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🤖 "How to Save No Less than 2.2 Billion Lives"

(don't) Waste Water!

Photo by Jainath Ponnala / Unsplash

Table of Contents

Host: Antoine Walter
Guest: Jacob Bossaer | CEO & Founder | BOSAQ
Category: 🤖 Technology

Podcast’s Essential Bites:

[3:32] “There was an application for a water expedition in […] Antarctica. I didn’t know anything about water, but I wanted to go to Antarctica. So I just applied for the job. […] I was technically involved [in] the Antarctic station. [Based on that experience I then] started my own company, because the particular thing about the station is that it runs 100% on renewable energy. I was thinking if you can recycle water […] in one of the most extreme environments in the world you can do it anywhere. And that’s how the idea evolved for BOSAQ, which is [a] sustainable water company, where we provide a decentralized supply of drinking water with the means of renewable energies.”

[12:42] “Drinking water, even more than just water, is a very political product. And that was my naivety. I thought […] everybody needs it, so it’s easy, the market is there, so let's start a company. And then you bump against the boundaries, which are the political ones. And that's where the technological idea evolved to a visionary idea. […] I think the vision of BOSAQ is one of our strong selling points. We do not sell technology, although we consider ourselves a water technology company, not as a water utility company, which is a big difference. So we develop patents, we develop new technology, we look at new ways on how to treat [water] better, [with] less chemicals, less impact, less energy consumption. […] But I sell […] an idea of having drinking water available for everybody. […] The political gain from providing drinking water to communities is quite high. So you have a good leverage there. But it's really the vision that you have to [sell] to the people that want to get elected next term.”

[15:06] “The problem is that 80% of Europeans do not trust water from the tap. […] Belgium is one of the worst countries concerning drinking water consumption from tap water, most buy bottles. And Holland is the complete opposite, [so it really is] country dependent. […] [The concerns are that tap water is] not safe, not clean, still [has] some some medicines in it or drugs […]. [But it’s] just perception. And that's also due to the fact that the marketing of the bottled water industry is very fierce, because if you think about it, a bottled water company that's not a water production company, it's a water transportation company. And if you look at it like that, you get a completely different view on what water is.”

[20:17] “I'm raised as a person that is against capitalism. But to be capitalist, you get to become a part of it. How strange that sounds. […] I said, I'm going to use capitalism to make a change. […] Everybody that works at BOSAQ has to comply with […] a value framework where the idealistic view of the world is a necessity to work at BOSAQ. So everybody is a bit naive in a good way that we want to change the world for the good. And if you have that as a company […] DNA, […] I'm convinced that we can make a change for the good.”

[22:03] “I'm also the first to say that people have to pay for drinking water. It's not free. It's a human basic right, absolutely, but it's not free. Because food is also a human basic right and it's also not for free. […] You have to [make an] effort to make water drinkable. And there we come to the value of water. What value does water have, because for a farm it's different than for a company that is using a cooling system. […] Water is a very good example of how interconnected everything is. Because if you don't have water, you don't live. […] Every advancement in this world in an industry is water based. […] The luxury we have in the West is based on water in the end.”

[24:16] “We set up a foundation, which is called Water Heroes, […] a foundation that supports […] the communities […] that really don't have anything to provide for [themselves]. And we provide technology to provide clean drinking water. So it's 10% of the profits that goes there from BOSAQ […] and you also have clients that for CSR reasons donate to Water Heroes. […] We oblige everybody who financially is involved in BOSAQ, to give something back to communit[ies], because the fact that we can live the way we live is a gift […] compared to […] 2.2 billion people not having access to clean drinking water on a regular basis.”

[36:52] “Our system is membrane based. […] And for us, it’s at this stage, the best technology to provide a high quality drink or at all at all time. […] What we’ve done is first of all, we made a system that’s 100% off-grid, which is quite unique. So we don’t need electricity from the grid or from a generator to operate our systems. […] Also in the concept, what we do is three years of maintenance is included. If a government doesn’t want to, we don’t provide systems. So it’s obligatory. […] The technology transfer is a part of that three years, because if you provide new technology to a country and engineers are not trained in it, they cannot sustain it. […] A second very important thing is […] we oblige governments to make people pay for water, which is not always obvious. As soon as people pay for water, the value of water is there. […] People understand that, [which is] the most amazing part. […] Even the poorest ones are willing to pay for good quality drinking water, [because] they don’t want their kids getting sick. 4.5 million people die worldwide per year because of drinking water issues. Most of them are kids. So they’re really willing to pay for that.”

[1:02:03] “The water sector is changing for the good and I think it's going a little bit further away from government from a technological point of view. […] In water […] innovation is still possible, the low hanging fruits are still there. So I really believe that the trend is […] water is going to be hot, it's going to be sexy. […] Also in the eyes of public opinion, […] I think [the value of] water will go up. They [are referred] to as the blue gold, the new oil […] And I think that water is going to […] be more publicly debated.”

Rating: 💧💧💧

🎙️ Full Episode: Apple | Spotify
🕰️ 1 hr 7 min | 🗓️ 05/26/2021
✅ Time saved: 1 hr 5 min