Umwelt Verein Tirol
Commitment with a lot of energy for the environment and for a sustainable use of resources
The association was founded in 1994 under the name ‘Verein der Tiroler Abfall- und Umweltberater:innen’ and renamed in March 2008 to ‘Umwelt Verein Tirol’, the interest group of people working in ecological advisory professions in Tirol. The more than 100 people in the association work, among other things, as waste consultants in municipalities and institutions, but also in related ecological fields such as environmental protection and nature conservation. Many of the members work in Tyrolean municipalities and advise citizens on all environmental issues. They also organise and manage waste management in the municipalities.
The Umwelt Verein Tirol ensures the exchange and transfer of information between the environmental advisors and also organises their further training. For example, twice a year conferences are held for all Tyrolean environmental advisors in cooperation with the Department of Environmental Protection of the Office of the Tyrolean Provincial Government. According to the statutes of the Umwelt Verein Tirol, new elections take place every 3 years. As is customary for associations, the chairman Michael Kneisl, together with the managing director Martin Baumann, reported on projects of the past period 2019 – 2021. As highlights and at the same time perennial issues, the general assembly – this time 55 Tyrolean waste and environmental advisors from all Tyrolean districts were present – was informed about the following projects and activities:
Environmental education programme
Within the framework of the environmental education programme, environmental educators of the Umwelt Verein Tirol conduct experience- and practice-oriented teaching units and workshops in educational institutions, from kindergartens to primary schools, new secondary schools, polytechnic courses, grammar schools as well as in vocational and secondary schools. The environmental education programme is funded by the province of Tirol, provided that the maintainers of the educational institutions contribute 50 % of the costs of teaching units. The cost of a teaching unit for municipalities after deduction of the state subsidy is therefore only € 32.50. In the reporting period 2019 – 2021, due to the pandemic, only 1500 instead of the planned 3000 and already agreed teaching units could be carried out because of the ban on external lecturers entering the area.
Tyrolean Environmental Consultant Conferences
Within the framework of the environmental education programme, Umwelt Verein Tirol organises an annual spring and autumn conference on behalf of the Department of Environmental Protection of the Office of the Tyrolean Provincial Government. At these conferences, the Tyrolean environmental advisors are informed about innovations in the field of waste and recycling management as well as about current developments in the field of environmental and climate protection. The focal points of the spring meeting on 21 April 2022 were the topics of sustainability advice for companies, the Tyrolean neophyte strategy, the Tirol’s training offensive with the training courses for qualified persons and Tyrolean waste and environmental advisors, as well as the ReUse project Tyrolean school bag collection, which will be organised for refugee children from Ukraine in 2022.
The members of the association are at the disposal of all population groups, schools, associations, institutions as well as trade and commercial enterprises and especially also of decision-makers in the economy and those with political responsibility as contact persons for ecologically, economically and socially sustainable development in Tirol.
In addition, there is a nationwide association of waste consultants, VABÖ (www.vaboe.at), which was co-founded by Umwelt Verein Tirol and is continuously supported by it. The Umwelt Verein Tirol has supported many initiatives in the field of ecology and continues to do so, e.g. in the initiative ‘Mehrweg.at’ (www.mehrweg.at), which fights against the increase of disposable products, especially in the field of beverage packaging.