In response to the global waste crisis and aligning with global commitments to Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) net zero standards and targets, an international consortium led by Rolando Berger and BEAH GroupIn collaboration with DFINITY Foundationand the International Solid Waste Association (ISWA)demonstrated the world’s first global incentive system to counteract the solid waste footprint.
Supported by the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MoCCaE) and the COP28 Presidency, the public-private coalition presented the Voluntary Recycling Credits (VRC) Initiative at the UAE Pavilion at COP28, marking a new era of positive climate action.
Commenting on the initiative, Hani Tohme, Managing Partner, Roland Berger Middle East, saying,
“The VRC Initiative is designed to address a particular market gap: as the private sector makes more commitments towards circularity and net zero emissions, we also recognize significant barriers to meeting it. Double counting, transparency, profitability. We decided to address it through strong collaboration and exchange between the public and private sectors, with a transnational approach and a cooperative mentality. “The involvement of different stakeholders across countries and multiple layers of the value chain is a crucial part of VRC’s value proposition, which aims for a joint effort to shape future industry standards.”
Announced in Paris in May 2023 by Roland Berger, BEEAH Group, and ISWA apart from the Intergovernmental Negotiation Committee on Plastic Pollution (INC-2) in Paris, the VRC Initiative is poised to have a significant impact and transform global recycling practices. It emphasizes the responsibility of all stakeholders to mitigate their environmental impact, promoting standardized processes and transparency in offset activities. The proof of concept for the VRC initiative was successfully developed and the first live transaction was exhibited at the UAE Pavilion, COP28, on December 4, 2023. The full-scale platform will be developed and officially launched in 2024 is actively seeking project investors, ecosystem partners for recycling credit trading, and technology collaborators to grow the system globally.
Khaled Al Huraimel, CEO of BEEAH Group, commented on the VRC initiative: indicating,
“BEEAH Group has been working tirelessly towards a landfill-free future, which we see as closely linked to delivering on the UAE’s Net Zero 2050 Strategic Initiative and the broader sustainability agenda. As we drive higher waste diversion rates from landfills, accelerate the circular economy and support emissions reductions in the UAE and the region, we want to enable a similar positive impact globally. The VRC Initiative is a standardized incentive that includes all stakeholders from all sectors, from waste collectors and recycling companies to large organizations that commit to addressing the environmental impact of waste produced in their operations.
In the face of a growing global waste crisis, the world is battling staggering waste generation. Annually, individuals produce approximately 2 billion tons of municipal solid waste. When industrial, electronic, agricultural and other economic activities are accounted for, this figure rises to an alarming 17 to 18 billion tons. Since only half of this waste is managed, the remaining portion contributes to significant environmental damage through dumping, dumping and burning in landfills, affecting soils, water resources and air quality.
To counteract this situation, the VRC Initiative establishes standardized rules and processes to allow institutions to offset their solid waste footprint through a transparent ecosystem. This mechanism involves trading “recycling credits” on a blockchain-based marketplace, ensuring auditable and secure transactions between waste offsetters and recycling companies. The initiative, which emphasizes the principle of additionality to encourage greater recycling around the world, aims to promote the collection and recycling of solid materials, promoting the management of all types of waste.
He DFINITY FoundationThe technological partner of this initiative will provide a solution based on the Internet Computer blockchain that will instill confidence, credibility and scalability in the project, guaranteeing its viability as a global standard for recycling incentives.
“The VRC platform is a great showcase of how we use Web3 technology to address environmental issues. Dfinity’s Internet Computer Protocol technology is a perfect match for this.”
says Pierre Samaties, partner and global director of Digital Assets and Web3.
Dominic Williams, founder and chief scientist of the DFINITY Foundation expressed his opinion on the VRC initiative,
“The Internet Computer is a fully decentralized and tamper-proof network. It ensures a transparent, auditable and secure record of recycling credits and transactions. This transparency ensures that all parties, whether waste producers or recyclers, can trust “the veracity of the information. credits that they buy, sell or exchange.”
Brazil welcomes the VRC Initiative, which aligns perfectly with the country’s current strong efforts to move from a linear to a circular economy. Highlighting the importance of efficient waste management, Adalberto Maluf, National Secretary of Urban Environment and Environmental Quality of the Ministry of the Environment of Brazil, attended the event and shared that the country aspires to continue developing and exhibiting this initiative, with the intention to present it as a global standard at COP30 in Brazil. He highlighted the important social role that this initiative could bring by taking account of recyclers, an important social category for the country.
News source: Emirates News Agency