Solidaridad y compromiso en beneficio del medio ambiente
Jordi Julian – Business Strategy and Development Manager
“The year 2020 will be remembered for an unprecedented pandemic that, although it has had a profound impact on business activities, has in turn given an enormous stimulus to solidarity and commitment to vulnerable people and the defence of the environment “
In order to reduce the digital gap, promote access to technology and reduce waste generation, in November 2019 we set up a new edition of the campaign ’Digitalización Sostenible’ (Sustainable Digitalisation)’ along with the CEOE Foundation and other Producer Responsibility Organisations of WEEE and in collaboration with the SEUR Foundation and the eco-innovation studio inèdit.
The initiative was based on a charitable collection of used computers, tablets and other IT equipment through companies and self-employed throughout Spain, with the aim of allocating them to preparation for re-use processes so that they can be used again by minors, training centres with limited resources, elderly people in non-profit residences, and other people and groups at risk of digital exclusion.
Thanks to the huge response, and with a number of donations still to be counted, more than 3000 devices have been collected to date, since the collections continue, we foresee that the final quantities will be much higher. Once reconditioned, the devices are distributed via the 24 partner NGOs in order to help reduce the inequality caused by the digital gap, which has worsened due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
In short, ’Sustainable Digitalisation’ has been a wonderful opportunity to combine solidarity with the protection of the environment by promoting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) such as the reduction of inequalities, quality education, responsible production and consumption, climate action and alliances to achieve goals.
More information at www.digitalysostenible.com
Another Ending is Possible
The educational campaign about electronics recycling and circular economy “Otro Final es Posible” (Another Ending is Possible), which we have been promoting over the last few years in several Autonomous Regions with the support of the regional Public Administrations, saw the roll-out of two new editions between 2019 and 2020 in Castilla-La Mancha and Castilla y León.
Despite the suspension of schools and colleges due to the state of emergency, we were able to carry out practically all the activities planned in the 247 educational centres participating, and the best waste collection result to date was achieved with a total of 41’582 kilograms of WEEE collected by the students through the separate collection containers provided in the centres.
Over the course of the various editions rolled out in Andalusia, Asturias, Castilla-La Mancha and Castilla y León, “Another Ending is Possible” saw 821 education centres participating, with a total of 91,416 students taking part in the 3,946 educational workshops held, managing to collect 90’123 kilograms of WEEE and reaffirming itself as one of the major environmental education initiatives in our country.
More information at www.otrofinalesposible.org
Although the pandemic had a very significant impact on any face-to-face activity, the Ecoinstaladores (Ecoinstallers) programme strengthened its ambitions over the course of the year, aimed at involving installers and distributors of air conditioning and refrigeration devices in the proper management of such devices at their end of life.
Therefore, we continued promoting training activities in digital format and developing informative materials aimed at professional sectors, a task in which we have the invaluable cooperation of leading organisations such as Endesa, CNI, Agremia, FEGiCAT, GIBaix and ASOFRÍO.
We also wanted to strengthen our proposition aimed at distributors, due to their privileged access to waste and at the installer who must channel it. That is why, within Ecoinstaladores, we are working with Salvador Escoda and AMASCAL to install selective WEEE collection containers, both in its own network of centres and in wholesalers’ and distributors’ facilities in order to facilitate the free disposal of the waste for installers.
Also worthy to highlight that, as we did in the first edition, we maintained the collaboration with World Refrigeration Day through our sponsorship and training contents. Organised by AEFYT, AFAR and AFEC, it has established itself as a reference event for the refrigeration industry combining solutions, trends, innovation, a social commitment and good practice in which sustainability is particularly relevant.
More information at www.ecoinstaladores.com
Throughout 2020 we reiterated our commitment to and participation in WEEE Forum, the leading international WEEE management systems association. In June Andreu Vilà, General Manager of Ecotic, joined the organisation’s Board of Directors, where we will be able to make a direct contribution to the current and future definition of the WEEE recycling scenario in Europe.
In this regard we can highlight the common position reached in the WEEE Forum on the need for WEEE management to develop into an open system, which extends responsibility to the entire device value chain, so that this is not understood to be an exclusive responsibility of the producers of electric and electronic equipment, which is key to being able to achieve the targets set.
Furthermore, on 14 October we participated in the third edition of International E-Waste Day organised by the WEEE Forum in order to promote the proper disposal of WEEE worldwide. On this occasion we focused on showing children and young people how to face the growing problem of WEEE, by broadcasting a video summary of the educational campaign “Another Ending is Possible” to highlight the intense educational work that we have done in Spain.
More information at www.weee-forum.org
‘More Sustainable’ at CASA SEAT’
On 22 January we had the pleasure to take part, along with Ecoembes and Ecovidrio, in the ‘Más Sostenibles’ (More Sustainable) event held at CASA SEAT, in order to share experiences about the impact that the Covid-19 pandemic has had on the recycling sector, for both citizens’ habits and the professionals area dedicated to waste management.
Although the recycling of packaging and glass packaging maintained its growth trend, in the case of WEEE it suffered a sharp decline due to the nationwide closure of recycling centres and electric appliance stores, these being the main collection channels. However, we have stressed that the restart of the activity allowed a rapid recovery that has enabled us to close the year with figures in line with those of 2019.
Marta Yuste, Institutional Relations and Projects Coordinator at Ecotic, participated along with Begoña de Benito, External Relations and CSR Manager at Ecoembes, and Borja Martiarena, Marketing manager at Ecovidrio, in this event moderated by Marcos González, journalist and president and editor of Corresponsables.
Go to the video of the event
Share and Recycle
The latest edition of “Comparte y Recicla” (Share and Recycle), the biggest toy collecting charity initiative in our country, which Ecotic supported as we do every year, proved to be a great success. Thanks to the contribution of the children and their families, we managed to collect a total of 220 tons of toys, 51% more than in the previous edition.
This magnificent result meant that last Christmas 15,000 children in need were able to enjoy toys distributed through 53 NGOs and organisations that requested them and addressed them to different projects in Spain and Equatorial Guinea.
In this latest edition of “Comparte y Recicla”, around 40% of the toys received were sent for recycling, and therefore at Ecotic we took care of ensuring their proper treatment with all the environmental guarantees. Furthermore, the reconditioning of the toys was carried out at special employment centres, where it contributed to the social and work inclusion of persons in different roles.
More information at www.comparteyrecicla.com
In line with our commitment to environmental education for young people and children, in May we joined the organisations that promote educational resources aimed at improving the environment and health in Ambientech, a non-profit association that investigates the influence of new Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in education.
Through our sponsorship and participation in the moderation of the inter-school debates, which were adapted to an online mode due to the limitations imposed by the state of emergency, we were able to contribute to the training curriculum on circular economy, defining what it consists of and presenting what action can be taken by individuals to contribute to the sustainability of the planet.
We dealt with subjects such as programmed obsolescence, the open and closed cycle of matter, the biodegradation of waste, the 5Rs rule, the water cycle in society and the sustainability of the planet. All this in order to support online educational resources, which have become particularly relevant as a teaching medium in the difficult context of the Covid-19 pandemic.
More information at www.ambientech.org/la-economia-circular
Repair Café Alcañiz
The Consortium of Grouping no. 7 and Alcañiz Council, within the framework of the partnership agreement between Aragón Government and the Producer Responsibility Organisations, we agreed on 6 March last year, to open the first Repair Café in the town of Teruel. This was aimed at encouraging the citizens towards repair.
The people who came along to the Repair Café brought broken items like toasters, lamps, hair dryers, clothes, bicycles, toys and crockery. The students from the Vocational Training branches of the I.E.S. Bajo Aragón de Alcañiz and employees of Teleservicio Bajo Aragón, acted as voluntary reparires, helping refurbish electric and electronic equipment and other damaged objects free of charge.
The aim was to avoid the used products ending up in landfills, all in line with the GIRA Plan 2018-2022 and the principles of the European circular economy package in which waste management is introduced as a pillar of these policies.
Re-Turn to the Shop
Between December 2019 and January 2020 we worked on developing the ‘De-vuelta a la tienda’ (Re-Turn to the Shop) campaign, a selective WEEE collection initiative promoted by the Consorcio Valencia Interior and the main Producer Responsibility Organisations operating in the region of Valencia.
The purpose of the initiative was to promote the correct recycling of WEEE through a network of civic amenities, mobile collection points or member shops, informing and raising awareness among the general public about the importance of good recycling practices in order to recover the materials that waste contains and avoid any environmental pollution.
In order to incentivise these good practices, ‘De-vuelta a la tienda’ awarded points to local people who used the environmental ID card in civil amenities or mobile collection points, which were then transformed into bonuses on the management bill or into discounts at shops that are members of the “Mi Cuenta ambiental” (my environmental account) plan.