The goal of this project is to fight against youth unemployment through the development of pop-up businesses by young people, in close collaboration with schools and businesses. This will allow students to increase their life and vocational skills, to develop entrepreneurship and to lower the threshold to employment.
For European countries the energy required for water treatment and supply – including wastewater distribution and treatment – accounts for 1%-3% of national energy consumption and consequent carbon emissions.
There is substantial scope to reduce the carbon footprint on the industry, by focusing on the following:
• Energy efficiency – more efficient technologies and reducing energy demand of treatment and distribution processes
• Energy recovery – utilizing embedded energy (gravity flow; heat; bio-solids; chemical?)
Stronger drivers are needed to reduce energy use. A new reporting tool is proposed, and recommendations to national industry regulators such that carbon emissions are prioritised in asset management programmes. Other solutions are sought.
Water busses, water shuttles, ferries, river cruise ships are more and more integrated in mobility networks for commuting and leisure tourism, especially in France, the Netherlands, Belgium and the UK, where a dense network of navigable inland waterways connects cities with the suburbs.
Connecting water transport networks with on land mobility networks in well developed ‘blue hubs’ is considered as one of the measures to reach a higher degree of modal split. Especially combining cycling with boating to cross a river can shorten a route considerably. When it is developed as a competitive alternative it can diminish car use and traffic jams through tunnels and over bridges.
The measurement is interesting to develop further but the reverse side is that most public transport vessels and river cruise ships are not sustainable! They are still equipped with engines running on diesel fuel (euronorm 1 and 2) and very polluting. Partly because of the expensive diesel fuel the exploitation costs are high and not competitive. Especially as water transport is often not considered as ‘public transport’ and supported by the government, but exploited by the waterway management company or a private water transport provider.
Phosphorus (P) is a critical raw material, essential for food production (as a fertilizer). There are no primary Phosphorus resources in the EU and future high cost or restricted availability due to unforeseen events may affect food security.
Phosphorus is used very inefficiently, with over 80% going to waste. A large proportion of P is lost to natural water bodies in sewage effluent (over 60%), where it causes eutrophication (leading to algal blooms, low oxygen conditions, and damage to wildlife and ecosystem processes).
Recovery of P from sewage sludge to use as fertilizer could have a significant benefit in reducing P imports and improving water quality. However, low P import prices, fragmented regulation (e.g. ban on using sewage sludge on farmland in some countries), and concerns regarding pollutants in sewage sludge are significant barriers to the development of a circular economy in P.
This project aims to focus on the process and cost efficiency of P recovery from the wastewater treatment process, which has two main steps: removal of P from wastewater and recovery of the P in a form that is bioavailable and economically transportable. An integrated, process optimization approach will lead to identification of beneficial process combinations, such as C-Tech (a highly efficient P removal process) and various conversion technologies for recovery of P-rich biosolids as fertilizer. Technical, regulatory, and economic barriers and opportunities will be addressed.