If you are curious about the industrial uses of water in Africa, you can learn all about them here. Find out the 10 uses of water in industry that you might not have been aware of before. This is more interesting than you might have anticipated!
What are the uses of water?
In case you did not know, water is heavily used in various industries. While around 70% of all water used in the world, particularly in Africa are used in the agriculture sector, up to 20% of it is used in other industries (and whatever left is used domestically). This means that there are lot more uses of water in industry that you know about!
For that reason, we have compiled a list of uses of water by the many industries that can help you understand the scope of it all. Check it out!
Uses of water list
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Here are the top 10 most common uses of water in industry you should know about:
- Agriculture industry. While agriculture is its own sector, it is still an industry, and in most countries, it accounts for the most water consumption. Water is used to irrigate, fertilise, pesticide and cool the crops, as well as to sustain livestock. In addition, it is also used in fish breeding.
- Food industry. Even if we exclude the water used in growing some foods, there is still a lot of it involved in further preparation of it. For instance, processed foods, no matter how dry and lifeless they might look, actually require lots of water to make. This might sound surprising, but more than 900 litres go into making a single loaf of bread, while a pound of cheese requires almost 1,500 litres of water.
- Textile industry. You might not realise this, but almost every step of making the garment you are wearing right now involved copious amounts of water. This includes dying, bleaching, scouring, desizing and many other steps required in preparation of the fabric. As making the textiles and clothes involves the use of many chemicals and dyes, a lot of water is required to do that, especially to wash off all the chemicals before the clothes and textiles get to the user.
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- Leisure and recreation industry. Of course, we cannot talk about the uses of water in industry without mentioning something that cannot exist without water, namely swimming pools and water parks. This is pretty much obvious, as this industry uses water simply for recreational activities.
- Hospitality industry. Hotels use incredible amounts of water each day for washing the sheets and towels, cleaning, preparing meals, washing the dishes and so on. A big hotel that has a pool and a restaurant can be using as much as 340,000 litres a day! So next time you go on a trip with a 5-star hotel, keep this in mind and consider how much water is going to be wasted just to please you.
- Restaurant industry. Along with hotels, restaurants use a lot of water as well. As we have mentioned before, a lot of water goes into making and cleaning the dishes, while some also goes into making ice and drinks. It is interesting to note, however, that a fast food restaurant actually uses only a third of the water used at a similar-sized regular restaurant. At least they are doing some good :)
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- Oil and gas industry. Water is an integral part of the oil industry, as it is used during exploration, production and transportation of the products. Water is needed in every step, from construction of oil plants and maintaining pressure to cooling of the power generators and the natural gas compression. It is also one of the main channels for transportation of the products from this industry.
- Energy industry. Water can be used both as the source of energy and as one of the tools for generating energy. For instance, there are hydropower plants that use the flowing water and turn its energy into electricity. At the same time, water can be used in other types of power plants (such as nuclear power plants) for cooling purposes, as they overheat in the process and require something to reduce their temperature.
- Manufacturing industries. Pretty much everything you see around you was made using water at some point in the production process. Water is used in manufacturing for many reasons, including steam generation, cooling, cleaning, process uses and even sanitation of the employees. Without water, the machinery would most likely overheat constantly, and we would have to return to the dark ages.
- Chemical industry. Water in chemical industry is used to heat or cool equipment, produce steam, create vacuum, prepare solvents, rinse the products and so on. As in most other industries, it is required for every step of the way, and no chemical production plant can function without water.
As you can see, water has many uses in various industries, some of the most common being cooling and cleaning. What other uses of water in industries do you know? Share them in the comments.
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