Image European lifestyles have changed significantly over the last 50 years.  The fact that we have water on tap means we use it everywhere: in baths, showers, sinks, pools, gardens but also in washing machines and dishwashers.  Water usage in our Western society is often taken  for granted.  Consequently there is a potential imbalance risk between of the supply and demand for water and therefore a need to reduce the amount we consume or see an increasing percentage of the population experiencing water-related problems.  Therefore understanding how to reduce water consumption has in consequence become a key issue both for the manufacturer and consumers.

Water Quality

Members of A.I.S.E. and Cefic have been working on innovative measures to develop products that have the least impact on water and the environment for many years.  An efficient way of doing this is by ensuring that the ingredients used in a product are biodegradable.  Biodegradation is the natural way in which organic materials are broken down by bacteria. When biodegradation is incomplete, by-products are formed that will accumulate in the environment or will degrade further through other mechanisms. The innovative measures taken by industry coupled with the EU Detergents Regulation (EC) 648/2004 (which further reinforced former pieces of legislation in that domain) have helped to ensure that surfactants (a key ingredient in laundry detergents) are biodegradable in water systems.  For more information on biodegradation of surfactants please click here .

Water Quality matters in the EU should also be considered in the context of the implementation of the Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive (UWWTD) which aims at improving waste water treatment.

Industry continues to work with regulators, academics and scientific experts for the continual improvement of its products. 

Water Saving

Many of our industry’s products depend on water throughout their life-cycle,  that is from their production to their consumption.  Water is used in factories as part of the manufacturing process and then by consumers when they use our products, for instance when using washing-up liquid to clean dishes or using laundry detergents when doing the laundry.
To encourage water savings member companies continuously take measures to address water consumption by providing guidance to consumers on how to consume less water and by improving their products. In addition A.I.S.E./Cefic have developed best practice industry schemes such as Responsible Care and the Charter for Sustainable Cleaning to tackle among other issues water consumption.  

Furthermore, it is a recognised fact that a majority of the water consumed in the detergents and maintenance product sector is used by the consumer when actually using the product. It is for this reason that A.I.S.E. launched the Washright campaign and the Save Energy and Water project, which aim to show consumers how they can help to reduce their water consumption and still get the best results from their cleaning and washing duties.

Did you know that by using 50°C or 55°C programs or Automatic programs instead of high temperature programs when running your dishwasher you can save*:
…up to 84 kWh of electricity in one year? That's about 80 extra cycles or over 3 months worth of dishwashing for free!
…up to 1,497 litres of water in one year? It represents the amount of water you may use for about 43 showers or 19 baths, at moderate use rates.
* based on the maximum likely saving which can be achieved, identified from a sample of machines recently on the market in Europe and data on average European machine usage patterns

The Visit the House section of this site provides a number of additional tips on how to save water at home while going about your daily chores.


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