ITT Corp. has completed two new rural water treatment plants in China, as part of a pilot project to tackle the country’s rural drinking water issues. The two plants, which utilize leading water-treatment technology, will supply more than 10,000 local residents with purified water that meets or surpasses the national standards. Both plants were designed and donated by ITT under an agreement with the Center for Rural Drinking Water Safety of China’s Ministry of Water Resources. The project is to serve as base for future rural water systems in developing countries.

“Finding sustainable solutions for the problem of rural drinking water safety in China poses huge challenges for the local government, rural residents and technology providers,” says Mike Kuchenbrod, president of ITT’s China and India operations. “To address the issue, ITT designed two different solutions for Qing County and Zhaojiaopu Village, each according to the distinctive features of the water environment and the specific needs of local residents. We hope that these two successful pilot models can be promoted to more rural areas of China, and offer useful experience for future rural drinking water safety projects in many developing regions of the world.”

According to survey data, 300 million of China’s rural residents drink water that falls below standards. Residents in Qing County rely on wells that have been in use for more than 20 years. Because of the local land composition, seawater gradually has infiltrated the wells, leading to higher fluoride content in its water.

The ITT project was conceived in 2005, with company and the China Ministry of Water Resources signing a cooperation agreement in April 2008. Having analyzed raw water quality, residents’ needs and existing equipment, ITT employed technologies such as multiple agent filtration and ultraviolet sterilization to purify the well water and produce water that surpasses National Drinking Water Standards in a scalable form that also is energy- and resource-efficient.