Project WOW! kicks off: sewage is valuable

Sewage contains valuable substances that can be used as raw materials for biobased products. However, in North West Europe this potential is hardly exploited yet. This results in loss of valuable materials. The Interreg North-West Europe project WOW! - Wider business Opportunities for raw materials from Waste water (sewage) - aims to make the transition to a more circular approach by matching supply and demand of cellulose, lipids and bioplastics (PHA) from sewage. Avans is proud to be a part of this project.

Last week the WOW! consortium came together for the project kick off. Partners from the UK, France, Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg and the Netherlands gathered to meet each other and discuss about the content.

Valuable materials from sewage
There are market opportunities for raw materials from sewage, but for this the sewage treatment plants and the industry need alignment. This calls for a transition: sewage treatment plants need to switch from treating sewage to producing valuable materials. On the other hand, market parties need to regard sewage as a valuable source instead of ÔÇÿdirty unsafe waterÔÇÖ. Last but not least, the policies should better fit this new circular practice. To realize these opportunities the consortium aims to develop value chains for three different raw materials from sewage: cellulose, PHA bioplastics and lipids.

The following activities will be part of the project:

  • Identify high potential value chains for raw materials from sewage.
  • Develop a Decision Support Tool that guides sewage treatment plants in their transition towards a circular approach on sewage.
  • Build and run three WOW! pilots to optimize and implement innovative recovery and upcycling techniques.
  • Create bioproducts made out of sewage, such as bioplastics, biofuel and bio-char.
  • Create national policy action plans and an EU policy roadmap.

During this project Avans University of Applied Sciences will focus on researching the production of PHA bioplastics from sewage. Besides, Avans is involved in developing the Decision Support Tool and the communication of the project.

We are looking forward to a fruitful collaboration!

WOW! is supported by the Interreg North-West Europe program, 

The WOW! consortium consists of:

  • Water authority Vallei en Veluwe
  • Wupperverbandsgesellschaft f├╝r integrale Wasserwirtschaft
  • Technische Universit├ñt Kaiserlautern
  • Universit├® du Luxembourg
  • Natureplast
  • Avans Hogeschool
  • REMONDIS Aqua Industrie
  • VITO
  • Pulsed Heat
  • CirTec
  • Severn Trent Water