The transition towards a Circular Economy (CE) plays a significant role towards socio-economic and environmental improvements. For East Europe, demonstrating the application of CE principles though practical cases (e.g., from EU funded projects) can be an inspiration to build a culture of sustainability and develop appropriate business models adapted to East Europe, where waste and pollution are designed out, products and materials stay in use for much longer and natural systems are able to regenerate.
On 7 October 2021, Business Development Group and Aquademica Foundation, with support from the Watershare secretariat (KWR Water Research Institute), organised a webinar during the AquaCircular Conference 2021 for about 200 registered Lower Danube River Basin stakeholders on CE with cases studies demonstrating the CE principles and how to apply CE principles in practice. The focus of the webinar was on knowledge sharing and connecting Lower Danube River Basin stakeholders to international knowledge and experiences to inspire possible application of CE principles in the region.
Anne Kleyboeker, Researcher with KompetenzZentrum Wasser Berlin and Work Package Leader in ULTIMATE, an EU funded project fostering the synergetic cooperation between the industry and the water sector for an intelligent and efficient operation of water-related processes, explained the importance of CE in addressing increasing global stress of climate change, and cooperation between partners in creating win-win situations across the water value chain and establishing the needed enabling environment (e.g., legislative framework needed to the implement of circular economy) can lead to successful application of CE principles.
Examples of sewer mining in Greece (from Christos Makropoulos of the National Technical University of Athens), smart and circular water management approaches in Romania (from Nicoleta Frunza of Agricola and Johann Poinapen of KWR), and biogas production from anaerobic pre-treatment of wastewater in Israel (from Issam Sabbah of Galilee Society and Dimitri Iossifidis of Greener than Green Technologies) were provided showing CE thinking in practice. The webinar closed with a Serious Game on Circular Economy demonstration from Mehdi Khoury of University of Exeter. The Serious Game was developed as part of NextGen, an EU Horizon 2020 project aimed at applying and scaling-up innovative technological, business and governance solutions for water in the CE. The aim of the game is to maximise your CE score which consists of interrelationship between a water health score, energy health score, material reuse health score, environmental health score and financial health score. The serious game helps to explain the CE principles, while providing, at the household level, examples of tools and approaches to reach accepted CE standards.
Did you miss the event? Watch the recording below.
Are you interested in reaching our to the Regional Hub for the Lower Danube River Basin? Contact Ciprian Nanu (firstname.lastname@example.org) or visit www.watershare.eu/regional-hubs for more information on the Regional Hubs.