ECN e.V.

Network for Organic Resources and Biological Treatment
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23 MAY 2023
EU Taxonomy │ ECN Position Paper

Proposal on Incentives for Composting and Anaerobic Digestion has to be aligned with common practices on Biowaste Management in Europe

The European Commission has launched a public consultation on the draft environmental delegated act of the EU Taxonomy Regulation. ECN reacted specifically to the Annex II dedicated to technical screening criteria that economic activities need to fulfil to be considered as contributing to the transition to a circular economy and thus falling under the EU taxonomy framework.
ECN welcomed the inclusion of the recovery of biowaste through composting and anaerobic digestion as a sustainable activity supporting the shift from a linear to a circular model, yet regrets that some of the criteria laid down in the draft text fall short of considering all the different practices found in the Member States, ultimately leading to lose possible financial incentives for operators.
In particular, we have addressed issues concerning criteria aimed at framing obligations for composting and anaerobic digestion treatments, the transport and collection of municipal waste, as well as the criteria laid down for compostable packaging.
You can read ECN full statement here.
New Staff Member

ECN welcomes Steffen Walk as Scientific Officer

We are happy to announce that Steffen Walk joins ECN as Scientific Officer. He is an experienced scientist who spent more than 6 years working in the field of bioresources and circular economy.
Steffen was involved in several EU-financed projects in which he developed a broad knowledge on biowaste management. His experiences include waste management system analysis,
concept development for new collection systems, and implementation in case studies. He has co-authored several scientific publications and technical reports and is currently in the process to complete his PhD at the Hamburg University of Technology where he was member of the Bioresource Management Group.
For ECN, Steffen will work in the new EU Life BioBest project which aims at promoting the improvement of biowaste management in the EU framework. Besides that, he will continue to chair ECNs Task Group of Separate Collection of Biowaste.
We are excited to have Steffen on board and look forward to the contribution he will make to our team and members.
EU Life BioBest Project

First Steering Committee meeting of the Project Consortium

Four months after the start of the project, its consortium met for the second time as a large group to discuss progress made by each member in their work packages.
Key performance indicators on biowaste management were discussed, as well as initial responses to a survey organised by ECN on policy and regulatory barriers on the implementation of biowaste collection. In the next months, the consortium will be organising workshops and meetings with local authorities and umbrella organisations to discuss these topics further.
INTERREG Europe I CORE Project I Kick-off meeting 17-19 April 2023

Partner Exchange and Study Visits in Castilla la Mancha, Spain

The ECN joined the CORE Project which is part of the Interreg Europe Programme and stands for Composting in Rural Environments.
Accordingly, the project focuses on rural low-density territories and aims at leading the process of spreading and mainstreaming the composting of bio-waste.The project is expected to be an accelerator for rural territories to increase composting and the overall prevention of landfilling or burning of biowaste significantly.
To kick off the project, the Project lead RSUSA welcomed the ECN and all the other project partners for the kick-off meeting of the Interreg project ‘Composting in Rural Environments’ from 17-19 April 2023 in Ciudad Real. The visit included a study tour and a thematic seminar for the exchange of community, individual and centralised composting practices in rural areas. The three-day study tour included a visit to the centralised MBT and composting facility of Almagro, to composting areas situated in Cabañeros Natural Park and also examples of urban organic gardens and a composting pilot project initiated by an association taking care of people with disabilities.
Click here to follow the project on the official CORE Twitter account!
EP Plenary and EU Council I Empowering consumers for the green transition

MEPs and Ministers voted on Proposal banning misleading and generic Environmental Claims

The European Parliament plenary approved on May 11th the proposal for a new directive on empowering consumers for the green transition. Its main aim is to help consumers make environmentally friendly choices and encourage companies to offer them more durable and sustainable products. The Council of the EU also adopted its position on the file.
Among the provisions set out in the EP approved negotiating mandate, MEPs have backed a ban on the use of general environmental claims like “environmentally friendly”, “natural”, “biodegradable”, “climate neutral” or “eco” if these do not come with detailed evidence, as well as, prohibiting environmental claims that are based solely on carbon offsetting schemes. Conversely, specific claims such as “packaging biodegradable through home composting in one month” would not fall under this prohibition.
Members States’ ministers within the Competitiveness Council have also finalised their negotiating mandate on the proposed directive, reinforcing consumer rights, banning generic environmental claims, and introducing a European Union harmonised graphic format.
Click here to access the full EP approved text, and here for the EU Council position.
EU Commission I Circular Economy monitoring framework

EU Commission includes new Indicators in revised CE Monitoring Framework

According to the European Commission’s communication published on May 15th, the EU must continue its efforts to reduce consumption of materials and generation of waste to achieve a more circular economy.
The revised monitoring framework aims to provide a comprehensive overview by measuring direct and indirect benefits of increasing circularity. It comprises 11 indicators grouped into 5 categories: (1) production and consumption; (2) waste management; (3) secondary raw materials; (4) competitiveness and innovation; and (5) global sustainability and resilience. It also includes new indicators, mostly based on official statistics from Eurostat. These indicators will serve to accurately measure progress towards legal and policy objectives contributing to a resource-efficient, climate-neutral and resilient circular economy.

News from the Partners of the International Compost Alliance

Compost Council of Canada I Climate Change Initiative

Fighting Climate Change through Organics Recycling and Soil Health Improvement

The Compost Council of Canada (CCC) has announced the launch of the "Advancing Organics Recycling Throughout Canada" initiative, a program designed to support the adoption of organics recycling programs in Canadian municipalities, communities and the industrial, commercial, and institutional (IC&I) sector. Its goal is to reduce methane emissions, promote sustainable waste management and improve the health of our soils.
The CCC invites motivated organizations and individuals to access the Council’s expertise and availability to learn the how-to’s of organics recycling specific to their situation. Additionally, the CCC initiative includes education and awareness about the essential role that soil and compost play in mitigating climate change.
Click here for further information!

ECN Member Info

ECN Policy Brief

The ECN has set up a new communication tool the ‘ECN Policy Brief’. With this ECN Policy Brief ECN will inform its members on the specific legislative topics and developments in the Commission, Parliament and Council.

ECN Policy Brief on Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation

The discussion on the EU Commission proposal is ongoing in the European Parliament. The draft report of the rapporteur MEP Frédérique Ries from Renew Europe supports the need for more ambitious rules, but proposes different amendments, in particular to tackle plastic pollution by setting stricter conditions to place very lightweight plastic carrier bags on the market and introducing dedicated reduction targets for plastic packaging. Among the changes made to the initial proposal, MEP Ries addresses also compostable packaging, emphasising the need to respect and update EN standard 13432, to take into account all the different recovery treatments of biodegradable and compostable materials.

ECN Policy Brief on the Proposal for Incentives for Composting & AD under the EU Taxonomy

The EU Commission launched a four-week feedback period on on a new set of EU taxonomy criteria for economic activities making a substantial contribution to one or more of the non-climate environmental objectives, setting out the technical criteria required to fall under the list of environmentally sustainable economic activities. Among the categories contributing to the circular transition, the Commission has included also recovery of biowaste through composting and anaerobic digestion, collection and transport of waste and recovery of phosphorus from wastewater treatments.

ECN welcomes new members!

This month ECN welcomed the new member from Georgia!

Announcements for Members

Important Dates for Members

  • TG Soil & Organic Matter I 13:30 -17:30 I 21 June 2023 Brussels (BE)
  • Annual meeting 2023 I 9:00 – 13:00 h I 22 June 2023, Brussels (BE)
  • TG Separate Collection I 14:00 – 17:00 h I 22 June 2023, Brussels (BE)


Day of Biobin in Germany I 26 May 2023

Fermentation Day!

In order to improve the purity of the collected organic waste, continuous public relations work is required. In order to further support and drive this development, the idea arose to establish a nationwide and annually repeated "Day of the BioBin".
Further info here!
1st Northern Europe “4 per 1000” Regional Meeting I 6-8 June 2023

More Carbon in the Soil – For Multiple Benefits

Please join the 1st Northern Europe ‘4 per 1000’ regional meeting on ‘More Carbon in the Soil – For Multiple Benefits’ in Helsinki (FI) in June 2023 to discuss soil carbon sequestration, gain new perspectives, become inspired, and build cooperation to scale up regenerative agriculture!
The 1st ever Northern Europe “4 per 1000” Regional Meeting, co-organised by the Baltic Sea Action Group and the “4 per 1000” Initiative, is open to researchers, farmers, NGOs, company representatives, and policymakers.
The purpose of the three-day meeting is to spark cooperation and knowledge exchange that enables us to achieve our shared objective of increasing soil carbon sequestration in order to mitigate climate change and biodiversity loss, safeguard food production, and protect waters.
The meeting is targeted at stakeholders from the following countries: Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxemburg, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Poland, Ireland, United Kingdom, Switzerland, and Ukraine.
Further info here.
ISWA I 4-8 September 2023

Study Tour on Decentralised Bio-Waste Recycling

This 4th international study tour and training course will lead you through multi-dimensional best practices and nearly 35 years of experience in decentralised organic waste recycling.
In B2B meetings and practice-orientated lectures, the entire chain of a well-structured national and local biowaste recycling regime will be covered. As a special highlight, the 8th International Practitioner Day on Composting, Europe’s biggest show of bio-mass and compost processing machines organised by the Compost and Biogas Association Austria, will be visited.
ECN Members will receive tickets at a reduced price!
For more information and to register, click here!
IPT 2023 I Vienna (AT) I 7 September 2023

International Practitioner Day on Composting Plant of the City of Vienna

Please save the date for the composting and technology demonstration days of the Austrian Compost & Biogas Association (KBVÖ).
Further information will follow soon!

S.O.S Save Organics in Soil

This international initiative S.O.S. SOIL – Save Organics in Soil, led by the European Compost Network (ECN) and the Italian Composting and Biogas Association (CIC), aims to highlight the importance of soil organic matter to encourage policy makers to develop instruments to move Europe towards implementing sustainable, climate proof soil management practices.
Sign the manifesto 'Save Organigs in Soil' here.

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