Metallurgy industry groups, HALCOR and ELVAL, need to assess: (a) the adequacy of currently used water resources in near future and (b) the need to invest on more effective effluent treatment facilities.
The provided climate impact indicators are the core data for investigating the supply chain, water related risks and evaluating the assimilative capacity of effluent receiver (Asopos River), under climate change conditions.
Copernicus climate change service data combines ease of use and large geographical coverage, so that they can be core information for climate change impact investigations covering most aspects of local issues when combined with local information.
Case Study Description
The Groups of HALCOR and ELVAL operate in the greater area of Asopos River Basin since 1973. The metallurgy industry uses water in many stages of their production. This water is now provided from the two reservoir system of Evinos and Mornos which are the main reservoirs that supply Athens waterworks. A large population depends on this natural resource and the industry needs to know if this resource will continue to suffice for the water supply of the capital and also to support other water uses in the future. Further, industry’s effluents are disposed of in Asopos River, which receives significant pressures both in terms of quantity and quality, mainly attributed to water abstraction for irrigation and to the significant industrial activity in the area, respectively. The industry needs to know if climate change may impose the need for stricter effluent regulations.
Decision support to client
The current assessment addresses two major concerns of the interested metallurgy industry groups: (a) the need to invest on other than the currently used water resources in near future and (b) the need to invest on more effective effluent treatment facilities.
SWICCA indicators provide the core data to evaluate climate change impact on the client’s water resources and effluent treatment procedures. Analysis results, based on the use of SWICCA data, indicate no significant changes in major competing water demands in the area and a marginal climate change impact on the quantity of water resources is expected. Additionally, limited changes are anticipated in the assimilative capacity of Asopos R. and effluent treatment level may sustain future industry operations. Based on these results, the client may change focus towards influent water quality concerns.
Temporal and spatial Scale
The client is interested in evaluating (1) water availability and (2) assimilative capacity of effluent receiver for a period of maximum 10 years ahead. The abovementioned goals concern the Asopos River basin (regional scale), extending in an area of about 720 km2 as well as Evinos and Mornos reservoirs subbasins (regional scale), which cover an area of about 920 km2 in total.
Knowledge brokering was based mainly on personal meetings. Meetings, in person, with the clients have taken place where, through discussions, their needs were explained to the purveyors (EMVIS) and it was made clear to them what services can be provided, what solutions can be given to their problems and which data they should contribute for the assessments. Communication via phone calls and e-mails was limited to data exchange and meetings arrangements. The meetings took place at the premises of the client, at HALKOR or ELVAL. They involved presentations concerning climate change impacts, aiming at initially raising climate change awareness and were followed by presentations of available climate services. Further, they served the purpose of introducing the purveyor into the client’s view of the problem. As the project evolved, meetings were used for results presentation while ideas on the envisioned final goals of the analysis were exchanged and guided the investigations.
Well prepared meetings with preceding e-mail exchange of preliminary results or meeting agendas help make the most out of a personal communication and save time which many times is limited. Further, no matter the client’s level of climate change impact awareness, introduction on climate impact aspects can facilitate faster and better definition of the analysis goals. The SWICCA demonstrator has been used extensively for presentation purposes, regarding climate impacts and it proved to be an excellent mean to convey the uncertainty which characterises climate change predictions.
Indicators used for this study are: River Flow (seasonality), Precipitation (0.5 degree grid), Temperature (0.5 degree grid) and Population.
The investigation of possible connections between hydrological forcing data (from pan-European models) and historical water quality and availability problems may reveal useful, local indicators.
Indicators of Hydrology and future climate – Identification of future discharge characteristics for three basins: (a) Evinos & Mornos reservoir subbasins which provide the necessary water and (b) Asopos River which is the effluent water receiver. Relative indicators: (1) future change of low-flow discharges, low flow characteristics (discharge, mean annual duration etc) but also indicators on most prevailing flow conditions and (2) future predictions of discharge time series to be directly evaluated. Indicators result from Pan-European hydrological models, which were based on Pan-European climate change predictions from an ensemble of climate models.
Industry’s influent and effluent characteristics – Collect and assess data concerning industry’s water consumption, water use and effluent characteristics. Identify major pollutants.
Local hydrologic data – Local data enquiry relative to fresh water sources of Mornos and Evinos reservoirs subbasins and their water uses. Evaluation of current water availability and quality.
Assimilative potential assessment – Analysis of pressures on Asopos River which is the industry’s effluent receiver, and its current assimilative potential through the application of water quality modelling tool developed in the SWITCH-ON project.
Climate Change Corporate Risk Assessment – Local data, such as the interconnection of Evinos and Mornos subbasins with Asopos river subbasin through the waterworks of Athens, the number and effluent characteristics of industries related to the Asopos system as well as economic and population growth potential for the area of interest, are combined and co-evaluated with pan-European discharge indicators (see on the above) and climate change impact on the industry’s operation is evaluated. Estimation of water related risks (physical risks) and possible long-term changes in environmental permits (regulatory risks).
Corporate policy & Adaptation Strategy – If business sustainability and/or growth are facing a possible threat due to climate change, strategic adaptation measures will be discussed. Uncertainties of the assessment, related to the uncertainties of the climate change indicators, can be crucial and will be estimated if timely or costly investments from the company’s side should be required. Adaptation or re-evaluation of industry’s water management plans.
The SWICCA demonstrator can be a powerful platform for promoting climate services and conveying location-relevant information regarding climate change and possible impacts, keeping into mind that the clients may be unaware of these impacts or not alarmed enough to initiate a climate change adaptation policy. Further, it can be effectively used for familiarising the clients with the concept of uncertainty of predictions and introduce them to a different way of thinking, more compatible with a various scenarios approach. The data provided by the SWICCA climate service can be crucial information for climate change impact investigations, however they cannot cover all aspects of local issues and a combination with Pan-European indicators of daily time series and local information may be necessary for completing integrated climate change impact investigations.
The near future water availability has been assessed based on precipitation, temperature and socio-economic indicators in combination with local hydrological and water needs data. Results indicate no significant changes in major competing water demands in the area and a marginal climate change impact on the quantity of water resources is expected. The assimilative capacity of Asopos River was evaluated based on discharge indicators and local data of industrial effluent discharges and results indicate that limited changes are anticipated. Effluent treatment level may sustain future industry operations and the client should focus on other concerns, such as influent water quality.
The client (Groups of HALCOR and ELVAL) operates in the greater area of Asopos River Basin since 1973, now with six productive subsidiaries in the copper and aluminium sectors, with leading position in the Greek market and competitive presence outside Greece. Water use, as a constituent for production and as an effluent receiver, is of major operational importance. Identification of exposure to water related risks, under changing climatic conditions, is a key factor towards business sustainability. Estimations based on current conditions and previous experience or on application of web based tools developed recently for the estimation of water related risks, is a current tactic applied by the client concerning this kind of decision making. The use of the easily accessible, free of the need for laborious processing, SWICCA climate change indicators provides a series of different variables and information, based on current scientific knowledge, available for different scenarios. As a result, an integrated assessment of the effect of climate impact on hydrology and river water quality is supported, increasing the client’s climate adaptation abilities and better orienting the client’s funds towards climate change resilience investments.
SWICCA Climate Service “has brought climate change information on a mouse click” and “introduced climate change concepts and awareness in the future planning”. Further, climate change impact investigations has been an added value on the company’s reputational profile concerning environmental awareness and sustainability.
Changes in water availability could lead to changes in water resources allocation, with the water supply of the city of Athens being prioritized and the client (industry) led in search for other water sources, raising the cost of water and even leading to a reallocation of the industry. Changes of the hydrologic regime could lead to decrease of Asopos River assimilation capacity, trigger a regulatory change towards stricter effluent regulations and significantly raise the cost of effluent treatment with adverse economic impact on the client. Climate impact analysis can lead to a higher level of preparedness, making the client more agile and competitive while adaptation, if needed, can make the client more resilient against possible changes. Therefore climate change impact analysis and adaptation has the potential to indirectly reinforce the local economy and conserve the water quality of the effluent receiver (Asopos River).
The usage of SWICCA indicators and the case study goals are related to different levels of the National Strategy for Adaptation to Climate Change, concerning the armouring of industry as well as future water resources quantity and quality aspects under climate change conditions. SWICCA data have been also used for assessing the need of metallurgy groups to invest on better effluent treatment facilities, in order to conform to restrictions imposed by the local policy (Common Ministerial Decision, Greek Government Gazette 1909/B, 8/12/2010 and 749/B, 31/05/2010), following the targets set by the EU Water Framework Directive, for ensuring good chemical status of surface water bodies across Europe as well as serving targets set by the Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) regarding the regulations of pollutant emissions from industrial installations.
EMVIS Consultant Engineers
+30 210 652 8078
HALCOR Group http://www.halcor.gr/
ELVAL Group http://www.elval.gr/
EMVIS Consultant Engineers http://emvis.gr
Relevant EU policy
Purveyor: EMVIS Consultant Engineers
+30 210 652 8078
Value added by Copernicus Climate Change Service:
Clients: ELVAL group and HALCOR group
Study Area – Waterbodies related to industry assessment
Modeling river pollution due to industry emissions using wPrisma developed under SWITCH-ON project