A journey through different worlds – review of the PREVENT General Assembly 2021

Online • 2. December 2021

A journey through different worlds – review of the PREVENT General Assembly 2021

We look back on a wonderful general assembly last week! Together with many PREVENT members, we embarked on a digital journey, visited different thematic worlds and travelled back in time and into the future of PREVENT.

On 24 November 2021, the PREVENT Waste Alliance held its second general assembly. Ms Heike Henn from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) opened the event. Ms Henn emphasized the leading role of the PREVENT in the circular economy movement: “While the world is realising the potential of the circular economy, I am glad to say that, as the PREVENT Waste Alliance, we are already a step ahead. With the PREVENT we are providing a platform to foster exchange and collaborative action along global value chains.” Moreover, she announced the new innovation programme “Innovate & PREVENT”, which will be launched in December. The programme consists of three different contests aimed at the development and scaling of solutions for waste prevention. Ms Henn concluded by thanking all members for their great commitment throughout the year.

Then Mr Eberhard Brandes, Managing Director at WWF Germany, gave a keynote speech in which he underlined that PREVENT can play a significant role as a catalyst for the implementation of concrete solutions for waste management worldwide. He emphasized that the combination of social commitment, pioneering innovation, and implementation power of PREVENT members can drive forward the development of international regulatory frameworks. “PREVENT has made an important contribution to this task by creating the EPR Toolbox.” Mr Brandes also stressed that a circular economy approach for all materials is urgently needed. “Here, PREVENT’s approach of driving forward solutions for integrated waste management is of particular importance.”

Subsequently, the PREVENT Members travelled to three thematic worlds (Plastic, Framework Conditions and E-Waste World) to learn about the highlights and challenges of the eight pilot projects of PREVENT:

  • Three pilot projects work on plastics (active in Indonesia, India, Mexico, Vietnam, Brazil, Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina)
  • Two pilot projects work on framework conditions (active in Ethiopia, Algeria, Morocco, Jordan, Egypt)
  • Four pilot projects work on E-Waste (active in Nigeria, Tanzania, Ecuador, the Balkans, Latin America, East and West Africa)

The PREVENT working and sub-working groups on plastics, framework conditions and e-waste as well as the round table on awareness raising also reported on their current activities. We invite you to take a look at the websites of the working groups and closely monitor our communication channels for past and future developments and achievements.

Subsequently, the PREVENT members embarked on a journey through time. First, PREVENT’s Steering Committee reported on strategic decisions implemented throughout the year 2021. These included new partnerships with key stakeholders and alliances, and an update of PREVENT’s vision and mission. To prepare everyone for a journey into the future, surprise guest Silvia Noronha presented her artistic work focused on the question “What geology might emerge from the remaining of modernity?”. The PREVENT Secretariat then presented planned activities for the new year 2022, including a “Pilot Project Festival” to celebrate the completion of the pilot projects and share lessons learned. Subsequently, the BMZ presented plans to secure the future of PREVENT in the long-term and invited members to share their thoughts.

Ms Christina Laun, Head of Division “Environmental policy, urban development, mobility, circular economy, marine conservation” at the BMZ, closed the general assembly by concluding: “I am impressed by all that has been achieved in the past year. But there is still a lot of work ahead of us.”