Water charges are due to be introduced in January 2015 but a conference is due to hear today that Ireland can learn from international experience.
Consultant engineer Sam Murdock believes that energy use at waste water treatment centres could be reduced by 20% by converting sludge into biogas.
Ireland is also dumping its waste offshore and recycling only 5%, compared to 100% recycling in other countries.
The Byrne Looby Water Forum is due to hear from a number of experts, including representatives from Scottish Water.
It will be attended by Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan.