The Partnership for Sustainable Textiles, University of Stuttgart, Tongji University, TÜV Rheinland and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) together hosted the symposium on Integrated Best Available Wastewater Management in the Textile Sector. The symposium took place in Shanghai on 27 November 2019.
At the very beginning, Professor Harald Schönberger represents Stuttgart University, Mr Gundolf Klaehn represents Partnership for Sustainable Textiles and Mr Fang Weimin represents TÜV Rheinland sent their warm welcome to the audience. Later on, UNEP Asia-Pacific Regional Officer Mr Zhang Jinhua, Tongji University experts Professor Zhou Xuefei & Mr Islam Abdelhafeez and China National Textile and Apparel Council (CNTAC) industrial policy expert Mr Cheng Hao respectively introduced the Global Environment Outlook for Asia Pacific, the novel technologies for textile wastewater treatment and the water resource utilization and protection policies in China.
During the day, textile wastewater treatment professions from Europe and the Asia Pacific Region pointed out that dyeing and desizing procedures generate majority of the pollutants in the textile production process, and on top of it, discussed with audience their latest research findings to achieve the minimization of water consumption where the chemical treatment techniques for better textile wastewater recycling performance plays an important role. The symposium also brought the subject of energy use efficiency and introduced the economic cost accounting tool to find the most efficient textile wastewater treatment solutions.
Apart from the academic discussion, entrepreneurs and sustainability leaders from transnational enterprises in the textile industry like IKEA, Adidas and Primark shared their view from a business perspective. Textile companies specifically the leaders of the textile industry could try to carry more responsibilities by mobilizing resources to conduct related studies, carrying out environmental education programmes to raise local environmental awareness and implementing better technologies to reduce the pollution at its source and to improve the capacity and efficiency of the textile wastewater treatment process in combination with a proper understanding of the local environmental policies.
Students from UNEP-Tongji Institute of Environment for Sustainable Development also attended the event. According to students’ feedback, the symposium gave a comprehensive overview of the current academic and practical status of textile wastewater treatment and would be very helpful and inspiring for their further studies.