Recently, terms like ‘sustainable development’ and ‘circular economics’ have spiked in popularity. Models that have been, up until recently, largely theoretical are being put into practice. Analyses and research have concluded that, by 2050, consumption would reach a threshold three times larger than the capacity of sustainable production. The recent COVID-19 pandemic and war in Ukraine highlighted the importance of a timely transition away from a linear economy in favor of a circular one. Our existing consumer habits, where only 5% of materials are reused, are devastating to the environment. Out of the billions of tonnes of waste produced each year, over half ends up in landfills! In this way, we lose precious resources and energy without compensation. It is for this reason that we are intensively preparing the infrastructure necessary to fulfill the ambitious goals for waste management set by the EU. By 2030, only 10% of our waste will be able to end up in landfills, and 25% will go to energy production. All other waste will need to be sorted and recycled. Initial investment will be costly, though this is partially covered by the EU fund. Even industrial companies in our region will have to undergo greening and transition towards a circular economy. This will decrease the emission of CO2 and solid pollutants. The replacement of boilers in local fireboxes with ecological alternatives has thus far been the most significant change that has led to the improvement of air quality in our region.
The greening and sustainability of production have also become a growing theme in the private sector. Regional companies are becoming increasingly aware and are taking measures to make their activities sustainable. Italian and French companies operating in our region are no exception. One such company is the Italian automotive supplier Brembo, based in the Ostrava Hrabová industrial zone, which focuses on producing braking technologies for luxury vehicles. They have managed to increase the efficiency of their process by recycling production waste and making effective use of their water and heat sources. As a consequence, they not only save money, but also the environment. This is why cooperation between the private and public sectors is so central to the implementation of sustainable principles.
There is a lot of hard work still ahead of us, but the protection of our environment is worth all that effort!