Bangladesh Launches Groundbreaking Zero Liquid Discharge Initiative in Textile Industry


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Bangladesh Launches Groundbreaking Zero Liquid Discharge Initiative in Textile Industry

Bangladesh has embarked on an ambitious project to implement Zero Liquid Discharge (ZLD) technology in its textile sector, aiming to reduce wastewater discharge and promote water reuse drastically. This initiative is part of the Sustainable Manufacturing and Environmental Pollution (SMEP) program, funded by the Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (FCDO) and implemented in partnership with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).

Zero Liquid Discharge is an advanced water treatment process designed to eliminate liquid waste from industrial operations. By treating, recovering, and reusing all water within the system, ZLD ensures no wastewater is released into the environment, leaving only solid waste for disposal or reuse.

The SMEP program, which funds pilot and research projects in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, has chosen Bangladesh’s textile sector for a ZLD project that will run until September 2025. The Bangladesh Consortium leading this initiative includes QStone Capital B.V., LennTech B.V., Kingsley Engineering Service Corporation, and KWR Water Research Institute. Kingsley Engineering Service Corporation has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with QStone Capital and Lenntech Water Treatment Solutions to develop a Circular Wastewater Management System incorporating ZLD technologies. Specifically, Kingsley Engineering is working on a pilot ZLD program within Bangladesh’s textile industry.

This project aims to create a sustainable, circular water management system in the textile industry. A 1% consumer surcharge will fund the ZLD system transparently, ensuring financial transparency and accountability. The pilot ZLD system aims to achieve up to 95% water savings and reuse, significantly reducing the textile industry’s environmental impact. Innovative technologies will be crucial in reducing the costs associated with implementing ZLD.

The textile industry in Bangladesh heavily relies on freshwater extraction and minimally treats wastewater before discharge, posing significant environmental challenges. Additionally, a lack of economic incentives has hindered investment in advanced ZLD systems. To address these issues, the project will showcase innovative technologies through the pilot ZLD system, demonstrate cost savings via a 1% consumer surcharge, and ensure long-term sustainability and operational transparency.

The ZLD system employs a 6-7-step process to treat and reuse wastewater within production. Key innovations include an efficient pretreatment system using electrocoagulation to extend the lifespan of ultrafiltration (UF) and reverse osmosis (RO) membranes. Multiple stages of RO will maximize treated water recovery and concentrate reject water, while advanced evaporation and crystallization processes will manage the RO reject. These innovations are designed to enhance the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of the ZLD system.

The project’s overall benefits include up to 95% water savings and reuse, reduced reliance on freshwater sources, eliminating polluted water discharge, increased resource efficiency, and promoting sustainable practices within the textile industry. The project is funded by SMEP and executed by the Kingsley Group. It aims to encourage Bangladeshi textile factories to adopt sustainable practices by demonstrating the effectiveness of a Zero Liquid Discharge system, building a business case with a 1% consumer surcharge to fund ZLD implementation and future initiatives, and highlighting the cost-effectiveness of advanced pre-treatment and brine management technologies. This project fosters environmental responsibility by promoting water reuse, resource efficiency, and sustainability in Bangladesh’s textile sector.

Yasir Monon
Yasir Monon
Online Editor, Business Mirror


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