Resccue, the challenge of preparing for a disaster

“Urban resilience is the capacity shown by cities to survive, adapt and grow no matter what kind of disaster they experience.”

A resilient city is one that protects its inhabitants and its assets, while maintaining its functionality in the event of a crisis. In this regard power is a key aspect. This is where Endesa comes in. Our technicians, specialising in distribution grids, are studying how to use autonomous micro-grids connected to the main grid to supply power in the event of an emergency. We shall focus on quantifying the impact of climate change on the capacity to recover power supplies and how smart grids can contribute to the resilience of cities.

“Urban services, such as telecommunications or water, depend on other services, such as the power supply in order to operate”, explains Miguel Pardo, head of innovation projects at Endesa Distribución. The idea is to quantify the impact of climate change on the capacity to recover power supplies and to understand how smart grids can contribute to the resilience of cities. For Pardo, "one of the project’s main objectives is to respond to cities correctly, coordinating with them and improving communication between urban services and jointly addressing disaster risks, before, during and after the event”.

Although we are focusing on the Barcelona case study, the project will be developed over four years in another two cities: Lisbon and Bristol. As always, collaboration is essential.Cooperation between power, water and gas companies is crucial in order to quickly and efficiently respond to catastrophes. And this became evident during the first presentation of the project held in Barcelona under the title of "Building a more resilient city to cope with climate change".

“One of the project’s main objectives is to respond to cities correctly, coordinating with them and improving communication between urban services and jointly addressing disaster risks, before, during and after the event.”

– Miguel Pardo, head of innovation projects at Endesa Distribución

A core part of Resccue is Hazur, a piece of software that detects possible vulnerabilities in cities and helps them to improve in terms of safety and protection.

Participants in the first public presentation of the Resccue project in Barcelona

There is nothing quite like being prepared.In fact, many studies cited by the UN-Habitat resilient cities programme Habitat claim that for every dollar invested in the prevention of disasters, between five and ten dollars are saved in economic losses.

This initiative is funded by the EU Horizon 2020 programme with a budget of 8 million euros and it will run over four years. The Resccue project, made up of 18 partners from five countries, led by Aquatec (Suez Water Advanced Solutions) and backed by the United Nations Agency Un-Habitat, includes the three town councils involved in the Project, large urban services companies such as Endesa, EDP, Aguas de Portugal, and Suez Advanced Solution UK, research centres (Cetaqua, FIC, LNEC and IREC), universities (Exeter and EIVP) and SMEs such as Optics, Hidra and UrbanDNA.

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