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About the project

The CIRCON project (full name: The circular economy in construction: eco-design of circular buildings) is realised by Green Building Council Iceland (GBCI) in cooperation with two Polish partners – a mirror to GBCI organisation Polish Green Building Council and the Silesian University of Technology.

The project will last 2 years (01/04/2022-31/03/2024). 

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Overview

The urban population is growing globally, and so does the demand for housing and accommodation. This means the growing intensity of construction-related activities and, consequently, increasing construction and demolition waste (C&DW) generation. This calls for action as, currently, C&DW already comprises one of the largest waste streams in the EU and Iceland. Even though C&DW recovery rates are high, their recovery leaves room for improvement as it is predominantly low-grade (for instance, backfilling). To preserve the value of construction materials and thus keep them on the market as long as possible, the implementation of circular economy principles in the construction sector is necessary. This would result in reducing the amount of not only C&DW produced but also the raw materials used. Building materials are responsible for around half of the carbon footprint of an Icelandic building during its lifetime.
Doing so requires developing solid and systematised knowledge of circular economy principles regarding construction processes. This is why, in the CIRCON project, we aim to create practical guidelines, emphasising circular building design as everything starts with the plan and design. These guidelines would include the specificity of Icelandic and Polish construction sectors, and they will be disseminated among the key stakeholders in the sectors. This will be done to familiarise the key actors with optimal building design regarding not only buildings' longevity and durability but also their sustainability and material circulation through possible reusing of building components after its deconstruction.

Main objectives

The project aims to strengthen the implementation of circular economy principles in the Icelandic and Polish construction sectors through:

1. Creation of practical guidelines on circular economy implementation in building design, including Icelandic and Polish market characteristics, needs, and specific Icelandic geographical and resource conditions.
2. Dissemination of the above guidelines among key stakeholders in the construction sector.

The CIRCON project benefits from a € 361,422 grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the EEA and Norway Grants
and co-funding by the national funding of Poland. Co-funding from the Polish state amounts to € 54,213.

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Information on EEA and Norway Grants

The EEA and Norway Grants represent the contribution of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway towards a green, competitive and inclusive Europe.
There are two overall objectives: reduction of economic and social disparities in Europe, and to strengthen bilateral relations between the donor countries and 15 EU countries in Central and Southern Europe and the Baltics. The three donor countries cooperate closely with the EU through the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA). The donors have provided €3.3 billion through consecutive grant schemes between 1994 and 2014. For the period 2014-2021, the EEA and Norway Grants amount to €2.8 billion.
The priorities for this period are:
#1 Innovation, Research, Education and Competitiveness
#2 Social Inclusion, Youth Employment and Poverty Reduction
#3 Environment, Energy, Climate Change and Low Carbon Economy
#4 Culture, Civil Society, Good Governance and Fundamental Rights
#5 Justice and Home Affairs
Eligibility for the Grants mirror the criteria set for the EU Cohesion Fund aimed at member countries where the Gross National Income (GNI) per inhabitant is less than 90% of the EU average.
The EEA and Norway Grants scheme consists of two financial mechanisms. The EEA Grants are jointly financed by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, whose contributions are based on their GDP. Norway Grants are financed solely by Norway.

More information can be found on: https://eeagrants.org/

 

Information on co-funding by the national funding of Poland

The co-funding from the Polish state was granted to the project within the program: Environment, Energy and Climate Change, program area: Climate.

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