Secretary of State for the Environment visits EEUM Interfaces

Cândida Vilarinho, Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Minho and Chair of the Board of Directors of the CVR – Centre for Waste Recovery, received the Secretary of State for the Environment, Hugo Polido Pires, at the facilities of the Technology and Innovation Centre on 26 February.

The member of the Government visited the CVR’s infrastructures and laboratories and learned about the Centre’s work in the areas of sustainability and the circular economy and some of its most relevant research, development and innovation projects in these areas.

After attending the opening session of the 6th edition of the Wastes Conference, which took place in Coimbra in September 2023, the Secretary of State travelled to UMinho’s Azurém campus in Guimarães, praising the work that the CVR does for the region and the industry, allowing it to “give companies new clues and other angles on how they can add value to their business and how they can gradually change the paradigm of how they produce”.

Hugo Polido Pires believes that the role of the CVR, “which transfers knowledge to companies, is fundamental.”

Stressing the need for a transition and a change in behaviour, the Secretary of State acknowledges that “Portugal is still far behind on its targets”, with around 56% of the waste produced going to landfill. By 2035 – says the Secretary of State – the aim is to reach 10 per cent.

Hugo Polido Pires therefore believes that “this reuse of materials and recovery of resources is absolutely essential”.

Access the statements made by the Secretary of State for the Environment as part of this visit, here .


On the same day, Hugo Pires also had the opportunity to visit Fibrenamics, where he got to know some research projects and the potential of fibres in different areas, especially sustainability and circularity, in a conversation with Raúl Fangueiro, also a professor at the School of Engineering. During his visit to PIEP – Polo de Inovação em Engenharia de Polímeros (Innovation Centre for Polymer Engineering), Hugo Pires was also able to learn about the innovative materials, products and solutions that this interface is developing in partnership with industry, which will be key to promoting Portugal’s increased competitiveness and resilience

The Secretary of State for the Environment was thus made more aware of the work of these UMinho interfaces that operate in the areas of Engineering, and their commitment to transferring and valorising knowledge for the business fabric, at the service of the economy and society.