Dutch start-up transforms canal water into drinking water

Potable water from the Amsterdam canals. Considering the number of bicycles that are annually fished out of them, it seems like a stretch. However, a young watertech start-up, Aquablu, has made this possible. Alumnus Marnix Stokvis, who studied Financial Economics at Erasmus School of Economics, and Marc van Zuylen, alumnus of Rotterdam School of Management, are the company’s founders.

Aquablu is on a mission to provide safe and clean drinking water for everyone without the need for PET bottles. The company developed a smart purification system for the consumer market, which guarantees the quality of the drinking water.

A statement against pollution 

Recently, Aquablu launched a campaign to show that the best drinking water is local water. In this way, the company wants to combat environmental pollution due to plastic waste and the transport of plastic water bottles all over the world. More than 60,000 kg of plastic, 700 dead animals, and 12,000 bicycles are fished out of the Amsterdam canals each year. Although the quality of the canal water is getting better and better, it has never been drinkable before.

Straight from the source

For the campaign, they took water from the Keizersgracht, Herengracht and Prinsengracht in Amsterdam. The water was pumped out of the canals and purified, mineralised, and bottled on site. The limited edition bottles of canal water were for sale at the Aquablu webshop for 39 euros. All the bottles were sold out within a day.

Joining forces

The unexpectedly high demand for bottles of canal water opens up a new market for Aquablu, but the company states that they are not in it to make a profit. Aquablu is currently looking for an environmental organisation to join forces with in the fight against plastic pollution.
With their initiative, Marnix and Marc have been nominated for the 25 most promising entrepreneurs under the age of 25 by Sprout magazine. You can vote for them here.

More information

More information about Aquablu can be downloaded above or found on their website.
Interested in their story? Click here for an article from YES!Delft or click here for their video campaign.