Session 5 - The Role of Green Infrastructure for Sustainable Water Management in a Circular Economy

Convener - Regine Ortlepp, Julienne Roux, Nidhi Nagabhatla

Speaker Titel Abstract Kind of presentation
Jos Frijns Stakeholder engagement for circular water solutions: NextGen CoP's  The involvement of stakeholders in the development of water technology and management solutions for the circular economy is considered important for three reasons. First, water supports basic human services such as sanitation and drinking water, and each interference in the delivery systems of these services requires the support of stakeholders. Second, involving stakeholders can lead to multiple value creation as new types of knowledge can lead to new and broader perspectives on solutions. Third, stakeholder involvement can secure the (long-term) implementation of water solutions on the ground. This is in particular important for circular water solutions which rely on stakeholder engagement from the whole water value chain, i.e. from all related sectors in the circular economy. In the EU project NextGen, stakeholder engagement is organised through Communities of Practises (CoP). NextGen will demonstrate innovative technological, business and governance solutions for water in the circular economy in ten high-profile, large-scale, demonstration cases across Europe. At each demo case, a CoP is set up to promote a multi-stakeholder approach to discuss CE water technologies in its institutional context. The CoP’s aim to create an engagement environment around the demonstrated innovations in which stakeholders across the water value chain interact and collaborate. The NextGen CoP’s are structured around four key topics related to the circular water solutions: 1) setting the scene; 2) closing the loop; 3) implementation; 4) upscaling and evaluation. In this paper, the results from the first CoP meetings are presented, including stakeholders feedback. An evaluation framework is developed to analyse how social learning processes contribute to the development of CoP’s for the diffusion of circular water solutions. Oral (normal length)
Jessica Hemingway Urban environmental acupuncture – An approach toward supporting water management in urban areas?  Urban green structures, like parks, gardens, forests, fields and greenways provide important services for urban residents. As retention areas, they can contribute to mitigating or even preventing flood events, avoiding larger technical retention basins. However, for many European cities, because of the need for housing and economic growth, it is a challenge to allocate large land areas as green space. In contrast, smaller areas such as courtyards, wastelands, roofs and roadsides are often available. Do these underutilized areas also have the potential to contribute to water management in cities? Additionally, how can they be given greater consideration as possible small green spaces in local decision-making processes? One approach for the improvement of urban green infrastructure, also with regard to retention services, could be the concept of urban environmental acupuncture (UEA). Behind this concept lies the idea of triggering major effects on the development of cities through small targeted interventions in their structure. Aiming on improving the function of cities, the concept of urban acupuncture has already been used in various parts of the world. The advocates of this approach try to identify the "acupuncture points" (i.e. certain sensitive places) that are important for the city organism in order to apply the "needles" (specific measures) that are necessary to solve the respective problems. The "SALUTE4CE" project, funded by the European Union (2019-2022), examines the extent to which this approach could be applied to urban green infrastructure by developing small green spaces (ca. 0.2 ha) in four European cities using the UEA-concept. In the lecture the UEA-concept will be discussed as a possible approach to address flood protection in urban areas. Questions addressed will include, "How can this concept be applied to improve the quality of urban greenery? (2) "How can the UEA concept be implemented within the context of flood protection?" Oral (normal length)
Marc Gimenez Maranges Transitioning to a circular economy through and with Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SuDS)? - Analysis of transformative dynamics in Linz (Austria) and Toulouse (France)  Conventional urban stormwater management is characterised by centralised technical and governance structures. While this management paradigm has become widespread in practice, its increasing ineffectiveness calls for a systemic transformation. A promising strategy involves the development of Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SuDS), through which natural processes are mimicked to handle floods. This paper analyses the role of SuDS as vehicles of change towards a circular economy. An indicator-based approach has been created and applied for the assessment of techniques, governance and policy at the neighbourhood and city level in Linz (Austria) and Toulouse (France). Findings show that the mere implementation of SuDS appears to have little effect on transitioning and radical paradigm shift in both cities. Little change has unfolded on the governance structures and the underlying engineering culture. Actually, the SuDS concept is only partly implemented and even in demonstration projects showcasing comprehensive SuDS deployment, the principles behind the conventional paradigm dominate. Demonstration projects seem to have limited upscaling effects. Thanks to engaged leading actors, ambitious approaches have been undertaken and shift is unfolding. Policy narratives are also underpinning this notion. Action on the social sphere of the system is urgently needed, if radical change to a circular economy is to be attained. Oral (normal length)
Nasim Ahmadi Ghaleh Investigating the Extension and Implementation of Green Infrastructure for Recycling Grey Wastewater of Buildings & Sites belong to Tehran Municipality  Iran is listed as the country with serious water crisis, Based on the water consumption Index of renewable water sources in United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. In this regard, Tehran, as the capital, has faced some limitations in the availability of surface and underground water resources and Tehran Municipality, as the administrator of urban green spaces is coping with the challenge of supplying the needed water and is trying to find replaceable water resources like wastewater. Despite other cities’ long records in using green structure for recycling wastewater, unfortunately, this issue is still alien in Tehran and there is no significant executable plan regarding this issue. In this study, the extension and implementation of Green Infrastructure for recycling grey wastewater of buildings & Sites belong to Tehran Municipality has been investigated. The Sites belonging to the municipality, as the first Pilots, may be an appropriate start point for extending these types of infrastructure in public places like inner city riversides, parks and street refuges. This study has been done in collaboration with the stakeholders of various divisions of the municipality. By implementing the stakeholder management model, several scenarios of Green Infrastructure implementation were obtained. In the phase of defining these Scenarios, two primary principles have been considered: Plan’s Sustainability, and Circular Economy. Next, the main threads like extra operating costs or different operation’s problems like treated wastewater storage tank’s overloading, have been identified by SWOT method. Moreover, several executive approaches have been found for removing the main threads and developing a common sense, such as “providing Technical and Executive Regulations based on Standard PMBOK2.0; Warranty Regulations Settling and Establishment of Wastewater Recycling Advisory Committees in 22 Districts of Tehran Municipality”. Oral (normal length)
Patrick Opoku Optimizing green infrastructure management and land governance for resilient circular economy: Insights from Ghana  Green infrastructure is defined as an inter-connected network of open, green spaces that provide a range of ecosystem services. Over the years many studies on green infrastructure have been realized. However, there are still unanswered questions on how best to manage green infrastructure in developing countries while correcting the wrongs of abuse and free riding. In Ghana, problems of green infrastructure are related to land access and exclusion as well as unclear institutional framework for governance. The focus of this inquiry was to understand whether resource managers in developing countries employ appropriate tools for managing green infrastructure resources towards resilient circular economy. The article used case studies in Ghana and the theory of access to examine the broad range of factors including property rights to land and theft that enable people to gain access to green infrastructure resources and abuse them. The objectives also include outlining the boundary conditions for which different systems of green infrastructure have worked in different landscapes and discussing the challenges under which they do not work. Our findings suggest that management of green infrastructure in Ghana is mediated by complex interrelationships between customary and statutory institutions. Different forms of legal rights to land (title, lease, and deeds) and illegal rights (theft, coercion, violence, deception) characterized access and management of green infrastructure resources. Oral (normal length)