ECAM: Assess the energy performance and carbon emissions within the urban water cycle

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  • ElaChe
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ECAM: Assess the energy performance and carbon emissions within the urban water cycle

ECAM, a tool for the water sector to transition towards energy and carbon neutrality

The Energy Performance and Carbon Emissions Assessment and Monitoring (ECAM) tool enables water and wastewater utilities to measure their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy consumption at a system-wide level. From Abstraction, Treatment and Distribution to Collection, Treatment and Discharge. By identifying areas to reduce GHG emissions, increase energy savings and improve overall efficiencies to reduce costs, ECAM offers a holistic approach for urban water utilities to shift to low energy, low carbon water management. The water sector can make significant contributions to the Paris Agreement target of keeping global temperature rise to well below 2°, and the respective Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), although awareness of this opportunity is currently limited.

“The contribution of the water sector to GHG emissions is complex and therefore often under-recognised”, said Astrid Michels, Project Manager of the Water and Wastewater Companies for Climate Mitigation (WaCCliM) project that has developed the ECAM tool, “ECAM helps utilities develop an emissions baseline, identify areas of improvement to reduce indirect and direct emissions, and monitor progress over time.”
Identify areas to reduce GHG emissions, increase energy savings and improve overall efficiencies to reduce costs.
ECAM is a free and open source tool that has been successfully piloted by utilities in Jordan, Mexico and Peru that participate in the WaCCliM project, to achieve dramatic reductions in GHG emissions. Operational and process optimization of the pilot plants have resulted in annual savings of more than 10,000 tons of CO2 equivalents:

Madaba, Jordan joined WaCCliM in 2016 and is using ECAM to assess its carbon footprint to unlock financing for low carbon water and wastewater infrastructure to help meet its GHG reduction potential. The Installation of energy-efficient pumps with variable-frequency drives has reduced energy consumption by 40%.

San Francisco del Rincón, Mexico, has achieved almost a 50% reduction of its total GHG emissions compared to the baseline established with ECAM in 2014. A Reduction of 2,500 tons of CO2 equivalents per year was achieved by increasing the number of connections to the wastewater treatment plant, resulting in a 40% reduction of GHG emissions.

Cusco, Peru, is saving 7,454 t CO2 emissions per year through optimized sewage sludge Treatment. This corresponds to about 3,100 flights Lima-Frankfurt-Lima per Person.

In addition to the pilots, utilities in over 20 cities have now used the ECAM tool to assess and drive GHG reductions. ECAM was recently endorsed by the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group as a means to empower cities around the world to measure the emissions of their urban water, identify and plan reduction measures, and shift to a low-carbon, resilient future.

Suggestions and feedback are highly welcome!


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Further Information

ECAM is available under: www.wacclim.org/ecam
● Learn how to carry out an assessment through the ECAM Exercise Book. Available in English & Spanish
● Find further resources about ECAM and the WaCCliM Project under: www.wacclim.org


Notes to Editors
ECAM was developed by the International Water Association (IWA), the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and the Catalan Institute for Water Research (ICRA). ECAM is a central component of the WaCCliM project, part of the International Climate Initiative. The German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) supports this initiative on the basis of a decision adopted by the German Bundestag.

The ECAM tool development was based on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories methodology. It provides the opportunity to develop scenarios and model reduction impacts of future measures, as well as to monitor GHG reduction results after their implementation. It can help utilities prepare for future reporting needs on climate mitigation. ECAM also assists in linking Monitoring, Reporting and Verification of mitigation actions in the water sector to national level.
Elaine Cheung

Advisor | Water and Wastewater Companies
for Climate Mitigation (WaCCliM)

Deutsche Gesellschaft für
Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH
Friedrich-Ebert-Allee 36 + 40
53113 Bonn
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  • RanF
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Re: ECAM: World’s first holistic tool to measure and report greenhouse gas emissions from urban water services

I would like to point out that the ECAM tool has been developed to assess greenhouse gas emissions of centralized water and sanitation systems. It currently can estimate the GHG emissions from onsite sanitation but only in a generalized manner that does not differentiate between different technologies and practices.

It may be possible that in the future we can include also more options for decentralized sanitation systems. Therefore, any feedback from this community on how this should be done and especially any relevant studies that you can share on greenhouse gas emissions from fecal sludge management are welcomed.
Ranjin Fernando
Water & Climate Consultant
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Re: ECAM: World’s first holistic tool to measure and report greenhouse gas emissions from urban water services

Dear all,

I am happy to announce that the test version of ECAM V.2.2 including faecal sludge management is now available.

We are currently peer-reviewing, testing and translating it before the tool will be officially launched. If you have any feedback or questions, they are very welcomed.

If anybody here is interested to participate in a more in-depth peer-review please send me an e-mail.

Regards,
Ranjin
Ranjin Fernando
Water & Climate Consultant
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Re: ECAM: World’s first holistic tool to measure and report greenhouse gas emissions from urban water services

The tool has been released and is available via www.wacclim.org/ecam .

You can see a short demonstration of it in the video below:

Ranjin Fernando
Water & Climate Consultant
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Re: ECAM: World’s first holistic tool to measure and report greenhouse gas emissions from urban water services

How to work with the ECAM Tool?

Find Video Tutorials here:

vimeo.com/album/5639500
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  • ElaChe
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Re: ECAM: Assess the energy performance and carbon emissions within the urban water cycle

Make sure to check out the new ECAM Exercise Books, available in English and Spanish
Elaine Cheung

Advisor | Water and Wastewater Companies
for Climate Mitigation (WaCCliM)

Deutsche Gesellschaft für
Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH
Friedrich-Ebert-Allee 36 + 40
53113 Bonn
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