Brussels, 5 June 2013 - The award winners and finalists for the 2012 European Week for Waste Reduction (EWWR) have been publicly announced on 5 June, World Environment Day. The EWWR jury rewarded the most outstanding awareness-raising actions implemented during the 2012 EWWR in each of the 5 project categories (Administration & Public Authority, Associations & NGO, Business & Industry, Educational Establishment, Other).

The fourth edition of the EWWR proves a great success

From 17 to 25 November 2012, over 10,700 EWWR actions took place in 27 countries throughout Europe and beyond, with the common aim to promote waste reduction. Out of these, 74 initiatives were pre-selected by the various organisers and submitted to an independent jury featuringEuropean waste management specialists representing each category.

Six awards were handed out: one for each of the five Project Developer categories, anda special prize from the Jury, as follows:

  • Administration & Public Authority: “…di meno in Meglio” Project – CO.VA.R.14 (Italy): A campaign carried out across the Piedmont region including a booklet and online tips on waste reduction, guided tours in markets and supermarkets, and cooperation with restaurants that had the opportunity to become involved in a local “Eco-Restaurants” network.
  • Association & NGO: The Solid’R clothes collection - Solid’R (Wallonia, Belgium): The Solid’R network organised a large clothing collection in the Walloon region and Brussels, gathering over 500 tonnes of clothes for reuse, and organised an exposition of revamped textile containers, the decoration of a train station by a school, as well asa guided tour of a textile sorting centre and reuse shops.
  • Business & Industry: R2R (Reuse to Reload) – Augustea Holding SPA (Italy): Various teams from this Neapolitan company implemented several activities encouraging employees, their families and professional contacts to reduce waste, for instance by replacing disposable cups with  multiuse personalised glasses, book exchange, switching to unpackaged products, etc.
  • Educational Establishment: Waste prevention in the canteen – Collège Jules Grévy (France): To raise students’ awareness about the challenges of food waste, pupils spent time in the kitchen with the school catering team, weighed their meals, visited an organic garden and a fish farm, and were presented with the food equivalent of a week's worth of waste.
  • Other: The zoo improves the Earth – Barcelona Zoological Park (Catalonia, Spain): The Barcelona zoo placed composting bins in various areas of the zoo for pedagogical and educational use, implemented trainings for animal keepers, and organised school visits so that the pupils could learn about the composters and the entire closed cycle of the zoo's organic material.
  • The Jury’s special prize: The paper orchestra – Oviedo School of Music (Asturias, Spain): The jury granted a special award to this school of music for their creativity in making music instruments with waste material (in particular paper waste).

Other actions implemented during the EWWR 2012 were also inspiring and worth attention. Among the runners-up (two per each category of Project Developers), the jury highlighted actions on “give box” and clean ecological products in Brussels, composting in Bulgaria, less packaging in IKEA stores in Sweden, and community cooking in Oxfordshire. For more information about the awards winners and finalists, the complete press file is available in the EWWR website press area.

The EWWR extends to recycling awareness

Ever since it was launched in 2009, the EWWR has seen a tremendous increase in activity in all respects: more initiatives, more territories and more participants implementing over 25,000 actions within the four editions of the Week. This shows the growing success of the EWWR in Europe (and beyond), as well as the increasing interest in how to reduce the amount of waste we put in our garbage bins every day.

Within four years, the EWWR has succeeded to involve Project Developers in 27 countries, coordinated by 35 Organisers, in cooperation with the EWWR Technical Secretariat. It also contributed to creating a lively network of public authorities and stakeholders acting in the field of waste prevention at national, regional or local level, and sharing their expertise and best practices to reduce waste. EWWR has become the waste and resource event in Europe.
In 2013, the Week is ready to capitalise on its success, and extend to cover selective collection and recycling, even though in the past it focused exclusively on waste prevention. This extension will help to involve more actors and countries, and to raise people’s awareness on preserving material resources and reducing waste.

The next EWWR edition will take place between 16 and 24 November 2013. Everyone interested in joining is welcome!

Become an Organiser or a Project Developer.

On 7 March 2013, the European Commission issued a green paper on plastic waste. The objective of this green paper is to consult stakeholders on responses to policy challenges posed by plastic waste.

The Green Paper aims to gather facts and views in order to assess the impacts of plastic waste and define a European strategy to mitigate them. Stakeholders are invited to contribute their views on whether, and how, existing legislation should be adapted to deal with plastic waste and promote re-use, recycling and recovery of plastic waste over landfilling. Views are also sought on the effectiveness of potential recycling targets, and of economic measures such as landfill bans, landfill taxes and pay-as-you-throw schemes. The Green Paper also asks how to improve the modular and chemical design of plastic to improve recyclability, how to reduce marine litter and whether there is a need to promote biodegradable plastics.

Stakeholders can submit their opinion until 7 June 2013.

Consult the Green paper on plastic waste

Pre-waste gives examples of good practices aimed at preventing plastic waste, for instance in packaging.

26/03/2013 WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme) has recently started to promote a communication campaign about opportunities for reuse on the British island.

WRAP is distributing to public and private actors communication materials such as posters, leaflets and web banners to promote the socio-economic advantage of greater reuse rates. The materials will be delivered to local authorities, nonprofit organizations and companies dealing somehow with waste issues and collection. It contains helpful information about the value of supposed obsolete materials and the reuse opportunities of furniture, textiles, and electrical and electronic equipments.

WRAP has already successfully tested the communication materials within 6 different areas (Leeds, Shropshire, Inverness, Nairn, London Borough of Bexley, and Oxford) in collaboration with public and private partners. It resulted that five out of six areas has improved the collection rates of materials to be reused and a survey conducted during the project indicates that 45% of respondents who recalled the information went on to or will change their behaviour when disposing materials. A report illustrating the results of this trial project was published in August 2012 on the WRAP website.

Linda Crichton, Head of Collections and Quality at WRAP, commented saying that opportunities are increasingly seized by people and businesses and that the value potential of reused materials amounts to over £200m in the UK. She pointed out the strength of the communication project saying “we know that re-use organisations, recyclers and local authorities are looking to tap in to economic opportunities by increasing the amount of re-usable items they collect, this can be achieved with the help of communications.”

The Pre-waste project highlighted several successful examples of reuse activities and communication campaigns in the Pre-waste best practices factsheets.

Source: WRAP: