The Horizon 2020 Capacity Building/Mediterranean Environment Programme wrapped up for the summer with a sub-regional training in Tirana, Albania (7-8 July 2011) where more than thirty participants from various public bodies of Southeast Europe gathered to be trained on “The implementation of the Water Framework Directive (WFD) as a means to promote environmental integration”. In partnership with the third phase of the GEF International Waters: Learning Exchange and Resources Network (GEF IWLEARN3), the Horizon 2020 two-day workshop attracted participants from Albania, FYROM, Kosovo and Montenegro.
Belgium, the epicenter of the European Union, hosted the latest study visit organized under the Horizon 2020 Capacity Building/MEP project. Thirteen decision makers from relevant national authorities and NGOs flew in from Albania, Algeria, Egypt and Lebanon to follow an intensive workshop on “Management of waste from electronic and electrical equipment (WEEE)” (20-22 June 2011), aiming at improving understanding and decision making skills on the subject. Already experienced professionals, they benefited especially from the balanced mix of theory, practice and site visits in Lokeren and Willebroek plants.
Olive oil production and poultry farming were at the centre of the latest national training course organized in Albania within the framework of the Horizon 2020 CB/MEP project. The two-day training course (30 June- 1 July) introduced trainees to the best environmental practices and cleaner technologies with the overarching goal to minimize the environmental impact of the olive oil and poultry farming sectors.
One of the most challenging issues when promoting Sustainable Development is the shift toward Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP). This challenge was at the core of the latest regional workshop held within the framework of the Horizon 2020 capacity building programme. The two and a half-day seminar took place on 1-3 June 2011 in Budva, Montenegro, in conjunction with the 14th meeting of the Mediterranean Commission for Sustainable Development (MCSD) which also had SCP on its agenda this year.
Introducing sustainability to the management of industrial areas was the focus of a Horizon 2020 training course organized in Montenegro. The two-and-a-half day course (27-29 June 2011) focused on the environmental impacts of industrial areas on the Mediterranean Sea and on the tools and measures necessary to mitigate these. The participants were Montenegrin professionals working on coastal zone management or in industrial areas, sourced mainly from local and national environmental regulatory bodies, industry and academia.
Thirty two Algerian professionals from all over the country gathered in Algiers, to participate in a three-day workshop on wastewater treatment and reuse organized within the framework of the Horizon 2020 Capacity Building/MEP project. The course, which took place on 15-17 May 2011, aimed to support the Horizon 2020 initiative and its objective to de-pollute the Mediterranean Sea through developing and strengthening the capacities of professionals dealing with the management of wastewater in Mediterranean countries.
Measuring carbon and water footprints was the theme of the latest Horizon 2020 regional workshop held in Athens (20-21 June 2011). As climate change and water scarcity pressures increase in the region, efforts to improve reporting skills on mitigation and adaptation measures are becoming all the more relevant. With 37 participants from eleven countries, the workshop targeted professionals from governmental authorities and civil society who stand to benefit from the overall understanding of the matter at hand. The course showcased the existing Mediterranean frameworks and strategies and built the case for reducing carbon and water footprints, through measurements and indicators. As with all H2020 workshops, every effort was made to create an interactive experience for the trainees through role playing and the actual calculation of carbon and water footprints.
A four-day training course on “Urban wastewater: Integrated Management of Wastewater Collection and Treatment Systems” focusing specifically on coastal areas, took place in Montenegro (18-21 April 2011) within the framework of the Horizon 2020 CB/MEP programme and in response to the capacity building needs identified earlier in the project. The course was organized by the UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education with the support of the Arab Countries Water Utilities Association (ACWUA).