BLUEPRINT to a Circular Economy Project Update: January 2022

Lily Chambers, BLUEPRINT Project Communications Officer 28th January 2022

Overview

The BLUEPRINT Project is off to a great start in 2022! Key achievements in January included:

The BLUEPRINT Model

The BLUEPRINT Model and accompanying guidance tool will help local authorities to understand and progress their transition to a circular economy. A first draft will be presented to partners in February.

The Essex County Council (ECC) Team will then continue to build the supporting guidance tool. This tool will be hosted on the BLUEPRINT website and will act as a self-help guide to steer local authorities through the information needed to implement a circular economy. The tool will link all components of the BLUEPRINT Project, including research reports, learning and training and circular economy solutions

Hand holding computer mouse
The model and guidance tool will be hosted on the BLUEPRINT website.
 

Circular Economy Training Programme

The majority of the 21 training modules have now been drafted and will be piloted in the next eight weeks. By March 2023, this training programme will upskill 2,000 individuals in circular competencies to help them secure the green jobs of the future.

ESITC Caen has already delivered its first module produced by ORÉE. Other partners will launch their modules in February, including the “Introduction to the Circular Economy” course launching with ECC’s ACL (Adult Community Learning).

Man in facemask stood in front of screen displaying BLUEPRINT Project powerpoint.
BLUEPRINT partner, ESITC Caen, has already delivered its first training module.
 

SHIFT Pilots

BLUEPRINT to a Circular Economy has launched a series of behaviour change campaigns (SHIFT Pilots) to encourage 78,000 people to embed circular practices in their everyday lives. As part of this work, BLUEPRINT has engaged over 55,000 people on Instagram, where the project’s officers share sustainable tips and tricks.

ECC also launched the Essex Library of Things, enabling residents to borrow a range of items for free, instead of buying them brand new. Meanwhile, Brighton and Hove City Council has been working to reduce textile waste, while PECT has completed a flat block engagement project and Kent County Council has been tackling period pollution.

The BLUEPRINT Schools Pilot has also completed its evaluation phase in Essex and Peterborough. Partners are reviewing its success and evaluating potential partnerships for the campaign’s second year.

All local authority partners have launched their own volunteer communities to help spread awareness of and engagement in the circular economy. In Essex, there are now 115 Love Essex Champions, with a challenge weekend planned for February to encourage further participation.

Silhouettes of people jumping in air in front of sunset.
Over 115 individuals have signed up to become Love Essex Champions.
 

Project Communications

ECC and EcoWise has started to plan the BLUEPRINT Roadshow, a week-long series of free virtual events planned for May 2022. Speakers will range from local authority offers and start-up entrepreneurs to construction experts and economists.

The project has also secured several pieces of press coverage, including Brighton & Hove Economic Partnership, In Your Community and Brighton & Hove Independent