Did you know that in Singapore they recycle 100% of construction waste and 100% of iron scrap?
Each local economy faces specific needs in the area of value and rarity of substances. We are convinced that there is also a number of good opportunities for the circulation of materials in our local environment.
We are looking for opportunities to circulate materials, products and services in the local environment
Six partners participate in the NovIKroG project: Komunala Novo mesto, Development Centre Novo mesto, Faculty of Industrial Engineering Novo mesto, Zavod Knof, Nord University from Norway, and as a leading partner the Municipality Novo mestoThe duration of the project is 24 months, it started in May 2022.
The project addresses the issue of closing material local loops. This means that we look for opportunities to reuse or recycle materials, products and services that have their origin in the local environment and can be reused in the local environment. We are looking for materials and products that can be recycled several times in their life cycle – from door to table, from table to fence and so on. The material, in this case wood, circulates through several life cycles and reduces transport costs, the consumption of new materials and energy, thereby significantly reducing the burden on the environment.
We analyse material flows, promote circular public procurement and establish a circular innovation centre
As part of the project, in several phases, we will first analyse the material flows in Novo Mesto and neighbouring municipalities and the suitability of individual areas of public procurement for circular public procurement. As promoters of the circular economy, our goal is to bring the circular economy from theory to practice - into concrete circular or green public procurement.
We will try to show that multiple use of substances and waste in our local environment is possible and meaningful. In doing so, we will focus on the givens of our environment and the opportunities of our economy. We will focus on the waste materials that are present here - perhaps the greatest potential will be shown in glass, textiles, perhaps in plastic, furniture or wood, or in some innovative services. We plan to include the economy in the processes in the following year, perhaps fast innovative companies that will see a new opportunity in this area.
At the same time, a circular innovation centre will be established within the framework of the Novo mesto Development Centre, which will connect stakeholders from the fields of research, economy, and local self-government - as a meeting point for a common vision of circular life. We also see the circular economy as an opportunity to develop a new segment of business, as it is already seen in some other European countries and also globally. The circular innovation centre will be aimed at helping the economy as well as public institutions, as our aim is to transfer as much knowledge as possible from the field of circular public procurement to neighbouring or interested municipalities.
We are also happy that we will be able to cooperate with the Norwegian local community of Bodo and their Nord University within the project. We hope that we will be able to transfer some good ideas and good practices from the north of Europe to our homeland, and vice versa.
We are building on previous sustainability work
The municipality of Novo mesto has been intensively developing sustainable models of development and living in the community for several years. Along with areas such as sustainable mobility and energy efficiency, we have also recently been developing green policies that carry the common message of a circular and sustainable understanding of handling raw materials and waste. Thus, in 2020, together with practically all municipal public institutions in Novo mesto, we successfully carried out a joint circular public procurement for the supply of hygienic paper from KEMSO packaging . We continued our activities by studying the possibility of further development of the circular economy, which also includes circular public procurement, through the European project CircLocal, in which we collaborated with our partners from the Netherlands and Portugal.
An important result of the analysis of circular economy opportunities in local communities within the framework of the CircLocal project was the project proposal, which we named NovIKroG, and which was submitted in a consortium of partners to a tender for co-financing by the Norwegian Financial Mechanism within the framework of the climate change mitigation and adaptation program. Our application for the co-financing tender was successful, so in June 2022 we signed an agreement on the co-financing of the two-year NovIKroG project in the amount of EUR 799,990 and with 100% financing of eligible costs, which will enable us to give new impetus to the development of the circular economy and circular material loops in local space. The project has several components - from the analysis of the situation in our community and suitable areas for the development of the circular economy, to the development of circular public procurement competencies and the establishment of an innovative center for the circular economy.
The concept of a circular economy and circular management of resources is also identified by the European Union as one of the key elements in dealing with climate change and the challenge of maintaining a healthy living environment, which is one of the strategic goals of the Municipality of Novo mesto.
The NovIKroG project is co-financed by the Norwegian Financial Mechanism
The Norwegian Financial Mechanism and the EEA Financial Mechanism represent Norway's contribution to a green, competitive and inclusive Europe.
Through the Norwegian Financial Mechanism and the EEA Financial Mechanism, Norway contributes to the reduction of social and economic differences in Europe and to the strengthening of bilateral relations with the beneficiary countries in Central and Southern Europe and along the Baltic. Norway cooperates closely with the European Union on the basis of the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA). Together with two other donor countries, in five consecutive financing periods between 1994 and 2014, it provided funds in the amount of EUR 3.3 billion through financial mechanisms.
The Norwegian Financial Mechanism, which is financed only by Norway, is intended for countries that joined the European Union after 2003. The total amount of resources within the framework of the Norwegian Financial Mechanism in the period 2014-2021 amounts to EUR 1.25 billion. Priority areas in this period are as follows:
#1 innovation, research, education and competitiveness;
#2 social inclusion, youth employment and poverty reduction;
#3 environment, energy, climate change and low-carbon economy;
#4 culture, civil society, good governance and fundamental rights and freedoms;
#5 Justice and Home Affairs