On the 24th March the CEWASTE project held a hugely successful final event at which over 200 stakeholders learned about the work and results of the project and discussed the future of critical raw material (CRM) recycling. 

If you missed the event, watch the full recording here and view the slides here.

In the first part of the event project partners walked the audience through the work undertaken during the last 2.5 years.

Shahrzad Manoochehri from World Resources Forum explained the background to the project and current situation with CRM recycling. Otmar Deubzer from United Nations University presented the list of key equipment containing CRMs that were selected for drafting of the voluntary certification scheme, which was then explained in detail by Sonia Valdivia (World Resources Forum).  Yifaat Baron (Oeko-Institut) showed the audience the tools created to control conformity with the requirements. 

The second part of the event focused on the future of the CRMs recycling. Firstly, Federico Magalini of Sofies explained how the project views the future potential of the certification scheme once the CEWASTE project ends. Secondly, the panel discussion, moderated by Pascal Leroy of the WEEE Forum focused on key questions around what needs to happen to improve CRM recycling. The panel composed of Christian Dworak (CENELEC TC111x Environment), Christian Hagelueken (UMICORE), Mattia Pellegrini (DG Environment, European Commission), Norbert Zonneveld (EERA) and Fanny Rateau (ECOS) addressed the following questions, amongst others: 

  • What progress has been made in CRM recycling in the last 10 years?
  • What incentives need to be in place for companies to invest in new technologies for CRM recycling? 
  • Should standards become legally binding?
  • What the European Commission can do to make the things really happen?

In response to that last question, Mattia Pellegrini indicated that, at the moment, there is not enough recycled material available in Europe, so the focus should be on fostering recycling capacity and collection of WEEE. Mandatory recycled content and Member States' green procurement will be considered in the revision of WEEE legislation. The consortium looks forward to engaging further with the executive agency that manages the Horizon 2020 calls and with the policymakers in European Commission.

In addition, several questions, ideas and concerns were raised by delegates during the webinar. The consortium will work on aggregating and answering all the questions that remained unanswered and once completed will post these on the website, as well as in a special edition of the project newsletter.

If you are interested in the CEWASTE work and wish to receive the Final Report and other project related updates, you can register to CEWASTE stakeholder network