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Assess Your Plant’s True Water-Savings Potential

By Zainuddin A. Manan, Sharifah R. Wan Alwi, Mohd H. Samingin and Norrazi Misran |

    For companies in the chemical process industries, water is an indispensable utility. But the growing scarcity of quality industrial water, combined with stricter environmental regulations and the rising cost of wastewater treatment, have encouraged the conservation of water as a key utility in process plants. Concurrently, the development of systematic techniques for water reduction has made significant progress. Many companies employ a combination of intercompany and intracompany benchmarking techniques to set realistic utility savings targets. In the former, companies reference the achievements of other companies in the same business, while in the latter, they refer to their own past performance. Intercompany and intracompany benchmarkings are usually part of a company’s total quality management program, which calls for the relevant department to set annual targets for continuous improvement. To meet these quality management requirements, a conservative utility savings target of, for example, 5% per year is typically specified. This target is set quite apart from considerations of the technical potentials and limitations, design and thermodynamic constraints of a plant. Hence, the true potential of a plant can…
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