Water experts meet in Malaga to advance in the reuse of water

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On July 6, 2022 we organized from Bioazul together with the collaboration of TU Delft and EIT Food  the “Workshop on the use of reclaimed water in agriculture” in Malaga. This event was held as one of the activities carried out within the Water Academy as part of the EIT Community Water Scarcity project in order to bring together water experts from different areas of activity to interact and mitigate the emerging challenge of the water scarcity in southern Europe.

The workshop was attended by different professionals from the water sector, as well as researchers, agricultural technicians and irrigators to advance in the implementation of water reuse in agriculture and exchange experiences and knowledge that help us in the process of adapting to the new regulatory framework.

The event began with a guided tour of the Rincón de la Victoria wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) by Axaragua, where they toured the different treatment units that the water passes through until it is regenerated and optimal for irrigation. . In addition, the attendees were able to get a closer look at the experimental plot that Trops has in collaboration with Axaragua to study the effects of reclaimed water irrigation on subtropical crops such as mangoes.

After this first part, the workshop continued at the Hotel AC Málaga where the rest of the presentations of the day took place. The event was presented by our colleague Ángela Magno, Director of Marketing and Communication at Bioazul, who after welcoming all the participants gave way to Carmen GalindoEIT Food Project Manager, who presented the EIT Community Water Scarcity project and the objectives that are pursued within these Water Academy workshops.

The first speaker of the day was Jules van Lier, Professor and head of the Department of Water Management at the Technical University of Delft, who spoke about the link between wastewater treatment and agriculture. After this introduction to the field of reclaimed water, it was the turn of our CEO Antonia Lorenzo and our Director of Engineering Alejandro Caballero. Both made a presentation on the current situation of water scarcity and the advantages offered by technologies for water reuse.

Another of the invited speakers was Alfonso Expósito, Professor of Applied Economics at the University of Malaga, who had the opportunity to explain all the economic aspects related to water reuse.

After these interventions it was the turn of the speakers who made their presentation online. This was the case of Maurits Ertsen, Associate Professor in the Water Management group of the Technical University of Delft, who shared some tips for efficient irrigation with reclaimed water as well as practical aspects for farmers. One of the most anticipated presentations was that of Conchita Marcuello, Head of the Support Unit for the General Directorate of Water at MITECO, who shed a little light on the European Regulation 2020/741 on water reuse and its implementation. The last speaker in this block was Gertjan Medema, Professor of Water and Health at the Technical University of Delft, who made his presentation on risk assessment in water reuse.

To end the day, our colleague Rafael Casielles shared with all attendees the questionnaire on analysis of skills in water reuse. Finally, he made a summary of the day with the main conclusions. Undoubtedly, this workshop served to strengthen relationships and bring reuse closer to all professionals who work in the field of water and agriculture.

Remember that you have the full workshop available on YouTube: https://youtu.be/Opmqbxnjvwg

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