Achieving Climate Smart Utilities – Digital Tools for Ambition Increase
24 August 2020, 16:00 – 17:15 CEST
The water sector is strongly affected by the impacts of climate change, such as increasing water scarcity and extreme weather events. Sometimes overlooked, the sector also contributes to climate change by using fossil energy as well as through methane and nitrous oxide emissions generated from wastewater treatment. The event showcases solutions for measuring and reducing GHGs at
utility and national policy level, emphasizing the potential for mitigation and adaptation through digital tools and through positioning water in national climate strategies.
To become climate smart, water and wastewater utilities must take action to improve climate resilience, but also to reduce their GHG emissions. Integrating mitigation and adaptation approaches into the water sector not only helps to achieve policy goals but utilities can also benefit through increased performance levels, safeguarding of ecosystems or even improved sanitary protection. However, challenges remain at policy and utility levels: At policy level, the need for adaptation in the water sector is strongly prioritized in Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), but the sector’s relevance for GHG mitigation is only considered in a few countries. At utility level, lack of awareness, capacities and incentives can impede efforts to reduce GHGs.
The session will present and discuss the ‘Energy Performance and Carbon Emissions Assessment and Monitoring’ (ECAM) tool, which assists utilities in all parts of the world to assess and monitor emissions and identify opportunities for GHG reduction. Further, the event will address incentives for GHG mitigation, both at utility level and through an enabling institutional environment.
Objectives and outcomes
The event will highlight how enabling environments, including NDCs and digital tools can play a key role in the efforts of achieving a climate-smart and sustainable urban water sector, both at national policy and utility level.