The Water Crisis: A Paint Manufacturers’ Perspective - Dekro Paints

The Water Crisis: A Paint Manufacturers’ Perspective

In conversation with Greg Judd, HSE Manager at Dekro Paints regarding Dekro Paints water conservation efforts amidst the current drought.

Cape Town – With the effect of the water crisis felt directly in the manufacturing sector and the implementation of Level 6b water restrictions, it could be another five months before the city even considers lifting these restrictions.

To ensure the availability of this scare resource the tariffs for use of municipal water increased exponentially in the past year and has had a massive impact on the manufacturing sector where water is required during the manufacturing process. Dekro Paints unfortunately is not excluded from these restrictions and the cost of manufacturing would have directly been passed on to the consumer if effective measures weren’t put into place to reduce water consumption.

Dekro Paints avoiding day zero in context

The project commenced in 2015 and according to Greg Judd phase one was to determine the actual water consumption for the manufacturing plant situated in Fabriek Street, Kuilsriver..

Water restrictions was implemented in early 2016 (Level 1 and 2) and therefore it became a water management project.

In mid 2016 our water consumption was reduced by 30%

In mid 2017 a further reduction by 25%

and at the end of 2017 a further 20% reduction.

Water Management Supply

In 2016 a management decision was taken to implement a water management system which included recycling of pot wash water and the installation of 15 water meters where water measurements was conducted twice daily and captured for water use analysis.

There was an immediate impact with identifying leaks, identified and quantification of actual areas of water use and abuse which assisted with raising awareness among employees to eventually lead to a reduction in water consumption by 30%.

In 2017 they designed a system of main and sub-meters and installed an additional 13 water meters. This coincided with a re-design of the Resin Production Plants’ water cooling system and a re-plumbing of the entire plants water supply system relocated above ground. This resulted in a further reduction of 25% of water usage.

The next step was to include rainwater harvesting and an analysis of borehole water. Dekro Paints acquisition of a Filtration Plant and water storage reservoirs in conjunction with re-plumbing filtered borehole water to toilets and cloakrooms helped reduce water consumption to a further 20%.

Water Management Options

Further reductions will be achieved in 2018 by installing or implementing the following water management systems.

Intelligent water meters, Aquatrip – Water saving management audit, Water from air installations and Grey and Black water recycling.

The current and future projects for reduction in water consumption includes:

Rainwater harvesting.

Replacement of water meters with intelligent system.

Acquisition of Reverse Osmosis System.

Recycling of Grey Water and Black Water.

Recycling and re-purposing of Reflux Water.

The responsibility is on us all to defeat day zero and at Dekro Paints we are committed to reduce our water consumption to ensure the availability of this scare resource for generations to come.