Cities and regions in Alpine Space have mainly set their low-carbon objectives and adopted relevant strategies in energy, mobility, construction etc. – however a cross-sectoral approach is missing. The project GREENCYCLE aims to introduce the system of circular economy as a holistic approach to support implementation of low-carbon strategies and provide additional 2-4 % greenhouse emission reduction to the partner cities.
Circular economy deployment will save energy, water, recover critical raw materials, reduce transport, boost the eco-innovation, create green jobs and benefit to low income citizens. Cities as biggest emissions producers and biggest energy and materials consumers will play the pioneering role by developing circular economy implementation strategies.
Establish transnationally integrated low carbon policy instruments.
GREENCYCLE project aims to achieve low-carbon objectives of participating cities and AS through introduction of holistic system of circular economy into urban management. It provides implementation system that integrates all relevant sectors of urban management (energy, waste, mobility, construction…) into circular economy system.
for circular economy
We will develop a circular economy system for partner cities, building on available practices and existing low-carbon strategies.
The project will provide implementation strategies and establish cross-sectoral cooperation and governance.
Toolbox for circular
We will develop a toolbox for the implementation of circular economy strategies.
The toolbox will be tested by pilot project implementation in all partner cities.
Establishment of transnational
circular economy marketplace
We will establish a transnational cooperation platform to provide marketplace for specific circular economy outputs and to provide cooperation platform for local and regional governments of AS presenting governance systems, best practices etc.
Testing the pilots
Each municipality of the pilot-cities will implement its own pilot according to the needs and with help of the developed toolbox.
The 5 pilot cities are:
Freiburg, Vorau, Maribor, Pays Viennois and Trento
The knowledge platform will be used to improve awareness about circular economy (WPC) on one side and as a knowledge basis for implementation of other technical WPs: WPT2 (inputs for action plans), WPT3 (inputs for toolboxes), WPT4 (inputs for platform).
The knowledge platform will contribute to better understanding of circular economy benefits to environment and society. More aware public and private stakeholders will be better integrated into strategies development, toolbox & platform implementation.
The circular economy knowledge platform will be used by local public authorities, SMEs (public and private) included in circular economy, environmentally aware citizens, NGOs and project stakeholders during later stages of the project. Local public authorities and its employees will be involved in providing relevant data on local level, while experts can be included to contribute with specialised expertise on circular economy. Circular economy is quite new term, therefore there is some confusion and misunderstanding in the understanding of implementation and strategic phases, EU policy issues and the benefits of circular economy. Many times circular economy is too narrowly seen (just recycling) or is misunderstood with bio-economy or sustainable development. Target groups using circular economy knowledge platform will improve their knowledge and become more sensitive to circular economy and consequently improve the impact of the project.
Circular economy knowledge platform will stay accessible also after project end. The knowledge platform will be integrated in the WPT4 circular economy marketplace platform and will become a synthetic part of it. Both will stay in use by municipalities, ensuring their availability at least for 5 years after the project end.
The Toolbox will enable planning, management and monitoring of circular economy processes. It will be in the form of E-tool and will be tested in local pilots.
Circular economy toolbox will support practical implementation of strategies. Toolbox functionalities will include at least the following: initial assessment, reduce material use, recycling of waste into secondary material, quality/quantity of material and increased energy efficiency from shorter supply loops (optimised transport routes) and heat recovery from industrial processes. Toolbox will be developed for 6 cities (AT, SI, D, IT, FR, LIE), while pilots will be tested only in 5 without LIE.
Pilot implementation will be evaluated and recommendations for fine-tuning of the toolbox will be prepared. Lessons learned will be identified and possible optimization of the toolbox will be proposed. Toolboxes will be accordingly improved. To assess potential environmental impact of implementing pilots the sustainability impact assessment will be prepared to assess pilot impact on all 3 pillars of sustainable development: environmental, social and economy.
Circular economy marketplace platform will be the main transnational tool for practical implementation of circular economy. It will establish transnational cooperation in the fields, where it is needed due to big-scale approach. For example when recycling electronic waste some materials (tantalum, iridium, cobalt…) can be feasibly recycled only if larger quantities are gathered.
Marketplace will also include technologies, governance, services, recycling opportunities.
The platform will be put into testing operation for 6 month. In this time circular economy city manager focal points will fill in the data about 14 critical materials (EC 2010 classified as critical for recycling), new technologies and services, governance models, recycling ideas, potential energy savings, etc. and have regular skype conferences to build working collaboration. Platform will be tested and improved and put for operation and use by Alpine Space stakeholders.
Greencycle is contributing to EUSALP action plan by supporting environmental quality of AS by contributing to “Alpine Space to become circular hotspot and case-study for other macro regions”. There is also connection between EUSALP and Europe 2020 Strategy with supporting smart low carbon circular economy solutions – (toolbox, marketplace platform). Low carbon economy and green jobs will be supported by more effective recycling of secondary material and shorting transport loops – WPT3, WPT4).
The project is building on past experiences of partners: Municipality of Maribor has rich experiences with waste treatment and recycling (Don’t Waste Waste! project). E-zavod is bringing in knowledge of smart city (UPSIDE project), environment protection and co-creation process in quadruple helixes. Municipality Pays Viennois and RAEE are bringing in knowledge of energy loops in circular economy (TEPOS, SEAP, BOIMETHAN REGION). City of Trento is bringing several good examples of management process where the city is excellent (e.g. environment, garbage disposal, mobility). Informatica Trentina is experienced in ICT development of new solutions for Smart Cities. CESBA will bring expertize in communication, while LISD is expert in sustainability.