TRACK 2: Energy and Water Sustainability

February 21st, 2019

Water is one of the most important natural resources that we have. However, the availability and quality of water has been significantly affected by population growth, increasing consumptive life styles, human mismanagement, and the impacts of climate change. It is essential to challenge the current isolated approaches to how we manage energy and water issues, and to strive for an integrated approach to plan for and accommodate the growing, often linked, demand for energy and water.

This track will focus on the multiple connections between water and energy, including the use of water in energy production systems such as hydropower, thermal power, off-shore wind power, floating solar PV and biofuels, as well as the use of energy in the provision of water and sanitation services. The session will take an integrated view of how to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 6 and SDG 7[2], and how to address the challenges posed by existing institutional structures, policies, and procedures at the subnational, national, regional, and global levels.

Topics will include, but are not limited to, the use of energy for water treatment and sanitation; for transport, delivery, and water pumping for residential use; and for irrigation in agriculture. Case studies and examples of regional cooperation will be presented throughout the track.

Abstracts should address one of the topics listed below:

Energy and Water, Session 1: Sustainable Energy Use for Water: Focusing on Water Supply and Sanitation

There is a critical need to properly address water supply and sanitation in Asia, as the lack of adequate waste management policies and infrastructure improvements is impacting many watersheds. This session will feature discussions on water treatment for water supply, and energy generation from waste, including biogas from sludge digestion.

The session will address the following questions:

  • How can we include energy savings through innovative technologies from ground water extraction and water transmission from water supply and sanitation?
  • How will future and current innovative technologies help address these issues by the introduction of renewable energy, such as solar PV for water treatment and extraction?
  • What are commercial and cost-effective systems and business models for turning wastewater into energy?
  • What are the business models that will help accelerate the circular economy of innovative energy-water projects that can provide access to affordable clean energy in both rural and urban areas?
  • What are the key challenges and success stories in the region?

Energy and Water, Session 2: Sustainable Energy Use for Water: Focusing on Irrigation Water

As populations continue to grow rapidly across Asia, it is important to discuss how to improve sustainable water irrigation and improve overall agriculture production in order to meet growing demand[3]. This session will focus on solar-based and grid powered irrigation and will highlight energy saving mechanisms for ground water pumping and water transmission, including efficient water use for irrigation.

The session will address the following questions:

  • What are the opportunities to utilize solar-based energy and reduce energy use in grid powered irrigation?
  • What are the innovative business models that can help make solar based irrigation become mainstream?
  • How can we weight and prioritize the trade-offs of water use between food production and biofuel?
  • What are the economic impacts for rural communities?
  • What are the key challenges and success stories in the region?

Energy and Water, Session 3: Sustainable Water Use for Energy: Focusing on Hydropower, Offshore Wind, and Floating Solar PV

Water-based energy generation systems such as hydropower and floating solar PV offer great opportunities for the clean energy transition in Asia. This session will include deliberations on how we can scale up technologies such as floating solar PV, offshore wind farms, hydropower, and wave-power generation, supported through favorable policies, and delivered at competitive prices while minimizing environmental and social impacts.

The session will address the following questions:

  • How can we assess where to best deploy technology options to produce the most cost-effective power production?
  • How can we educate the public about the benefits from latest technology developments?
  • What are the economic benefits of various water-based energy generation systems, and how can we address job training?
  • How can private and public sector organizations and stakeholders leverage resources to attract additional financing?
  • What are the key challenges and success stories in the region?

Energy and Water, Session 4: Sustainable Water Use for Energy: Focusing on Thermal Power; Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage; and Geothermal Power

There is a close nexus between water and energy in power production at various stages of the process. This session will examine water utilization and the potential for savings in thermal and geothermal power production, and how to prevent water pollution in various stages of the fuel and groundwater supply chain. For geothermal generation, multi-purpose use of resources will also be considered.

The session will address the following questions:

  • How can we achieve the most environmentally and economically friendly mechanisms for water utilization throughout the power production process?
  • What regulations are needed to ensure the protection of water resources?
  • What is the impact of carbon capture utilization and storage for power generation, and how can this be managed?
  • What are the key challenges and success stories in the region?