The world used to see wastewater as a nuisance, but in recent years, this approach is changing and wastewater is considered to be raw material for the production of electricity and fertilizers. This trend is called Wastewater Resource Recovery (WRR). One of the companies leading the trend is an Israeli company – Emefcy.
Emefcy‘ solution creates energy from the organic material in wastewater. The company has developed two products – one to treat municipal wastewater (sewage) and another to treat industrial wastewater. Emefcy’s product treating industrial wastewater, is called EBR (Electrogenic Bio-Reactor).
Many industries face a major challenge: they create a large amount of organic wastewater and today don’t have effective disposal solutions, while the regulation in the world is getting more and more strict. This bottleneck will have to be resolved, and soon. Emefcy’s EBR solution extracts more energy from the wastewater than it actually consumes in the process.
Regarding Emefcy’s municipal product, it address the two most costly operational expenses of wasetwater treatment plants (WWTP), the energy (up to 35% of Opex) and sludge treatment/removal (up to 30% of Opex). Emefcy’s EBR reduces the sludge yield by 30%-40%. In the industrial activity it reduces the sludge yield by 80%. This translates into a lot of money. In Germany, for example, sludge removal costs 80-100 Euro per ton, before transportation costs.
Emefcy is now constructing its first assembly line for the municipal product, which is set to begin operating by early 2012. The first version of the product will be geared to medium sized cities. The Company also plans to establish an industrial test project (a pilot) in 2012. These developments place Emefcy at a unique vantage point vis a vis the competition, as they claim to be closest to market. Additionally the economic viability of their solutions are key to future success.
Leading Cleantech research institutes in the world see Emefcy as a big promise and the Company has already won a number of prizes and high ratings by Cleantech companies. Emefcy appears twice in a row in the list of the 100 most promising Cleantech companies in the world of the Cleantech Group, the leading Cleantech research firm in the world.
The global need for effective, “green” solutions to wastewater treatment is quickly rising. The rapid urbanization of China and India is adding to this need, and already today organic wastewater consumes 2% of the world’s energy supply. Thus, the business opportunity for companies like Emefcy is dramatic.