Which Chemicals Are Rising in Demand due to Waste Disposal Regulations?

The federal government of the U.S. has enacted the Clean Water Act (CWA) to prohibit the discharge of any pollutant into navigable water unless permission is obtained under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). As per this regulation, industrial facilities, municipalities, residential units, and commercial structures must obtain clearance before discharging waste into surface waters directly. Stringent government regulations such as this are encouraging the usage of water treatment chemicals across the world.

Moreover, the increasing desalination activities in countries with limited freshwater reserves are expected to drive the water treatment chemicals market at a CAGR of 5.2% during the forecast period (2020–2030). According to P&S Intelligence, the market was valued at $48,938.1 million in 2019, and it will generate $85,341.8 million revenue by 2030. Water-starved countries, such as the U.A.E., Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and African nations, are generating an enormous demand for high-quality freshwater due to the rapid surge in their population.

Additionally, the surging public concern for waterborne diseases, such as cholera, poliomyelitis, diarrheal diseases, typhoid, shigella, and hepatitis A and E, will boost the consumption of water treatment chemicals in the foreseeable future. The large-scale discharge of untreated water from power stations, households, manufacturing plants, and commercial facilities has significantly increased the pollutant content of waterbodies, owing to which many new water treatment plants are being constructed. As per the World Health Organization (WHO), nearly 842,000 deaths in low- and middle-income countries are caused due to waterborne diseases every year.

The type segment of the water treatment chemicals market is classified into oxidants, corrosion inhibitors, oxygen scavengers, chelating agents, scale inhibitors, anti-foaming agents, coagulants and flocculants, pH adjusters and stabilizers, biocides and disinfectants, and others, such as resin cleaners and algaecides. Under this segment, the coagulants and flocculants category is expected to witness the fastest growth during the forecast period due to the large-scale consumption of these chemicals in the water purification, sludge thickening, solids removal, lime softening, and solids dewatering processes.

These chemicals are used in the medical, agriculture, construction, municipal water treatment, power generation, chemical processing, metal and mining, pulp and paper, food and beverages, and oil and gas industries. The chemicals used in these sectors are produced by Kemira Oyj, Buckman Laboratories International Inc., SUEZ, Solvay S.A., Solenis LLC, Akzo Nobel N.V., The Dow Chemical Company, Ecolab Inc., BASF SE, and SNF s.a.s. Currently, these companies are heavily investing in research and development (R&D) to develop advanced water treatment technologies.

Geographically, the Asia-Pacific (APAC) water treatment chemicals market generated the highest revenue in 2019, and it is likely to continue on this path throughout the forecast period. This can be attributed to the expanding industrial base and escalating demand for clean water on account of the improving living standards of people. Additionally, the APAC market will showcase the fastest growth during the forecast period due to the rising public awareness regarding the vitality of treated water, rising number of government regulations on water treatment, and growing prevalence of waterborne diseases.

Thus, the toughening government legislations on water treatment and soaring public awareness regarding waterborne diseases will fuel the consumption of chemicals that can make this precious resource fit for human consumption again and again.

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