Main Topic

Economically and Ecologically Efficient Water Management in the European Chemical Industry (E4Water)

The chemical industry provides the highest potential for increasing eco-efficiency in industrial water management. E4Water has addressed crucial process industry needs, to overcome bottlenecks and barriers for an integrated and energy efficient water management.

The main objective was to develop, test and validate new integrated approaches, methodologies and process technologies for a more efficient and sustainable management of water in chemical industry with cross-fertilization possibilities to other industrial sectors.

E4water united in its consortium large chemical industries, leading European water sector companies and innovative RTD centers and universities, active in the area of water management and also involved in WssTP and SusChem European Technology Platforms and collaborating with water authorities.

E4Water has built on state-of-the-art and new basic R&D concepts. Their realization, improvement, utilization and validation, with the compromise of early industrial adaptors, are clearly innovative. E4Water has realized this by

  • creating water loop interfaces, synergies and symbiosis: (a) in industry (b) with urban & agricultural water management
  • developing and testing innovative materials, process technologies, tools and methodologies for an integrated water management,
  • providing an open innovation approach for testing E4Water developments with respect to other industries,
  • implementing and validating the developments in 6 industrial case studies, representing critical problems for the chemical industry and other process industries,
  • implementing improved tools for process efficiency optimization, linking water processes with production processes and eco-efficiency assessment.


  • Reduction in water use (≥ 40%)
  • Reduction in waste water production (≥ 20%)
  • Reduction in energy use (up to 20%)
  • Economic benefits (up to ~ 30%)
  • Policy compliance ensured

Read more in the box "Outcome" on the right side.

E4Water facts and figures:

  • Project partner:19, >40% industry
  • Countries:9
  • Industrial case studies:6
  • Project period:05/2012 - 04/2016
  • Total Budget:>17 Mio
  • Total EC funding:<11 Mio
  • Coordination:DECHEMA e.V./ Germany


This project has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n° 280756.


E4Water Success Story

(flyer, September 2016)

E4Water Special Issue

(WRI Vol. 14, Elsevier, June 2016)


(May 2016)

E4Water - Solutions for practice

(final brochure, April 2016)

Integrated Industrial Water Management: Solutions for Practice

(E4Water final conference, April 2016)

Learn more about E4Water

(video final conference, May 2016)

Saving water from waste in chemical plants
: E4Water in Euronews TV FUTURIS
(video, May 2015)

Using microalgae to convert industrial wastewater into high value byproducts

(video, May 2015)

Introductory film on E4Water
and its symbiosis activities in Kalundborg /Denmark
(video, 2012)


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