Water conservation and infrastructure investment vs. water crisis (Emwis / Semide)

Read at :


The water crisis cannot be solved simply by conservation and infrastructure investment

“The water crisis cannot be solved simply by conservation and infrastructure investment; it calls for a new wave of creative thinking.”; Amir Peleg, Chairman of SWAN (Smart Water Networks Forum) and Founder & CEO of TaKaDu, discusses how the water industry is lagging behind when it comes to adopting sophisticated technologies

According to the Global Risks Report 2013, “water supply crises” was ranked second out of 50 in terms of impact. Only “major systemic financial failure” was placed higher, while “chronic fiscal imbalances” and “food shortage crises” were placed lower. Also, the likelihood of water supply crises was listed fourth out of 50. Clearly, improved water management is essential. However, it will not occur without innovation.

The water innovation and investment gap

There is a gap between the perception of the water crisis and the increasing need for innovation and investment in this sector. According to the OECD Environmental Outlook to 2050, global water demand is projected to increase by 55% between 2000 and 2050, by which time over 40% of the global population is likely to be under severe water stress. Insufficient water supply could result in food shortages, demographic changes, political strife and even armed conflict. Water networks suffer from a deteriorating infrastructure in drastic need of capital investment. Technologies that provide superior performance at lower costs and improve the productive and responsible use of natural resources are needed to meet these challenges in a sustainable manner. Developing such technologies requires investment.



Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.