A cloud-based water management system developed by Accenture and Amazon Web Services is intended to help the energy industry with ample data to improve water efficiency and sustainability throughout their operations.
The water intelligence and management platform will be a single data source providing information on water volume and quality, and it will provide analytics to optimize water and enhance integrated efficiency management. The companies also hope the system will help businesses build a platform where they can share data and promote water reuse across industries.
The system is being developed by intelligent systems operator Accenture with cloud services, including storage, machine learning and artificial intelligence, from Amazon Web Services (AWS).
Colombia-based energy company Ecopetrol will use the platform to reduce its water footprint by providing information on how to decrease the amount of fresh water it gets from local sources to improve water treatment. The system will also help increase the reuse of water and wastewater in production.
Ecopetrol says it will use the platform to help it meet its goals of reducing 66% of its fresh water captured and zero discharges to surface water by 2045.
Water is an integral piece of the energy industry, and it is estimated that up to 44% of the world’s water withdrawal is used in energy production, according to a report from Science Direct. The International Energy Agency says as part of its sustainable development scenario such water withdrawals need to decrease by 20%.
AWS Chief Operating Officer Adam Selipsky says water conservation is a big data problem and by using machine learning and artificial intelligence can help the energy industry achieve water neutrality.
Such smart systems are improving efficiency in water use, and a 2021 report by Banyan Water found automated systems and machine learning can save millions of gallons of water and cut operating costs. Schneider Electric has an automation system specifically to help water and wastewater facilities cut energy costs, safeguard fresh water and improve sustainability.
Intelligent data systems overall are becoming a key component of energy efficiency and sustainable operations, and artificial intelligence could save trillions of dollars in energy transitions. Cloud-based systems can help track everything from water and energy usage to supply chain operations.
Accenture has been highly involved in the effort as part of the Green Software Foundation with Microsoft, improving its net zero and energy efficiency businesses and other smart platforms such as one that monitors methane emissions.