From waste to water: how one man turned industrial evaporation into Sustainability Transformation

Fujitsu / December 9, 2022

Megadroughts. Waterborne illnesses. Poor sanitation. As water-related issues intensify worldwide, awareness is growing that urgent action must be taken to stave off a host of potential disasters for humanity. And while the chemistry behind water molecules is simple, the solution to these issues is anything but. What’s required is out-of-the-box thinking, or in Terry Paule’s case, out-of-the-drain thinking. As the Co-Founder & CEO Botanical Water Technologies Ltd, Terry’s mission is to “produce the world’s most sustainable water in places where there isn’t any.” In Episode 1 of our partnership with CNN International Commercial’s (CNNIC) brand studio Create exploring the Art of Sustainability Transformation, discover the surprising way Botanical Water is delivering on this important goal and the impact it’s having on some of the world’s most vulnerable communities.

Does water grow on trees?

Renewable energy is a hot topic for a warming planet. In recent decades, we’ve heard about the importance of switching from fossil fuels to solar, wind, hydro and other carbon-neutral sources to meet the ever-increasing global demand for power. In other words, there are alternative means to the same end. But there is no substitute for water – and that’s precisely what makes it the world’s most precious resource.

In the first article in our Art of Sustainability Transformation series produced in partnership with CNNIC, Co-Founder & CEO Botanical Water Technologies Ltd (BWT), Terry Paule, provides a fascinating look at the motivations behind his unique company and the technology that made it possible. It all started with an idea. Terry felt that the three and half million annual deaths from water-related diseases worldwide was unacceptable and largely preventable. So, he set about to discover a new, sustainable water source. He found it in an unexpected place: juice factories and sugar mills.

When he realized that processing fruits and vegetables requires a large-scale evaporation process, he wondered if it were possible to somehow harvest that water – water that previously vaporized into thin air. It turns out, BWT was indeed able to harvest that water, all from a renewable plant-based source. It turns out, water does grow on trees, and in sugar cane and in plants of all shapes and sizes. The result? “We produce the world’s most sustainable water in places where there isn’t any,” Terry says.

From vision to mission

What started as a good idea is now a vital force doing a world of good. From drought-ravaged areas to developing countries lacking clean water infrastructure, this inspirational technology now has the power to save millions of lives throughout the world. “If we don’t do it, I’m fearful that nobody else will,” admits Terry. “It needs people who are driven by the same principles of giving.”

And indeed, there are many people who are driven by the same urge to pitch in for this noble cause. BWT partnered with Fujitsu to create a digital trading platform that tracks water production and connects suppliers with customers. The blockchain-powered platform is called the Botanical Water Exchange (BWX) and it has been an important piece of the puzzle to help BWT deliver on its mission to save lives through healthy water.

“When you’re dealing with those transactions, you need a source of truth,” reveals Terry, which is why “blockchain is a fabulous way to use technology to solve real-world problems.”

Explore the Art of Sustainability Transformation

Using technology to solve real-world problems. That is at the heart of our Sustainability Transformation efforts – and the reason we’re partnering with BWT to help bring about much needed change. That’s also why we’ve partnered with CNN International Commercial’s (CNNIC) brand studio Create, a division of the world leader in news coverage, to bring you “The Art of Sustainability Transformation,” an in-depth look at how inspirational thought leaders from diverse fields are using technology to solve some of the most pressing challenges facing the planet, society and business.

Click on the banner below to hear more from Terry about how BWT is expanding on its mission and why sustainability is such an important part of it, and hear Terry speak with mathematician, a best-selling author, an award-winning science presenter Hannah Fry in a fascinating podcast about these topics. Also, be sure to check back for upcoming stories about other sustainability pioneers who are leading the way towards a more prosperous future for everyone through innovations in fields ranging from architecture to fashion. We all have a role to play, and visionaries like Terry are indispensable guides on this journey.

Fujitsu Blog editorial team

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