Alliances between sectors: a key factor in combating the consequences of the drought

In Catalonia, the last few months have been marked by drought, alerts in the vast majority of internal basins and little accumulated rainfall. This historical trend has not been able to be reversed by the last rains in June, keeping the reservoir water levels still very low. Therefore, given the current situation, the Catalan Water Partnership (CWP) has taken an active part in the organization of several sectoral conferences in relation to the efficient use and management of water.

Recently, the CWP has participated in several conferences focused on different sectors to work on water management in the respective areas: industry, tourism, etc. For example, last April 19 a session was held with the tourism sector and efficient water management, co-organized with the Catalan Water Agency (ACA) and with the participation of the Climate Action departments and Business and Work, had a total of 500 participants. On May 18, also organized with the ACA and ACCIÓ, aimed at optimizing water consumption in the various industrial sectors and with a total of 560 attendees. After these two events, about fifteen meetings were organized with various sectors. One of the sectors with the greatest impact on water consumption is the food sector, in this sense and within the framework of intercluster cooperation, the CWP has co-organized a first day on April 21 with INNOVACC “Circularity Day of resources in the meat industry” and on May 24 with INNOVI “Water and Cellars. How to act in the face of the climate emergency in the water in the wineries”.

In particular, these two alliances with the meat and wine sector have made it possible to share success stories and examples to alleviate the effects of the drought. Of those two sessions, the initiative has been repeated, specifically, on July 13, the conference “Solutions for water management in the meat sector in the context of the current drought” took place, jointly organized with the CWP and INNOVACC and held at the UVic-UCC Faculty of Medicine. The aim of this was to learn about solutions, projects and success stories that have been carried out to reduce water consumption in the meat sector industries, specifically success stories and technological solutions were presented that have been carried out to reduce water consumption in the meat sector. Andreu Camps, from the company Diversey, explained how to focus on reducing water consumption in the food industry. Adriano Pace from KURITA presented a technological solution for saving water and energy in steam/treatment systems. Mariona Danés from the company Derypol presented the water saving in the treatment plant with the use of flocculants. Lluís Baldi from CIMAigua presented the improvements in discharge conditions with an optimized design for the treatment of water supplied by the packaging industry.

In the INNOVI conference that took place last July 14 under the name “Water, Vine and Cellars: water management and innovation in a context of water emergency”. Successful cases of solutions to deal with the drought were presented by experts in the water sector. These were Agustí Figueras from ABM where he explained circularity and self-sufficiency in the agricultural world and the agri-food industry. Carlos Serrano from Aonchip spoke about IOT digitization in viticulture and the water availability of the vineyard. Alba Cánovas from Anthesis Lavola spoke about the efficient use of water and resources at the LIFE PRIORAT MONTSANT project. Carme Santasmasas from ACO referred to integrated solutions for the recycling of wastewater from a winery. Finally, Joaquim Bellvert from IRTA, presented the application of precision irrigation in vineyards.

The alliance between the various sectors and clusters is an indispensable tool to mitigate the effects of water restrictions, while establishing new guidelines and innovative and sustainable alternatives to face the future, which will involve a change in habits in relation to the use and consumption of this good.

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