Towards a climate neutral EU:
efficient allocation of EU funds

ECOTIC Caravan – raising awareness of the importance of environmentally sound management of WEEE

Organisation: Focus Eko Center Website: Added: September 14, 2022
Project start date: February 06, 2014
Project end date: February 06, 2016


Waste of electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) poses a threat to the environment and to health. It is one of the fastest growing waste sources in the European Union, making up around 4% of municipal waste. According to a 2007 United Nations study, WEEE gathered from across the EU27 amounted to an estimated 8.3 – 9.1 million tonnes per year, growing at an estimated 3–5% each year. Currently a large proportion of this is disposed in landfills or in iron scrap sites depending on local or national practices. The main objectives of the ECOTIC LIFE+ Caravan project were to raise awareness of the environmental issues surrounding the manufacture and use of electrical and electronic equipment (EEE), the handling of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) and its treatment and recovery, including reuse and recycling. The project also aimed to promote green energy, targeting in particular households and schoolchildren in Romania, but also to engage all relevant stakeholders in a joint effort to tackle the issue at national, regional and local level. An awareness campaign would highlight the risks posed by WEEE on both the environment and on human health, if it is not properly managed, treated and recovered. Separate collection and the sorting and treatment of WEEE would be encouraged as a precondition for further actions in effective WEEE management. The campaign focused on raising awareness and providing information about: 1. Hazardous substances in WEEE; 2. Recycling of electronic devices; 3. Electronic equipment that is potentially the most harmful to the environment and human health; 4. Location of collection facilities; and 5. Further treatment and recovery of e-waste. Also great effort was put into offering a WEEE collection possibility. There were three main target groups – schoolchildren and teachers; households and the general public; and local authorities – all of whom were successfully reached in higher than expected numbers. At the heart of the project’s information campaign was the ‘ECOTIC Caravan’ a vehicle bought second-hand, and adapted to serve as a mobile showroom (with the capacity of an average school class-room). This mobile exhibition was fitted out to showcase 10 examples of dismantled, typical electronic devices, such as a washing-machine and mobile phone. The interior provided information and helped raise awareness on environmental hazards associated with WEEE and on recycling and reuse possibilities. Tablets were also available for visitors (usually schoolchildren) to play a special ‘WEEE game’ developed during the project.

Financial data

Total: 361,321 EUR, from which EU contributions 159,711 EUR (45%)


With the overall aim of increasing knowledge about the correct handling of WEEE, its treatment and recovery; and to promote green energy for households and schoolchildren, the caravan travelled across the country, visiting a total of 206 schools under the title “Eco days in your school”. As well as these visits, it stopped-over at selected towns for periods of 2-3 days carrying out local campaigns (‘Recycling days in your city’) targeting the local population. Various other educational and publicity-raising activities were also carried out. These included: presentations on WEEE, its collection, reuse and recovery. Games and competitions e.g. raffles were also organised, to highlight the project’s aims. The project surpassed most objectives. At the end, it had generated more interest among schools – pupils and their teachers – than originally expected: 206 schools were visited, compared with the forecast of 150. Similarly, almost 85 000 pupils visited the caravan exhibition, participating in 765 eco-activities. This was higher than the 10000 predicted. Meanwhile, at the public places visited, 36 000 visitors received information about the project, compared with the expected figure of 20 000. And at 54 additional stops, at the car-parks of large retail stores, a further 33 000 visitors received information. Media attention was also higher than expected (i.e. there were 286 media mentions, compared with an expected 150). The website was another key dissemination tool – receiving 15 000 visits during the project period, almost double the expected number. Moreover, the project organised 10 local authority workshops, attracting a total of 265 participants, and organised four conferences. Here too, expected numbers of participants were higher than estimated in the project proposal. Finally, the project’s demonstration value was, and remains, very high, as the exhibition as well as the presentations for different target groups have been very well received. By opting for a mobile exhibition, the project was able to assemble a large and steady stream of attendees. The beneficiary is confident the idea can easily be replicated in other countries. Importantly, most of the project activities are continuing in the after-LIFE period, including the use of the caravan as an awareness raising tool, continued school campaigns, and continuation of general dissemination and networking activities (see for example collection points: ).

Information sources

Ecotic Organization website

Other info

European Climate Initiative (EUKI)
This project is part of the European Climate Initiative (EUKI). EUKI is a project financing instrument by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK). The EUKI competition for project ideas is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. It is the overarching goal of the EUKI to foster climate cooperation within the European Union (EU) in order to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions.