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Historic Villages of Portugal innovates for sustainability

13 JUNI 2024
Themen
Casas Sustentáveis Turismo Portugal Sustentabilidade Eficiencia Energetica Escapadinhas Aldeias Históricas
Aldeias Históricas de Portugal wants to be the country's first carbon-neutral tourist destination and has taken several measures to achieve this goal.
Historic Villages of Portugal innovates for sustainability
Source: Aldeias Históricas de Portugal
Author: Redaction

Aldeias Históricas de Portugal - Associação de Desenvolvimento Turístico (AHP-ADT) has just become the first organisation to have buildings classified with the three AQUA+ benchmarks for assessing and classifying the water efficiency of buildings - AQUA+ Residential, AQUA+ Commerce & Services-Hotels and AQUA+ Commerce & Services-Offices - thus positioning itself at the forefront of water efficiency in Portugal, as stated in a press release to SUPERCASA Notícias.

AQUA+ is a benchmark for classifying and promoting water efficiency in buildings, developed by ADENE - the Portuguese Energy Agency, in collaboration with organisations from the national scientific and technological system. Its purpose is to assess and classify, on a scale from F to A+, the performance of buildings in their various water uses and to identify opportunities for improving water efficiency and energy efficiency within the water-energy nexus.

In partnership with ADENE, the Historical Villages of Portugal carried out an experiment on three different types of building, resulting in a careful analysis of the optimum points and those to be improved, noting their importance as a mechanism for saving money and an increasingly scarce resource - water. Once the added value has been recognised, the aim is to move on to replication.

Within the scope of AQUA+ Residential, a single-family house in Almeida, Guarda district, was classified. The improvement measures identified in the audit, namely the installation of more efficient taps and shower systems, a hot water circulation and return network and an intelligent water consumption measurement system, will save 107m3 of water and 57 € annually, taking into account the cost of water and the costs associated with heating it.

With regard to the AQUA+ Trade & Services - Hotels audit, the INATEL de Linhares da Beira Rural Hotel, a hotel with 26 accommodation units, located in the village of Linhares da Beira, in the municipality of Celorico da Beira, was classified. The building is a rural hotel with 26 accommodation units, built in 2013. It has two swimming pools for guests, a laundry room and around 3,700 square metres of green areas that need watering. As a good water efficiency practice, the use of water from the levada, which comes from the Serra da Estrela mountain range and supplies all the resort's irrigation needs, was identified. The proposed improvement measures, including the installation of an intelligent monitoring system with partial meters at key points in the water network and the creation and implementation of a water management plan, will enable the development to improve its water performance.

The Almeida Town Hall building, built in the 18th century, was one of the pilot buildings for calibrating the AQUA+ Commerce & Services - Offices methodology. This building uses water for sanitary facilities and outdoor areas that require irrigation. The proposed improvement measures will enable the building to save 221m3 of water per year. Improvement measures include the replacement of devices (taps and cisterns) and the creation of awareness campaigns, such as putting up signs to reduce water consumption, training employees and drawing up a good practice manual on sustainability and water efficiency.

This is undoubtedly a significant step towards carbon neutrality. In line with the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and the European Green Deal, the Historical Villages of Portugal Network aims to become the first network in Europe to benefit from water and energy efficient status, based on the strategic vision: "Historical Villages of Portugal: a sustainable urban network that is a pioneer in its contribution to the green growth of low-density territories".

Continue reading topics like this in SUPERCASA Notícias
Themen
Casas Sustentáveis Turismo Portugal Sustentabilidade Eficiencia Energetica Escapadinhas Aldeias Históricas
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