Water utilities are typically the largest consumers of energy in municipalities, often accounting for 30-40% of total energy consumed. All steps of wastewater treatment and sludge disposal consume massive amount of energy for pumping, mixing and aeration of water, wastewater or sludge. At the same time, energy is becoming a very important cost factor in WWT given its increasing costs in the recent years. Pursuing energy efficiency of the water sector systems can significantly reduce operating costs. There is 15-30% potential to save energy while simultaneously improving the nutrient removal. The importance of energy consumption optimization, energy recovery processes, efficiency of equipment and technology operations are vastly growing in the field of WWT as the energy demand of the sector will rise in time due to population growth, increasing requirements for effluent quality and residual water reuse.
The innovative approach applied in IWAMA entails reducing nutrient impact in the Baltic Sea at lowest possible energy level. Reduction of nutrients and electrical energy consumption will be implemented through pilot investments and the smart energy management concept based on the key figure data collection and technical audits in a wide range of WWTPs in the region.
IWAMA features a range of various activities developed to address the issue of energy consumption.
- Key figure data collection and evaluation of energy management provides valuable knowledge about the general state of the wastewater treatment sphere in the region. The data is collected from over 60 WWTPs from Baltic Sea Region. Collected data is analysed and a comparative benchmark of the energy efficiency in relation to nutrient removal is developed and published. Activities are of particular transnational relevance as information from different WWTPs in the region is collected, analysed and published. Operators of the WWTPs as the main target groups are actively involved in the process by providing input information and gaining feedback.
If you are interested in the questionnaire applied for the benchmark development, please download the Excel file and find a video providing instructions on how to use it.
Report on the key figure data for energy efficiency (published July 2018)
- Energy audits comprising a thorough analysis of the efficiency and feasibility of energy management are carried out at WWTPs of Tartu and Türi (EE), Jurmala and Daugavpils (LV), Kaunas (LT), Gdansk, Szczecin (PL) and Grevesmühlen (DE). Conducting energy audits is one of the first steps in the process of identifying possible energy efficiency positions. Energy audits bring detailed knowledge about the individual situation at the wastewater treatment plants.
Each audit consist of full plant process analysis, modelling and analyses of energy consumption patterns and equipment efficiency, on-site energy measurements of the consumers and analyses of personnel involvement. Based on results, WWTPs receive knowledge about the potential to improve the process. The increase of the operational capacity of WWTP after the amendments made on the basis of energy audits demonstrate the potentials that can be unlocked by enhanced technical knowledge. Enhancement of WWT process leads to reduced energy consumption and loads of nutrients in the effluent.
Read more about the audit concept for smart energy management.
- Pilot investments are implemented to study the advantages of novel energy nutrient-related technologies and management models for WWTPs at varying advancement levels. The investments planned:
The energy efficiency activities in the project are lead by Technical University of Berlin, Germany.