What was the main objective when the European Union was born? Many people think that it was a purely commercial reason, but it really was “to promote peace” in a continent convulsed by two world wars. This argument was yesterday explained by the professor of International Law and EU Adrià Calvet, in a speech in English, aimed at students from Secondary School in the school El Cim at the Vapor Universitari in Terrassa. It was attended by 90 people, including students and teachers, with more than 30 of them from schools in Germany, Romania and Scotland, because El Cim is participating in a European project called The voice of young Europe within the Erasmus +. This project aims to make young people think about wich Europe we want for their future and their role in democratic participation. The school contacted the service of European and International Affairs of the City Council for organizing this conference, titled EU citizenship: Do you feel European? Rights and benefits of living in the EU. Before his speech, the City Councillor for European and International Affairs, Amadeu Aguado, said that “we are at a moment of great importance for the European Union and the states and citizens who live in” at a time with significant threats as “populism and escalating regression of the concept of democracy.” The principal of El Cim, Sílvia Samaniego also stressed the commitment of a European school (which also participated in European Comenius and offers intensive english courses in Ireland and England) and the fact that the council “opened us his doors when we did the proposal.”
Calvet gave an overview of the history of the European Union, with special emphasis in the original objectives that had to do with “promoting peace, freedom, security and justice, internal market and union monetary and economic” and the values ​​like “freedom, human rights and human dignity” although what happens with the refugee situation nowadays. The professor of the Rovira i Virgili explained to the students how the union was born with just six states and how gradually grew to 9, 10, 12 (1986, when was joined by Spain) and even 28 today, but with the possibility to become 27 with the British Brexit.
Calvet highlighted the vocation of union, with huge and small countries together. The feeling of being European, he added, perhaps is not yet fully established, but considers significant that there are parts of the world where someone will direct you as saying that you are “European”. To strength the power of the EU, Calvet said that “more than half of the world’s humanitarian aid comes from the European Union,” while 24% is in the US and 8% in Japan.
Calvet highlighted its European feeling because “I have traveled, I’ve been a volunteer, I have studied and worked across Europe thanks to treaties mobility. I am, therefore, son of the Union”.
At the end of his speech, the students could ask him several questions about issues such as, among others, multilingualism, Europe’s relationship with Russia, the role of Donald Trump, and a possible future enlargement of the EU.

Link to Canal Terrassa (local TV): Canal Terrassa TV news


The city of Terrassa, Catalonia, has installed citywide 920 large smart rubbish-bins, to obtain real data about the routes the rubbish collection lorries are taking and the frequency of the pick-up for the different kind of bins.

The system works with a sensor installed in the arm of the lorry that reads the electronic label on the bin that is going to be emptied. Then, the lorry sends its GPS data and bin id to Terrassa’s Sentilo platform, which provides these data to management applications. The information will also be published in the City Hall web, so every citizen will be able to know when their nearest bins have been emptied.

More information: http://blogs.terrassa.cat/smarterrassa/?p=1708

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Together with the cities of Oslo, Prague, Brno, Lyon, Zurich, Lille, Brussels, Vienna and Turin, the City of Terrassa will be involved in the SPIMA (Spatial Dynamics and Strategic Planning in Metropolitan Areas) project of ESPON.

ESPON (the European Observation Network for territorial development and cohesion) is a comprehensive spatial observation network which develops comparative studies and scenarios about spatial development dynamics. Building on the many years of research carried out by the EUROCITIES Metropolitan Areas Working Group, ESPON and the project partners will collect and analyse data. The main issue to research is how spatial development works on a metropolitan level.

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The “Plaque of Honour” will be delivered to Terrassa the 10th November at 19:00  by Mr. Jordi Xuclà, parliamentarian of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.

Mr. Xavier Ferrer, president of the Catalan Council of the European Movement, will also give a speech on the European trajectory of Terrassa.

The event will include the delivery of scholarships and educative projects, with a speech by an ex-Erasmus student and a short concert at the end by some students from the Conservatory of the city.

The event will be opened to all the citizens.

See you there!

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The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe  awarded Terrassa a new prize in recognition of the work done in favour of European integration and promotion of the European ideal: “The Plaque of Honour” 2015. Terrassa had already won “The European Diploma” in 2009 and “The Flag of Honour” in 2010.