In buone acque: transparent management Hera water’s cycle in a single report
In 2017, for the ninth consecutive year, Hera published “In buone acque” [In Good Waters], its report on tap water. The report is still the first and only thematic report published in Italy on the topic of tap water and its benefits in both environmental and economic terms.
On the basis of the new data for 2016, it has once again shown that the mains water in the areas served by Hera is a good, convenient, widespread, safe and inexpensive resource, as well as being rich in trace elements and low in sodium, comparable in quality to the leading bottled waters on the market. Reassuring results, guaranteed by 2,400 analyses per day on tap water (carried out by Hera, by ASL – the local health authorities, and by Romagna Acque) proven by the fact that 99.9% of the checks carried out showed the water is compliant with the water quality standards set by law.
The report also contains, area by area, the data of the analyses of 29 parameters. The analyses also concern pesticides and parameters not required by law, such as emerging pollutants and asbestos fibre: again, the results confirmed the quality and safety of the mains water distributed by Hera.
The report, in a completely new layout compared to previous years and with extended contents in its online version, shows that besides being a sustainable choice for the environment, drinking tap water is also good for our customers’ wallets. In fact, tap water in the area served by Hera makes it possible to avoid the production, transport and disposal of almost 250 million plastic bottles that would fill over 3 million bins and to save on average up to Euro 270 per year, for a family of 3 people.
To ensure maximum transparency and reliability of the data reported, the report was examined and certified by DNV GL.
The extended contents of the report are available at www.gruppohera.it\report.
At Hera we drink tap water
The Hera2O project, launched in 2008, encourages Hera’s employees to use tap water. By drinking over 552,000 litres of tap water in 2017 from the dispensers installed in Hera’s canteens and offices, workers avoided the production of almost 17 tonnes of plastic, equivalent to around 555 bins, and over 847,000 plastic bottles (0.5 litre bottles were considered for canteens and individual use, and 1.5 litre bottles for offices and meeting rooms). This virtuous behaviour generated an energy savings of approximately 57 tonnes of oil equivalent and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 159 tonnes.
Residents can also have good and checked drinking water by obtaining it from the Urban Springs, public dispensers of drinking water, located throughout the area served by the Hera Group. The water they provide is identical to that in the taps of homes but is cooler (refrigerated) and sparkling water is also dispensed. In 2017 the number of “Urban Springs” in the area served by the Hera Group decreased by one unit compared to the previous year, from 70 to 69 because the one in Portomaggiore (FE) is no longer operated by Hera. The number of dispensers located in the area served by AcegasApsAmga remained the same as in the previous year (a total of 5), while the number of “Urban Springs”, set up jointly with Marche Multiservizi, increased to a total of 8.
We would like to mention the considerable environmental benefits deriving from the decision to drink tap water, which is good, safe and scrupulously checked by the Hera Group. For example, in 2017 the Group’s “Urban Springs” supplied a total of more than 21.5 million litres of water, 30% of which was sparkling water, determining a remarkable saving in terms of plastic, as that amounts to over 14 million bottles, and in turn means around 18,000 fewer bins to empty (bins with an average capacity of 800 1.5 litre PET bottles), thus reducing CO2 emissions by over 2600 tonnes. The savings for families, of the average expense to purchase mineral water, is around Euro 4 million.