EU-India WaterTech event explores solutions for water challenges
Courtesy: X/@EuraxessIndia

EU-India WaterTech event explores solutions for water challenges

New innovative technologies to tackle the urgent water challenges in India were presented at the European Union-India WaterTech event.

These results are from the joint research projects launched in 2018. In a press release, the EU delegation to India stated, "They are a clear demonstration of the effective EU-India collaborative efforts in this critical area. The technologies are now set for further deployment and market uptake."

Globally, 2.1 billion people lack access to safe water, a crisis amplified by 160 million people depending on surface water laden with pollutants.

Through Horizon 2020, the EU Research and Innovation Programme and India's Department of Science and Technology and Department of Biotechnology invested up to Euro 40 million in seven projects. These projects were selected from the 2018 EU-India Joint Call on research and innovation for water.

As many as 130 entities from across the European Union and India, including leading research institutes and organisations, small and medium enterprises and startups, were part of seven projects, according to an EU Delegation to India press release.

The challenge was to come up with new technologies and business models for improving the quality of drinking water, wastewater management, rainwater harvesting and real-time monitoring systems. The seven projects have established over 60 technologies, of which at least 15 are ready for market uptake and another 15 for deployment.

Almost 300 stakeholders on water management, both from Europe and India, including researchers, innovators, businesses, entrepreneurs, investors, experts, and governmental representatives, participated in the event held at the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay. The seven projects are INDIA-H2O, Lotus, Pani Water, Pavitr, Pavitra Ganga, Saraswati2.0 and Spring. India and EU are committed to support market uptake phase in line with the recently launched EU-Trade and Technology Council (TTC).

In a press release, the European Union Delegation to India stated, "These projects collectively represent impactful advancements in water technology, addressing critical challenges, and providing innovative solutions with broad applications across India."

"While some of these innovations are already in pilot stage and/or deployed, several of them require further efforts for market deployment. Both the EU and India are committed to support the market uptake phase, which is in line with the recently launched EU-India Trade and Technology Council," it added.

In April 2022, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Prime Minister Narendra Modi agreed to set up the EU Trade and Technology Council as a key coordination platform to address key trade, trusted technology and security challenges, to promote a human-centric approach to the digital transformation, and to deepen their bilateral relationship in these sectors, according to the press release.

In a press release, EU Delegation to India stated, "The TTC was established in February 2023, including a Working Group on Green and Clean Energy Technologies in support of the EUs and India's ambitious goals of achieving net zero emissions by 2050 and 2070, respectively. It is recognised that achieving these targets and objectives will require significant investments in new clean technologies, as well as increased research and innovation efforts."

"To this end, the Working Group will focus on three key areas to start with: (1) waste treatment; 2) recycling of batteries for Electrical Vehicles and 3) Standards to ensure interoperability. With respect to wastewater treatment, it was agreed at the first Ministerial meeting in May 2023, to focus firstly on the market uptake of the ongoing seven joint projects on wastewater. This does not exclude further cooperation on R&I on water, in particular to address marine plastic litter," it added.


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