How Guanajuato’s Water and Wastewater Utilities are tackling Climate Change through Efficiency Optimization and Renewable Energy Production
In San Francisco del Rincón, two utility companies, SITRATA (Servicio de Tratamiento y Deposición de Aguas Residuales) and SAPAF (Sistema de Agua Potable y Alcantarillado de San Francisco), are collaborating on projects to improve their services and lower their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. SITRATA manages wastewater, while SAPAF is responsible for drinking water and sewage. With guidance from the WaCCliM project, both utilities have undertaken a strategizing and implementation process similar to that proposed in the “WaCCliM Roadmap to a Low- Carbon Urban Water Utility”.
As a result, SAPAF have increased wastewater treatment coverage from 48% to 81% and improved the energy efficiency of their pumping stations. The magnitude of the increase in treatment coverage was by far the biggest achievement in GHG reduction.
An international guide to the WaCCliM approach
The Roadmap to a Low-Carbon Urban Water Utility presents utility managers with an approach to address their most pressing challenges, while reducing carbon emissions through measures that either have a return on investment through energy or water savings, or that correspond to planned investments as part of the asset management plan to maintain or improve their services. Utilities adopting this approach are contributing to a carbon-neutral future, by instigating a change of mind-set, not only in urban water management but also by inspiring all other urban services through sharing the risks and the urgency to act to avoid aggravated impacts of climate change, of which water utilities are among the first victims: water scarcity, flooding and deteriorated water quality.
Water and Wastewater Companies for Climate Mitigation in Mexico
In Mexico, water and wastewater utilities have a difficult task meeting users’ demands. Low tariffs, high water consumption, and an intricate legal framework have led to unsustainable water abstraction, high-energy costs, high water loss, and inadequate wastewater treatment, which contribute to high greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. GHG emissions are driving contribution to global GHGs. Approximately 3 -5 % of Mexico’s national GHG emissions can be attributed to the water sector.
Linking water and climate
Carbon reduction measures can be put into motion through working with utilities in emerging economies, where emissions are the highest due to a large portion of untreated or poorly treated sewage, as well as poorly managed sewage sludge.
ECAM Methodology Guide
This document provides a detailed explanation on the theoretical background of the second version of the web-based “Energy performance and Carbon Emissions Assessment and Monitoring” (ECAM v2.2) tool. The main assumptions and the key considerations that form the basis of the tool are explained. An overview of variables, performance indicators and related equations, as well as benchmark values and references are given. Additionally, the manual helps users with evaluating
different scenarios for specific system configurations.
Introduction to ECAM 2.0
This manual offers an overview of ECAM 2.0, the Energy Performance and Carbon Emissions Assessment and Monitoring tool, to guide first-time users through the basic elements of the tool and get started with the assessment.
Support document for the ECAM Methodology Guide
This flowchart document is a support document for the ECAM Methodology manual.
ECAM, a tool to transition towards carbon neutrality in the water sector
The Energy Performance and Carbon Emissions Assessment and Monitoring (ECAM) tool is a free web-based tool that is designed for assessing the carbon emissions that utilities can control within the urban water cycle and prepare these utilities for future reporting needs on climate mitigation.
WaCCliM in Mexico
Mexico was seen as a leader during the Paris COP21 negotiations. It has committed ambitiously to reducing 22% of its greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 compared to baseline scenario, with the potential to raise the target up to 40%, and 50% by 2050 compared to the year 2000. It is a signatory to the Paris Pact on Water and Adaptation to Climate Change. In Mexico, water utilities have a difficult task meeting user’s demands. Low tariffs, high water consumption, and a complicated legal framework have led to unsustainable water abstraction, high energy costs, high water loss, and inadequate wastewater treatment, which contribute to very high GHG emissions. Climate change will only exacerbate current conditions.
The WaCCliM project is working with the National Water Commission (CONAGUA), the State Water Commission of Guanajuato (CEAG), and the National Water Association of Mexico (ANEAS). The WaCCliM pilot utilities of San Francisco del Rincón, SAPAF and SITRATA, are already pioneering the way towards sustainable, low-carbon, urban water management. SAPAF provides water supply services, while SITRATA operates a wastewater treatment plant shared between two municipalities, San Francisco del Rincón and La Purísima. The raw water comes from groundwater wells and requires only disinfection. The drainage network does not require any pumping. The wastewater treatment plant is based on an activated sludge system.