We help improve access to water

By 2025, 63% of the world’s population will face water shortage. Veolia works daily to develop new ways of making this vital resource available when and where it is needed.
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We help improve access to water

By 2025, 63% of the world’s population will face water shortage. Veolia works daily to develop new ways of making this vital resource available when and where it is needed.
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Only 2.5% of water on the planet is fit for human consumption without treatment.

This freshwater comes from:

glacier melt
lakes and rivers

Yet our planet's water resources are finite...

and demand is growing by the day

By 2025
Access to water will be more difficult for 63% of the world's population

Water stress*
*Water stress occurs when there is insufficient water available to meet demand
Source: BRGM – 2011

Regions facing water shortage

  • Water Shortage 1

    1 – Many regions around the globe live beyond their means in terms of their water resources: the southwestern United States, the coastal strip of countries in northern Africa, southeastern Australia, almost all of the Arabian Peninsula, southeast India, northeastern China... All of these regions already withdraw over 75% of water flowing in rivers.

  • Water Shortage 2

    2 – Mumbai, India, is currently home to 19 million people, and is expected to have a population of 26 million by 2030. The world’s second-largest city faces a real risk of water shortage: fewer than 20% of people in Mumbai have access to clean drinking water.

  • Water Shortage 3

    3 – Tokyo, Japan, faces water stress as a result of its vulnerability to natural disasters affecting the water supply, such as flooding and drought, compounded by deteriorating water quality. According to Global Water Intelligence, 30% of the Japanese population is still not connected to a wastewater system. (Source: OECD)

  • Water Shortage 4

    4 – Beijing, China, has an annual water supply of just 100 cubic meters per person, which is only a tenth of the minimum recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO). Although the country is home to 20% of the world's population, it has just 6% of global water resources.

  • Water Shortage 5

    5 - In Mexico City, water pumped to meet demand exceeds natural groundwater recharge by more than 50%. (Source: The Cities of Tomorrow)

  • Water Shortage 6

    6 – Las Vegas, in the United States, sits in the middle of an arid desert. The global gambling capital has a huge appetite for resources and now faces serious water stress, a problem shared by the majority of cities in California.


Durban: running industry on recycled water

Water resources are limited in South Africa, especially in the city of Durban. The main challenge in the region lies in managing the supply of drinking water to ensure priority is given to the city’s residents.

Veolia developed a simple solution through the Durban Water Recycling plant, which supplies the city's industries with recycled, cost-effective water of sufficient quality to be used in manufacturing processes. 98% of the city's wastewater is now recycled.

At the same time, to avoid drawing too heavily on local water resources, 40,000 cubic meters of additional drinking water are supplied daily to the people of Durban – enough to fill 15 Olympic-sized swimming pools every single day.
Recycled Water

Western Corridor Project: reclaiming water

Queensland is Australia's second-largest state. In 2007, it experienced severe drought and the reservoirs used to supply water to 2.5 million people almost ran dry.
The Western Corridor Project aims to develop a network of underground pipes more than 200 kilometers in length. These pipes feed into a reservoir used to provide drinking water to local people and also supply the purified water needed to run two power plants.

The Thames Valley:
a universal challenge

  • It is a common misconception that water stress only affects the planet's drier regions. It also affects areas of Western Europe, for instance, despite their temperate climate.

    One example is the Thames Valley, which cradles the UK capital. The combination of limited water resources and high demand is a major challenge for London's water supply. Its water pipes date back to Victorian times and are sorely in need of repair to continue supplying the city's nine million people with water on a daily basis.

    The project is the largest capex management contract in Europe's water sector.

  • Nine million customers in London and the Thames Valley
  • An average of 2.6 billion liters of drinking water supplied every day
  • 100 water treatment facilities and 30 raw water reservoirs
  • 288 pumping stations and 235 clean water service reservoirs
  • Tap water costs less than a tenth of a penny per liter (€0.00012)
  • Drinking water quality meets 99.97% of the most stringent testing