EC
EC

Issue 03 / October 2015

Eco-management and audit scheme
WELCOME

Dear EMAS Community,

As the leaves turn and we settle into autumn, there is a flurry of activity in Brussels, with the Commission working hard on a new policy package on Circular Economy. The aim is to help modernise Europe's economy, moving away from the old linear model of take-make-throw away to a more a virtuous circle in which we take-make-remake and recycle materials for as long as possible. A model where waste becomes the material input for a new production process, and simply discarding used items becomes an outmoded way of thinking. We are moving towards a more progressive economy, where the sort of ideas we celebrate with EMAS are constantly moving to the fore. EMAS too is moving forward, with several events to celebrate in the coming quarter.

First on the list is an event in Germany on 13 November. Twenty Years of Premium Environmental Management: A High-Level Conference on EMAS will take place in the EMAS-registered European Central Bank in Frankfurt. This will be a great opportunity to hear more about the experiences of EMAS frontrunners, and to hear how the European Central Bank has used EMAS to green itself. The conference offers interesting panel sessions, touching on the Circular Economy, how the scheme can help cities and municipalities, and the crucial role of public bodies in promoting advanced environmental management. I look forward to congratulating a number of frontrunners who were the first in their countries to join the scheme – 20 years of greater sustainability through EMAS is an impressive achievement.

On the communication side, this month sees the release of translated versions of our new EMAS video. In addition to English, it is now available in German, Spanish, Italian and French, and with subtitles in Portuguese, Polish, Swedish, Dutch and Danish. Thousands have already viewed the English version, and this gives us a good opportunity to spread the message about the benefits of EMAS and the achievements of EMAS-registered organisations to a considerably larger audience. If you haven’t already, you can view the video at www.emas.eu!

And we continue to expand. Thanks to the work of the Joint Research Centre, EMAS-registered organisations in the retail sector will now be able to use the EMAS Sectoral Reference Document (SRD) for Retail Trade to gain advice on environmental best practices in their area of business. You can expect more SRDs in the near future. The JRC is also getting start on a next round of documents, with a technical working group of experts for the SRD on waste management meeting in October.

Happy reading!

Karmenu Vella, European Commissioner for the Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries

EMAS NEWS

Further details available on the EMAS High Level Conference of 13 November 2015!

If you haven't already, get out your calendars and mark the date! The EMAS High Level Conference is taking place in Frankfurt, Germany on 13 November. The preliminary agenda, which gives a peek at the interesting topics up for discussion at the conference, has been posted online at the conference website.

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EMAS + Public Administration = European Green Capitals

The cities of Bristol in the United Kingdom and Ljubljana in Slovenia are outstanding examples of how EMAS can help public administrations to be more sustainable. The two municipalities are the European Green capitals for 2015 and 2016 respectively - and they're also beautiful EMAS destinations for environmentally aware tourists!

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Sectoral Reference Document for the Retail Trade Sector is Available

The European Commission's first EMAS Sectoral Reference Document (SRD) has officially arrived! EMAS registered organisations in the retail sector will now be able to obtain practical advice and information on best environmental practices in their sector.

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EMAS Facilitates Organisations' Compliance with German Energy Efficiency Law

When it comes time to comply with the energy audit obligation under Germany's new Energy Efficiency Law, EMAS registered organisations have a huge advantage. In contrast to ISO 14001, EMAS already fulfils the energy audit requirement - a great reason for companies to step up to EMAS!

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EVENTS

ICT 2015 – Innovate, Connect, Transform

Date: 20-22 October 2015

Lisbon, Portugal

The biggest information and communication technologies event in the EU calendar combines the opportunity to network and follow interesting debates and lectures on the European Commission’s most recent policies and initiatives with the most up-to-date research and innovation in ICT.

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Business opportunities in Eco-innovation

Date: 27-28 October 2015

Seoul, South Korea

This edition of the Forum will explore business opportunities in eco-innovation, presenting the latest trends in circular economy while focusing on innovative materials and products. It represents an opportunity for exchange between actors in the European and Asian business communities.

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The Business & Innovation Network Annual Event

Date: 2-4 November 2015

Porto, Portugal

BIN is an international network of academic and industry partners engaged and supporting the creation of a sustainable forum for sharing good practice and opportunities in innovation. BIN@PORTO will be a motivating experience built on the theme of “Responsible Research & Innovation: a collective, sustainable, inclusive and system-wide approach”. The event will include open sessions, debates and action tanks dedicated to different aspects of innovation a Technologies Showroom & Business Showcase exhibition, a 24 hour challenge on product design & development and an exciting social programme.

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Workshop: Energy efficiency policies, financing and energy service companies (ESCOs)

Date: 10-11 November 2015

Ispra, Italy

This Joint Research Centre (JRC) workshop has been organised to facilitate discussions and exchange experiences and know-how among policy makers, experts, energy service companies and financial institutions. Attendees will come from the new Member states (Croatia), candidate countries, potential candidate countries, Horizon 2020 associated countries, and European Neighbourhood Policy countries. The workshop will focus on the development of policies, strategies and financial mechanisms for the improvement of the energy efficiency in buildings and other key sectors for energy consumption.

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7th European Innovation Summit

Date: 7-10 December 2015

Brussels, Belgium

The four-day event will call for "a pact for innovation". Highlights of this year's programme include topics such as 'policies and politics for innovation: creating a framework for success' and 'European Innovation Ecosystems'. The event will look at society's great challenges in areas such as water, energy, environment, agriculture, bio-economy, health, transport and the role of the digital revolution in areas such as smart manufacturing. Very importantly, the summit will engage actively with young people and discuss the opportunity for them in driving the future of innovation in Europe.

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European Tourism Day 2015

Date: 16 December 2015

Brussels, Belgium

The event will provide an opportunity for the exchange of views on topics that the European Commission considers key for the future competitiveness and sustainable growth of the European tourism sector, such as digitalisation, interconnectivity, sustainability and responsibility, accessibility, and governance. An estimated 400 tourism stakeholders (representatives of public authorities at EU, national and regional level, European associations, representatives of the industry and other private stakeholders) are expected to participate in European Tourism Day 2015, organised in Brussels by the European Commission.

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