Cobalt Water Global commercializes an artificial intelligence decision support system developed by LEQUIA for the selection of wastewater treatment technologies

The software, developed within the framework of Novedar_Consolider project, integrates information from more than 250 technologies to treat wastewater and sludge, and applies technical, economic and environmental criteria to assess and rank them. Cobalt Water Global is based in New York and Ghent (Belgium), and offers solutions for a more sustainable urban water management


International water consultancy Cobalt Water Global today announced it has reached an agreement with consortium of Novedar_Consolider project to commercialize its software “NOVEDAR_EDSS”. The consortium integrates 11 universities and research centers in Spain and the Netherlands within the field of water. This decision support system makes a huge leap forward in solving the highly complex problem of urban wastewater treatment technology selection. 


NOVEDAR_EDSS works from the premise that there is no single wastewater solution. The site-specific characteristics of wastewater, location of the plant, and water utility priorities dictate which is the best combination of treatment technologies. With this view, the software is structured with three databases: The first one with data on 250 technologies for wastewater and sludge treatment; the second one, with information on their compatibility; and the third, with legislative requirements. This huge amount of data was obtained mainly from scientific literature and interviews with experts from both academia and water practice. Therefore, it merges theoretical, practical, and empirical knowledge into the tool’s selection engine through different artificial intelligence techniques. Another special feature of the software is that treatment alternatives are compared and evaluated according to their sustainability in terms of technical (e.g. quality of treated water), economic (e.g. construction, energy costs), social (e.g. ecosystem services) and environmental (e.g. greenhouse gases emissions) criteria.


Cobalt Water Global, who will be taking the Novedar_EDSS to market, is based in New York City and the Flemish city of Ghent (Belgium).  Cobalt Water Global was founded by engineer and entrepreneur José Porro, who previously worked as a researcher at the UdG through the European Marie Curie network project “SANITAS” – and has as a mission to improve the sustainability of the urban water cycle by means of modelling and artificial intelligence.


The timing for this agreement could not be more perfect in light of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, particularly SDG6 for water, because it should not be about constructing any type of facility just to increase wastewater treatment coverage, it is about identifying the best practical and sustainable solution in each case.  The Novedar_EDSS, is the only tool that can quickly do this within a single platform, so it is an exciting opportunity.” (Jose Porro, Cobalt Water Global) 


For us, this is a great opportunity to be able to continue transferring the outcomes from our environmental decision support research line to society, not only locally, but also internationally, and particularly since it can support water managers in such a complex task.  Moreover, we are pleased to have this opportunity with someone who was part of our group and who not only understands our vision, but also the real needs in the water sector.” (Manel Poch, LEQUIA-UdG)

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Laboratory of Chemical and Enviromental Engineering

Institut de Medi Ambient
Universitat de Girona
Campus Montilivi
17003 Girona

Parc Científic i Tecnològic de la UdG
Edifici Jaume Casademont, Porta B
Pic de Peguera, 15
17003 Girona
Tel. +34 972 41 98 59




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