IoT and wastewater management: how technologies are being used to improve sustainability
By Daniel Perciante
Effluent management is a crucial issue for any industry that generates liquid waste, and not only because of the environmental impact it may have, but also because of the risk it represents for public health and the economy. In this context, IoT (Internet of Things) technology is offering innovative solutions that allow more efficient, sustainable and safe management of effluents.
What is effluent management?
Effluent management is an essential process to guarantee the protection of the environment and public health. Effluents are liquid residues generated by various human activities, and can contain a wide range of chemical substances, organic matter and microorganisms that can be harmful to health and the environment if not properly treated. Therefore, effluent management involves the application of processes and techniques to minimize the amount and toxicity of liquid waste, and ensure its safe and effective treatment and disposal.
Effluents can be generated by different sources, including industrial production, agriculture, livestock, and wastewater treatment. Effluent management includes the collection, transportation, treatment, and final disposal of liquid waste, and may require the use of different technologies and treatment processes, such as sedimentation, filtration, disinfection, and oxidation.
In summary, effluent management is a critical process to guarantee sustainability and environmental protection, and requires advanced technologies and processes for its correct implementation.
How can IoT improve wastewater management?
IoT offers a series of tools and technologies that allow monitoring and controlling the flow of effluents in real time, from its generation to its treatment and final disposal. Some of the ways that IoT is improving wastewater management include:
Sensors and measurement devices: the sensors installed in the pipes and storage tanks make it possible to measure the flow, the temperature, the concentration of potentially polluting substances and other critical parameters for the control of the quality of the effluents.
Data management and analysis platforms: IoT platforms allow the collection and analysis of large amounts of data in real time, allowing for more informed decision-making and optimization of the performance of wastewater treatment systems.
Automation systems – IoT systems also enable process automation, reducing the risk of human error and improving the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of effluent management systems.
Alerts and notifications: IoT platforms can also send alerts and notifications in the event that abnormal levels of pollutants are detected, enabling rapid and effective response to emergency situations.
The importance of proper effluent management
In recent years, sustainability has become an increasingly important topic for companies and industries around the world. Effluent management is an area where sustainability plays a critical role, as liquid waste can have a significant impact on the environment and public health if not managed properly.
Proper effluent management implies the adoption of practices and technologies that reduce the amount of waste generated and minimize its impact on the environment. The implementation of IoT technologies in effluent management can significantly contribute to this goal. For example, IoT sensors can continuously monitor water quality and contaminant levels in effluents, allowing companies to take quick and effective action to prevent pollution and protect the environment.
In addition, the sustainable management of effluents can improve the image of the company and increase its competitiveness in the market. More and more consumers are concerned about the environmental impact of companies and prefer to do business with companies that demonstrate a commitment to sustainability and corporate social responsibility. The implementation of IoT technologies in effluent management can help companies demonstrate their commitment to sustainability and improve their reputation in the market.
Environmental regulations in the region
In recent years, there has been a growing tendency for countries to regulate environmental issues, including effluent management. Concern for the environmental impact of human activities, especially in industrial production, has led to the implementation of specific regulations and standards in countries such as Uruguay, Argentina, Chile and others in the region.
In Uruguay, Law No. 16,466 establishes the regulatory framework for waste management and environmental protection. This law establishes the basic principles and guidelines for the comprehensive management of waste, including its prevention, minimization, recovery, and final disposal, and establishes the obligations and responsibilities of waste generators, carriers, and recipients. In addition, the law establishes the creation of a National Registry of Waste Generators and Operators, and establishes the obligation to prepare waste management plans for certain types of waste and activities. (https://www.impo.com.uy/bases/leyes/16466-1994)
In Argentina, Law No. 25,675 on the National Environmental Policy establishes the principles and objectives for environmental management throughout the national territory. This law recognizes the importance of pollution prevention and control, including effluent management. Likewise, there are specific regulations for the management of hazardous waste and the protection of bodies of water, which establish the requirements that companies must comply with. (https://www.argentina.gob.ar/justicia/derechofacil/leysimple/ley-general-del-ambiente)
In Chile, Law No. 19,300 on General Environmental Bases establishes the regulatory framework for environmental management throughout the national territory. This law recognizes the importance of waste management and the protection of bodies of water, including the regulation of the discharge of liquid effluents and the protection of aquifers. Likewise, there are specific regulations for the management of hazardous waste and the protection of wetlands and other sensitive ecosystems. (https://www.bcn.cl/leychile/navegar?idNorma=30667)
In general, the specific regulations and standards for effluent management seek to guarantee public health and safety, as well as minimize the environmental impact of these activities. These regulations establish quality parameters for effluents, environmental discharge limits, and requirements for the implementation of treatment and final disposal systems. The implementation of IoT technologies in effluent management can help companies comply with these regulations and regulations, by allowing more efficient and sustainable monitoring and control of effluents.
At Nettra, we have extensive experience helping companies comply with environmental regulations and implementing IoT solutions for effluent management. Our systems allow real-time monitoring and control of effluents, data analysis for process optimization and automation of effluent management systems. With these solutions, companies can improve their efficiency, reduce costs and minimize their environmental impact, complying with the specific regulations and regulations of the region.
About the author: Daniel Perciante
Researcher, Engineer and Entrepreneur.
Daniel is one of the founders of Nettra. Today he is Co-CEO and Commercial Director of the company. He is an electrical engineer with a doctorate in Engineering from the University of the Republic as well as a level II researcher of the National System of Researchers.
He has a particular interest in applied research for the generation of value and works actively to generate and deepen links between academia and industry in Uruguay. From Nettra he has participated in numerous technological research and development projects related to IoT and its applications.