Published: 14. Sep 2022

Urban water loss is down to 6 %

Pumpestation Drikkevant ART Large

The United Nations expect that the world will use up to 40 percent more water in 2025 than in 2015. At Aarhus Vand we use asset management to reduce water loss.

Increasing water consumption will lead to an even greater supply gap for countries already facing water stress. What is needed in order to meet the future demand for water is a strong focus on efficient water management, operation and not least a reduction in Non-Revenue Water (NRW).

In addition to the environmental consequences, neglecting to reduce NRW has a serious impact on the financial viability of water utilities due to revenue losses and unnecessarily high operating costs. In order to bring down and maintain a low level of NRW, several aspects need to be addressed – from the initial planning phase to the day-to-day operations as well as the use of high-quality installations and good workmanship.

Aarhus Vand has focused on optimising water distribution, and today the key performance indicators on efficiency are very impressive. Over the last 10 years we have managed to reduce our NRW to 6 percent and the real pipe loss is only 1.4 cubic metres/km/day. The Infrastructure Leakage Index (ILI) is down to 0.83.

Through a determined effort that started back in the mid-seventies, we have managed to reduce the number of bursts and thereby the water loss. The increase in the total NRW between 2002 and 2005 and the subsequent reverse development over the following three years was due to a test period without active leakage control in order to investigate the actual benefits of investing in this programme.

In addition to asset management, high quality construction work, leakage detection, pressure management, monitoring DMA night flows as well as an intelligent pipe replacement programme, new innovative methods are planned to be developed which will benefit and improve the current work.

These include a method to complement the asset management system to reduce leakage detection costs and the time spent on analysing data from DMAs as well as a new strategy for the design criteria on future constructions to ensure effective maintenance and leakage detection.