Circular Economy Strategy on Bioregio II

BIOREGIO-Regional circular economy models and best available technologies for biological streams is an international project framed inside the Interreg Europe program, which principal objective is to help local entities and regional governments on developing better policies by creating spaces for the opportunity and the exchange of ideas. The project is nourished by round tables, seminars, workshops and regional/international events where experiences are exchanged, knowledge is acquired, and synergies and experiences of interest are developed.

The Deputy ministry of environment of Castilla la Mancha, participate as a partner on this project since 2017, when it started, and which was supposed to be finished by December 2021.

Due to the crisis induced by the Covid-19 pandemic, and the focus on a fast economic recovery, the project was extended until December 2022. The intention was to develop actions to identify, collect and exchange information on the measures taken in relation to COVID-19 and link it with a greener recovery opportunity based on biowaste as a catalyst and, in this way, implementing the circular economy.

BIOREGIO is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and seeks to influence regional policies by promoting the regional economy of organic waste in line with the guidelines given by the European Commission. Being a space for exchange, it also seeks to share experiences in relation to the best available techniques to achieve the objectives through regional and interregional cooperation.

The Deputy Minister of Environment of Castilla la Mancha, in collaboration with IRIAF, has focused the project on research and testing in technological innovation actions seeking the efficiency of the use of waste as resources carried out by the CLAMBER project, which have been developed, through the demonstrative level, at the Puertollano biorefinery (Ciudad Real).

In this second phase of the program where the circular economy has become a part, two specific objectives were included that, previously, did not have funding:

  • Specific objective 6.6.1: Development and use of innovative technologies to improve environmental protection and efficiency in the use of waste, water and soil resources and reduce air pollution.
  • Specific objective 6.7.1: Support for the industrial transition towards a more efficient industry in terms of the use of resources and the promotion of a greener development.

Focusing on this year, on January 25 2022, an online Workshop focused on the circular bioeconomy in SMEs and on improving their access to structural funds was held. Castilla la Mancha, for its part, presented the development of the 2021-2025 Circular Economy Action Plan. In addition, the state of implementation of the community composting and selective collection project in Ciudad Real was presented, a project that Ignacio Aguilar, Technical Director of RSU Ciudad Real, who has also participated as a Stakeholder since the beginning of the BIOREGIO project, showed us.

We are in semester 12 of the planning (3/2022-8/2022) and, in it, an Interregional Workshop has been held (29/30-March-2022, Nantes), which Castilla la Mancha was unable to attend and in which information was exchanged in relation to the measures taken in relation to Covid-19 and the bioeconomy, in relation to good practices to improve the circular economy based on biowaste and visits were made in Pays de la Loire, to sites related to the circular economy strategy.

On July 14 2022, the last meeting with the stakeholders was held where the current status and progress of BIROEGIO II were presented, followed by the Circular Economy DG presenting the projects and actions that have been carried out in the region throughout 2022 as well as future forecasts.

The presentation included the latest advances in the implementation of the circular economy action plan in its different actions:

  • Circular tourism. Call for grants.
  • Network of circular economy agents.
  • Chair of circular economy of the UCLM.
  • Industrial symbiosis: Circular industrial parks, Circular Romica.
  • Edar Biofactory.
  • Annual hackathon.
  • Supercircular program.
  • Circular week.
  • Next generation call for grants in the waste management area.

Finally, a brief survey was carried out so that the stakeholders who attended could give their opinion regarding their experience with this project and transfer them to the rest of the partners, and future projects that they are interested in dealing with.

This meeting is the last of those contemplated by the planning of the BIOREGIO II project. Read the original news in Spanish: