INTERREG project recommend - eco-management : eco innovation
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INTERREG project recommend: Green Regions, Green Management, Green Innovation, Green Jobs
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economic growth and environmental protection can go hand in hand.

Europe 2020 is a 10-year growth strategy proposed by the European Commission for reviving the economy of the European Union. It aims to build a resource efficient, greener and more competitive economy with sustainable growth during the current decade.

The RECOMMEND partnership strongly believes that fostering eco-management and eco-innovation systems at a regional level will play a significant role in Europe's ambition to achieve a low emission economy where economic development is uncoupled from the use of natural resources. It is believed that economic growth and environmental protection can go hand in hand.

Some innovative European regions have already set a priority on implementing eco-management and eco-innovation and have supported their SMEs in adopting their management systems by implementing environmental-friendly measures. Such regional success stories have attracted much interest even beyond national levels. But very quickly it has become clear that the success of such regional concepts and its acceptance amongst its target groups strongly depends inter alia on the structural specialities of each region. A simple copy and paste approach is not appropriate. Therefore the RECOMMEND partnership will examine what kind of challenges the single regions have to face on their way to sustainable development and what can be learnt from each other. The three crucial questions will be:
  • How can regional public authorities and enterprises (especially SMEs) be made aware and convinced of the importance and efficiency of environmental management?
  • How can enterprises be supported effectively when starting or intensifying their orientation towards more eco-efficient and eco-innovative production?
  • Which will be the appropriate methodologies to stimulate a high level of commitment for sustainable development at the different levels of regional economies?
The RECOMMEND project consortium consists of 10 partners from 8 Member States. 5 partners are public authorities with responsibilities around business and the environment. The other partners have direct influence on the regional policies in order to raise eco efficiency via eco-management. The partners represent a good mixture of regions with different levels of the regional support for eco-management and eco-innovation. They decided to develop this project because it offers the opportunity for all regions to learn from each other, to foster networking among each other and to improve eco-efficiency amongst their businesses within their regions. Only a joint approach and international cooperation will help to reach the EUs contribution for worldwide environmental changes.

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The Interregional Cooperation Programme INTERREG IVC, financed by the European Union's
Regional Development Fund, helps Regions of Europe work together to share experience and
good practice in the areas of innovation, the knowledge economy, the environment and risk
prevention. EUR 302 million is available for project funding but, more than that, a wealth of
knowledge and potential solutions are also on hand for regional policy-makers.