On January 29 and 30, CETaqua (Water Technology Centre) is hosting a LIFE platform meeting in Barcelona, Spain. The meeting, organised by the European Commission through the LIFE-Environment Programme will focus on waste water treatment.
The meeting will be helpful for the revision and implementation of the Urban Waste Water Treatment (UWWT) Directive. It will showcase sustainable water treatment projects to policymakers, local authorities and waste water treatment providers.
For the restructuring of the directive, feedback will be provided to policymakers in several essential areas, such as circular economy of water and sludge; pollutants of emerging concern; urban run-off and storm water overflows; and monitoring.Read More
The Water Europe Working Group on Water Distribution Infrastructure was officially launched at the Water Knowledge Europe event in October 2019. The Working Group aims at creating innovations that provide economic, environmental and social benefits for the owners and operators of water distribution
infrastructure, e.g. water utilities and building owners.
The work scope of the WG has been developed by the members during 2019 and a preliminary plan of activities is drafted for the coming years.
The first step in the Working Group’s action plan is to engage the water utility members of Water Europe to explicitly specify current and future business and innovation challenges and opportunities. These insights will be integrated into the working plan of the WG.
The upcoming Water Market Europe 2020 conference is a great opportunity to invite business colleagues from water utilities to participate in the Working Group’s workshop and share their valuable thoughts, as well as their needs to enlighten the group members with increased understanding on the matter.
The workshop will be organized at 14:00 – 15:30 on Thursday, March 19. Save the date, join the workshop and provide your insights to innovation in water distribution!Read More
The 15th edition of the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report was launched last week, presenting the major risks the world will be facing in the coming year.
For the 9th consecutive time, water crises appear to be among the top five risks in terms of impact, together with other climate-related issues that appear as top concern.
To address the world’s greatest challenges, the report stresses out the need for a multi-stakeholder approach and immediate collective action. The report comes ahead of the World Economic Forum’s 50th Annual Meeting in Davos-Klosters, where the focus is Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World.
To download the full report, please click here.Read More
The evolution towards a healthy planet, a climate-neutral and circular economy and a novel digital world is a transition that Europe can globally lead, under a new European Green Deal. The European Green Deal intends to make Europe the world’s first climate-neutral continent.
The European Commission disclosed its one trillion euro public and private investment plan to finance the European Green Deal on 14th January 2020.
The overall goal of the plan is to create an enabling framework for private investors and the public sector to facilitate sustainable investments and to provide support to public administrations and project promoters in identifying, structuring and executing sustainable projects.
The European Green Deal Investment Plan will mobilise EU funding and create an enabling framework to facilitate and stimulate the public and private investments needed for the transition to a climate-neutral, green, competitive and inclusive economy.
Complementing other initiatives announced under the Green Deal, the Plan is based on three dimensions:
- Financing: mobilising at least €1 trillion of sustainable investments over the next decade.
- Enabling: providing incentives to unlock and redirect public and private investment.
- Practical support: the Commission will provide support to public authorities and project promoters in planning, designing and executing sustainable projects.
Water will play a pivotal role in the EU Green Deal Policy areas, particularly for the Clean Energy, Sustainable Industry, Biodiversity, From Farm, to Fork and Eliminating Pollution thus heading to the realisation a Water Smart Society, as streamlined in the Water Europe Vision.Read More
The new year brings in new faces at Water Europe. We are excited to welcome on board four excellent water professionals as co-leaders of our Water Europe Clusters.
WE Cluster ‘The Value in Water’
Francesco Fatone is Full Professor of Chemical-Environmental Engineering at Polytechnic University of Marche (Ancona – Italy).
Besides being coordinator or leader in several EU-funded projects, chair of international conferences and general secretary of the IWA Resource Recovery Cluster, author and editor in water-related international ISI journals, Francesco is active in the science-policy-business interface, as national advisor for the application of EU circular economy package and member of the ECOMONDO executive board.
WE Cluster ‘Smart Water Treatment’
Olga Ferrer works in ACCIONA Agua R&D department, as Desalination and New Technologies Area Manager.
She undertook chemical and industrial engineering as well as her PhD studies in the Polytechnical Catalan University (UPC, Spain) and an MSc in Cranfield University (United Kingdom). She has been working in R&D and engineering in the water sector for more than 10 years.
WE Cluster ‘Water Smart Rural Areas’
Antonio Lo Porto is researcher at the Italian Water Research Institute (IRSA-CNR), in the field of Integrated Water Resources Management and irrigation management and acts as International Liaison Officer in the EU, China, India and USA.
He is the Past President of Euraqua and is member of the Advisory Board of the Water JPI (Chair) and of the FACCE JPI. He leads of the focus area “Water Resources Management under Climate Change” in the China-EU Water Platform.
WE Cluster ‘Digital Water’
Rita Maria Ugarelli is Chief Scientist at SINTEF Community and adjunct professor at the Norwegian technical university in Norway.
She holds a PhD in Civil engineering with a focus on urban water infrastructure asset management. She is currently coordinator of the H2020 STOP-IT project and core team member of the H2020 Digital Water City and of the B-WaterSmart projects. She covers the role of secretariat of the Aqua Research Collaboration since 2016.Read More
Are you an SME who has innovative technologies to detect and/or remove pharmaceuticals from wastewater? Are you willing to demonstrate this in a full scale municipal wastewater treatment plant with the fully funded support (with a value to up to €50.000) of the project?
The Water Test Network is looking for SMEs that can detect and/or remove pharmaceuticals from wastewater. You will be in a position to showcase your innovative technology in a real test environment. This can either be a municipal wastewater treatment plant or the untreated wastewater of a hospital.
The innovation must result in cost-effective and efficient pharmaceutical detection and/or removal. Applications from removal technologies, as well as innovative analytical methods, technologies or tools are very much welcomed.
Interested SMEs can apply by submitting an application form no later than 1 February 2020 at 12 pm.
For more information about the project and the application process, please click here.Read More
Until the 20th of January 2020, the European Commission will receive feedback from citizens and stakeholders about the new Circular Economy Action Plan. Aiming to accelerate the European transition towards a circular economy, the action plan is a response to the commitments of the European Green Deal.
The goal of the new action plan is to strengthen the EU industry, help fight climate change and preserve the European natural environment.
By analysing the life-cycle of products and materials, the new action plan aims at ensuring that resources are used sustainably. It will also address more resource-intensive sectors, such as the textile, construction, electronics, and plastics industries.
Moving away from a linear economy will help decrease harmful impacts on the environment, such as climate change and loss of biodiversity.
You can read more about the new Circular Economy Action Plan as well as give your feedback until the 20th of January.Read More
Digital disruption has already transformed several industry sectors worldwide and is now changing the traditional paradigm of water utilities. Yet, water utilities are embracing the digital transformation with heterogeneous strategies and priorities, business plans, and technologies.
Understanding the patterns of digital transformation across time, space, and water utility sectors is key to characterize its development, current impact, and future plans.
An international team led by the Smart Water Networks group at the Technische Universität Berlin and Einstein Center Digital Future released the “Smart Water Survey”, an online questionnaire targeted to water utilities worldwide.
The Smart Water Survey is a research project that investigates the point of view of utilities to understand how the water utility paradigm is changing in the era of digital disruption.
If you work for a water utility, please take a moment to fill out the Smart Water Survey. Completing our survey will take about 15 minutes.
The results will be then made available to you in the form of a report with a global assessment of the digital transformation of the water utility sector. The Smart Water Survey will remain open until the end of February 2020.Read More
The Working Group on ‘Water Security’ is organising a workshop on the 29th of January 2020, at the KWR Water Research Centre in Nieuwegein, Netherlands.
The workshop will start with a plenary programme with invited keynote speakers, addressing the importance of Water Security, development of assessment methods, and the importance of Water Governance Framework. Finally, policy implications will be discussed.
Among the keynote speakers are Veronica Manfredi, Director Quality of Life, DG-Env, EC, Gonzalo Delacamara, Water Europe Cluster leader ‘Value of Water’, IMDEA, Alexandros Makarigakis, Programme Specialist Water for Human Settlements, UNESCO, Oriana Romano, Coordinator – Cities and Circular Economy Programme, OECD and Kees van Leeuwen, Chief Science Officer, KWR Water Research Institute.
The plenary session will be finished by a moderated panel discussion.
The programme will be hosted by Jan Hofman (University of Bath and KWR) and Blanca Antizar (Isle Utilities), co-leaders of the Working Group ‘Water Security’.
Besides the considerable progress, Europe continues to face serious environmental challenges. This is the conclusion reached in the new Environment Report 2020 from the European Environment Agency (EEA).
The report says that Europe will not achieve its 2030 goals without urgent action during the next 10 years to address the alarming rate of biodiversity loss, increasing impacts of climate change and the overconsumption of natural resources.
Concerning water, while the report reiterates the principle that securing water and its sustainable use remains a key challenge globally and within Europe, also states that Europe’s waters are significantly affected by diffuse pollution, hydromorphological changes and water abstraction.
Action is needed
The report specifies that improved implementation and increased coherence between EU water-related policy objectives and measures are needed to improve water quality and quantity as well as it will become increasingly critical to address and monitor the climate‑water-ecosystem-agriculture nexus and connection with energy needs.
The report suggests that it is at a river basin scale that effective solutions for water management can be found and essential knowledge is being developed through the implementation of river basin management plans under the Water Framework Directive, which perfectly fits with the Water Europe Vision and the Living Labs approach for achieving a Water Smart Society.
The coming decade will, therefore, be of decisive importance in determining Europe’s opportunities in the 21st century.Read More