GE Shares Best Practices, Commits to Water Reduction

GE Water & Process Technologies has outlined the policies and best practices being used to increase and implement successful water conservation programs in water-scarce regions in a newly released white paper: Addressing Water Scarcity Through Recycling and Reuse: A Menu for Policymakers.

"Policymakers are looking for ways to expand water recycling and reuse initiatives, but until now finding information on how best to do that was tough," said Jeff Garwood, president and chief executive officer. "By providing a menu of policy tools ranging from less-intensive mechanisms, like public outreach programs, to more proactive, regulatory approaches, our paper will help governments, communities, and businesses effectively evaluate their options."

The paper is built around various policies that are being used in different locations of the world, including efforts to:

• Provide more information on and recognition of water recycling and reuse efforts;
• Reduce or remove regulatory or cost barriers that prevent more water reuse or recycling;
• Provide financial, regulatory or other incentives for water recycling and reuse;
• Require more water recycling and reuse.

Examples of how these policies are being applied in communities around the world are included in the report, which can be downloaded at

The company also announced its commitment to reduce fresh water use by 20 percent by 2012. In 2006, GE used approximately 37 million cubic meters (10 billion U.S. gallons) of fresh water. Using this figure as a baseline, GE will aggressively implement water reuse and process efficiencies to meet the target. Selective GE sites will decrease water use by applying process efficiencies and/or reusing highly treated wastewater for a variety of commercial and manufacturing needs, such as boiler feed water, cooling tower make-up, heat exchangers, and manufacturing processes. The company also is using the same portfolio of water-saving solutions to help reduce municipal, industrial, and agriculture customers' water footprints.

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