The Potential of the Wastewater Sector in the Energy Transition: policy brief published!

The H2020 project PowerStep has been demonstrating at full-scale lab-tested innovations for energy-positive wastewater treatment, to kick-start their market deployment. Decreasing energy consumption and raising energy production at the same time, PowerStep converts wastewater treatment plants into real power producers.

A new policy brief published by the project shows how turning wastewater treatment plants into efficient renewable energy generators is a good fit with the current goals of strengthening the European economy and its energy system.

To enable the full potential of energy neutral or even energy positive wastewater treatment plants using the PowerStep concept, the main recommendations of the policy brief are that EU policymakers:

  • #01 Recognise biogas from sewage as a renewable energy with a lower environmental footprint than other forms of biogas and biofuels.
  • #02 Prioritise renewable energy from sewage for public support.
  • #03 Extend green public procurement (GPP) criteria for wastewater treatment plants so that they promote energy neutral or energy positive plants as well as energy efficiency.
  • #04 Grant access to cohesion/structural funds contingent on energy efficiency investments, including in wastewater treatment plants.
  • #05 Make public subsidies for energy production at wastewater treatment plants contingent on the application of energy management systems.
  • #06 Define power-to-gas (P2G) as a form of energy storage.

                                                                                 Read here the full text of the policy brief.

Policy brief