Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water host an annual innovation event in Cardiff where industry specialists, businesses and academics all join together to discuss the challenges that the sector faces and how to overcome them. The event was split into talks, workshops and stalls.
The talks included multiple presentations outlining Welsh Water’s targets for 2050 and what challenges that creates. It was fantastic to see such long term targets being implemented, which are key but often lacking in sustainability. An in-depth review of these targets are available on their website. One of the talks was from Ole Fritz Adeler, who is the senior vice president of the Greater Copenhagen Utility, he highlighted the advances his company have made in Copenhagen and how Welsh water can learn lessons from this, including how to deal with flooding and reduce consumer consumption. This is a perfect representation of what collaboration can achieve, a key theme within the Dŵr Uisce.
In terms of the workshops, it was great to see such a plethora of topics on display. These ranged from: smart networks and data science to environmental considerations and wastewater services. The stalls gave an extra layer of immersion into the interests and potential links between various stakeholders with the hosts of the stalls ranging from technology companies to school children.
As representatives from Dŵr Uisce, Nathan and Isabel spoke to many individuals within the water sector to seek out areas where the project may be able to assist in problems that the industry faces, from this, ideas for potential future research have been developed. Additionally, it was a good opportunity to see where the current research undergoing within the project fits within the context of the needs of the sector.