06 Dec 2016

Danish wastewater technology in the US

A number of Danish water companies, including DHI, are involved in a new project concerning the upgrading of an existing wastewater treatment plant, Glenbard Wastewater Facility, in Chicago, USA.

As a demonstration of the full-scale development and adaptation of Danish wastewater technology into the USA, the project is receiving financial support totalling 10 million DKK from the environmental technology development funds (MUDP) of the Ministry of Environment and Food of Denmark. The Water Technology Alliance in Chicago - a cooperation between a number of leading Danish water technology manufacturers, Aarhus Vand and the Danish Trade Council - has initiated the project.

Photo © Glenbard Wastewater Authority

Sustainable treatment that saves more energy than it uses

In many parts of the USA, treatment plants are major consumers of energy, and many of them still do not handle nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus. However, the requirements for the discharge of wastewater are now likely to be more stringent, paving the way for an opportunity to export Danish wastewater technology. This project will focus particularly on energy-efficient solutions and the reduction of discharged nutrients.

One of the unique aspects of the project is the combination of technical solutions offered jointly by Danish technology companies through the Water Technology Alliance in Chicago. The combination of solutions, coupled with the know-how of the utility company Aarhus Vand, will help utilities to achieve energy-efficient plant operations.

No need for upfront capital

Another unique aspect of the project is a financing model (ESCO), where the plant owner does not have to provide capital upfront. Furthermore, the financing model ensures that US investors receive a return in the form of savings when using Danish water technology solutions.

The participating Danish companies are: AVK, Danfoss, DHI, Grundfos, Landia, LINAK, NISSEN energiteknik and Stjernholm, with DHI leading the project. Now in its initial stages of design and planning, the plant is scheduled for completion in 2019 and will be an outstanding beacon of Danish water technology.

‘This project is based on a novel business model in which we combine technical and financial solutions innovatively with intelligent partnership ’, says Antoine Labrosse, CEO, DHI. ‘It will set a new standard for getting technology to the market and will potentially lead to a major breakthrough for DHI and Danish wastewater technology in the US. ’