Manufacturing process sustainability advancement through a water-management value-system

Thumbnail Image
CORA Abstract.docx(12.71 KB)
Walsh, Brendan P.
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
University College Cork
Published Version
Research Projects
Organizational Units
Journal Issue
The world’s current utilisation of water, allied to the forecasted increase in our dependence on it, has led to the realisation that water as a resource needs to be managed. Whilst it is generally accepted that enhancements in water management are required worldwide, the relatively low apparent financial cost of water is inhibiting the essential changes, as the true cost of the water is not known. The water-energy nexus has been researched and details of significant, predominantly industrial, water management studies are outlined. A common trend has been identified, whereby the true cost of the water is rarely determined and hence unappreciated. In order to assist with addressing this situation within the pharmaceutical/healthcare manufacturing industry, a novel framework for establishing the true cost of water by analysing the cost added has been developed. The application of this decision support tool is described. The true cost provides a valuable insight into the operation of the facility, a means for internal and external benchmarking, and also the data necessary to financially justify any modifications required. The data may also be used to assist with the calculation of a water footprint or a life-cycle cost. For the case-study, a model was created and data over a three year period was analysed. It was determined that the true cost of the deionised water was, on average, €13.20/m3. The Cost-Added Factor relevant to this system is 14.05, originating from a water supply cost of €0.94/m3. The total true expenditure on deionised water was €26,025 whereas the perceived expenditure was €1,853. The true cost and Cost-Added Factors for other water services typical of the industry were also calculated. The results were analysed for various scenarios and tested for sensitivity and uncertainty. The methodology developed and results obtained will assist with the transition to more sustainable practices.
Water , Sustainability , Energy , Water energy nexus , Industrial sustainability
Walsh, B. P. 2017. Manufacturing process sustainability advancement through a water-management value-system. PhD Thesis, University College Cork.
Link to publisher’s version