ECN e.V.

Network for Organic Resources and Biological Treatment
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18 January 2024
EU Council | PPWR

EU Ministers for environment reach general approach on the packaging and packaging waste law

The Environment Council has adopted its negotiating position just before the Christmas break, with the outgoing Spanish presidency gifting the incoming Belgian one with the challenging task of negotiating the file in trilogues before European elections in June 2024.
Council also agreed that tea bags and sticky labels on fruit and vegetables must be compostable, introducing the option for Member States to require that coffee single serve units other than metal ones and very lightweight and lightweight carrier plastic bags which are placed on their market for the first time are compostable. EU countries are also empowered to mandate compostability for other packaging which is already required to be compostable under national rules before 1 January 2025.
Interinstitutional negotiations will start in January, and they appear to be difficult ones.
Check out the Council adopted text and press release!
EIPPCB I BAT Conclusions on Slaughterhouses and Animal By-products

Best Available Techniques BAT Conclusions for Slaughterhouses, Animal by-products and/or edible co-products Industries published

The Commission Implementing Decision establishing the best available techniques (BAT) conclusions under Directive 2010/75/EU for Slaughterhouses, Animal by-products and/or Edible co-products Industries (SA) have been published in the Official Journal of the European Union (Commission Implementing Decision (EU) 2023/2749).
A direct link to the document (available in 24 languages) is available here.
The corresponding best available techniques reference document for Slaughterhouses, Animal by-products and/or Edible co-products Industries (the SA BREF) will be published on the EIPPCB website very soon:
EU Commission I Public consultation deadline 26/01/2024

Evaluation of the 8th Environment Action Programme

The 8th Environment Action Programme sets out the EU's priority objectives for environment and climate policy until 2030 and its long-term vision to 2050 of living well, within planetary boundaries.
The present initiative will assess the progress achieved in attaining the programme's 2030 priority objectives and 2050 vision, as well as the progress made in establishing a robust monitoring framework capable of assessing systemic change. This call for evidence is open for feedback until 26 January 2024.
Please follow the consultation link here.
News from JRC European Soil Data Centre (ESDAC)

Phosphorus cycle in European agricultural soils

Process-based biogeochemical models are valuable instruments to monitor the Phosphorus (P) cycle and predict the effect of agricultural management policies.
Therefore, the ESDAC upscaled the calibrated DayCent model at the European level using data-derived soil properties, advanced input data sets, and representative management practices.
The results depicted a P budget, total soil P, and available P content consistent with literature and national statistics. Agricultural management scenarios revealed a range of potential changes in the P budget by 2030 and 2050, influenced by the interlink of P with biogeochemical carbon and nitrogen cycles. Available datasets include Current P Budget and Soil Pools, Projected P Budget and Soil Pools for the EU and UK as well the datasets corresponding to the figures of the related manuscript.

Source: JRC ESDAC, 2024

Download the data:
Project on improving compost quality

ECN attends KUKOM project meeting near Hannover

The DBU-funded project (KUKOM, which stands for “KUnststoffe in KOMpost”) undertaken by Hamburg University of Technology, University of Hamburg, Entsorgungsbetriebe Lübeck, and ASB Grünland aims to identify concepts for reducing plastics in compost. The project also seeks to establish a methodology for their analysis to ultimately promote compost as a soil improver and turf substitute.
The project's goals are intended to be achieved through the following means:
  • Enhancing the quality and quantity of separately collected household biowaste by testing new collection models focusing on food waste, thus improving the quality of the final compost product.
  • Developing a routine method to detect microplastics in compost.
  • Conducting additional analysis of potentially harmful substances in materials used for food waste collection (e.g., paper bags, biodegradable plastic bags, etc.).
  • Implementing novel methods for collection and analysis into practice.
Our Scientific Officer, Steffen Walk, attended the meeting to provide an introduction to ECN’s quality assurance scheme and discuss current developments on compost and digestate quality requirements at the EU level.

News for ECN Members

GKRS and AWN from Baden-Württemberg join ECN

ECN welcomes the German Quality Assurance Organisation for compost of the Region South (GKRS – Gütegemeinschaft Kompost Region Süd e.V.) and the AWN GmbH Biomassezentrum as new members.
The GKRS represents around 80 composting and anaerobic digestion plants situated in Baden-Württemberg which recycle more than 750.000 tonnes of separately collected biowaste into high- quality organic fertilisers and soil improvers.
The AWN GmbH Biomassezentrum is responsible for the collection and biological treatment of the waste management region Neckar-Odenwald and is operating besides a composting/AD facility as well a biochar production plant treating more than 20.000 tonnes of green waste from landscaping.


Northern Roots Forum I Tallinn (Estonia) I 24-25 January 2024

A Regenerative Future - bridging the gap between theory and practice

Agriculture is one of the most important sectors affecting the health of our climate, environment, and communities. The Northern Roots forum focuses on solutions for future agriculture that regenerates the environment and climate while producing nutrient dense foods and thriving farming businesses.
The aim of the forum is to support the emergence of this new generation of agriculture in the Baltic and Nordic regions. ECN’s Executive Director, Stefanie Siebert, will present the EU policy initiatives and quality assurance for compost and digestate and their use in agriculture.
Please download the programme and register here.
Save the date

The ECESP Annual Conference 2024: Circular Economy - from Visions to Actions

On 15 and 16 April 2024, the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Conference is happening in Brussels, with a twist!
The seventh edition of the most awaited Circular Economy conference in Europe will join forces with the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the European Union and the World Circular Economy Forum (WCEF), and bring policymakers, industry leaders, academics, and activists from all corners of the world of Brusells to turn circular visions into actions.
The 2024 edition of the conference will propose an exciting programme looking at the progress achieved and the gaps that need to be closed for Europe's transition to a Circular Economy, while showcasing the work of its frontrunners.
Online and on-site attendees can expect keynote speeches, panel discussions, workshops, and networking opportunities to kick-start engaging discussions and inspire change. There will be a mix of policy-oriented sessions and stakeholders' dialogues, to highlight the key role of a legislative framework for a Circular Economy that is designed for a swift and effective implementation, at the core of which are civil society organisations.
The conference offers a unique platform for fostering partnerships and forging collaborations among various sectors, reinforcing the Circular Economy as a driver of sustainable development.
The European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform (ECESP), powered by the European Commission and the European Economic and Social Committee, will showcase and discuss Europe's progress in the transition in dedicated EU-focussed sessions.
On 17 April, the Belgian Presidency of the European Union will organise sessions and site visits to local circular businesses open to all. In addition, accelerator sessions will be held by WCEF collaborators on 17 and 18 April in Brussels, online and around the globe.
More details will come shortly. Save the date, and stay tuned by subscribing to the newsletter!
ICAW 2024 I 05 -11 May 2024

COMPOST... Nature’s Climate Champion!

The 2024 International Compost Awareness Week (ICAW) theme is truly a collaborative and international effort. Again this year, we teamed up with the International Compost Alliance (ICA), which includes compost associations from around the world, to select: COMPOST... Nature’s Climate Champion!

The theme was chosen by participating international partners incorporating the collective focus on one of the initiatives of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), which is “Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.”
The 2024 theme best reflects the UN goal by highlighting the role compost plays in fighting climate change. Those roles include:
  • Decreasing methane: Methane, a greenhouse gas twenty-five times as powerful as carbon dioxide, can be significantly reduced through the recycling of organics instead of their being landfilled.
  • Helping with climate change mitigation: Compost offers a significant answer to climate change mitigation. Compost's return to the soil serves as a "carbon bank", helping to store carbon thereby removing it from the atmosphere.
  • Reducing fertilizer inputs, reducing the pollution created by manufacture those inputs
  • Increasing resilience: Compost helps to increase resilience to the effects of climate change such as drought and extreme weather.
Please celebrate the International Compost Awareness Week with us and please start to plan your event now!

Save the date!

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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