The Italian region of Friuli-Venezia Giulia was in the spotlight when it comes to decentralised biowaste management last week as the 5th general assembly of the DECISIVE project and an accompanying conference “How innovative biowaste management can boost the local circular economy?” took place in Trieste, Staranzano and Fogliano Redipuglia.
The project partners gathered for important updates on the two demonstration sites in Lyon and Barcelona which will serve as the very first places where DECISIVE’s solutions for decentralised biowaste management will be implemented and presented to a broader public. Until then, the project partners, namely research institutes, as well as industry are working hard in order to optimise the technologies, as well as present it to the local communities in order to ensure a smooth installation and launch of these sites. This especially implies reaching out to a number of local stakeholder, namely waste producers, especially restaurants, caterers and other foo providers. ACR+, the project’s partner responsible for communication and dissemination presented the latest outcomes of the research they conducted on successful communication models across Europe and how to include local communities and locally available sources of biowaste. Parallel to these activities and tools targeting local communities, Fundacio ENT is currently developing an important Decision Support Tool which will help decision makers and local policy makers to assess their biowaste management systems and at the same time the feasibility and possibilities for introducing a decentralised biowaste management.
The host of this two days meeting was ITS Energy which is providing important technology and equipment for the project – developing the Sterling Engine to recover the energy produced by the micro AD plants. The host organised a high-level conference in Staranzano, ensuring the presence of the highest decision makers, including members of local and regional authorities, as well as prominent people in charge of waste management in the Friuli-Venezia Giulia province. The conference was opened by Mr Daniele Dreossi, vice-mayor of Fogliano Redipuglia and the project coordinator, Mrs Anne Tremier. The event gathered more than 75 participants and it was a great opportunity to present the project, its technology and benefits to a range of audience – politicians, NGOs, industry and SMEs as well as the local community. Mrs Cristina Sgubin of ARPA presented the current waste management systems and performances in the province, in order to understand the local circumstances and potentials. Claudio Fontana, on behalf of the host explained the benefits and advantages such projects and technologies have for the development and innovation in the SME sector, while speakers coming from A&T 2000 SpA, Contarina SpA and Legambiente looked at these from the perspective of waste management and local economies. In particular, all speakers emphasised on the importance of the local context for the choice of a bio-waste management system; for instance, remote areas might make traditional door-to-door collection not economically viable, and can benefit from decentralised systems. The conference was followed by a visit to ITS Energy’s facilities and a presentation of the innovations they do.
The next General Assembly will take place in Brussels in spring 2019, with several important milestones to come already this winter.