Work Package 3: No/low regret investments in regional and national development

Under the Strategic Goal 1 Catalyze Change, the WACDEP Programme of GWP China Region stresses cross-regional cooperation, sector plan optimization, investment on recycling renewable resources, south-south promotion and a good lesson of utilizing the water rights market.

The Work Package 3 involves wastewater that is an overlooked potential resource available through appropriate treatment, let alone to investment on it. Yet, wastewater reuse can benefit water security and climate improvement as the compensation to water scarcity, environmental pollution or deprived living environment. it targets at two authorities who in charge of the sewage system, the network of recycling renewable resources and infrastructure in urban and rural areas, namely, MWR and the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of the PRC (MOHURD). It proves the value of more investment on wastewater treatment to resolve the issue of sewage, water/environmental/climate deterioration and to the development of climate financing and circular economy.

The path towards both economic development and environmental improvement is national development strategy of China till 2030. China plans to cut water consumption, energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP by 23%, 15%, and 18% by 2020.[1]

Each related policy is improved to support and ensure water security and environmental protection. On one hand, it will encourage everyone to conserve energy and water. On the other, the Government presses ahead with the national wide upgrading of urban sewage treatment facilities and improves the networks of recycling renewable resources.[2] With political support in China, wastewater reuse/treatment and sewage management system may gain traction in the coming decade. One of the most popular concept of wastewater is turning “waste” into treasure via innovative technologies/measure. Thus, wastewater is "an available resource” in compensation for water shortage. In the latest decade, China has built up 4000+ wastewater treatment plants in urban areas. The total treatment capacity is 135 million m3 per day filling the gap between supply and demand.

Nevertheless, the network of recycling renewable resources or sewage management system is still at preliminary stage. Currently, most plants or projects are sponsored by governments. The investment in water sector has too small volume to see on wastewater treatment. The analysis on the selected plants will illustrate the benefits to socio-economic growth, water sustainability, development of power industry or urban construction, etc. It will state the value of investment on the network of recycling renewable resources to local, national or regional development.

·Illustration of existing wastewater investment in China and its benefits to socioeconomic development;
·Knowledge of potential of water supply from treated wastewater, and the associated energy and cost;
·Analysis report with policy references to show value of investment on wastewater treatment and the network of recycling renewable resources.

[1] Source from the “Report on the 2017 Work of China’s Government” issued in January, 2017

[2] Source from the “Report on the 2017 Work of China’s Government” issued in January, 2017