In April, Schneider Electric, the leader in digital transformation, energy management and automation, launched the Water and Wastewater Leadership Forum at its Innovation Hub in Coventry.
The event invited major operators, including Thames Water, Anglian Water and others, to see how advancement in technology can improve water and wastewater management and ensure the uninterrupted delivery of clean, safe and reliable water and transportation of waste.
The forum provided an opportunity to discuss the current challenges and future trends facing the industry, including growing energy consumption, climate change, flooding and sustainability. During interactive sessions, attendees discussed water infrastructure optimisation and the rising water demand and risk.
The forum addressed these challenges and trends in the industry, before focussing on two areas:
- Cybersecurity – Gary Williams, senior director of technology, took attendees through the ever-changing cybersecurity landscape. The introduction of new industry standards, including the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), are affecting all business operations. Failure to comply could lead to fines of up to 4 per cent of global turnover. Combined with the exponential growth of attack vectors, this makes cybersecurity a top priority for water and wastewater companies.
- Process profitability using automation – Kevin Fitzgerald, director at Schneider Electric explained the role of automation in driving improved business performance. Automation unlocks huge potential in terms of operations, safety, reliability and, crucially, profitability. It also empowers a workforce to make better decisions. Schneider Electric’s Ecostruxure Profit Advisor determines how each action and asset affects real-time operational profitability and potential savings, enabling a 3 per cent improvement in production value and 5 per cent reduction in cost per year.