The Regional Agency for Energy and Environment of the Autonomous Region of Madeira (AREAM), in the scope of the E5DES project, is developing this study which aims to evaluate the use of renewable energy in small-scale desalination units located in the Autonomous Region of Madeira.
The study includes the analysis of the energy, economic and environmental viability for the installation of small-scale desalination units, powered by solar photovoltaic systems, to be installed in 3, 4 and 5 star hotels in the Autonomous Region of Madeira. Presently, Autonomous Region of Madeira has two hotel units equipped with desalination systems.
The study will help support hotel managers in making decisions regarding the installation of this type of system, in view of increasing the hotel’s resilience to climate change, reducing energy consumption from the electric grid, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and reducing high annual costs with the operation of desalination units.
Climate change, with the prospect of a gradual increase in temperature and less rainfall in the short, medium and long-term, will influence the climate of the islands of Madeira and Porto Santo, with expected periods of water scarcity. The deployment of desalination systems will allow hotel units to adapt to climate change in order to ensure the availability of water for their activities, guaranteeing water supply to bedrooms, kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms, swimming pools, irrigation systems and cooling systems.
In addition to this study, a tool is being developed that allows energy and resource managers of hotel units to design the size of the desalination units and associated solar photovoltaic systems taking into account the monthly indicators of the occupancy rate, number of beds occupied and associated water consumption.
Main tasks foreseen to be carried out in this study:
- State of the art of reverse osmosis (RO) desalination systems and solar photovoltaic systems;
- Sizing of small-scale desalination units coupled with the integration of solar photovoltaic systems in hotel units:
Sizing of small-scale desalination units for 3, 4 and 5 star hotels, taking into account the indicators of average monthly occupancy rate, average number of beds and average consumption of water per bed occupied;
Preparation of scenarios for the introduction of solar photovoltaic systems in 3, 4 and 5 star hotels to supply electricity to the dimensioned desalination units.
- Water efficiency in hotel units;
- Available financial instruments to improve water efficiency and use of renewable energy in hotel units;
- Legal framework applicable to production units for self-consumption (UPAC) and renewable energy communities.
E5DES project is co-funded by the European Union program INTERREG MAC 2014-2020 (MAC2/1.1a/309), by means of the European Regional Development Fund – ERDF.