The open innovation center on circular economy of Ecoembes, TheCircularLab, has presented today, in Barcelona, a pioneering initiative related with the care of the environment: the Program “Recycling 5.0”. Catalonia will be the “sandbox” of the project thanks to the collaboration of the Generalitat de Catalunya. This new system will consist of the distribution of containers and litter bins with QR codes that will detect users who recycle, and who are previously registered in the WebApp, and will compensate them with points that can be exchanged for discounts and advantages in services related such as discounts on public transport, bicycle rental or the purchase of an electric car.
Ecoembes, the non-profit environmental organization that coordinates recycling packaging in Spain, and its open innovation center on circular economy, TheCircularLab, have developed this system because of the need to achieve a future where innovation and technology at the service of citizens are the best allies to achieve a clean, safe and sustainable planet.
Catalonia sets the tone
“Recycling 5.0” will be tested with the placement of prototypes in selected towns in Catalonia such as Igualada, Sant Boi, Granollers and the Pla d’Estany region. Catalonia is considered to be the most advanced territory in terms of recycling and, due to its innovative and pioneering business fabric in this field, it has been chosen to become the “sandbox”, or controlled test field, where circular innovations and assessing their impact on society will be the first step towards opening up possibilities in the rest of the territories.
The collaboration of the Generalitat de Catalunya has been the necessary impulse that the project needed to come to light.
According to Óscar Martín, CEO of Ecoembes, “this program, for the development of which the collaboration of the Generalitat de Catalunya has been indispensable, marks the steps towards a 100% recycler Catalan society and turns this territory into the ‘sandbox’ of the circular economy in Spain”. As the president explains, after a visit to this space, the Conselleria de Territori y Sostenibilitat, launched a glove for them to explore the possibility of testing and piloting innovative ideas in Catalonia.
In this sense, Damià Calvet, Minister of Territory and Sustainability of the Generalitat de Catalunya, asks citizens to “recycle more and better, at home, in the street and in the nature, in order to become the leader of Europe in terms of care for the environment.” According to the Conseller, the alliance with TheCircularLab and Ecoembes will allow to conduct citizens and to solve all the doubts they might have to make easier their collaboration in the implementation of this new system.
A totally disruptive project
Recycling 5.0 is an idea of change that seeks to revolutionize and rethink the way to mobilize citizens on environmental issues with a unique project in Europe that was born to move towards a model of Smart City. The program implements a circular economy practice at the service of urban waste management with the idea of creating a new value chain in the life of beverage cans and plastic bottles that is environmentally sustainable, based on a notion of reuse, ‘remanufacturing’ and waste valorisation.
How the program works
Citizens who want to participate in the program must register on the WebApp provided by Ecoembes. All intelligent containers/bins will have a QR code and, when the citizen is close by, thanks to the geolocation of their smarthphone,he will be identified and the container will know it.. For each recycling action, the system will digitally compute in “RECYCLOS”, an exclusively digital scoring system, which will allow to redeem the commitment for products or services related with sustainability.
These points will provide the user with advantages and services such as: discounts on public transport or bicycle rental, help with the purchase of an electric car, donations to environmental NGOs, discounts for local fruit and vegetable shops or sponsorships for endangered species, among others.
In the area of collection of containers generated outside the home, the tests will begin at the facilities of the Hospital Germans Trias i Pujol and two universities: the Politécnica de Catalunya and the Rovira y Virgili.