In the afternoon, participants gathered around roundtables to explore solutions related to five fields of interest. These discussions will help elaborating the upcoming Work Programme and make sure that activities developed by ACR+ are addressing its members’ needs. More detailed summaries of each workshop will soon be shared, in the meantime here is a short teaser of what happened.

The workshop revealed a need from ACR+ members to have a better knowledge of local and regional authorities educational programmes, especially with the perspective of moving from awareness to commitment. Participants strongly advocated for a permanent observatory of educational practices, building a shared treasure with the experiences of ACR+ members. One of the next coming activities of ACR+ will therefore be on mapping activities on that topic, with some specific areas to further investigate such as school education and engagement of local communities; upskilling to boost repair & reuse industries; mapping of circular jobs; definition and standardization of competences required by circular jobs. Last but not least, participants asked ACR+ to support them with a pivotal role on new project proposal.

Although new technologies might be the first idea to come in mind when talking about innovation in waste, participants of this workshop rather discussed solutions linked to economic incentives, legislation and communication. Indeed, the motivation of citizens was identified as the main obstacle for participants, together with the stagnation of performances. Technologies such as smart containers or apps can be a leverage but participants agreed that without adequate policies, they might not be efficient. To support its members ACR+ will identify good practices, in particular thanks to the Interreg WINPOL and Smart waste projects. Study-visit and peer-to-peer review were also mentioned as actions which could be taken.

Using a hand-made map of the city of Dublin as support of the discussion, the participants gathered around the table dedicated to sustainable textiles to analyse the current impact of textiles on not only environmental aspects, but also social and economic. This included their production, consumption and more importantly their disposal.

Participants shared and discussed their idea of sustainable food systems, from an environmental, social and economic perspective. A common vision emerged, namely an integrated approach to food in which production and consumption are closely connected and waste prevention is on top of the hierarchy. ACR+ members called for support in raising their voices at EU level, through position statements and networking with EU-related platforms. Furthermore, the need of exchanging good practices and setting common key performance indicators to compare existing activities in different countries was put forward, as well as the willingness to participate in EU-funded project or access different kinds of funds.

During the carbon campaign workshop, participants exchanged opinions about the scope of the initiative, discussing issues like the waste fractions to be tackled, the stakeholders to be involved, their ability to participate, how to best incorporate external actors in the initiative and how to communicate it to local stakeholders. Based on the feedback received, ACR+ will draft an in-depth memorandum about the campaign by September 2019, with a view to launching it during the European Week for Waste Reduction (EWWR) in November.

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