Circularity and resource efficiency within the public sector in UK and Europe

November 2017 saw the launch of the European Resource Efficiency Knowledge Centre’s series of capacity-building workshops, with the first event taking place in Berlin regarding resource efficiency in the manufacturing industry.  A second successful workshop has since taken place in the UK, in Wales’ capital city, Cardiff, on the 20th of March 2018.  Hosted by WRAP, the event – ‘Resource Efficiency and Circularity: Benefits for the Public Sector’ – was attended by over 50 individuals, including decision-makers, intermediaries, buyers and procurement professionals.

Delegates discovered the many benefits of embedding sustainability into their organisations’ procurement practices; hearing first-hand from those involved in success stories in both Wales and further afield in the EU.  Inspiring presentations and interactivity via a roundtable discussion and panel debate, enabled delegates to discover the strategic and commercial advantages that can be gained through prioritising resource efficiency, the circular economy and sustainability when procuring goods and services.  The engaged audience was challenged to think differently and to consider how they could make their current approaches even better, which culminated in several ideas and potential solutions being discussed.

The event also highlighted the ways in which innovative procurement can enable organisations to meet the goals set out in the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015.  Unique to Wales, and attracting interest from across the world, the Act requires Welsh public bodies to take into consideration the long-term impact of their decisions – to act today for a better tomorrow.  Speaking passionately about this Act, and the significant opportunity it offers to make a long-lasting, positive change, was the Future Generations Commissioner for Wales, Sophie Howe.  The line-up of high profile, inspirational speakers also included Cuno van Geet from the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment, along with many others.

Webinar: summary and main conclusions of the Cardiff Workshop