Sector spotlight: Water treatment

by Hannah van Rooyen

Electrical engineering for water sector

The intensive nature of the operations carried out by the water industry means that a vast amount of energy is required. Alongside the pumping and treatment of the water for example, waste management alone uses around half of the total required energy for a company’s operations.

And as the UK population continues to grow and overall power demands rise as a result, so too do environmental compliance standards relating to sustainably sourced, green energy.

The rising demand for renewables

In line with this need for more energy and more stringent regulations, water utility companies are having to increase the amount of renewably sourced power they use.

This is mainly being achieved via investments in Combined Heat and Power (CHP) and anaerobic digestion (AD) technologies, by which the biomass potential of wastewater is harnessed to produce energy. A key advantage of CHP and AD is that water treatment by-products are not wasted. Instead, these resources are used efficiently to create power themselves, which in turn helps to offset the impacts of rising energy prices. It even helps to increase revenue for water companies as a premium can be generated by selling renewable energy through Renewable Obligation Certificates, for instance.

And thanks to this commitment to renewable energy sourcing, the water industry is contributing considerably to the government target of 15% renewable energy by 2020.

Testing (and maintaining) the waters

For any water company, having an electrical infrastructure that’s in perfect working order is essential for the smooth running of its entire operations. That’s why we work with United Utilities, the UK’s largest listed water company, for instance to ensure that they can continue to efficiently manage the water network that supplies over 7 million people across the North West of England.

Holding the framework maintenance agreement for their switchgear and cabling infrastructure, our highly accredited engineers are on hand to provide a safe and responsive service in the event of any kind of electrical emergency, fault or outage.

With decades of experience in electrical engineering, our experts are proficient in carrying out inspections, testing, cabling, jointing and commissioning for water treatment facilities, no matter the size or complexity of the job. We additionally offer planned preventative maintenance programmes, which mean that both low and high voltage distribution systems are continually kept in optimal working condition, and that any potential issues can be resolved before disruptions arise.

And as the renewables market continues to grow in the UK, we expect to see the demand rising for our turnkey electrical design, installation and commissioning services amongst water companies too. Plus, as biogas projects are increasingly developed to run alongside sewage treatment plants, we’re looking forward to working on more of these projects in the near future.

To find out more about our work within the water treatment sector – including the array of services we can offer – feel free to contact us.

Leave a comment
RoSPANERSFpal AchillesUVDBISO 9001ISO 14001ISO 18001