BIOREGIO project is a part of the Interreg Europe programme financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The first meeting of BIOREGIO experts, arranged in Lahti at the end of April, brought together international guests from Spain, Greece, Slovakia, France and Romania to be introduced to the bio-based circular economy practices in the region of Päijät-Häme, including cooperation and operational models and technological innovations.
Best practices of bio-based circular economy in Päijät-Häme
Based on the BIOREGIO Good Practices definition the following practices have been detected by the regional stakeholder group in Päijät-Häme region:
Effective municipal waste separation and collection in Päijät-Häme region (Päijät-Häme Waste Management Ltd)• in year 2016 the share of municipal waste landfilled was 3%
- Utilisation of bio-based streams, part of Kujala industrial symbiosis (LABIO Ltd)
• biogas and fertilizer production from municipal biowaste, waste from food industry and sludge from waste water treatment plants
- Päijät-Häme regional model, vision and road map towards circular economy (ERDF-project)
• visualized state of art of regional biological streams (phosphorus, nitrogen), tight cooperation model between stakeholders towards a joint vision
- Conveyor solutions for handling biowaste (Ferroplan)
• smart conveyor solutions and systems for handling biowaste
- Päijät-Häme Grain Cluster
• a cooperation network for the grain producers and related industry in the region aiming at e.g. utilisation of bio-byproducts
- Tonni lähti campaign to activate personal responsibility in saving resources (City of Lahti)
• an ongoing challenge to stimulate the debate about resources and promote people's awareness to reduce their consumption of natural resources
- ResQ service to reduce food waste from restaurants
• an application where left over lunch food is announced on a webpage and citizens can "rescue" food from being wasted for half of the normal price
One of the best practices to be shared is the biowaste and sewage sludge treatment developed by LABIO
"Thanks to long-term development efforts, almost all biowaste, garden waste and sewage sludge delivered to us can be utilised as material or energy," says Ari Savolainen, CEO at LABIO. The waste is processed into biogas and soil improvement material.
After expert assessments, the best practices chosen in BIOREGIO will be published in the common EU database. At the final phase of the project, the best practices of various countries will be assessed to determine the ones most efficient in promoting bio-based circular economy and the ones most feasible for implementation in other countries.
Transfer of expertise at EU level
The authority responsible for the strategic planning of each target region is closely involved in the BIOREGIO project. The information gained in the project will be put into practice in future regional programmes through this authority. Alongside LAMK, the Regional Council of Päijät-Häme is involved in the project as the other Finnish partner, putting the results into practice through the Regional Programme and the ERDF programme. The intention is to reform the Structural Fund programme and allocate funds to the development of bio-based circular economy in the future.
RDI Specialist, Project Manager
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