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Published: 08.03.2015

Wastewater Reclamation and Reuse Network

In the late 1990s Singapore initiated a program to become increasingly self-sufficient in its water supply. One component of the program, called NEWater, involves the collection of treated wastewater flows that would have otherwise been discharged to the ocean. Between 2002 and 2010 the program further established four NEWater plants with a capacity of 500,000m3/day. Singapore also implemented an extensive water sampling and testing program to publicly demonstrate the safety of reclaimed water by distributing it in bottles.

As a result, NEWater gained acceptance as a legitimate source of water. Growth in its use increased from 27,000m3/day in 2003 to 350,000m3/day in 2012, thereby offsetting the withdrawals required from existing freshwater sources. As of today NEWater meets 30 percent of Singapore’s water demand, and is projected to meet up to 55 percent demand by 2060.