Water expected to fuel a future investment boom

A global population boom and climate change will prompt huge investment in water and waste projects around the world in the decades ahead, the head of the world's second-largest water group told Reuters.

"We are at the onset of a revolution," declared Jean-Louis Chaussade, chief executive of Suez Environment, on the eve of United Nations World Water Day on Thursday. He added: "All the issues linked to global warming, water resources, the increase in population, mean that businesses linked to water will continue to develop in a favourable way for us, as our businesses are at the core of these global

About 20% of humanity lacks access to safe drinking water, according to UN data, while 44% of the world’s population live in areas affected by high water stress, and this figure is expected to increase to 47% by 2030.

This means a growing need for facilities to supply water and to treat waste, so as not to pollute existing water reserves, in both emerging countries and in more developed water markets, Chaussade said. Suez Environment will invest 100 million euros (over US$150 million) annually in sewage treatment and water projects in China over the next five years, he added.

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