News | March 22, 2014

Water & Energy: Combine Them Both…And It Will Push Growth

The Swiss- based company Trunz Water Systems developed an entrepreneurial-driven business model, a so-called NEXUS Center Concept that delivers safe drinking water and electricity at affordable prices to low-income rural consumers in developing and emerging countries.

Idea
The idea is to install a network of “off-grid” water and energy hubs, named/called NEXUS Centers, with water treatment systems and solar power centers at their core in remote areas. Due to additional revenue generation possibilities beyond safe drinking water, such as refrigeration, charging of electronic devices, space for medical treatment and small businesses, access to internet, hygiene products, etc. The NEXUS Center will become a true “one-stop” retail and infrastructure facility that aggregates community members, helps to promote local development and creates employment opportunities. The modular approach allows to tailor services and products towards the specific community needs and offers interesting partnership opportunities with telecommunication providers, micro-finance institutions and other local businesses.

Partnerships
Leveraging the expertise of different partners is critical to establish a successful business at the BoP base of Pyramid). In the first instance, the NEXUS Centers will be installed, managed and operated in collaboration with four partner entities: a local partner enterprise, an investor, Trunz Water Systems and a locally embedded NGO.

Advantages

Technology
The Trunz technology will be a key component of the water and energy hubs. The innovative and environmentally friendly technology produces clean energy and safe drinking water from contaminated fresh and salt water with solar and/or wind energy. It removes all viruses, bacteria, chemical contaminants and salts without requiring toxic chemical treatment.

Know-How
Trunz Water Systems AG is a Swiss-based company which develops, manufactures and distributes water purification and desalination as well as energy supply systems. The company, which was awarded with the Swiss Export Award in 2012, is dedicated to develop sustainable projects in collaboration with its partners in the following core areas: rural villages, schools, disaster relief, oil & mining, hotels and military.

The World Water Development Report
Energy for water
Energy is required for two components of water provision: pumping and treatment (before and after use).

Access to water and sanitation
In 2011, 768 million people did not use an improved source of drinking-water and 2.5 billion people did not use improved sanitation.

Access to electricity
More than 1.3 billion people still lack access to electricity, and roughly 2.6 billion use solid fuels (mainly biomass) for cooking.

Wind power
Wind power is the most sustainable source of renewable energy, mainly because of its low greenhouse gas emissions and water consumption.

Financing water
For developing countries alone $103B per year are required to finance water, sanitation and wastewater treatment through 2015.

Waterborne transportation
Waterborne transit is one of the most energy efficient. Inland towing barges are more than 3 times more energy efficient than road trucks and 40% more efficient than rail.

World Water Day is held annually on 22 March as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources www.worldwaterday.org.

SOURCE: Trunz Water Systems