Reducing water by 50% at our site in Porto Feliz

LANXESS has reduced water consumption by 50% through a retro-washing project at its manufacturing unit in Porto Feliz, where inorganic iron oxide pigments are produced and marketed under the brand names Bayferrox® and Xadrez®. 

The water re-use system in the plant shows that it has been possible to achieve outstanding results by efficiently managing scarce resources. 

Water consumption has dropped by around 50% since 2004, the year when the retro-washing project was established. The amount of waste has been reduced by around 40%. Moreover, the quality of the product, and therefore competitiveness, has increased. 

Data show an annual reduction comparable to the consumption of almost 12,000 households in the city of Porto Feliz. 

In order to improve quality, and consequently reduce the consumption of water used in production, the retro-washing process is a set of measures applied in inorganic iron oxide pigment production, from the moment water is collected from the Tietê river to the stage when, after being used in the production process, it is treated once again and returned to the river, following strict parameters. Basically the whole water collection and treatment has been reviewed in detail and made more efficient. 

“LANXESS values responsible operations where actions are not only profitable for the company, but also for the community in the surroundings of the units, as well as our partners, clients, suppliers and employees. The continuous development of processes is key to assuring the company’s competitiveness and shows its commitment to the regions where we operate. As current reality has proven, it is a duty to operate sustainably, integrating the economy, the environment, and social competency,” states Robert Madersdorfer, manager at the Porto Feliz plant.

In addition to contributing to the management of scarce resources, a further benefit is the reduction of waste, raw materials and energy, as well as an indirect reduction of the greenhouse effect.