WOTA BOX Yosuke Maeda with solution
2021 Finalist
Build a
Waste-free World

WOTA BOX

Country: Japan

Nearly 40 percent of the world could experience “water stress” by 2050. WOTA’s technology purifies wastewater on site, meaning it can be used over and over.

Their Story

Climate change and population growth are already driving shortages across the world. WOTA, a Japanese start-up, wants to improve water security for everyone, everywhere. By improving circulation and reducing waste, it can ease global water stress.

Founded in 2014, WOTA’s unique water recycling system turns more than 98 percent of wastewater into fresh water. A fraction of the size of a typical water treatment plant, WOTA BOX is over 50 times more efficient and can be delivered at scale. Plus, installation requires no existing infrastructure.

The result means less wastewater pollution in lakes, rivers and other freshwater ecosystems, as well as reduced water scarcity in times of drought. The only invention of its kind, WOTA BOX could change the world.

It has already had an enormous impact. In Japan, between 2016 and 2020, more than 20,000 used the technology after floods, typhoons, and earthquakes cut off water supplies.  

The company’s long term hope is to develop products that are lower cost than existing water infrastructure, so they can be reasonably implemented in any region, including developing countries.  The WOTA  team hopes to make its technology as common as power generators. If it succeeds, it could help save the world from a water stressed future.   

In the time since becoming an Earthshot Prize Finalist, the team have enjoyed inbound requests from around the world, begun a new partnership with Antigua & Barbuda and are on track to launch pilot projects in multiple countries. 

They are also in ongoing discussions with their home government in Japan about introducing WOTA to rural parts of the country, with some projects already underway this year.

Other Finalists in Build a Waste-free World

Learn About the Earthshots

Protect
and Restore
Nature
2021 PRIORITIES

Over the last ten years, the evidence that we face urgent challenges to protect the environment has become indisputable, and it’s clear that the time to act is now. Drawing inspiration from the concept of moonshots, which since the moon landing in 1969 has become shorthand to talk about the most ambitious and ground-breaking goals, Prince William announced the Earthshot Prize: an ambitious set of challenges to inspire a decade of action to repair the planet.

  • Paying environmental stewards and improving land rights
  • Using agricultural commodity markets as a lever to reduce harm
  • Increase yields in biodiverse, regenerative agriculture
Learn more about this earthshot

Clean Our
Air
2021 PRIORITIES

Over the last ten years, the evidence that we face urgent challenges to protect the environment has become indisputable, and it’s clear that the time to act is now. Drawing inspiration from the concept of moonshots, which since the moon landing in 1969 has become shorthand to talk about the most ambitious and ground-breaking goals, Prince William announced the Earthshot Prize: an ambitious set of challenges to inspire a decade of action to repair the planet.

  • Paying environmental stewards and improving land rights
  • Using agricultural commodity markets as a lever to reduce harm
  • Increase yields in biodiverse, regenerative agriculture
Learn more about this earthshot

Revive Our
Oceans
2021 PRIORITIES

Over the last ten years, the evidence that we face urgent challenges to protect the environment has become indisputable, and it’s clear that the time to act is now. Drawing inspiration from the concept of moonshots, which since the moon landing in 1969 has become shorthand to talk about the most ambitious and ground-breaking goals, Prince William announced the Earthshot Prize: an ambitious set of challenges to inspire a decade of action to repair the planet.

  • Paying environmental stewards and improving land rights
  • Using agricultural commodity markets as a lever to reduce harm
  • Increase yields in biodiverse, regenerative agriculture
Learn more about this earthshot

Build a
Waste-free
World
2021 PRIORITIES

Over the last ten years, the evidence that we face urgent challenges to protect the environment has become indisputable, and it’s clear that the time to act is now. Drawing inspiration from the concept of moonshots, which since the moon landing in 1969 has become shorthand to talk about the most ambitious and ground-breaking goals, Prince William announced the Earthshot Prize: an ambitious set of challenges to inspire a decade of action to repair the planet.

  • Paying environmental stewards and improving land rights
  • Using agricultural commodity markets as a lever to reduce harm
  • Increase yields in biodiverse, regenerative agriculture
Learn more about this earthshot

Fix Our
Climate
2021 PRIORITIES

Over the last ten years, the evidence that we face urgent challenges to protect the environment has become indisputable, and it’s clear that the time to act is now. Drawing inspiration from the concept of moonshots, which since the moon landing in 1969 has become shorthand to talk about the most ambitious and ground-breaking goals, Prince William announced the Earthshot Prize: an ambitious set of challenges to inspire a decade of action to repair the planet.

  • Paying environmental stewards and improving land rights
  • Using agricultural commodity markets as a lever to reduce harm
  • Increase yields in biodiverse, regenerative agriculture
Learn more about this earthshot
The Earthshot Prize