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Network for effective knowledge transfer on safe and economic wastewater reuse in agriculture in Europe

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - SuWaNu Europe (Network for effective knowledge transfer on safe and economic wastewater reuse in agriculture in Europe)

Reporting period: 2019-01-01 to 2019-12-31

SUWANU EUROPE is a thematic network intended to transfer existing practical knowledge in the use of reclaimed water in agriculture. The term reclaimed water is referred to treated urban wastewater according to appropriate standards and methods (i.e. reclaimed water) so that the resulted effluent achieves the quality standards defined for a specific use such as agriculture irrigation. Reclaimed water has a strong potential to complement conventional water resources used in agricultural irrigation and it is currently misused in a context of water scarcity which limits agricultural production.
SUWANU EUROPE aims to make results of research and innovation available to practitioners so that this knowledge can become a driving force for the agricultural sector and become more efficient and sustainable. This approach requires an intense effort to find the best way to present the information in order to reach the users and have a real impact. SUWANU EUORPE is concentrating efforts to extract relevant knowledge and lessons learnt and translate them into abundant and appealing material in terms of format (e.g. layout) but also using appropriate language (e.g. avoiding technical words or the structure of scientific articles in journals) and transferred through effective dissemination channels.
SUWANU EUROPE is also committed with public participation and participatory processes. We believe this is the only way to promote an effective exchange of knowledge, experiences and skills. Therefore, the project has intensively involved a wide range of target groups including farmers, water engineers, consultants, advisory groups, consumers, authorities, etc. following a multi-actor approach. This strong involvement ensures that direct applicable technological and organizational solutions are widely disseminated all around Europe resulting in a more resilient agricultural sector to cope with water scarcity and climate change effects.
WP1 consisted in an inventory of existing knowledge, good practices and regional analysis. The consortium started in month 1 with an in-depth analysis to understand the conditions of each target region and the potential to extend water reuse in agriculture. After this assessment, a data base of water reuse initiatives has been developed. From these initiatives, lighthouse projects and initiatives have been identified. Relevant information was extracted and summarized in fact-sheets to be used as training material in future project activities. With the same purpose, success stories of Israel and Cyprus have been analysed and summarized in fact-sheets.
WP2 is intended to develop action plans with strategies for the implementation of water reuse in agriculture. WP2 started with the development of SWOT and PEST analyses for the 8 target regions. Based on the gained knowledge, a general strategy (Action Plan) has been outlined. This general plan sets the basis of the regional action plans that will be developed during the second period. On the other hand, Regional Working Groups have been established creating regional clusters that include organizations out of the consortium. 10 participatory workshops have been organised with local and regional actors to present the project and receive their feedback in the definition of strategies ensuring a participatory process.
WP3 is devoted to Knowledge Exchange and training. This WP is still in an early stage of completion. The work under WP3 so far has mainly consisted in the coordination of contents and responsibilities for the info-packages. It is foreseen in the project to develop six info-packages with 30 fact-sheets, oriented to reach the main stakeholders identified based on WP1 outcomes. Moreover, first cross fertilisation meeting was held in Rome during January 2020, jointly with the 2nd General Meeting of the consortium.
Dissemination and Continuation strategy is being carried out under WP4. The first task has been the preparation of a Communication plan which defines the strategy for communication and dissemination. According to this plan, the consortium has developed a common image in the dissemination material. The project web site has been a powerful dissemination tool, hosting the project results achieved so far (fact-sheets, regional characterization, SWOT, etc.). Moreover, the project has been presented in several and relevant events such as IWA conference on water reuse in Berlin. Contacts with other projects and networks also took place under this WP, SUWANU EUROPE was presented in the Water Europe platform, Water Reuse network, EUVRIN or collaborated with EURAKNOS thematic network.
WP5 has been devoted to the management and coordination of the project activities ensuring the correct organisation, coordination, communication and co-operation between the partners and with the European Commission.
WP6 responds to the ethic requirements set by the EC. In this sense, the consortium has prepared guidelines and templates to ask for explicit consent of participants out of the consortium that provide personnel data as well as the provisions for data management.
Project results achieved during the first period are listed below:
Regional characterization of the 8 target regions
Data base of water reuse projects: 79 initiatives have been collected and mapped
Good practices characterized in 16 fact sheets
SWOT and PEST analyses for the 8 target regions
AKIS analyses for the 8 target regions
10 Participatory workshops (Total: 435 participants) organized in the 8 target regions and in the EIP Water Conference held in Zaragoza.
One General action plan
14 meetings have been organized with key actors in order to engage organizations out of the consortium with an active participation in the project activities.
One cross-fertilisation meetings has taken place in Rome with consortium members and representatives of several RWGs: 4 representatives of RWG participated.
SUWANU EUROPE created synergies with the Water Europe platform, Water Reuse network, EUVRIN and EURAKNOS thematic network.
The project website is available and continuously updated with materials resulted from the project, news, information from workshops and other events, etc.
16 project presentation were carried out in congress, conferences, seminars, etc. related to water reuse, agriculture, etc.
11 press releases and 3 articles have been developed
One project flyer and one poster have been developed in English and translated into national languages of the target regions
Active communication through social media. SUWANU EUROPE twitter account has 519 followers by the time of preparing this report (28/02/2020)
For the second period, the following main results are expected:
8 regional action plans completed
1 cross fertilization meeting with RWG members
30 fact-sheets with practical knowledge adapted to different target groups
8 training workshops
1 international conference
4 training modules for e-learning
4 policy briefs
100 practice abstracts
Presentation of SUWANU EUROPE in relevant events
Network with other projects and initiatives
Finally, expected impacts identified in the proposal are still valid.
Presentation during project workshop