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EWP @ Green Week

Jun 8th, 2011 |

Brussels, 8 June 2011. The Directorate General for the Environment of the European Commission organized the 11th Green Week in Brussels from 24 to 27 May 2011. The Green Week is the biggest annual conference on European environment policy. This year, more than 3000 participants were discussing “Resource Efficiency – Using less, living better”.

Every drop counts – tips and tools for better water management

Sabine von Wiren Lehr, EWP Water Stewardship program coordinator

Sabine von Wiren Lehr, EWP Water Stewardship program coordinator

Sabine von Wiren-Lehr, coordinator of the EWP Water Stewardship Program, presented the EWP Water Stewardship scheme and its implementation on pilot farms during the session “Every drop counts – tools and tips for better water management”. (Please click here to download the presentation). The outcomes of the Water Stewardship pilot tests of Coca Cola as presented by Ulrike Sapiro (Please click here to download the presentation) contributed to the general focus of the workshop on practical management of water, demonstrating ways of saving water and managing available resources more sustainably across a variety of different sectors.

Resource Efficiency: The Agenda for economic transformation (UNEP)

Members of the UNEP’s International Resource Panel (IRP), a group of international experts whose global scientific assessments seek to improve understanding of ways to increase resource efficiency, presented their ongoing works in the field of resource efficiency at the Green Week session “Resource efficiency: the agenda for economic transformation”. EWP attended the session which was chaired by Mr. Steiner (UNEP Executive Director) and which included presentations from Mr. Weizsäcker (Co-Chair of UNEP’s International Resource Panel), Mr. Swilling (Member of UNEP’s International Resource Panel), Mr. Suh (Member of UNEP’s International Panel) and Ms. Mc Glade (EEA Executive Director & member of the EWP Board of Advice). Their assessments showed that global resource use is escalating in parallel with rising population and wealth. But some resource efficiency improvements have been noted, indicating an enormous potential to increase resource efficiency in developed and developing countries. This session analyzed the current and future resource use patterns, and considered options to improve resource efficiency.

The IRP will publish soon the first report on sustainable water management where water has been identified as a resource challenge requiring decoupling. The IRP presented some results of the Decoupling 2 Report, where decoupling is about shifting from debt-financed consumption (which is unsustainable) as the primary economic driver of our economies, to sustainability oriented investments in innovation as the primary economic driver of our economies.

The 3 options presented by the IRP in order to respond to the CO2 challenge are to decrease carbon intensity of energy by 30 %, to decrease energy intensity of wealth by 65 % and to decrease wealth by 5 % globally. This scenario can be reached only if work on efficiency is done on the basis of thinking and acting big by developing the “Factor Five Revolution” (five-fold increase of resource productivity). The practices from using water once to purifying/recycling are one example of the factor five revolution.

The work on resource use and decoupling is technically possible and can be political attractive if cities are transformed into innovation centres for decoupling, if the transition towards resource-efficient-economy happens by changes in energy systems, transportation, water, metals and mineral resources and if less dependency on resources and more awareness among citizens is achieved.

For additional information, please contact Lisa Struebbe (

To know more about Green Week, please visit the Green Week website.

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