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Net Zero Future Blog: Issue 2

Updated: Jan 18, 2022

Why are we wasting and not recycling?

Many of us are still under the impression that recycling is expensive. Recycling rinse water is generally perceived to be more expensive than "treat and discharge" and conventional wastewater treatment/precipitation approaches.

While the cost of water and sewer has substantially risen in the past decade, it is still cheap to buy water and, in some places, dispose of wastewater. When examining the cost of water and sewer, taking into consideration the costs of water pre-treatment and wastewater treatment, the truth reveals itself.

Exergy has conducted numerous cost/benefit analyses using customer data from across the country to determine if recycling pays back. We found that it certainly does.

The various site data has shown that recycling rinse water in manufacturing processes, like Exergy EthorCel, for example, offers superior water quality across the board for many customers. It also saves over 70% of customer's current cost of operation or cost of ownership (COO). So, what does this mean?

It means that recycling saves you money and potentially has payback if you choose to purchase equipment. It also means that a typical customer could see a return on their investment on a recycling system within 1-3 years after acquisition (depending on their current internal costs, volume/flows, features, and the performance they expect from a recycling process).

An expert in water recycling can conduct an evaluation of your operations and determine approximately how much recycling will cost your facility or company. In most cases, new recycling system installations with Exergy's EtherCEL see savings in 1-2 years, which includes achieving the water quality necessary for running your operations safely.

How to get started in recycling water at a manufacturing site?

It has been proven time and time again that recycling and, when feasible, reuse leads to operating cost savings as well as process quality improvement. It is recommended that sites conduct a full-scale water use and waste review, which will reveal areas that may need to be modified or updated. Additionally, your use and waste of material can be thoroughly evaluated, especially if it leads to water use and discharge.

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