Consultation with a range of stakeholders involved in water treatment technology validation confirmed the tangible economic value to the Australian water industry in developing and implementing a more codified, consistent and scientifically robust process for technology validation.
A streamlined process will help stimulate innovation in technology and its uptake in the market. Government and regulatory stakeholders also confirmed that red tape reduction and streamlining regulation is a priority.
WaterVal has been designed to achieve these objectives.
National consultation revealed that over-engineering of water treatment schemes has not been uncommon. Regulators often face the practical challenge of retaining skilled staff and ensuring they are up to date with complex scientific advances and latest technological developments.
For stakeholders participating in the technology validation processes, including scheme and technology proponents, consultation revealed instances of confusion about roles and responsibility for attaining validation. These can lead to project delays, confusion about requirements, inconsistent application of regulations and insufficient capacity or capability in approving agencies – all contributing factors to unnecessary financial costs and ultimately higher charges to the water customers.
Proponents suggested that validation processes need to be clearer and more transparent, with much greater certainty regarding outcomes. In addition, improved arrangements will allow the market for water treatment technologies to grow and prosper in the future.