Friday, January 28

Water sports become one of the main economic and social engines of Lleida

Every day more people decide to enter the world of adventure sports and enjoy contact with nature. The feeling of freedom and adrenaline that these activities provide make this type of tourism grow and the number of users increases. But for this to be possible it is necessary that the environment is suitable. For example, in the case of water sports, a specific flow is necessary to carry out activities such as rafting, canoeing or canyoning, in addition to certain weather conditions throughout the year. In some cases, however, these conditions do not exist, or are not the most suitable for practicing these sports, which is why external help and control is necessary.

It is because of that, Endesa -through its renewable energy division Enel Green Power- actively participates and collaborates with numerous administrations and cultural and sports entities to regulate the flow of rivers and facilitate the practice of all these sports with total safety and respect for the environment.

Flow regulation

The regulation of the water flow is an essential part to be able to practice different water sports. Endesa knows this, and that is why it carries out the necessary actions to guarantee, not only that the necessary conditions are in place to be able to carry out all the activity, but also that it runs with maximum safety and that the sustainability of the environment is taken into account natural.

The regulation of the water flow, for recreational-social use, requires periodic maintenance by the hydroelectric plants, as well as the associated hydraulic infrastructures, together with a reliable communication system between the plants and the control center.

For a perfect operation, in the first place, Endesa technicians carry out a preliminary study from the Hydraulic Control Center of the Company, located in Lleida, in which the amount of water requested and available is valued taking into account, on the one hand, the current state of the rivers and, on the other, the conditions of the environment to guarantee the success of the activities.

Taking this study as a reference, and taking into account the orography of the land for the correct regulation of the flow, operations were activated to control the flow through reservoirs and hydroelectric plants.

Hydraulic production

It is important to note that Endesa’s commitment to the territory makes sustainable development an essential pillar in the company’s strategy. Within the framework of Endesa’s Sustainability Plan 2018-2020, the company collects the environmental, social and ethical priorities identified from a process of reflection and consultation with different stakeholders.

Specifically, the environmental element has been a very important factor in all the company’s activities, as well as in the execution of its projects. Endesa has identified water as an important resource, and for this reason it has focused great efforts on the comprehensive management of its use in all areas of activity. In 2017, for example, Endesa received the award from the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), which highlights it as a company that is ahead of its time in the fight against climate change and in the management of water resources.

Furthermore, for Endesa, hydraulic generation is a key factor in the idea that renewable energies are the ones that pave the way and, therefore, contribute to the future development and sustainability of the territory.

In order to produce hydroelectric energy, three essential needs must first be met: water supply, water consumption and ecological balance in rivers. Hence, the levels of hydroelectric production are conditioned to the volume of rainfall and the amount of accumulated snow.

Beyond the supply of electricity without emissions, as ensured by the objectives of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, today hydroelectric plants play a fundamental and direct role in the sustainability of the entire territory.

Lleida and water sports

All this regulation, control and work are fundamental elements that allow certain areas to be suitable, and even optimal, for the practice of different water sports in the natural environment. One of the clearest examples in our country occurs in the province of Lleida.

A long tradition, its strong ties with the natural environment, as well as the privileged conditions of its territory and the prestige it enjoys, both nationally and internationally, have led this province to establish itself as a benchmark in the world of adventure sports, giving rise to the creation of hundreds of companies that today offer a wide range of possibilities to practice sports in the natural environment.

The proliferation of companies that offer sports activities has exponentially increased the number of contracted activities, which in turn has a direct impact on the region’s economy. An increase that not only directly affects the economy of the region, but also favors the creation of jobs, both direct and indirect.

Water as an economic and social engine

This growth has made the regions of Lleida one of the unique areas of the national map in terms of sports activities in the natural environment, and especially if we talk about those that take place in the aquatic environment. That is why the regulation and control of the water flow is a fundamental factor for the correct development of this and other water sports in the province of Lleida.

The rise of these aquatic activities has become part of daily life in some regions of the area, hence its importance, both socially and economically. Faced with this situation, Endesa set to work to strengthen and grow aquatic adventure tourism, and that is why it collaborates with various entities to guarantee the necessary conditions that allow the holding of different sports competitions.

These have a very positive impact on the region as they help to promote it, increasing tourism in the different regions where these activities are carried out. Tourism also causes various cultural activities to be carried out, and all this goes hand in hand with an increase in the income of the different companies and local businesses. Nature, sport and development move in the same direction.