What can we learn from the latest IPCC report on climate change?

Cover of the IPCC 2021 Report on Climate Change presented by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change presented in August 2021.

Strong are the conclusions of the latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that urges Spanish administrations and economic sectors to tackle, in the coming years, a profound economic, social and political transformation to avoid the worst effects of global warming.

In this latest special report entitled “Global Warming of 1.5”, highlights the fundamental role that the conservation of biodiversity has as the first line of defense against climate change, in addition, as has recently been demonstrated, against the proliferation of pandemics such as the one we go through these days.

Among the regionalized data that are presented, we want to highlight the situation in Europe, facing situations of extreme heat, drought and increasingly frequent and unexpected floods, especially the Mediterranean region, but not only.

Natural disasters that can be avoided

In Spain, at the beginning of the summer, we have witnessed the great natural disaster that occurred as a result of the contamination of the Mar Menor and the terrible fish mortality associated with it.

It is the second year that we have observed a problem of a similar magnitude and they are the consequences of a well-known process. The eutrophication of water in estuaries and inland lagoons induced by human activity, in this case, it seems that everything points to uncontrolled discharges from the agricultural exploitation of the area.

Aquatic ecosystems receiving discharges of nitrogen compounds, mainly biodegradable organic nitrogen and ammonia nitrogen, can lead to the massive development of phytoplankton and algae. These organisms, when they die, begin a decomposition process, the environment undergoes a reduction in the concentration of dissolved oxygen as a consequence of the biological oxidation of said compounds by microorganisms.

Growing need to improve water sanitation

Complex created in a former mining site with nature-based solutions, in which two forests were created, one tropical and the other Mediterranean.
In a growing context of population and with increasingly populated areas, it is difficult to assess whether conventional water treatments will be adequate to manage the wastewater of the world’s population. The use of these resources implies reducing the economic and environmental impacts associated with water treatment.
There are a variety of technologies for removing nitrogen from wastewater that involve physical and chemical processes, however, due to their high cost, irregular operation, and operational and maintenance problems, the application of this type of technology has focused on specific situations, mainly on industrial wastewater effluents, where their low biodegradability and / or toxicity make the use of conventional biological processes unfeasible.
In recent years there has been a growing recognition of the role and importance of NBS (Nature Based Solutions) as an alternative or complement to conventional wastewater treatment systems. Responding to the need to improve sanitation, with an emphasis on the benefits that these technologies can provide both to people and to ecosystems.

Gráfico que muestra el proceso de transformación del nitrógeno mediante los procesos de nitrificación y desnitrificación vía nitrato.

There is a growing interest in this type of solutions based on natural systems of low-cost treatment. However, it is often difficult for wastewater service managers to know how best to combine legacy traditional infrastructure with these novel treatments.

An example of these solutions (NBS) is the combined treatment by means of the controlled addition of special bacterial strains and a mixture of micronutrients and biostimulants, for the treatment of industrial effluents. Together, these two components work to improve the existing microbial population and improve the digestion of different contaminants.

The microbial species involved in the biological purification processes will depend mainly on the characteristics of the wastewater and on the design and operation of the biological process. The goal was to identify strains that would digest substrates such as ammonium. Once selected, the strains can work together seamlessly because synergy between strains is absolutely key, the greatest success is achieved when the product is applied in the right place, at the right time and in the right dose.

The purpose of this treatment is the benefits of bioaugmentation, cost saving opportunities with a high return on investment for everyone involved, as well as seeking measurable results. All framed within an action to protect, manage in a sustainable way, and address social challenges in an effective and adaptive way, simultaneously providing benefits for the community and biodiversity.

This is a shared objective with Amapex and with which we have already helped different industries in the implementation of this type of system.

If you want more information, or that we make an approximation to the solution you need, do not hesitate to contact us.