On 18.10.2019 ENGINEERING Ltd. has signed a contract for expertise and consulting services in support of its research and study of natural-based solutions (Reed Beds) for the treatment of excess active sludge from the population and / or agriculture, subject to Lot 1 (Wastewater or manure sludge treatment in the Nordic or Alpine environments) and Lot 3 (sewage sludge or animal manure treatment in the Mediterranean).
The project will be developed jointly with experts from Slovenia, Bulgaria, Austria, Italy and the EU’s Joint Research Center (JRC).
The study will be based on:
- Data collection and analysis on two assigned cases (pilot projects);
- Collection and analysis of data in similar cases;
- Preparation for the development of a technical project;
- Cost analysis consisting of data collection and analysis, investment cost analysis, operational cost analysis, cost recovery analysis and more.
Each of the two Lots aims to develop several major Work Packages (WPs):
- Project management;
- Characteristics of nature-based solutions for wastewater and sludge treatment and technical design;
- Quantification of indirect and direct benefits;
- Cost analysis;
- Challenges in implementing and developing a business model.
Today, there are various nature-based (NBS) wastewater and sludge treatment solutions designed to reduce nitrogen and phosphorus emissions into the water and improve water quality. Water policy documents such as WFD (EU) have been developed in recent decades to achieve positive results with eutrophication. With regard to nitrogen reduction, the task set in 1995 of reducing 56200 tonnes of N was achieved by reaching 24% of the N reduction by 2005 from 30% by 2010.
Certainly the role of nature-based solutions for wastewater and sludge treatment should find its sustainable place in the development of investment projects for settlements below 10,000 people equivalent and the treatment of sludge formed during animal breeding.
Each design team should apply well-targeted economic thinking, respecting national and European water policy. In fact, decision-making should be guided by the use of data related to the economic assessment of nature to determine the feasibility of a particular nature-based design (NBS) project. The CBA is a very appropriate tool to support decision making whether to build an NBS or not. The CBA outlines those innumerable benefits of nature that enhance human well-being at no cost locally and globally.
In particular, it is an influential practice that provides quantitative values for resources and their services that do not have their market price.