Sabadell is a city of over 200,000 inhabitants, with a gardened area of more than 190 ha. It is located in northeast Spain, a region with frequent periods of rainfall shortages, in which drinking water has become a scarce resource. Different sources of non-drinking water, such as water from wastewater treatment plants or former catchment points in wells and mines are therefore encountered in the city. In an increasingly global context, water management is essential, and there is a need for implementing innovative management systems that prompt efficiency and savings. Hence this project includes the use of non-drinking water, the remote management of irrigation to adapt consumption to real climatic needs, the improvement of less efficient irrigation networks, and the legislative regulation of water use and saving.
This project has been undertaken on a joint basis by the City Council’s areas of sustainability and maintenance and has arisen from an initiative, the first of its kind in Spain, for the remote management of irrigation and use of non-drinking water. This management system was initially introduced to irrigate green areas close to the River Ripoll. Later, the approval of the Pla director d’utilitzaciσ d’aigόes externes a la xarxa d’aigua potable a Sabadell (Master Plan for the Use of Water from Outside Sabadell’s Drinking Water Network) and the execution of work associated with this Plan, the start of extension work on the River Sec wastewater treatment plant to incorporate Membrane Bioreactors (MBR) for tertiary treatment, and the approval of the bylaw regulating water uses and savings, prompted Sabadell to implement the efficient management of all water resources available for the city’s green areas.
This project has involved numerous measures in different fields. These measures notably include the installation of equipment for treating nondrinking water to make it suitable for irrigation, the construction of a parallel network to distribute non-drinking water, the implementation of a communications system to operate the irrigation network via the internet, and the drafting of local legislation to regulate the implementation of this project and to limit water consumption and use. Diverse sustainability benefits have now been yielded. These include the release of drinking water network resources, savings in water resources destined for irrigation, and a reduction in the fuel and the time necessary to manage irrigation networks. The most recent measures taken in 2010 have ensured that over 80% of the city’s automatic irrigation zones are now remotely managed, the irrigation network has been restructured to improve efficiency in over 60,000 m² of green areas, and a total of 100,641 m³ of drinking water has been released.
|Award category:||going green|
|Sector:||Environment, climate change, agriculture (incl. food safety) and fishery|
|Type of activity:|
|Keywords:||Non-drinking water, remote management, irrigation, local legislation, green areas|
|Short English description:||This project has been undertaken on a joint basis by the City Council’s areas of sustainability and maintenance and has arisen from an initiative, the first of its kind in Spain, for the remote management of irrigation and use of non-drinking water.|
|Organisation:||Municipality of Sabadell|
|Level of government:||local level|
|Size of organisation:||>100|
|Number of people involved:||6-10|
|EU membership:||EU member|