European Commission launches call for proposals to support cities to produce bio-based products from urban biowaste and wastewater

The European Commission has launched a call for proposals under the Horizon 2020 programme, aimed at supporting a pilot group of European cities to produce bio-based products from urban biowaste and wastewater.

The 2018 EU Bioeconomy Strategy sees cities becoming major circular bioeconomy hubs. Urban biowaste and wastewater are circular feedstocks that can be used to produce innovative bio-based products such as bio-based chemicals, plastics and fertilisers. Moreover, the new EU waste legislation may lead to more quality biowaste becoming available for use in biorefineries. Nevertheless, very few European cities have developed circular bio-based economy strategies and projects for the production of innovative bio-based products.

In response to this challenge, the European Commission has launched a call for proposals to provide Project Development Assistance (PDA) to a pilot group of at least 5 European cities (and/or clusters of cities). The aim is to build the technical, economic and legal expertise needed for investments in projects to add value to urban biowaste and wastewater, through the production of safe and sustainable bio-based products, including innovative ones. The projects and related investments should form part of urban circular bio-based economy strategies.

The proposals are also expected to support the creation of a European network to facilitate the exchange of good practices among circular bio-based cities, to contribute to increased recycling of urban biowaste and wastewater, avoid landfilling and cut the respective associated greenhouse gas emissions, and to help create jobs in local economies.

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