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Taiwan and India Sign Memo to Promote Sustainable Water Environment

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On 18 September 2023, the MOENV hosted the "Promotion of Emerging Wastewater Treatment Technologies and Taiwan-India Sustainable Water Environment Forum" at the Taipei International Convention Center, where the MOENV showcased achievements of its collaborative research and development efforts with various local universities to promote emerging wastewater treatment technologies. Also, the Water Association of Taiwan (WAOT) and the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises Chamber of Commerce and Industry of India (MSMECCII) signed a memorandum of cooperation, aiming to advance the wastewater industry into markets of countries under the New Southbound Policy and deepen collaboration between Taiwan and India through bilateral exchanges.

MOENV Deputy Minister Shih Wen-chen stated that in response to the global challenge of achieving net-zero emissions by 2050, Taiwan has been taking concrete actions through legislative amendments and announcements of reduction pathways while assisting enterprises in their net-zero transition. In the field of wastewater treatment, in recent years the MOENV has collaborated with local universities to promote R&D of emerging wastewater treatment technologies characterized by low pollution, low energy consumption, low cost, low space utilization, and resource circulation (4L+C). Significant progress has been made in related research and development initiatives.

"Previously regarded as pollution, wastewater is now considered a valuable resource," stated Deputy Minister Shih, who pointed out that current technologies significantly reduce the space requirements and processing costs while effectively guide resource recycling and reuse efforts. By integrating smart cloud monitoring technology, wastewater management efficiency can be enhanced simultaneously. She further emphasized that the MOENV's perspective and approach have shifted from past end-of-pipe control to management at the source. The future direction of wastewater treatment is maximizing resource reuse and minimizing environmental impact.

At the event, 10 companies specializing in wastewater treatment equipment and smart cloud monitoring were invited to demonstrate their innovations. Take, for example, the packaged treatment system for ammonia nitrogen wastewater, which integrates film capacitors in ammonia nitrogen treatment technology, as well as ammonia nitrogen gas extraction and recycling technology. This system significantly increases concentrations of ammonia nitrogen in wastewater, facilitating its subsequent conversion into liquid ammonia and ammonium salts for reuse as raw materials. This resource-oriented approach replaces traditional method that treats the substance as pollutant and holds significant potential. Already some semiconductor enterprises are showing keen interest in adopting such technology. Furthermore, the application of catalytic oxidation-reduction technology and bio-ball technology has yielded practical results. An enterprise in Hsinchu Science Park has already employed in its factory catalytic technology to treat the high-concentration organic nitrogen wastewater generated by detergents, reducing operational costs and occupied space by approximately one-third compared to the traditional chemical methods. Bio-ball technology has been applied in treating domestic wastewater in a technology park and also wastewater from stainless steel production in the Changhua Coastal Industrial Park. It has resulted in an 80% reduction in sludge volume compared to the traditional biological treatment with the addition benefits of reducing space and processing costs, demonstrating its commercial value.

The focus of this forum was the collaborative exchange on water quality protection between Taiwan and India. The MOENV invited experts from India’s Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs to deliver keynote speeches on opportunities in India's water, wastewater, and smart systems, as well as how Taiwan can assist it in achieving sustainable development goals. Additionally, among the forum invitees were three senior executives from Delhi State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (DSIIDC), who were interested in the feasibility of applying Taiwan's technologies and equipment to improve wastewater treatment facilities in 15 industrial zones in the Delhi region.

The MOENV stated that Taiwan and India have begun to engage in exchanges in the field of wastewater treatment since 2017. Taiwan possesses highly mature wastewater treatment technologies, and local companies have been actively visiting India to share their experience and develop initiatives. This forum witnessed the signing of a memorandum of cooperation between the WAOT and the MSMECCII, setting a solid foundation for mutual cooperation. Both organizations will jointly promote wastewater treatment technologies and work toward achieving net-zero carbon emissions.

Excerpt from Major Environmental Policies, September 2023
Ministry of Environment