"Impressing management tools in highly complex business area"

ECO Consult sucessfully completes ISO certification process

2019-06/ ECO Consult is now certified along EN ISO 9001:2015. The related certificate was issued May 28th, following a very successful final audit. The auditing covered the whole of ECO's quality assurance policy, from IT infrastructure over workflow organization up to client satisfaction monitoring and evaluation and institutional learning. ECO's operative and management procedures were acclaimed by the auditor-in-charge as reavealing an "extraordinarily high level of conformity" with ISO standards. The rating  pertained to ECO's analytical instruments for attaining client satisfaction ('very good'), electronic documentation for monitoring, controlling and risk assessment ('manifold and adapted to the working environment'), interlinked working via cloud computing, and to provisions for keeping up sustained market presence. In the report ECO Consult is mentioned working with an array of "impressing management tools in a highly complex business area".

Investing in ISO certification, which tends to consume some logistics and time resources by all parties of company management and staff, is increasingly becoming a prerequisite for international business transactions. Compliance with EN ISO 9001:2015 standards will now be regularly monitored. An independent follow-up supervision audit is scheduled.

ECO Consult wraps up standards for briquette production for CTCN

Turning organic waste into sustainable biofuel in sub-Saharan Africa: Manual for capacitation

2019-05/ Briquette production techniques are highly required in regions of sub-Saharan Africa that wish to improve their solid fuels waste management, and introduce climate-smart combustion technologies at a time. In order to replace charcoal and firewood by briquettes from non-wood fibres implementation strategies are needed that are situation-specific and consider users' perspectives. For the UN's Climate Technology Centre & Network (CTCN) ECO Consult has now condensed contextual expertise from The Gambia in a brochure "Briquette production manual: Basic and advanced technology". It helps capacitate women’s groups for income generation and improve the waste management value and supply chain.

The manual by ECO Consult's Dr. Mike Temmerman was produced in the context of CTCN's technical assistance project "Organic wastes for Energy and Smallholder Livelihood" in The Gambia. Here, as in other sub-Saharan countries solid waste management is crucial for maintaining public health, in cities and rural areas alike. Turning biowaste such as ground nuts/coconut shells, corn cobs or sawdust into carbonized fuels is a promising option to stimulate waste collection. On the side of sustainable fuel provision, biomass energy has many advantages as it stems from ubiquitous and affordable resources, creates jobs, ensures diversification and energy security and may be deemed a climate-smart alternative. Among briquettes' obvious advantages are price, length of combustion and possibility of standardization. 

The manual explores general rules for briquette projects, touches on the cost structure of briquette production and offers step-by-step advise on how to proceed in practice (from prior equipment to drying). Models of training and product evaluation forms and a reporting template are annexed separately.

In The Gambia resources for briquette production are abundant and available. But a rigorous analysis of the briquette value chain and of possible scenarios for producing and selling revealed that by no means all production strategies are viable or sustainable. As proven by ECO Consult in other contexts, profitable value chain models are possible though, if the the production chain is organised in stages and target groups are capacitated on a regular basis. Practitioners in the area of biowaste technology can now resort to the booklet as a compact tool to this end.
> view manual (PDF, web version, 7.2 MB)

Related project

Brazil:

Green Markets and Sustainable Consumption The project promotes value chains and marketing of products from family farming and indigeneous peoples' origin, based on the region's biodiversity. State administration, communities, companies and science are supported — in order to create alternative incomes to forest logging, and in favour of a sustainable development of the Brazilian Amazon. More...


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