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The innovations making waves in the future of water

A new online film series is showcasing incredible innovations taking place across the world of water, highlighting game-changing technological advancements and ways communities are coming together to protect this precious resource.

With themes shaped by the International Water Association (IWA) and the featured films produced on behalf of content partners by BBC StoryWorks Commercial Productions, the stories in Beneath the Surface spotlight some of the incredible projects around the world aimed at securing this essential element.

We know water is critical to our survival – yet, with populations growing worldwide and climates changing, there are challenges to securing this resource for the future. This is why the IWA is dedicated to generating and spreading knowledge, especially on the potential of technology, to ensure communities worldwide can have access to the water we need now and into the future.

Taking a deep dive into the world of water, this brand new series celebrates some of the pioneers around the world working to keep this precious resource safe – from taking inspiration from nature to filter water in Copenhagen, to monitoring the maze of underground water pipes in a Romanian city, to repurposing a hydroelectric dam in the mountains of Italy to provide a community with a more reliable water supply, these stories range from the microscopic to the vast, showing the ripple effect across the water industry. Valuing every drop of water is critical to preserving the huge quantities required to sustain communities of today and the future.

This film, produced for Watericon by BBC StoryWorks Commercial Productions, tells the story of the below:

Summary of film

Rural areas in Africa lack access to reliable municipal supply, and water scarcity is rife. Communities and facilities such as colleges can utilize existing water sources such as borehole water, but not before treating the water to remove dissolved salt, high hardness and often metals. These sites are often far and little infrastructure is available.

Capricorn College is a product of a merger of three Colleges with very distinct and diverse historical backgrounds . These were the former Pietersburg Technical College ( P T C ), Bochum College of Education and the former Northern Province Community College ( N P C C ).

The whole of the North municipality area around Capricorn College in Polokwane, South Africa, has suffered from a lot of water issues, including high fluoride levels in the water (causing people to lose their teeth) to high iron content, high minerals, corrosive water with high TDS levels that affects infrastructures and is undrinkable.

Despite containerised units already existing within the municipality, issues still persist; the units are often left incomplete, or the wrong sized equipment is used, and ultimately the community is left without water.

Watericon has been working to solve this problem, and has now installed 5 containers and is able to provide the area with accessible, clean water.

This story will explore how Watericon’s containerised units changed an area that previously didn’t have access to clean water.

Series Background

The series will consider how the water sector is building more sustainable, efficient, resilient, and intelligent water systems, as well as effecting important changes to consumer behaviour.
In the face of challenges including a changing climate, ageing infrastructure, and growing population, it will showcase innovations and solutions from across the industry and communicate what those new ideas really mean for the end user.

Through the stories of communities affected by critical water issues, the series will promote greater understanding around how positive changes around water will benefit all life on earth.
Working with a small number of organisations, BBC StoryWorks will present the most interesting projects across the water sector and tell the human stories of the individuals behind the work shaping our world.


Watericon is an African company with the goal to be the top solutions provider in the water treatment industry across the continent. To do this, they provide an end-to-end water treatment solution for their customers’ unique needs through specialised problem-solving techniques and highly skilled partners and resources.

We design and construct water treatment and process plants, and provide ongoing maintenance and consumables – all under one roof. Modular plants ranging in size from 10m3/hr to 20ML/day, with the ability to offer larger solutions for bigger projects.

Watericon, isn’t afraid to push boundaries. Innovate. Invent. Renew and revolutionise.

Beneath the Surface launches on www.beneaththesurfaceseries.com on 8th September 2022, shortly before the IWA’s World Water Congress & Exhibition, and will run for 12 months.

Dr Kala Vairavamoorthy, Executive Director of the International Water Association, said: “Water touches every part of our lives. As the UN Sustainable Development Goals show, a great deal of action is needed. Climate change in particular will add to this need. Beneath the Surface helps raise awareness of the work that goes on, often behind the scenes, to secure our water future.”

Simon Shelley, vice president of BBC StoryWorks Programme Partnerships, said: “The aim of this series is to show how the water industry is rising to the challenge of building greater security, resilience, and stewardship in global water systems with a steady stream of pioneering solutions. It’s been a pleasure to tell these stories, and we hope the series will encourage viewers to consider how we can manage our most precious resource more wisely.”

Beneath the Surface is available to explore here – www.beneaththesurfaceseries.com

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