Drinking water

Reliable, high-quality drinking water plants and systems
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Veolia Water Technologies designs, delivers, maintains and upgrades water treatment plants and systems alongside our public and private customers all over the world. Our expertise and technologies ensure the quality and safety of the drinking water supply.


Water in its natural state is rarely of a quality optimal to maintain human health. To deliver quality drinking water pure enough for human consumption, from public networks to private taps, it needs treatment and distribution technologies.

Municipalities all around the world need safe, accessible and reliable drinking water in cities, rural and remote areas.

Safely managed drinking water and improved access to safe drinking water can result in tangible improvements to health, avoiding risks arising from consumption of water contaminated with infectious agents, toxic chemicals and radiological hazards. The right technologies shall treat bacteria and microorganisms, and remove phosphorus, pesticides, arsenic, heavy metals and other hazardous substances.

Improving potable water quality while meeting regulations

We are committed to delivering drinking water that is:

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Competitively priced

Our innovative water technologies and solutions are as suited for large cities as they are for rural or remote communities. The drinking water we produce has guaranteed traceability, which ensures the quality and preservation of water using a range of measurement tools and indicators. These methods ensure the real-time monitoring of water quality – from the treatment plant to the distribution network.

Our teams ensure the production of safe, reliable drinking water and continuous supply for local populations.
The quality of our technologies translates to lower operating costs and production continuity for all our public partners, and our partnerships all over the world enable us to provide a quality after-care service on all facilities.

Our global design, delivery, monitoring and maintenance capabilities facilitate continuous improvement, creating value for our clients:

  • Delivering potable water that is safe and reliable.
  • Minimizing costs.
  • In strict compliance with regulatory standards.
  • Benefiting from global experience in dealing with difficult-to-treat water sources.
  • Providing practical operation and maintenance experience.

Municipalities around the world trust:

  • The effectiveness of our treatment solutions. 

  • Our ability to recommend the best solutions to address specific needs.

  • The position of our technologies at the forefront of research and innovation.

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Drinking water is at the heart of all our innovations.

Clarification and purification

Water drawn from the natural environment is loaded with:

  • Suspended solids.
  • Mineral substances.
  • Organic substances.

Depending on the concentration levels of these substances in the water, there are different water clarification operations that can be performed to render it safe to drink. 
The decantation and flocculation / coagulation techniques put in place by Veolia Water Technologies guarantee the best solution at the best price for our customers.


The choice of softening technology depends on water characteristics and desired results. Technology benefits include:

  • Compact footprint.
  • Flexible and robust treatment.
  • Sludge treatability.
  • Fully automated.
  • Application expertise.


The drinking water we produce also undergoes specific treatments to remove the most harmful substances to organisms, including:

  • Arsenic.
  • Uranium.
  • Nitrates.
  • Endocrine disruptors.
  • Total organic carbon.


Our specialized business unit SIDEM is the world leader in seawater desalination. Our technologies help us provide populations with drinking water, even in the driest areas. 


Water purification is an essential step in making water resources drinkable. It relies on various advanced technologies to remove harmful micro-particles and associated impurities – whether they are of mineral or organic origin.
Notably, drinking water production and quality control systems developed by our experts protect public authorities against any risk of bacterial contamination or any other incident that would jeopardize the safety of water distributed to the public.

Discover our standardized solutions

We offer a full range of technologies to optimize the value of water. Our equipment include standardized, compact units that are easy to connect to industrial equipment. This allows faster integration and delivery, which is greatly valued by our customers.

Strong partnerships with municipalities worldwide to provide potable water

Modernizing a drinking water plant in Brittany.

Nantes Metropolis, near the western coast of France, entrusted Veolia Water Technologies with the modernization of its La Roche drinking water treatment plant. Playing a strategic role for the 24 municipalities the plant supplies nearly 600,000 inhabitants with potable water. 
Economic development and changes in quality standards have made its modernisation essential.

Would you like more information about our technologies for drinking water treatment?


Climate change, pollution and water scarcity have negatively affected the main drinking water sources, in particular surface waters which many cities around the world rely on as raw water for their drinking water supply. An increase of color in rivers and lakes, due to a rise in the content of organic matter, is experienced; this has stimulated research into achieving more sustainable drinking water treatments

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Philippe Sauvignet

Industrialisation Manager at Veolia

Contact Philippe through his LinkedIn account

More services for our municipal clients

A combination of digital tools and Veolia expertise that make all your water processes smarter, safer and more sustainable.
We provide a wide range of services to existing facilities including technical support, pre-planned preventive maintenance, spare parts, etc.
Rental assets to support and assist your site operations for temporary and longer-term water treatment needs 24/7.
Providing water hygiene and HYDREXⓇ chemical solutions serving the performance of utility and water treatment equipment.

FAQ about drinking water

What are the main sources of drinking water?

The sources most frequently used for the production of drinking water are:

  • Groundwater, from boreholes and wells. These waters are generally microbiologically pure, and free from turbidity. Their quality is stable over time. Depending on the geology of the soil, they will contain dissolved elements that will require treatment, such as softening in the case of hardness, or oxidation and filtration in the case of metals.
  • Surface water, from rivers and lakes. These must be disinfected as they usually contain suspended matter, organic matter and various pollutants. Their quality varies depending on the weather and the seasons. They require physico-chemical treatment, at least filtration.

In regions where these two main sources are scarce or variable over time, seawater is used. Because of its high salinity, seawater requires energy-intensive processes such as reverse osmosis in order to carry out efficient desalination. New technologies are however making it possible to treat this water with increasing energy efficiency. 
Technological developments now also make it possible to consider the reuse of wastewater as a realistic source of drinking water.

What is the source of color in water?

The presence of color in the water is an indication of the nature of the impurities that it contains and therefore of the treatments required to purify it. We refer to the color as being either apparent color or true color:

  • The apparent color is that of the raw water sample collected. It comes from both suspended matter and dissolved matter present in this water. We can recognize inorganic particles such as silts and clays, as well as organisms such as different types of algae (which can be green, yellow, red) and plankton.
  • The true color is that observed on a sample following filtration or centrifugation. The most common causes of color in water are the presence of minerals (iron, manganese, etc.). A yellow or brownish color is also often due to the presence of dissolved organic matter resulting from plant decomposition (leaves, roots, wood, for example). This organic material must be removed, as it reacts with disinfectants and forms unwanted by-products.

Why is chlorine added to drinking water?

Chlorine is a strong oxidant which acts as a disinfectant. It is used in drinking water to reduce or eliminate microorganisms such as viruses and bacteria. Over the past century, water disinfection has drastically reduced the transmission of disease through drinking water. In combination with filtration processes, chlorine helps control all pathogens.
While other means of disinfection exist, chlorine, used in the last stage of treatment, has the advantage of remaining in small quantities in the network to ensure microbiological safety right down to the user's tap.

Why is tap water cloudy sometimes?

Freshly poured tap water can sometimes look whitish or milky. If, after allowing this water to stand for a few minutes, it becomes clear again, it means that it is due to the presence of microbubbles of oxygen. This is likely due to the solubilization of oxygen in cold water in the pipes and the water is perfectly safe to drink.