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Imagine H2O and The Coca-Cola Foundation Announce New Funded Pilots while Renewing Partnership for Water Innovation Access

In 2023, The Coca-Cola Foundation partnered with Imagine H2O to de-risk adoption of water innovation for water-stressed communities. The Sustainable Access Solutions Partnership funded four technology pilots in South and Southeast Asia. Today, the Partnership announced three additional pilots while also confirming an expansion of the program in 2024.  

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Data-driven, village-level water budgeting in rural India. Real-time visibility into water quality across remote distribution networks in the Philippines. Safe drinking water access using small piped systems in Dhaka. These are a few of the technology pilots now underway with support from the Sustainable Access Solutions Partnership, a collaboration between Imagine H2O (IH2O) and The Coca-Cola Foundation (TCCF). 

Launched in 2023, this pilot support program helps water-stressed communities around the world trial water technology startups that protect and restore water supply, mitigate pollution and strengthen resilience of freshwater resources to climate disruption. Four pilots received grants and technical support last October, all of which are now underway. Three new projects were announced today. 

Ekatvam Innovations is trialing their water budgeting tool to help villages in Maharashtra, India, better manage their water resources.
TracWater is deploying their portable water quality analyzers for remote water distribution network monitoring in two cities in the Philippines.

Each project funded by the Partnership is a product of IH2O’s extensive in-country pilot design and consultation process with startups and their customers. As a neutral intermediary, IH2O helps entrepreneurs identify the right opportunities and partners to increase the likelihood of pilot success and commercial conversion. To date, seven utilities in four countries have contributed their own resources to support these pilots.

TCCF will renew and expand the Partnership in 2024, creating more opportunities for utilities to overcome the barriers to adopting innovative water solutions. This momentum builds on Imagine H2O’s five-year track record funding pilot projects supported by other philanthropic and public sector partners including Oceankind, Enterprise Singapore, World Bank, and the Asian Development Bank. IH2O’s pilot funding budget doubled in 2023, supporting 17 pilots globally.

“Imagine H2O didn’t just open doors to new markets in Southeast Asia for us, their team partnered with us on the ground to design and fund pilots with the right customers,” said Len McKelvey, CEO of TracWater. “Our first projects in the Philippines are now underway thanks to Sustainable Access Solutions Partnership, empowering utilities to leapfrog expensive and time-consuming water quality monitoring.”

Learn more about the three new innovation pilots below:

  • Government-run small and large utilities in Indonesia have an average non-revenue water (NRW) level of 34%. Existing NRW software solutions, however, often require complete datasets and are therefore accessible only to data-mature utilities.
  • SmartTerra will deploy their AI-powered data analytics tool in up to five utilities in Indonesia to reduce apparent and real water losses as well as improve utility revenue. 
SmartTerra’s AI analytics tool helps utilities in emerging markets with intermittent, manual data to reduce NRW.

  • Nearly 75 million septic tanks in India are emptied manually, a process that is both dangerous to workers and inefficient for cleaning. In response, the central government has prohibited manual scavenging and committed new funding for municipalities to procure mechanical cleaning equipment. 
  • Solinas Integrity will trial their robotic cleaning system for a municipality in Maharashtra to empty up to 100 septic tanks and sewer manholes.
Solinas Integrity’s HomoSEP robot homogenizes sludge and improves the cleaning efficiency of sanitation assets while eliminating manual scavenging.
  • Climate change is pushing the limits of already ageing utility infrastructure in the US, with heavy floods and low temperatures causing water main breaks that contaminate water and disrupt supply. 
  • BlueConduit will explore opportunities with a utility in Mississippi to improve their water infrastructure by prioritizing resources in high-risk areas using machine learning and predictive modeling.
Blue Conduit’s software predicts the materials and conditions of water service lines to help utilities efficiently rehabilitate their infrastructure.

Learn more about other projects and IH2O’s pilot funding program here.