Cutting-edge tech to prevent global water stress by 2050 revolutionizing water access.

February 28, 2024


  • Japanese startup WOTA has developed a portable water recycling plant called the WOTA BOX, which can purify over 98% of wastewater into freshwater.
  • This technology could help prevent nearly 40% of the world from experiencing water stress by 2050.

A Japanese startup called WOTA has created the world’s first portable water recycling plant, the WOTA BOX, which can purify over 98% of wastewater into freshwater. The technology, which was a finalist for the Earthshot Prize in 2021, is 50 times more efficient than typical water treatment plants and requires no additional infrastructure to set up and use. With nearly 40% of the world facing potential water stress by 2050, the ability to purify unclean water is becoming increasingly important.

Over 20,000 people in Japan have already benefitted from the WOTA BOX, accessing clean water after natural disasters disrupted water supplies. WOTA CEO Yosuke Maeda highlighted the importance of converting wastewater into usable fresh water to reduce global water scarcity and lessen the impact of wastewater pollution on oceans and rivers.

The World Health Organization reports that in 2023, half of the world’s population did not have access to safe drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene, a trend expected to worsen due to climate disasters linked to human-caused pollution. Other companies are also developing technology to combat water crises, such as turning saltwater into freshwater using waves and creating powders to remove bacteria from water.