The Institution of Engineers India, J&K State Centre Srinagar
WORLD WATER DAY-2014
WATER AND ENERGY
Er. Mohammad Ashraf Fazili FIE
It is an established fact that the origin of life is aquatic and we are here because of water, otherwise we would be nonexistent. Water is the elixir of life and the fuel or the energy that sets us in motion. It is the water that has made earth the only so far known living planet in the universe. Water exists here in three forms: solid, liquid & vapor. The global interchange system of glacier-ocean-atmosphere maintains a comfortable environment that supports life forms, from the polar-bear to tropical orchids. Nature is so benevolent that 72 % of the surface area of the globe is covered with water. We have held many seminars in this centre deliberating on water as the subject and recently I got a book published namely “Environment in Jammu & Kashmir” from Gulshan Publishers Srinagar having 35 chapters mostly dealing with water.
Ancient people regarded four elements as basis for sustenance of life; these were: water, soil, fire and air (Aab-o-Khak-o-Atash-o-Bad-yehi char anasir hain jin se hay jahan abad) but on analysis we find that the other three basic elements are also subservient to water.
As we observe, water and energy are closely interlinked and interdependent. Energy generation and transmission requires utilization of water resources, particularly for hydroelectric, nuclear, and thermal energy sources. Conversely, about 8% of the global energy generation is used for pumping, treating and transporting water to various consumers.
In 2014, the UN System – working closely with its Member States and other relevant stakeholders – is collectively bringing its attention to the water-energy nexus, particularly addressing inequities, especially for the ‘bottom billion’ who live in slums and impoverished rural areas and survive without access to safe drinking water, adequate sanitation, sufficient food and energy services. It also aims to facilitate the development of policies and crosscutting frameworks that bridge ministries and sectors, leading the way to energy security and sustainable water use in a green economy. Particular attention will be paid to identifying best practices that can make a water- and energy-efficient ‘Green Industry’ a reality.
Objectives of World Water Day in 2014
Raise awareness of the inter-linkages between water and energy
Contribute to a policy dialogue that focuses on the broad range of issues related to the nexus of water and energy
Demonstrate, through case studies, to decision makers in the energy sector and the water domain that integrated approaches and solutions to water-energy issues can achieve greater economic and social impacts
Identify policy formulation and capacity development issues in which the UN system, in particular UN-Water and UN-Energy, can offer significant contributions
Identify key stakeholders in the water-energy nexus and actively engaging them in further developing the water-energy linkages
Contribute as relevant to the post-2015 discussions in relation to the water-energy nexus
Facts and figures
The Facts and Figures in this section are drawn from the edition of the World Water Development Report on Water and Energy that has been published in March 2014 and launched on the occasion of World Water Day celebrations in Tokyo, Japan.
Hydroelectricity is the largest renewable source for power generation and its share in total electricity generation is expected to remain around 16% through 2035. (Our J&K State has a potential of generating about 16,000 MW, the surplus power could be exported to earn revenue for the State.)
Hydropower and water use
Most of the water used for hydropower generation is returned to the river though some evaporates and there are important impacts on timing and quality of stream flows. (After over six decades J&K State has woken up to charge water-usage charges from Hydropower generating agencies. Better late than never.)
Industrial water use
Roughly 75% of all industrial water withdrawals are used for energy production.
For developing countries alone $103 billion per year are required to finance water, sanitation and wastewater treatment through 2015.
Energy for water
Energy is required for two components of water provision: pumping and treatment (before and after use).
Waterborne transit is one of the most energy efficient. Inland towing barges are more than 3 times more energy efficient than road trucks and 40% more efficient than rail. ( Here I must admit that It is unfortunate that our Inland water transport project on river Jhelum, framed by SDA with M/S Rites, at a cost of Rs.25.00 Lakhs has run in fiasco.)
Biogas produced from sewage
In Stockholm, public buses, waste collection trucks and taxis run on biogas produced from sewage treatment plants. ( I have seen Sulabh International having electrified Patna streets with biogas from a community type latrine in eighties. In J&K UEED initiated introduction of biogas plants in eighties in individual houses in certain rural areas and survey of certain areas was also got conducted. However the programme was later taken up by Rural Development Department.)
Access to water and sanitation
In 2011, 768 million people did not use an improved source of drinking-water and 2.5 billion people did not use improved sanitation. (Kashmir was once known for its purest form of water, but today we are importing drinking water from outside. The water quality of our lakes & rivers is deteriorating with the passage of time. Most homes have installed water purifiers. Regarding sewerage schemes for the capital city of Srinagar, no substantial achievement has been visible so far. Most of the wetlands like Bemina, Hyderpora (lately even Dood Ganga Channel has overflowed due to blockage by its filling) ;serving as absorption basins have been filled up & urbanized; whave lost over thirty wetlands in past half a century, and water bodies are shrinking, hence we have witnessed worst kind of flooding of the city roads in this March & April due to excessive rains, attributed to the global warming.)
Access to electricity
More than 1.3 billion people still lack access to electricity, and roughly 2.6 billion use solid fuels (mainly biomass) for cooking. (Again I like to draw your attention to the fact that despite an estimated hydro-potential of about 16000 MW in J&K State, we have exploited so far only about 2300 MW, the rights of ownership of the most of which have been sold permanently to NHPCC against the normal practice of other states and this very power is sold back to us at a much higher cost. )
Wind power is the most sustainable source of renewable energy, mainly because of its low greenhouse gas emissions and water consumption. (We need to explore this source, besides the solar energy. I have witnessed Masdar City in Abu Dhabi being built where solar energy shall be used for generating electricity, heating, driving vehicles and absolutely no petroleum products or biofuels. shall be used.)
Theme, Key Facts and Events around the World
World Water Day 2014 was observed on 22 March, which we are celebrating today the 26th April. (Der ayad drust ayad) The United Nations, which instituted the practice in 1993, has said this year’s theme is “energy and water”.
World Water Day 2014 theme
According to the UN, energy and water are interdependent. Generation and transmission of major energy sources such as hydroelectric, nuclear, and thermal power require water resources. Conversely, about 8% of global energy is used for pumping, treating and transporting water.
The 2014 theme addresses inequalities in this water-energy nexus, the UN said.
The focus is especially on the “bottom billion who live in slums and impoverished rural areas and survive without access to safe drinking water, adequate sanitation, sufficient food and energy services,” it said in a statement.
With this year’s theme, the UN also aims to facilitate the development of policies in water and energy sectors that “can achieve greater economic and social impact.”
Several events were/are being held around the world to mark the UN World Water Day and highlight the theme that water and energy are interlinked.
An annual conference was held in Zaragoza, Spain, in January to discuss the role of both the sectors in the conceptualization of UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) after 2015.
The main UN event marking the World Water Day 2014 was held on 20 and 21 March in Tokyo, Japan. The World Water Development Report 2014 on Water and Energy was released there.
Besides, this year’s World Water Week is scheduled to take place in Stockholm, Sweden, from 31 August to 5 September, and it will be held under the same theme as that of the World Water Day.
Water and Energy: Key facts and figures
Marking the World Water Day, the UN has released some key facts and figures based on this year’s theme. They are below:
- Roughly 75% of all industrial water withdrawals are used for energy production
- By 2035, the global energy demand is projected to grow by more than one-third
- 600 million Africans do not have access to energy
- 2.5 billion people have unreliable or no access to electricity
- In Stockholm, public buses, waste collection trucks and taxis run on biogas produced from sewage treatment plants.
- In 2011, 768 million people did not use an improved source of drinking-water and 2.5 billion people did not use improved sanitation.
- More than 1.3 billion people still lack access to electricity, and roughly 2.6 billion use solid fuels (mainly biomass) for cooking.
- Approximately 15–18 billion m3 of freshwater resources are contaminated by fossil fuel production every year.
WORLD WATER DEVELOPMENT REPORT (WWDR)-2014
Water and energy are closely interconnected and highly interdependent. Choices made and actions taken in one domain can greatly affect the other, positively or negatively. Trade-offs need to be managed to limit negative impacts and foster opportunities for synergy. Water and energy have crucial impacts on poverty alleviation both directly, as a number of the Millennium Development Goals depend on major improvements in access to water, sanitation, power and energy sources, and indirectly, as water and energy can be binding constraints on economic growth – the ultimate hope for widespread poverty reduction.
The Report provides a comprehensive overview of major and emerging trends from around the world, with examples of how some of the trend-related challenges have been addressed, their implications for policy-makers, and further actions that can be taken by stakeholders and the international community.
The WWDR 2014 on Water and Energy is the first that follows the new “formula” agreed by UN-Water in 2012. Indeed, the WWDR is now an annual and thematic report with a focus on different strategic water issues each year. It is shorter – in the order of 100 pages – with a standardized structure and data and case studies annexes related to the theme.
Starting in 2014, the theme of the World Water Development Report and that of World Water Day will be harmonized in order to provide a deeper focus and in-depth analysis of a specific water-related issue every year.
Highlights of the World Water Development Report (WWDR-2014):
Part I. STATUS, TRENDS & CHALLENGES
The Water-Energy nexus:
- Whereas energy is required mainly for the provision of water services, water resources are required in the production of energy.
Water: Demands, Energy requirements & availability:
- Consumer demand and increasing standards of living are driving increased demand for water, most notably by middle income households in developing and emerging economies through their greater demand for food, energy and other goods, the production of which can require significant quantities of water.
- The global demand for water is expected to grow significantly for all major water use sectors, with the largest proportion of this growth occurring in countries with developing or emerging economies.
- An interesting and notable flip side of the water–energy nexus is that wastewater is becoming recognized as a potential source of energy rather than as a mere waste stream. In several countries, water supply companies are working towards becoming energy neutral.
Energy’s thirst for water:
- There is clear evidence that groundwater supplies are diminishing, with an estimated 20% of the world’s aquifers being over-exploited, some massively so. Globally, the rate of groundwater abstraction is increasing by 1% to 2% per year. There is evidence that demand for all types of primary energy will increase over the period 2010–2035
- Approximately 90% of global power generation is water intensive. Water is used directly for hydropower generation as well as for all forms of thermal power generation schemes.
- Globally, electricity demand is expected to grow by roughly 70% by 2035. This growth will be almost entirely in non-OECD countries.
- Wind and solar PV consume negligible amounts of water, yet they provide an intermittent service that needs to be compensated for by other sources of power (which do require water) to maintain load balances on larger grids.
- In the transportation fuels sector, much of the world is moving away from conventional petroleum based fuels (petrol and diesel, relatively water-lean to produce). Many nations are selecting more water intensive options, such as unconventional fossil fuels (from hydraulic fracturing, coal-to-liquids or oil sands), biofuels and electricity. Even electric powered transportation is water intensive because of water requirements at the power plant.
Data challenges & opportunities:
- For water resources, monitoring availability and use represents an immense and on going challenge, especially given their variable distribution over time and space.
- Top-level annual estimates for energy consumption by fuel exist at the national level for most countries, allowing for informed decision-making in terms of energy policy.
- Lack of data puts water resources management at a political disadvantage in terms of priority decision-making.
Part II. THEMATIC FOCUS
- Funding gaps threaten economic growth and could lead to an increase in the number of people living in poverty. Regarding energy infrastructure, the IEA has estimated that nearly $1 trillion in cumulative investment ($49 billion per year) will be needed to achieve universal energy access by 2030. It also concludes that in a business as- usual scenario, one billion people will remain without access to electricity by 2030.
- Investment requirements for water infrastructure are even higher [than for energy infrastructure. For developing countries alone, it has been estimated that $103 billion per year are required to finance water, sanitation and wastewater treatment through 2015.
- When assessing the needs of the energy sector, water planners and decision-makers must fully understand the requirements of electricity generation and fuel extraction technologies and their potential impact on the resource. Similarly, energy planners and investors must take into account the complexities of the hydrological cycle and other competing uses when assessing plans and investments.
Food & Agriculture:
- As groundwater irrigation, in general, provides greater flexibility than other types in responding to fluctuating water demands, its relative importance is likely to increase in the future.
- For both large and small systems, any means of avoiding food wastage should be encouraged and can result in considerable savings in the energy, land and water used to produce this food that no one consumes.
- Market trends, technological innovations and the availability of cheap (but not necessarily energy efficient) equipment can increase the use of energy in agriculture.
- Many experts agree that abstracting freshwater from a surface or groundwater source, using it, and disposing of it – known as a ‘linear approach’ – is not sustainable. Future urban development requires approaches that minimize resource consumption and focus on resource recovery.
- In developed countries, industrial water use may be stabilizing due to increased efficiency and the move of some manufacturing plants to low income countries yet, at the same time, lack of access to water may hinder such moves, especially for water-dependent industries
- As industry is primarily focused on production, its interest is to secure water and energy at the lowest prices and not necessarily within a programme of water and energy efficiency. This provides an opportunity for policy intervention.
- Enforcement of regulation can be a challenge, especially in countries with limited resources. The goal is that regulations must be clear and based on the latest information and science.
- In the short term, investments may be perceived as a high and risky cost in the light of longer term gains such as lower operation and maintenance costs. But many investments in water productivity have shown positive returns in as little as three years.
- Ongoing degradation of water and land resources in river basins threatens energy provision. It could be reversed through protection and restoration initiatives.
Part III REGIONAL ASPECTS
Europe & North America:
- Improved energy and water planning will require better coordination among national/ federal agencies and other stakeholders as well as consideration of impacts to both resources
The Asia & the Pacific:
- Coal is the most prevalent energy product within the region, with China and India together extracting more than half of the world’s total output. There is also a growing market for renewable sources such as biofuel, with China, India, Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand among the leading regional producers. Both coal and biofuel require vast amounts of freshwater, and some areas within the region are already deemed water-scarce.
The Arab region:
- With the exception of Iraq and Lebanon, the low to middle income countries in the region have an annual per capita share of renewable water resources that falls below the water poverty line and are struggling to achieve energy security; many are seeking to reorient their energy mix towards renewable energy sources to meet growing demand for water and energy services.
Latin America & the Caribbean:
- Given intense competition for limited water supplies and the predominant role of hydropower in river basins, conflicts increasingly arise between hydropower and consumptive uses
- Sub-Saharan Africa is the only region in which the absolute number of people without access to electricity is increasing.
Part IV RESPONSES: FOSTERING SYNERGIES & MANAGING TRADE-OFFS
Creating an enabling environment for change:
- National energy and water policies need to be compatible and coherent.
- Research into how much of a reduction in energy demand can be achieved from increased water efficiency and vice versa would support policy-makers and investors in making more resource efficient strategies and investment choices.
- Each domain has been traditionally expected to focus on a narrow mandate in meeting its own aims and fulfilling its own targeted responsibilities. As a result, there is often little or no incentive to initiate and pursue coordination or integration of policies across sectoral institutions.
- Although there is scope for synergies and win–win results, there is also an array of situations where competition for resources or genuine conflict between water and energy aims can arise, requiring some degree of trade-off
- Economic pricing of energy and water services can more closely reflect the economic cost of their provision; provide sufficient revenues for continued operation and maintenance; and avoid waste and distortions due to under-pricing
Response & Practices:
- Energy audits to identify and reduce water and energy losses and enhance energy efficiency can result in substantial energy and financial savings, with savings of between 10% and 40% reported.
- Chemically bound energy in wastewater … can be used for domestic cooking and heating, as fuel for vehicles and power plants, or for operating the treatment plant itself.
- In terms of manufactured goods, considerable achievements have been made in the design and formulation of products specifically aimed at reducing the water and energy content or consumption of products and appliances.
- Thermal power generation development involves the increasing potential for serious conflict between power, other water users and environmental considerations
- Support for the development of renewable energy will need to increase dramatically in comparison to support for fossil fuels in order to make a significant change in the global energy mix and by association, to water demand.
A poet has said about water as:
Element – Water
Water an elemental
Water a fundamental
Building block of life
Water of Life
Water of Death
Water in all religions
Water in all living things
Water in all countries
Water also used for barter
No life without water
No rife with water
No respect for water
Willful neglect of water
Water, for cooking
Water, for cleaning
Water, for drinking
Water, for living
Water, for dying
Water is the same
In all languages
Water is the same
To all living beings
Life Is Like Flowing Water
If It Stops, It Gets Stagnated,
If It Flows It Turns Into A Waterfall,
A Stream,A River And Ocean
Similarly Life Has Joys And Worries,
But It’s Like Sunrise After Night
So After Each Sad Event There Is A Happy Event
So Live Life To Its Fullest
Enjoy Each Second Of Life
Life Is Precious , Respect It
Thank Thou For It