Within the context of the SWaTH project, a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) training was organized at the University of Lleida in Spain, Igualada campus, between 3 and 8 April 2022. This mobility attracted many faculty members from various Lebanese and European partner institutions, namely: Makram EL BACHAWATI and Rima MANNEH from the University of Balamand – Lebanon, Ferhat BENMAHIDDINE and Mohamed SAWADOGO from the University of La Rochelle – France, Walid HARB and Nancy ZGHEIB from the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik – Lebanon, Claudette HAJJ and Talal SALEM from the Notre Dame University-Louaize – Lebanon.
The local organizers, Gabriel PEREZ, Rita PUIG, Julia COMA, and Esther SOLER, from the Higher Polytechnic School of the University of Lleida (UdL), welcomed the Lebanese and European partners. This multidisciplinary journey included intensive environmental LCA training, technical presentations focusing on different wastewater treatment scenarios, and visits to industrial, municipal, and urban wastewater treatment plants. In addition, the SWaTH team visited the numerous laboratories, facilities, and departments at UdL.
The environmental LCA training was a core activity of this mobility. Dr. PUIG started with a general overview of LCA, its benefits, and the different LCA softwares. Dr. PUIG also conducted an interactive activity where the participants built their own model using the Gabi software. After that, Dr. EL BACHAWATI and Dr. HARB presented SimaPro and OpenLCA softwares, respectively.
The visits to the wastewater treatment plants were the other highlights of this mobility. At the CADAGUA treatment plant, the participants saw the different steps and stages of the physical, chemical, and biological treatment and the anaerobic digestion of sludge. At the Igualadina of Purification and Recovery treatment plant, the participants visualized the treatment process of the wastewater discharged from adjacent tanneries. At the Aqualia treatment plant, the participants witnessed its huge sustainable improvement since the last visit in November 2021. Aqualia upgraded their existing solar panel farm, installed a digestor, biogas microturbines, etc.
The participants also took advantage of this mobility to organize a roundtable and discuss the Lebanese and European current practices with the different partners involved physically and virtually.