Bernadette O’Brien

Senior Banknote Production Expert

European Central Bank (ECB) __ Germany

Tuesday 24/03/2021

Plenary __ Currency and identity: preparing for the future

Bernadette O’Brien is a Senior Banknote Production Expert in the Banknote Directorate of the European Central Bank (ECB), specialising in the environmental, health and safety aspects of euro banknote production.

Bernadette holds a BSc (Hons) in Chemistry. She began her career in the pharmaceutical industry before moving into currency production at the Central Bank of Ireland in 2010 and joined the ECB in 2015.

Improving the environmental sustainability of euro banknotes

The European Central Bank Directorate Banknotes seeks to ensure that euro banknotes become more sustainable and environmentally friendly. This presentation will focus on some of the on-going initiatives to achieve this goal, such as the sustainable cotton programme, environmental improvements to banknote waste and recycling, and the study to assess the environmental impact of euro banknotes using the Product Environmental Footprint (PEF) method.