How Hong Kong’s Water Supplies Department is getting smart
An annual report published in 2016 by Hong Kong’s Water Supplies Department declared the introduction of a Water Intelligent Network (WIN) system which would allow the department to continuously monitor its water distribution network.
WIN involves the installation of state-of-the-art monitoring and sensing equipment in the water supply network of the District Metering Areas (DMAs). WSD has planned to establish a total of 2,000 DMAs over the Territory and as of 2016, had approximately 850 in place.
The same report also stated that WSD planned to deploy a smart water network in new development areas such as the Development of Kowloon East and Anderson Road Quarry Site by applying the most advanced AMR technology together with WIN.
It stated that improving meter reading efficiency and providing better services to customers would be done via the adoption of a smart metering scheme.
On 26 June 2018, almost two years later, the Hong Kong Legislative Council on Development released a paper from WSD that aimed to brief the Council members on the Automatic Meter Reading for Water Supplies in Hong Kong.
The paper described AMR as a system that will collect the water consumption data of individual customers automatically and remotely by means of smart water meters installed at their premises.
The major components of AMR include the AMR Master Station (i.e. the backend computer in WSD) and the AMR Outstation (i.e. the equipment installed at individual buildings).
According to the paper, smart metering, i.e., AMR offers greater visibility to the consumers for them to better understand and manage their water consumption.
Current Implementation of AMR in Hong Kong
In the Smart City Blueprint for Hong Kong published in December 2017, the Government has included requirements on the provision of smart water meter system in buildings, i.e. AMR, for new land sales sites in the Kai Tak Development (“KTD”) in Kowloon East as one of the initiatives to develop a green and smart community.
In conjunction with the development of a smart water supply model, AMR will also be implemented in the Development of Anderson Road Quarry Site (“ARQD”) as one of the initiatives for the smart water supply model.
In all, around 55,000 smart water meters will be installed progressively in these two new development areas starting from 2018-19.
Apart from KTD and ARQD, WSD is also collaborating with Architectural Services Department (“ArchSD”) and Urban Renewal Authority (“URA”) to implement AMR in their seven developments (one from ArchSD and six from URA). The number of smart water meters in these developments is about 1300.
Other Digital Initiatives By WSD
With twin purposes of promoting water conservation and meeting the needs of today’s ubiquitous mobile phone users, the WSD also said that it would develop suitable phone applications to facilitate easy access to water consumption data in its 2016 report.
In the latest newsletter by WSD, the launch of the "WSD Mobile App" was announced.
Registered users can log in and gain access to various information including information on temporary water suspension notices, bill summaries, reminder summaries, and payment methods.
Users can also submit applications for change of consumership through the app.
In addition, WSD introduced its “WSD GA Product Directory” mobile app.
Users can make use of this app to search plumbing products with WSD's General Acceptance by entering category, brand or model number.
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