Insights

Don’t let the energy sector run away with our sludge

Hard copies of our new report on the sludge management market arrived in the office today. It is an interesting read. Sludge is the final frontier of water and wastewater treatment. Every other area of the water sector is essentially a mature market addressed by mature technology. Sludge has somehow been left behind by the rest of the water sector ...

Pricing upstream from Jeddah to London

I rushed back from the Saudi Power and Water Forum in Jeddah to take part in HSBC analyst Verity Mitchell’s water investment seminar in London earlier this week. On the face of it, the two water markets couldn’t be more different: Saudi Arabia with its fast-growing population, buoyant economy and almost absolute water scarcity; and the UK with ...

What does Veolia Environnement need Bertreau for?

Veolia announced on Monday that it had hired Francois Bertreau as group chief operating officer. Bertreau was formerly CEO of Norbert Dentressangle, the logistics firm whose red and white trucks have become a ubiquitous presence on European roads.

It is an interesting appointment for a company which is supposed to be selling its interests in the transport sector. In France ...

Risk management lessons from desalination disasters

I am in Sacramento today to give a paper on the Top 10 Desalination Disasters of all time. Although the title is somewhat incendiary, it raises a serious question: what is the best way of managing risk for big-ticket infrastructure projects?

For the record, my top 10 disasters are:

1) Wonthaggi, Australia – $1 billion additional EPC costs

2) Hong Kong ...

The energy and water nexus in Houston, Texas

We held a remarkable conference on water and energy in Houston at the beginning of the month. It was a complete sell-out, bringing together all sorts of people who wouldn’t normally congregate in a room together, from drillers to desalters, and frac’ers to farmers.

In the past, I have been slightly worried that the water sector’s interest ...

Understanding the desal market’s next move

We are publishing the latest edition of the GWI/IDA Worldwide Desalting Plant Inventory next week. It is a bit of an eye-opener for the desalination industry.

On the one hand, it shows that installed desal capacity has risen by 57% over the past five years – a rate of increase the industry has not known since the early days. On ...