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Isle Utilities hosted a webinar on nature-based solutions for climate resilient infrastructure

  • Isle Utilities hosted webinar on nature-based solutions for climate resilient infrastructure

About the entity

Isle Utilities
Innovation consultancy specialising in the development and commercialisation of emerging technologies in the water & environmental sectors.

ISLE organised on May 26, 2022, together with the Sci Forum platform, MDPI journal publisher and Sustainability magazine, the first of a series of 3 webinars planned as part of the LIFE GREEN ADAPT project. The webinar focused on "Green and nature-based solutions for climate change – resilient infrastructure". The objective of the webinar was to provide evidence of the opportunities provided by the blue-green infrastructure and nature-based solutions (NBS) to create climate change resilient infrastructure and ensure water security.

The webinar was chaired by Prof. Dr Blanca Antizar (Isle Utilities) and featured 3 keynote speakers, all involved in the implementation of the LIFE GREEN ADAPT project: Luz Herrero (AIMEN), Prof. Dr Jordi Morató (Polytechnic University of Catalonia) and Dr Carlos Arias (University of Aarhus, Denmark), and was moderated by Dr Elvira Serra (Isle Utilities).

The speakers focused on the need to develop climate resilient infrastructure and how the solutions developed as part of the LIFE GREEN ADAPT project contribute to this. The LIFE GREEN ADAPT project, funded by the European Commission, seeks to find solutions to foster the resilience of waste disposal infrastructure (landfills) using NBS for climate change adaptation. During the webinar, examples of projects at a global level using NBS were presented, which do not only take into account economic aspects, but also social and cultural aspects in the implementation of this type of technology. Participants also provided insight into the barriers and enablers to accelerating the adoption and replication of NBS technology.

The introduction was given by the Chair of the webinar, Prof. Dr Blanca Antizar, European Director of Isle Utilities and Royal Academy of Engineering Visiting Professor of environmental security and resilience at University College London in the UK. Blanca is the author of more than 100 scientific papers and technical reports, and her interests focus on the development and implementation of technologies in the context of water security. Blanca has been recognized as an international expert in environmental remediation technologies, and recently received the Woman of the Year Award at the 8th edition of the prestigious iAgua awards held in Madrid. The awards recognize outstanding professionals and organisations in the field of water resources management.

The first speaker was Luz Herrero, Coordinator of AIMEN's Environment Unit and Coordinator of the LIFE GREEN ADAPT project. Luz presented an overview of the project with a focus on the need to foster the resilience of the waste disposal sector (landfills) to the problems that climate change entails for this sector. She presented the expected results of the project, such as the increase of 21,300 m3 of available water to reduce the temperature in the landfills and with that, reduce the likelihood of fires and the environmental pollution associated with fires.

The second speaker was Prof. Dr Jordi Morató, Coordinator of the UNESCO Chair on Sustainability and Director of the MSMLab at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia. Jordi presented the general principles of the circular economy and previous global experiences using NBS to manage landfills and the risks associated with them. The presentation included examples of projects where these NBS have been used and where the social, cultural and economic aspects of waste management were taken into consideration. Finally, he also provided an overview of international networks involved in the use of NBS, such as the Natura Network, Water Museums Global Network and RECNET.

The third speaker was Dr Carlos Arias, Senior Researcher at the Department of Biosciences, Aarhus University. His presentation included a detailed description of the barriers and enablers for the adoption and replication of innovative technologies. He then presented some global experiences using NBS to address cultural aspects of waste management.

The presentations were followed by a Q&A session and discussion, moderated by Dr Elvira Serra, Senior Technology Consultant at Isle Utilities. During this part of the webinar, participants discussed the potential of NBS as an innovative technology to treat wastewater, e.g., leachates and run-off generated at landfills.

The full webinar can be viewed on the LIFE GREEN ADAPT YouTube channel: www.youtube.com/channel/UCLPUYo-s3HfTTCPCYmOFOmg    

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