WaterWorld | By: William Steel | March 2019:
Note: This article is Part 1 of a series. Read about the three part series here.
It is no exaggeration to note that Denmark’s water and wastewater sectors stand out on the international water scene. There are many and more reasons for this — much of which this three-part series aims to explore. To begin aptly enough, a significant distinguishing feature of Danish water concerns how it is sourced.
Unlike many countries, virtually all Danish drinking water is drawn from groundwater. Although groundwater abstraction brings its own challenges, what Denmark demonstrates is that if done correctly, sustainably managed groundwater fosters benefits that carry forward throughout the water cycle and beyond.
Rune Kier, strategist at one of Denmark’s leading water utilities, Skanderborg Utility and AquaGlobe – Water Solution Center, observes: ’Because of their importance, we have a widespread political and societal agreement that groundwater resources must be protected from pollution and other harmful impacts of human activities — that water should be protected, not treated.’
It follows that a key prerequisite for protection is thorough insight on groundwater resources which can inform effective action plans and legislation that prohibit the use of pesticides, and other industrial activities, in drilling areas.
Kier explains that this protect-not-treat ethos has therefore prompted a number of initiatives to secure its intentions, and as he says, “has led to all sorts of sustainable practices and knock-on benefits for the rest of the water supply sector, and the environment.”
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