Basque Government allocates more than 18 million euros in aid to promote the circular economy through European Next funds

2022 December 28
  • It is set to support 79 projects that will run until 2026
  • The aid will contribute to the generation of employment as a result of the promotion of waste collection, preparation for reuse and recycling activities
  • The aim is to make the Basque economy more sustainable, taking advantage of the challenges and opportunities of the ecological and digital transitions

The Basque Government’s Department of Economic Development, Sustainability and Environment is set to allocate more than 18 million euros to promote 79 projects to support the implementation of waste regulations and the promotion of the circular economy.

This line of aid mainly corresponds to the actions included in the Euskadi Next programme of investments for the recovery, transformation and resilience of the Basque Country, which are covered by funds from NextGenerationEU. This temporary recovery instrument conceived by the European Commission and the European Parliament, funded with 750 billion euros for the entire territory of the European Union, will contribute to a greener, more digital, more resilient Europe, better adapted to current and future challenges. 

Basque Government aid must be earmarked for projects which, developed up to 2026, are aimed at four priority areas: the implementation of new separate collections, especially bio-waste, as well as the improvement of existing ones; the construction of specific facilities for the treatment of separately collected bio-waste; the construction of new facilities for the preparation for reuse and recycling of other separately collected waste streams; and investments relating to collection, sorting and classification facilities, the improvement of existing mechanical-biological treatment plants and for the preparation of Solid Recovered Fuel.

Of the 79 projects supported with this line, 34 will be carried out in Gipuzkoa; 27, in Biscay; and 18, in Araba.  The beneficiary entities are the municipalities and other entities such as the provincial councils, associations of municipalities or groups of municipalities.


Ecological transition and job creation

The aim of this aid is to make the Basque economy and society more sustainable and better prepared for the challenges and opportunities of the ecological and digital transitions, as well as for social cohesion with the generation of new jobs. With the implementation of the projects awarded, the Basque Country hopes to have widespread collection of biowaste in all its municipalities by 2025, hence a large number of the projects and allocations are aimed at improving the collection and treatment of the organic fraction.

All of this with a medium-term vision, which is to position the Basque Country as a benchmark region in Europe in the circular economy, in which the environment becomes a key factor in competitiveness and job creation, and economic growth is decoupled from the consumption of natural resources, the generation of waste and the emission of greenhouse gases. These are the goals that make up the Basque Country Green Pact-Euskadiko Itun Berdea, the model of inclusive and sustainable development promoted by the Basque Government, in which the Basque Country Circular Economy and Bioeconomy Plan 2024 is framed.    

Targets for the reuse and recycling of municipal waste have been set for three new time horizons: 55% target in 2025, 60% in 2030 and 65% in 2035. In addition, there is a maximum landfill restriction of 10% of the total municipal waste generated in 2035. These targets are supplemented by targets for packaging and packaging waste recycling, both overall and by material, set for 2025 and 2030.

In addition to the benefits obtained from the point of view of waste management, efficient use of resources and action against climate change, there are also those associated with the generation of employment as a result of the promotion of collection, preparation for reuse and recycling activities.


Prevention and reuse

The best waste is that which is not generated or, failing that, that which, once generated, can be treated in such a way that it can be reintroduced into the production cycle with the same properties as the original material, without any degradation of the original raw material. For this reason, prevention and reuse are the fundamental pillars for avoiding the generation of waste, while preparation for reuse, recycling, other forms of recovery and disposal are, in this order of priority, the options to be promoted so that waste already generated can continue to be a resource.

Among the 79 projects supported with this aid, in Alava, for example, the Provincial Council of Araba, with its initiative aimed at promoting the repair and sale of second-hand consumer products, stands out. This project (€1,850,000) aims to promote the collection of products discarded by the public which, after an initial diagnosis of their viability for recovery for a second life, can be recovered and put on sale, such as furniture, textiles, household appliances, gardening material... or for the composting plants for Vitoria-Gasteiz and the Llanada Alavesa (€1,618,319).

With regard to Gipuzkoa, the Provincial Council of Gipuzkoa, on the other hand, presents a preparation centre for the reuse of solid urban waste in Zubieta (€1,789,042), the purpose of which is to carry out the testing, cleaning and/or repair of products or components of products that have become waste. The aim is to manage bulky waste, textiles and WEEE (waste electrical and electronic equipment), and the projects of Plasticenergy, S.L. and ECOCIR, which promote the development of new plants and processes for the recovery of plastic and the creation of secondary materials (€2,000,000).

In Bizkaia, the project presented by Garbiker, a public company belonging to the Provincial Council of Bizkaia, related to the construction of specific facilities for the treatment of bio-waste (€1,761,866) collected separately. The importance of the treatment of bio-waste to generate compost lies in the valorisation of organic materials generated as waste in households or socio-economic activities into compost, suitable for use in the recovery of degraded soils, agriculture or as a substrate for flora. The aim of this project is to build three regional composting plants, each with a capacity of 2,000 tonnes of food waste per year. Other notable projects are aimed at improving the Garbigunes network or the mechanical biological treatment plant in Artigas.

Read more: https://ekogarapena.eus/nextgen22

  • Photo usuario
    2022 December 31

    Ondo dago hondakinaren sorrera berriz pentsatzea, tratatu beharrean, eta, aldi berean, ahal dela, ontzi biodegradagarriak bilatzea, ahalik eta gutxiena izan denean. Ospakizunak eta hondakin kopurua abandonatuta uzteak udal-brigadak ekarri behar ditu horiek kentzera, eta badirudi pertsona batzuek ez dutela garbiketa-kontzientziaziorik, gizalegezko betebeharraren kontrolik ez dutelako.

  • Photo usuario
    2022 December 31

    Está bien repensar la generación del residuo en vez de tener que tratarlo, procurando a la vez a ser posible envases biodegradables cuando no se hayan podido minimizar. Eso de las celebraciones y la cantidad de residuos se dejan abandonados tiene que venir la brigada municipal con coste a retirarlos parece no haya en ciertas personas concienciación de limpieza a falta de control deber cívico.

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