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The 21st century is called the "Century of Water" because of the serious problem of water supply imbalance due to the uneven distribution of water. This is because while water demand increases with the increase in the global population, fresh water from rivers and lakes accounts for only 0.01% of water on the earth. For this reason, it is more necessary than ever to supply safe water constantly according to demand while considering the global environment.
Meanwhile, the population of Japan is declining, and a safe and secure water supply and water environment must be sustained. Facilities and equipment installed in the "Construction Era" of the past now need to be updated, but Japan’s financial situation cannot afford this undertaking. There is also the problem of insufficient skilled engineers and technicians due to the aging population, which makes efficient business operation essential. On the other hand, both a low-carbon society and a healthy water environment are essential, because the environmental impact of water supply and sewage treatment service is quite high from the viewpoint of reducing of greenhouse gas emissions.
The Hitachi Group’s Intelligent Water System concept incorporates smart supervisory control, instrumentation, information management and water treatment systems that are linked to solve global problems and provide a water environment that balances people and the environment. This enables total optimization on the city and watershed level of a stable supply of safe water that meets demand, and ensures environmental conservation, prevention of global warming and disaster prevention as well as facilities maintenance management and operating efficiency in the cycle from water resources to water use and recycling. For these reasons, the water environment is assumed information flow as well as that of water and is systematized based on the traceability of the water environment by monitoring information such as water quality, water volume and water pressure utilizing ICT (information and communications technology).