Comunication

LIFE NEXUS, the new CARTIF’s challenge to recover untapped energy in urban water cycles

15 november 2018

Partners of LIFE NEXUS project consortium, coordinated by CARTIF, is gathered together in facilities of the technology centre in order to celebrate the launch meeting of this new initiative, funded by European LIFE Programme. Its main aim is to promote the sustainability of the urban water cycle by recovering the untapped energy deriving from abundant pressure (water head) or kinetic energy (water flow) in existing water networks.

Water and energy are two of the most important resources of the 21stCentury. Cities are a framework where this water-energy nexus is becoming critical due to demographic movements, economic growth and global change pressures (66% of the world’s population by 2050). Continuing providing basic urban water services without increasing the impact on the environment is a current challenge due to the water scarcity framework and the need for low carbon solutions

Facing this reality, LIFE NEXUS project proposes recovering unused energy in water distribution networks in cities. Despite the potential of this technology to generate ‘green electricity’, it has never been evaluated in Europe. For this reason, this project will cover this gap by cataloguing possible energy recovery points in European cities and assessing their technical and economic viability.

Its main goals are:

  • Promotion of the sustainability of the urban water cycle by recovering the untapped energy deriving from abundant pressure (water head) or kinetic energy (water flow) in existing water networks.
  • Demonstration of a micro-hydraulic prototype (35 Kw) in the Porma Drinking Water Treatment Plant in Leon (Spain) based on the innovative integration of a Pump as Turbine (PaT) coupled to a battery storage.
  • Quantification the energy recovery potential along urban water cycle in European cities. GIS Database.
  • Production of at least 30 replication studies in follower facilities (including Poland, Lithuania, Ireland and Spain).
  • Quantification of the energy recovery potential along urban water cycles in European cities.
  • Creation of a network on Small Hydropower.
  • Rise the competitiveness and improving the sustainability of urban water provision services.

The consortium is integrated by CARTIF, as coordinator, AQUATEC, Aguas de León, ASU and IMP-PAN.

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