WISA 2014 - successfully presented and attended!

The WISA Biennial Conference & Exhibition 2014, hosted at the Mbombela Sports Stadium in Mpumalanga, attracted approximately 1 200 delegates deliberating the latest technological solutions to water provision in South Africa.

Veolia's stand received extremely positive feedback from large numbers of municipal sector decision-makers, while we were well-represented by delegates from our head office in Modderfontein and Aqua Services & Engineering (ASE) in Namibia.

Despite a prominent conference focus on industrial applications, such as brine treatment and freeze crystallisation processes, the municipal sector was very well represented with more delegates than ever before. This was clear by the number of municipal sector decision-makers who visited our stand.

Among the many interesting papers presented and workshops held, some stood head-and-shoulders above the rest. We highlight some of papers for readers' benefit:

  • Sewage characteristics from quasi-monastic establishments: This presentation revealed that South Africa still bases its sewage treatment plants' designs on COD of 185 mg/l and NH3 of 85 mg/l.
  • Technologies for the treatment of source-separated urine in eThekwini; Field operation of a simple struvite reactor to produce phosphorus fertiliser from source-separated urine in eThekwini: An exciting presentation, specifically the topic comprising the urine-diversion (UD) toilets discussed by the team from eThekwini. Struvite precipitation, nitrification distillation and electrolysis for nutrient extraction and disinfection of urine were deliberated.
  • Energy efficiency in sewage treatment: It appears that South Africa is still not keen on energy savings and optimisation.


One of several enlightening workshops held was the Workshop for small wastewater treatment works: SEWPACKSA (Small Wastewater Treatment Works Suppliers Association), of which we are a member and founding partner, is investing a lot of effort to standardise package wastewater treatment plants. The objective is to protect the end user. The Association is in the process of compiling a manual to aid designers in the design of these small plants.

As with most conferences, networking is part and parcel of the events, and the WISA 2014 Exhibition was no different. Attendance at social events and the gala dinner was high and, in many instances, friendships were renewed and strengthened.

We're looking forward to participating in WISA 2016, scheduled to be held in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.