Strategies for Textile Companies to Harness Water for Efficiency


As the textile companies strives toward sustainable cultivation and production, wastewater management becomes inevitable for woven and non woven material suppliers. Wastewater management refers to the control and regulation of water in textile manufacturing to minimize pollution and optimize water reusability. The textile industry is one of the top industries worldwide that consume most water for production. It’s a water-incentive industry as it requires water acrossall its processes, such as crop cultivation, harvesting, sizing, mercerizing, scouring, washing, bleaching, dyeing, finishing, and printing.

The volume of water used is just one aspect of the industry’s environmental impact. Textile production generates a wide range ofpollutantsthat can harm external water resources as well. The type and quantity of water pollutants vary based on the fiber, process, technology implemented, and chemicals used. For instance, to cultivate 1 kilogram of cotton, nearly 22,500liters of clean water is used.

In calculating water footprints, there’s often a failure to account for substantial quantities of ‘virtual water’—water that becomes unavailable for any other use due to either evaporation or pollution.

Pollutants Generated During Textile Production

  • Nonbiodegradable compounds in high concentrations. They include phenols, metals, pesticides, phosphates, and surfactants.
  • A large amount of organic matter that requires more oxygen to decompose (High Biological Oxygen Demand or BOD)
  • The total oxygen required to chemically oxidize matters(High Level of Chemical Oxygen Demand or COD). This may include both organic and inorganic compounds.
  • High Levels of Total Dissolved Solids (TDS), meaning high concentrations of dissolved salts, minerals, industrial water waste, bicarbonates, soil runoff, fertilizers, and other solids.
  • Increased concentrations of Total Suspended Solids (TSS). These are suspended particles that don’t dissolve and can be trapped through filtration. Examples include sewage, decaying plants, and silts.

These particles can drastically decrease oxygen in water bodies by altering the pH balance, creating a perfect environment for septic conditions that can harm humans as well as fish. Dyes are the most common and most damaging pollutants in textile production.

Available Solutions of Waste Water Management in the Textile Industry

Production water costs are increasing year by year. The textile industry is choosing sustainable measures as it faces pressures from the government and other industries. It is essential for woven and nonwoven material suppliers to recognize the cruciality of wastewater management and make it an essential process in textile production and quality control. Here are a few ways through which wastewater management can be implemented in the industry:

  • Installation ofpreliminary treatment plants can efficiently remove large pieces of debris that could harm machinery and cause operational issues. They include rugs, pieces of clothing, twigs, grease, dirt, and rags. Equalization and skimming can help remove oil and grease, some amounts of BOD and COD, and homogenize the mixture.
  • Secondary treatmentscan help remove biodegradable organic matter, including both COD and BOD.
  • Advanced or tertiary treatment is the most efficient wastewater management solution. In this process, adsorbents like silica, clay, fly ash, activated carbon, and natural and synthetic bioadsorbents are used to remove dissolved or suspended solids from the water bodies. Based on the complexity and variability of the pollutant, a different approach or technique can be adopted to eliminate waste.

Efficient biological and chemical treatments are available for processing textile wastewater, but the chemicals used in these treatments can be costly and environmentally harmful. In contrast, certain microbes used in biological treatment collaborate to safely break down complex organic wastes and other compounds, effectively reducing COD, BOD, and nitrogen levels simultaneously.

In the context of the textile sector, adopting a decentralized approach for wastewater management is logical as it begins the treatment process right at the beginning, i.e., at the production sites. Additionally, addressing textile wastewater directly at its source before it reaches the sewer system improves its effectiveness. In regions where municipal services levy additional fees for processing highly contaminated water, such costs can be minimized.

Furthermore, it is vital that non woven material suppliers and textile manufacturers prioritize accountability in order to improve the wastewater management process in the textile industry. Buyers should also consciously buy textile online from suppliers that give importance to wastewater management and sustainability.

By doing this, the textile industry can safeguard the environment as well as the water bodies and contribute to the industry’s overall sustainability initiative.

TEXchange Global recognizes sustainable water use and management as the bottom line, not just in terms of efficiency but also as part of our corporate social responsibility. If you want to buy textile online from sustainable woven and nonwoven material suppliers, register your business on TEXchange Global and become an active participant in saving the earth.

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