Water reclamation for industrial use in sub-Saharan Africa – a critical review
The increasing world population and growth of industrial development lead to growing water scarcity that, combined with deficient sanitation services, represents serious challenges, particularly in regions like sub-Saharan Africa. Water reclamation is a promising approach to reduce water scarcity, serving as a driving force for better sanitation services and protecting the environment by treating sewage and redistributing for the benefit of other water-dependent applications (e.g., industries). This paper aims to give an overview of the global trends on water reclamation, with a focus on industrial use, and to derive lessons for implementation of water reclamation projects in sub-Saharan Africa. Findings show that extensive experience exists in technology and management practices that can allow successful implementation of water reclamation projects in the region. Under the conditions of deficient sanitation services and low levels of technical expertise, the main challenge is to develop a framework that can facilitate the integration of social and technological methodologies and help in introducing water reclamation in water allocation planning, including the development of specific legislation for industrial water use and disposal.