As we wrap up another year at WE&B it’s a great time to reflect on some of the personal and professional achievements reached throughout 2019. We also reflect on the year with some relevant projects where, in our little way, we look to make the world a bit more sustainable, liveable and circular.
WE&B is all about its team and this year has been particularly extraordinary. Montse Gomarizcompeted at the 18th FINA World Masters Championships in Gwangju(South Korea). Through intense training and dedication, she achieved GOLD, SILVER, and BRONZE in 200m, 100m, and 50m butterfly respectively. We are extremely proud to have such a fantastic person and a true champion working with us. Well done Montse!
In May we were fortunate to bring Mathias Brummerinto our team. With his expertise in Ecology, ecosystem services, social and spatial analysis, he has slotted in like he has been with us for years. He is a remarkable young consultant that has a bright future in bringing positive change to environmental practices. From January 2020 he is with the WE&B team full time which will massively benefit our clients and the communities on which we impact.
Towards the start of the year, we took on Julia Jaqueas an intern who after her time with us, travelled across Latin America promoting her book and collecting stories about her experiences, no doubt she will be connected to WE&B again in the future.
When looking at the projects undertaken in 2019, we are privileged to be working with amazing partners and clients where we can achieve real measurable impact. The following is an update on the work carried out in those projects.
- WE&B together with the AfriAlliance Project partners set up 10 Action Groups(Communities of Practice) across Africa to deal with water and climate issues. They address specific, demand-driven issues with innovative approaches and knowledge co-creation in the field of water and climate. They consist of diversified sets of participants, including both European and African members in each group. Action Group leaders are from Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Ethiopia and South Africa, the Netherlands and the UK.
- Together with the project coordinators (Beta Tech Center (UVic)) of the project Interreg MED Green Growth Community, we produced and presented White Papers on circular economy in the Mediterranean for policy recommendations of the four thematic Working Groups: 1) resource efficiency; 2) sustainable production and consumption; 3) waste prevention and management; and 4) competitiveness and innovation.
- WE&B also undertook a study for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). The study found that a significant amount of cultural practices related to biodiversity exists in the Mediterranean basin. We discovered that there is a link between biodiversity and cultural practices in the Mediterranean basin that should be further explored. These include:
- Dry Stone Wall Management
- Water ditches and semi-permanent ponds
- Soil Fertility and soil biodiversity
- Governance practices
- We also continued our work on Coastal Areas in West Africa through the project “West African coastal classification, hazard management and standardized communication scheme utilizing the Coastal Hazard Wheel (CHW)”. This project was undertaken for the Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN)with financing from UNIDO.
We assessed the hazards using the CHW for each country including a number of potential mitigation measures together with GlobalCAD, Meteosim, and WASCAL. Our partners GlobalCAD, were on hand to present the final results in a regional workshop held in Dakar in November 2019. Following the analysis and implementation of the CHW, we devised the following set of recommendations:
- Recommendation 1: Name a national coordinator (preferably WACOM National Antenna), who will be responsible for the CHW implementation and interaction with other related stakeholders
- Recommendation 2: Create a scientific committee or Coastal Hazard Wheel committee in order to coordinate the further implementation of the method.
- Recommendation 3: Organize in-person training at national and/or regional level in order to ensure the mappings and identification of management options can be performed at the national level
- Recommendation 4: Realize a CHW risk mapping at step 2 and/or step 3
- Recommendation 5: Ensure alignment between the CHW mapping and the SDLAO in order to ensure socio-economic aspects are taken into account
- We have also been working on making the building sector more circular through the projects HOUSEFULand RUN4LIFE. The following video that WE&B helped to create, gives an idea of how circularity in the building sector can be achieved:
Projects or contracts that we closed in 2019
- Climate Change Awareness Programme for Policy Makers & Government Ministries in Jamaica– InterAmerican Development Bank
- Sustainable and Low Energy Wastewater Treatment for Warm Climate– Acciona Agua
- Interreg Med Green Growth Community– Beta Tech Center (UVic)
- Independent Evaluation of The Peru Country Program– GGGI
- Assessment of Coastal Hazards and Climate Change Adaptation Technologies for the Coastal Region of West Africa and Cameroon Using the Coastal Hazard Wheel(CHW) – CTCN and UNIDO
Projects that we won in 2019
- Market Opportunities on Key Circular Economy Sectors in Mexico – Contracted to IDOM financed by the European Commission
- The H2020 project: REsilient WAter Innovation for a Smart Economy – REWAISE – European Commission
- Links Between Agricultural Practices and Biodiversity in Mediterranean Landscapes –IUCN
FROM WE&B WE ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO A MORE CIRCULAR AND SUSTAINABLE 2020!