“Tipicità in Blu” Festival: A Showcase of Circular Economy and Plastic Reuse Initiatives

In Person
Location: Italy
Date: 22.05.2024

On May 22, 2024, the picturesque city of Ancona played host to the “Tipicità in Blu” festival, one of Italy’s most prominent events celebrating the sea and the blue economy. This year’s edition focused on the circular economy and plastics, exploring how materials can be reloaded for various applications such as urban design, construction, packaging, sports equipment, and energy.

The event began with a guided tour of the special exhibition “Tipicità in Blu” at the historic Mole Vanvitelliana, led by the culture assessor of the Comune di Ancona. This tour provided attendees with a comprehensive overview of the evolution and significance of circular economy principles, setting a thoughtful stage for the day’s discussions.

A highlight of the morning was the presentation of the SMART CIRCUIT project’s objectives and outcomes, with a particular emphasis on the CIA – Circular Innovation Academy and over 120 success stories. This presentation underscored Ancona’s role as a leading municipality in recycling initiatives, as exemplified by the exemplary work of Ancona Ambiente.

Detailed discussions on managing industrial waste from construction, boating, and marine sectors followed, offering valuable insights into local industry’s challenges and solutions. The session concluded with presentations on sustainable water management practices at Viva Servizi Ancona, emphasizing the importance of life cycle assessment in reducing environmental impacts.

The afternoon featured a roundtable on creating a virtuous supply chain for plastics recovered from the sea and PVC. Discussions included the use of reloaded materials in various sectors, with notable presentations from several EU-funded projects such as Interreg Italy – Slovenia RECREATE Project, Interreg Italy – Slovenia CIRCULAR BUILDINGS, and Horizon 2020 MAELSTROM Project.

COMET had the opportunity to showcase the SMART CIRCUIT project, highlighting its innovative approach to integrating circular economy principles into mechanical engineering. The project aims to improve resource efficiency and promote sustainable practices among local injection molding companies.

A standout demonstration was the Green Plasma machine by DISVI, Università Politecnica delle Marche, which transforms plastic recovered from the sea into energy. This practical application of circular economy principles demonstrated the potential to address marine pollution while generating renewable energy.

The event concluded with a farewell toast and a promise to reconvene at Ecomondo 2024, providing a networking opportunity and celebrating the progress made in circular economy practices.

Achievements of the Event:

  • Presentation of SMART CIRCUIT’s main outcomes, including the Industry Needs report and over 120 success stories.
  • Potential partnering and business opportunities with innovative companies such as:
    • Green Plasma by DISVI, which converts sea-recovered plastic into energy.
    • Garbage Group, developer of the eco-friendly Pelikan boat that cleans the sea.
    • ESO Recycling, which upcycles waste from major fashion houses.
    • TIMOTHEUS Srl, which develops biocomposites from shellfish waste.

A workshop concluded the presentations, offering an interactive platform for stakeholders to discuss opportunities within the EU programming framework for 2021-2027. The session culminated in the signing of a “Memorandum of Understanding,” marking a collective commitment to advancing circular economy initiatives.

The well-received SMART CIRCUIT project presentation paves the way for continued discussions and collaborations at Ecomondo 2024 in Rimini from November 5-8, 2024. Ecomondo is a key event for the green and circular economy, bringing together industrial groups, stakeholders, policy makers, opinion leaders, local authorities, research bodies, and institutions to shape the future of EU environmental policy.