greater efficiency across the network, identifying areas that are not performing as well, and recommending ways to bring them up to standard. By using data from better-performing areas, TaKaDu can assist you to prioritize leak detection surveys and detect faulty assets before they emerge as events in the TaKaDu system.

Utilis – Using algorithms that have been fine-tuned with the power of AI and machine learning to recognize the signatures of water leaking from different systems, Utilis provides likely leak locations as a subscription. Compared to current leak detection services and methods, recover satellite-based leak detection technology not only identifies more leaks, it increases field crew efficiency by up to 400%!

Curapipe System – Curapipe developed the patented Trenchless Automated Leakage Repair (TALR), which is a solution for rapid bulk reduction of unsustainable leakage levels. It is designed to work along with ongoing active leakage management services and works well with installed network pressure reduction systems. Curapipe’s TALR is an internal pipeline leakage repair solution for multiple leaks in water distribution networks. TALR is especially well suited for pipelines with substantial leakage from multiple sources of leaks. TALR is suitable for a wide range of pipe materials and as a standalone system. Once launched into the treated pipe section, it self-detects water leaks and automatically seals and cures them.

Wint – WINT delivers water intelligence solutions intending to allow enterprises to manage their water effectively so they can reduce consumption, eliminate waste, prevent water leak damage, and reduce their environmental footprint. WINT utilizes the power of artificial intelligence, signal processing, auto-shutoff valves, and IoT technologies. The company’s solutions monitor water flows to detect anomalies, leaks, and waste and to deliver real-time insights and alerts when issues are detected.

We conclude this article by referring to the silver lining which exists in the funding of Non-Revenue Water solutions. Leak detection technologies save money from the commissioning of the technology, by less water going to waste. Therefore, instead of losing money due to leaks, you spend that money on technologies that stop leaks, preserve water, and combats water shortages, ultimately contributing positively to the accomplishment of the 6th SDG.

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Israel – a hot country helping to cool the planet

There is no avoiding the issue of climate change and imperatively, the issue is being increasingly prioritized on the international agenda. In May of this year, a new study led by the Weizmann Institute of Science concluded that storms in the Southern Hemisphere have already reached intensity levels previously predicted to occur only in the year 2080. In short, the report indicated, worryingly, that the Earth’s climate is changing even faster than predicted.

Much needs to be done globally. In Israel, the climate issue has always been a consideration. Its arid climate and shortage of natural resources forced Israel to be creative in the spheres of energy and water management. Since the 1950’s solar panels have been used to heat water in close to 90% of homes while the country’s water revolution was accomplished through a combination of national water conservation campaigns, reusing water for agricultural purposes, and the construction of energy-efficient desalination plants.

As they have done in other sectors, such as water and cybersecurity, Israeli policymakers and industries collaborated, not only to tackle challenges, but also to stimulate industry sector evolution by supporting innovation, growing indigenous companies, and ultimately creating solutions for the domestic market and global export. The significant report: Israel’s State of Climate Tech 2021 by the Israel Innovation Authority and PLANETTech – a nonprofit innovation community for climate change technologies – reaffirmed this collaborative commitment. 

Today, according to Startup Nation Central, Israel is home to more than 700 companies that offer “ClimateTech” solutions that transcend many sectors such as Manufacturing, Construction, Alternative Food, Agriculture, Transport and Mobility, and Water. Among those are companies such as: 

Electriq~Global has developed a fuel that comprises 60% water. The company’s process technology extracts hydrogen from liquid fuel, which is then harnessed to create electricity to power vehicles.

Tomorrow – whose technology aims to democratize access to global weather forecasting and enable organizations to prepare for and mitigate the business impact of weather.

ECOncrete- which produces bio-enhancing concrete technology that supports biodiversity, and carbon storage, and offers superior structural performance to any concrete marine infrastructure. 

Electreon- is a leading provider of wireless charging solutions and end-to-end electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure to global partners, regional municipalities, Departments of Transportation, and fleet operators. Electron currently operates a first-of-a-kind wireless Electric Road and stationary charging station in Tel Aviv.

In addition to this, many multinational companies, such as Mercedes Benz, Asos, Hitachi, and Uber are partnering with Israeli climate-tech solutions companies, further amplifying their impact around the world. 

This type of global interaction and cooperation is essential and it can also offer economic and technological development and opportunity. To quote President Issac Herzog, who launched the Israeli Climate Forum earlier this year; “The global climate crisis is here with full force, and it is getting worse. We have a mighty mission, and we will rise to it only if we work together, in an Israeli partnership, in a Middle Eastern partnership, and a partnership of all of humanity.”

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UET – Water Treatment Technology

UET (Universal Environmental Technologies) is an engineering and manufacturing company, specialising in the treatment of water without chemical additives.

UET uses the natural attributes of water to correct a variety of industrial water issues, such as scaling, corrosion, heavy metals build-up, bio-contamination and brackish water treatment.

UET works with major industrial companies across multiple sectors worldwide, including Siemens, Soda Stream and Unilever. They currently have installed over 4,000 units worldwide, and hold 8 patents as recognised by the USA-EPA and ANAB.

UET are looking to work with businesses that require sustainable water treatment systems.

For all enquiries, email Luke at the Israel Trade Commission.

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gorillaLink is a plug and play PaaS solution that seamlessly enables connectivity of smart devices across multiple satellite networks providing 100% global coverage.

We want to re-define the way industries seamlessly utilise their communication devices in a smart and unprecedented way, that allows them to be more efficient and cost effective.

Easy to integrate edge to cloud via satellite connectivity solution. Billing, link management and on boarding process in a single Platform as a Service. 

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Smart Air | Out of the Box Climate Solutions

SmartAir (ISO9001 certified) builds and sells cutting-edge, innovative cooling and heating solutions.

Client base ranges from private customers, to businesses, to large-scale industrial projects, all over the world.

Competes on prices and customer service

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iXDen | Cyber Security for IoT Devices

IXDen provides security software solutions for IoT devices, industrial control systems, and sensors. IXDen introduces patent-pending technology to protect critical infrastructure from attacks via IoT devices by implementing a biometric-like multi-factor authentication approach.

IXDen provides a solution for operational technology and enables users to manage their IoT assets safely and remotely. IXDen employs a new technology to secure IoT devices and brings the equivalent of human identity verification (something users have, something they know, something they are) into M2M communication security while establishing elaborate and strong device identity.

IXDen creates a biometric identity for any IoT device and performs multi-factor authentication driven by proprietary mathematical and behavioral models, statistics, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.

IXDen models statistical behavior of the systems, machines, and processes, and it identifies the system’s normal behavior based on the sensor information, combining pre-knowledge of the device with behavioral analytics.

IXDen’s solution provides companies with an IXDen Grade that indicates the health status of the system and enables detection of abnormal behavior and prediction of potential misbehavior of the system.

If you manage critical infrastructure assets please email us for a proof of value.

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Atlantium Technologies | Ultraviolet-based Water Treatment

Atlantium Technologies Ltd provides safe and sustainable water treatment solutions based on ultraviolet (UV) disinfection, fiber optics, and hydraulics. Its systems offer high levels of water safety and provide industry and municipalities with a sustainable, measurable option.

Atlantium offers solutions for water-dependent heavy and light industries, including power and energy, biopharmaceuticals, food and beverages, dairy, aquaculture and aquariums, and municipal water providers. The company’s UV systems are field-proven globally, with Fortune 500 companies among its customers.

The company’s solutions conform to strict U.S. FDA and EPA regulations.

Contact Rochelle to learn more

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EZPack Water – Water Storage, Distribution, and Purification Solutions

EZPack Water develops, manufactures, and markets proprietary solutions for water storage, distribution, and purification. Its solutions include EZPuro, a compact robotic water purification and desalination system; water storage, transportation, and distribution solutions based on the company’s proprietary two-layer bladder technology; and EZCond, proprietary atmospheric water generator. The company’s products are aimed at markets such as emergency use, disaster relief, firefighting, remote water supply, military, home and outdoor, and others.

Email Jeremy if you are interested.

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GalMobile – Water Purification Vehicle

If this is not the coolest mobile desalination plant >< water purification tool then I don’t know what is. Israel does not have many natural resources, including clean drinking water. Australia has an issue with drinking water, and specifically, the Indigenous populations can stand to benefit from this: Gal Mobile. Drinking Water, Any Source, Any Time, Anywhere is their Motto; Innovative, Independent, Integrated Water Purification System, designed to produce high-quality Drinking Water, meeting the World Health Organization’s standards everywhere under any conditions. The only problem? They’re not yet in Australia, and yes that is Modi and Netanyahu captured together.

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Webinar – The Digitalization of Trade – Innovation for Ports, Shipping and Maritime Logistics