oikos Vienna

students for sustainable economics and management

CEE Meeting Day 3 – Story of Waste

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MVA PfaffenauAfter two amazing days there came an even more amazing third one. Morning tiredness vanished quickly after seeing the first sun rays promising a great sunny day. We had breakfast in the hostel and then headed to the super modern futuristic magnificent campus of WU.

The overwhelming impression of the interiors of the university was surpassed by the energy and enthusiasm of the first lecturer: Benjamin Steuer, researcher on circular economy at the University of Vienna, introduced the topic of waste collection and utilization, how this problem is handled in different parts of the world and especially in South China´s major hub Guiyu, the place where he has been doing his research. In the following discussion we dived deeper into the problematic nature of electronic waste, saw pictures of people in poor areas working on this so called e-waste separation and found out possible solutions for waste management problems.DSC_0031

As we already had experienced the previous day, coffee break was one of the best moments of the day. Fresh coffee, tea, home-made cakes, pies and other sweets made the atmosphere even more suitable for chatting with amazing people.

The second speaker, Elena Komarova from ALBA Group, talked about recycling technologies and the specific separation of materials that is essential for high-quality recycling. Very enriching was the discovery of green coal technology or in other words processing of residual waste into substitute fuel. ALBA is also turning used plastics into various forms of recycled plastics as recythene and procyclen which can be straightforward used for producing new products.

The first part of the day gave us a lot of rewarding knowledge about waste and its recycling. Vegetarian lunch from bio-catering Gaumen Freundinnen loaded us with the needed energy for the following tour at the waste management facility Pfaffenau. Our tour guide, pleasant and easy-going long bearded “Viking” made us familiar with the whole functioning of the incineration plant and Vienna’s first biogas treatment plant. It turns biogas produced from kitchen waste into biomethane which serves as a source of eco-friendly energy for about 1,000 households in Vienna. By seeing and smelling the facility we got a practical experience of waste management.

DSC_0110Our exciting day continued in one of Vienna´s most beautiful parks where we played games with oikos topics and chilling after a long day. Dinner in the Inigo restaurant, which helps socially disadvantaged people to get some work experience, was a perfect ending of the official program. The unofficial part consisted of a long walk through the magical night-time city center and the following closing party. To conclude, this day was unforgettable, especially thanks to great organizers, friendly collective, new friendships, a beautiful city, hospitable people and new knowledge.

By Olga Simotova, oikos Prague

For more pictures of the CEE meeting check on Facebook.

The oikos Vienna CEE Meeting Team wants to thank its sponsors:

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