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Energy Globe Award

With more than 170 participating countries and over 1500 project submissions annually the Energy Globe Award is today's most prestigious environmental prize worldwide. It distinguishes projects regionally, nationally and globally that conserve resources such as energy or utilize renewable or emission-free sources. Award ceremonies are held all over the world. Prominent personalities as well as Energy Globe Ambassadors in 90 countries support the mission of Energy Globe. The activities of Energy Globe attract worldwide media attention - international TV stations report each year with approximately 1,000 hours of broadcasting time. The aim of the Energy Globe is to raise global attention on sustainable, everywhere applicable environmental solutions and to motivate people to also become active in this area.

National ENERGY GLOBE Award 2016

Submitted by: Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering - University of Cagliari
Rural waste management

The small-scale Rural Waste Management (RWM) approach is oriented to communities whose economy is mainly based on livestock and agriculture. The 3 regions (Lebanon, Tunisia and Italy) where the project is implemented present the same needs and constraints regarding RWM. In fact, in all the involved countries the prevention of the rural waste production and the recycling of material deriving from rural activities and human activities are currently not well developed and none of them applies a policy which allows for a sound environmental management of rural waste. The project focuses on the need for changing typical belief of modern society, according to which there is a place where we can abandon, indefinitely and without consequences, the residuals deriving from human activities. In particular, farmers and citizens suffer from the presence of livestock located next to rural villages: for instance in the Tunisian target area, poultry farming strongly affects the local population due to offensive smell, dust and surface water pollution. The involvement of the farmers and citizens in the project represents a policy change on how the rural waste problem is usually addressed. In fact, the current trend is to develop more and more sophisticated processes in order to reduce the contribution of people in rural waste management. This policy presents several drawbacks. First of all, there is no process having 100% efficiency, so that in the event different kinds of waste are blended, this gives rise to an irreversible process. Furthermore, the process is not free, both in terms of energy and money. Finally, to be economically suitable, the process requires large-scale plants, with the consequent occupation of territory, concentration of pollutant emissions in the surrounding areas and cost of waste transport. Another aspect that makes the big plants an unsuitable solution is that they cannot be implemented in small islands and isolated territories, due to very high costs for limited quantity of waste. This project aims at providing local authorities with the necessary tools and methodologies for developing integrated strategies and policies in the field of RWM. This objective is achieved by enhancing territorial institutions and organizations for the development of a new integrated and environmentally sustainable RWM system, ensuring the waste treatment and recycling, through a small-scale methodological approach and the exploitation of technological state-of-art. The target groups consist of 4 rural villages involved in the project, their technical staff, farmers and citizens who can directly and positively contribute to the elimination of the idea of waste itself. In the framework of the project, farmers and citizens are the main actors of the project methodology. The system is implemented in small communities where a large part of the population is employed in farms located in the countryside of the target areas and municipalities territory.

Jury-Rating
In rural areas of Lebanon, Tunisia and Italy the prevention of rural waste production and the recycling of material deriving from rural activities and human activities are currently not well developed and none of them applies a policy which allows for a sound environmental management of rural waste. This year´s National Winner of the Energy Globe Award in Italy provides local authorities with the necessary tools and methodologies for developing integrated strategies and policies in the field of rural waste management. Congratulations to your initiative!