Despite the waste hierarchy in force – Reduce, Re-use and Recycle - re-use could be much further developed. Waste management programmes include re-use but prioritise recycling, even though re-use is more environmentally and socially friendly. 2Lifes project is meant to be an instrument to help boost re-use through public policies.
Based on experience, 2LIFES partners have identitied that re-use is often marginally and partially explored. However, when properly managed, re-use promotes environmental sustainability as well as employment and solidarity.
Unlike previous waste prevention projects, 2LIFES focuses exclusively on re-use and more specifically on re-use activities promoted by public administrations – something pending as it is usually promoted by the third sector.
The project brings together advanced cities and regions in the political backing of re-use, in addition to others that are in the process of doing so.
The main expected results are the development of new channels, infrastructures and protocols for re-use through instruments in force as well as the awareness-raising of households, businesses and administrations regarding the need to change consumption patterns. Green jobs around re-use initiatives are also expected.
Interreg Europe's framework for stakeholder involvement is excellent for 2LIFES, since re-use initiatives require the collaboration of municipal waste services with SMEs, civil society, NGOs, social enterprises and training and employment services.