Finnish company Pa-Ri Materia gives used office furniture a second life by refurbishing and selling it. The company purchases some of the furniture it recycles, while certain companies pay for their furniture to be recycled or reused.
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The Finnish foodtech company, Solar Foods, produces natural single-cell protein using simply renewable electricity and air, called Solein®. They bring to the market an entirely new kind of food that is both natural, and not dependent on agriculture, climate or the weather. The protein can be made in tough environmental conditions, such as the desert, the Arctic, or possibly even in space.
TOMRA's Circular Economy Division was established in January 2019 to speed up the transformation to a circular economy and shape future waste and resource systems.
TOMRA’s cutting-edge sorting technologies retain valuable resources by extracting high-purity fractions from mixed waste and metal streams in the most remote parts of the world. Its technology and equipment has been used in the world’s most advanced recycling plants.
TOMRA is the world leader in reverse vending solutions. It provides an automated method for collecting, sorting and handling used beverage containers for recycling or reuse. TOMRA has over 84 000 facilities in more than 60 markets.
In the Latvian town of Pļaviņas, Pļaviņu Gymnasium's circular canteen will provide students with nutritious, healthy food with a focus on waste minimisation and environmentally-friendly transportation.
Curaden Slovakia, the Slovak branch of the Swiss company Curaden AG, collects used toothbrushes for recycling in Slovakia. The company has been encouraging consumers to recycle their end-of-life products since 2017 through public awareness campaigns.
The Regional Association of Solid Waste Management Agencies of Central Macedonia and the Hellenic Ministry of the Environment and Energy present the pilot project "No more Christmas trees in landfills". The project recycles discarded trees, using the wood chips as a secondary raw material to make pellets, biofuels and chipboards, and as organic waste for composting.
The main objective of the INSIGHT project is to develop a new professional profile: the industrial symbiosis facilitator, who helps transition towards the design of a common curriculum and learning approach.
DuCoop presents innovative solutions for heating, water and energy management for a new district in Ghent with 400+ dwellings
DuCoop invests in sustainable technologies for the Nieuwe Dokken, the new circular districts in Ghent. The cooperative DuCoop provides systems for decentralized water sanitation with water re-use, 4thgeneration district heating and smart energy management. The company contributes to the climate ambitions of the city of Ghent, by closing the loops on water, energy and nutrients.
The Circularity Gap Report Norway is an in-depth analysis of how Norway consumes raw materials to fuel its societal needs. Currently, 97.6% of materials consumed each year never make it back into the economy.
Norway also has one of the highest per capita consumption rates in the world (44.3 tonnes per person). At 2.4%, its circularity rate is below the global average (8.6%). Each year Norway consumes 235 million tonnes of materials - metals, fossil fuels, biomass and minerals - to meet its internal needs.
However, the report reveals how Norway could see a 20-fold increase in its circularity by restructuring its businesses and industry through 6 key actions in the following fields:
- repair, reuse and recycle
- forestry and wood products.
The EU’s Circular Economy Action Plan: setting the world’s largest single market on a transition towards a circular economy
This case study on the EU's Circular Economy Plan (CEAP) by the Ellen McArthur Foundation reflects back on the steps which the European Commission took to take a lead in circular economy policies globally. From initially aiming at improving resource efficiency, to redefining growth with positive social, environmental, and economic benefits, this case study analyses this policy-making process.
The CEAP was a comprehensive body of legislative and non-legislative actions adopted in 2015, which aimed to transition the European economy from a linear to a circular model. It mapped out 54 actions, as well as four legislative proposals on waste.
By rethinking resource efficiency and material flows, the European Commission has developed a framework to promote systemic change.
The relationship between innovating business model and the circular economy is complex and rapidly evolving. So, how can we turn the focus on the circular economy into a driver for global sustainability?
The report titled "Incremental Circular Economy as a Serious Sustainability Problem" aims to understand the relationship between business model innovation and the circular economy.
It also seeks to guide companies, intrapreneurs in companies, and organisations working towards a circular economy. And, finally, it aims to provide a structure to understand very different approaches and their outcomes.
European Investment Bank and national promotional banks launch the Joint Initiative on Circular Economy
On average, a European citizen produces half a ton of waste a year. This amounts to 2.5 billion tons yearly for the entire European Union.
The Joint Initiative on Circular Economy (JICE) is a partnership between the EU’s largest national promotional banks and institutions and the European Investment Bank to invest at least €10 billion in the circular economy by 2023.
It provides loans, equity investment, guarantees, innovative financing structures and technical assistance.
The initiative will support projects that prevent and eliminate waste, increase resource efficiency and promote circular business models. Eligible projects can be submitted to the respective JICE partners.
This report analyses the scope of the plastic industry for the economy, the planet and society, as well as the policies at European and Spanish context to move towards a new plastic economy. Besides, the trade offs for companies are identified as key challenges.
Finally, the report shows the best practices of eleven companies from different sectors.
Pop Machina Research Project - Mapping the maker community ecosystem and the urban metabolism processes
The Pop-Machina project is an EU-funded research project exploring the maker movement contributions to cities’ transition to the circular economy.
This 2nd deliverable 'Mapping the maker community ecosystem and the urban metabolism processes' draws a collection of definitions to characterise the circular maker movement. A set of original tools, including a decision tree, a taxonomy, indicators and maps of the circular maker movement are developed to delineate the circular maker movement, with a focus on the Pop-Machina seven pilot cities.
Eventually, pilot story-boards present the current status of the circular maker movement in the city, with the disclosure of the circular maker passports, characterising the movement in each pilot.
The travel & tourism industry has touchpoints with most, if not all, key value chains and material flows in society and is therefore very relevant to consider for the circular economy transition.
To guide a sustainable recovery and development of the industry post COVID-19, this publication introduces key circular economy principles and concepts in the context of travel & tourism. This report provides private tourism operators with a robust introduction to circular economy concepts and how these apply to their operations and business transformation.
It also offers guidance to policymakers, regulators, and trade bodies on possible circular economy-inspired policy and business development directions.
The post-COVID-19 recovery plan should be extensive, as the effects of the pandemic on people and economy have, in many cases, been devastating. The recovery plan must also fully support the green transition to guarantee resilience over the long term.
The circular economy has the potential to raise EU GDP by billions of euros, and create around 700,000 extra jobs by 2030. With this in mind, the economic approach should be an integral part of that recovery. It is one of the messages of a new EUROCITIES policy statement on the EU Circular Economy Action Plan that sets out how cities, as significant engines for economic growth, can drive the circular economy to unlock economic, environmental and social benefits.
The briefing highlights the key findings of the background report "The Decarbonisation Benefits of Sectoral Circular Economy Actions", produced for the European Environment Agency by Ramboll, Ecologic Institute and Fraunhofer ISI.
The key messages are the following:
- Greater circularity and more efficient use of materials present new opportunities for further reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
- A new methodology can help to identify which circular economy actions in each sector can make the most promising contributions to meeting targets to reduce emissions and to achieving climate neutrality in Europe.
- In the buildings sector, selected circular economy actions can lead to reductions of up to 61 % in the materials-related greenhouse gases emitted across buildings’ life cycles.
The European Association of Chemical Distributors (Fecc) acknowledges the Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP) and supports the initiative for a more sustainable approach by ensuring that used resources are kept in the EU economy for as long as possible.
However, on behalf of the European chemical distribution sector, particularly the numerous SMEs it represents, Fecc would like to raise the following points:
- increasing recycled content in products while ensuring their performance and safety is paramount
- stakeholders from across the board – private companies, academia, and public bodies – can all benefit from circularity in the distribution sector
- promoting circular public procurement to empower consumers and public buyers is necessary and must be supported post-COVID-19.
Through the Brussels Regional Programme for a Circular Economy, the government of the Brussels-Capital Region has defined a framework to encourage the transformation of a linear economy (extract – produce – consume – dispose) into a circular economy (recover – produce – consume – reuse) within Brussels.
The be circular portal is the entry point to the BRPCE, and networks the regional government with businesses and civil society delivering change on the ground, while also providing information to entrepreneurs about the various direct and indirect support programmes available.
Its projects include the Annual General Meeting linking more than 300 Brussels and European participants, and yearly Prizes for Circular Entrepreneurship. In 2017, be circular supported 222 entrepreneurs and financed 139 projects. A year later, the programme had reached nearly 1,300 businesses.
be circular also collects good practices from the Brussels region, with a particular focus on its four priority sectors: construction, logistics, retail and waste management.
- l’ADEME Grand Est,
- la Région Grand Est,
- la CCI Grand Est,
- la Chambre Régionale des Métiers et de l'Artisanat Grand Est,
- la Direction Régionale de l'Environnement, de l'Aménagement et du Logement Grand Est,
- l’Agence de l’eau Rhin-Meuse,
- le Centre International de Ressources et d'Innovation pour le Developpement Durable,
- l’Institut National de l'Economie Circulaire
ont créé collectif-grandest.org, la plateforme collaborative de l’économie circulaire des acteurs de la région. Ce portail territorial rassemble les initiatives, les acteurs, les connaissances, les outils, les actualités et les événements de l’économie circulaire.
Espace de valorisation, de partage et de rencontre, il est au service des collectivités locales, des entreprises et des associations du territoire.
L’économie de la fonctionnalité et de la coopération consiste à fournir aux entreprises, individus ou territoires, des solutions integrées de services et de biens reposant sur la vente d’une performance d’usage ou d’un usage et non sur la simple vente de biens. Ces solutions doivent permettre une moindre consommation des ressources naturelles dans une perspective d’economie circulaire, un accroissement du bien-être des personnes et un developpement économique.
L’Institut est un organisme d’intermédiation dont l’objectif est de favoriser la coopération entre tous les acteurs (publics, parapublics et privé)s engagés dans la démarche relevant de l’économie fonctionnelle et de coopération.
Notre mission est de faire mieux connaître le modèle de l’EFC car il ne peut pas y avoir de transition sans transition économique et sans changement du travail.
Pour y arriver, l’Institut s’appuie sur
- un réseau de Clubs Territoriaux
- l'animation de 8 ateliers sur différents thèmes de recherche opérationnelle
Enfin l’Institut assure la promotion, la communication et la diffusion du modèle de développement de l’EFC en France, en Europe et à l’international.
The Circular Economy Task Force is a business group convened by the Green Alliance. It is a forum for policy, innovation and business thinking on resource use in the UK and is currently chaired by Colin Church, chief executive of IOM3. This task force has already produced a number of reports on resource policy, recycling opportunities and manufacturing productivity.
The task force’s most recent report, Completing the Circle, has placed a spotlight on the amount of material often lost to the economy, once collected, and proposes new measures to complement recycling targets which would help to 'pull' these materials back into use in manufacturing.
Some of the task force's recommendations were picked up by the UK’s Environmental Audit Committee’s Growing a circular economy report, and by the Scottish Government’s Resource Use and the Circular Economy inquiry.
The task force has also established the North Sea Resource Roundabout project, working with the Embassy of the Netherlands in the UK to identify the regulatory barriers to the trade and use of recycled materials across European countries, and working with regulators to develop solutions.
The current members of the task force are Kingfisher, Viridor, Walgreens Boots Alliance, SUEZ recycling and recovery UK, and Veolia.
Versnellingshuis Nederland Circulair! (Netherlands Circular Accelerator) is a business support network created by VNO-NCW / MKB Nederland, their regional affiliates and the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water. Despite much interest in the circular transition, creating a successful enterprise that effectively keeps resources and products in use longer is not that straightforward due to a lack of knowledge and too little collaboration with stakeholders.
The Versnellinshuis helps overcome these challenges by:
- improving the preconditions for circular entrepreneurship through dissemination of financing opportunities, promotion of market incentives and discussion on regulatory barriers at regional, national and European levels
- matchmaking entrepreneurs across regions and value chains to stimulate sustainable solutions.
In addition to hosting a website for circular innovators to connect directly, the Versnellingshuis launches 5 groundbreaking projects and fosters 3 regional collaborations yearly and contributes to a circular transition with the following programmes as well:
- Holland Circular Hotspot: network for international promotion of Dutch CE activities
- VANG: knowledge and best practice exchange for local authority waste managers
- Plastic Pact NL: bringing 75 value chain players together to stimulate less plastic and more recycling.
For a brief overview, view the video below:
Circwaste is a 7-year LIFE IP project that promotes efficient use of material flows, waste prevention and new waste and resource management concepts. It is coordinated by the Circular Economy Service Centre established by the Finnish Environment Institute.
The Service Centre provides regional operators with expert support and disseminates information on good practices in the context of the circular economy. It distributes information on material-efficient public procurement, harmful substances, establishing industrial symbioses and the possibilities of funding new initiatives. In particular, it supports regional working groups and a select number of pioneering municipalities in preparing their own circular economy roadmaps, which should be adopted by late 2019.
A regional cooperation network provides support and expert assistance for developing the circular economy and implementing the national waste plan in Southwest Finland, Central Finland, South Karelia and North Karelia.
The circwaste.fi portal (in English), which distributes information on national good practices in circular economy, similar to 'Good news from Finland', is an abridged version of the Finnish-language service materiaalitkiertoon.fi.
To learn more about circwaste activities watch the video below:
The Swedish Life Cycle Center is an initiative by the Swedish Energy Agency, hosted by Chalmers University of Technology, which strengthens collaboration and engages more organizations to apply a life cyle perspective in Sweden.
The platform, designed for academia, industry, research institutes and government agencies, has been active for 20+ years, counts 14 partners and is supported by 7 government agencies. In 2018, it organized 80 meetings for 370 lifecycle professionals.
The lifecycle center accomplishes its objectives with partnerships for several activities such as: network conferences, seminars, webinars, education, initiating research projects, collaboration and communication activities.
The Circular Economy Academy is a free mentoring and support programme, set up by the Rediscovery Centre, which is the National Centre for the Circular Economy in Ireland. The programme assists social enterprises and community organisations in any part of Ireland to move their activities towards sustainability and embrace the circular economy.
The Academy provides business support services built on the Rediscovery Centre’s vast knowledge of social enterprise development and design thinking concepts. The service includes advice for start-up, circular business planning, development, funding, diversification, and training. The Academy also supports organisations to replicate the Rediscovery Centre’s successful paint, furniture, fashion and furniture reuse initiatives.
Each service is tailored to suit the needs of the participating organisation. The Academy also offers incubation and regional clinics.
State of Green is a not-for-profit, public-private partnership from Denmark. It facilitates relations with international stakeholders and is a one-point entry to more than 500 leading Danish players working to drive the global transition to a sustainable, low-carbon, resource-efficient society.
As "Moving towards a circular economy" is one of the network's four global challenges, State of Green is highly active in communicating Denmark's policy and business leadership in this field. Since inception, the platform has:
The UK Circular Plastics Network (UKCPN) brings together diverse users of plastic products to reduce plastic waste entering the environment through a programme of networking and knowledge-sharing events, and related support activities.
- Eliminating the volume of plastic waste arising from within the UK.
- Raising awareness and sharing best practice to improve the rate of UK plastic recycling.
- Sharing best practices to reduce confusion among citizens and highlighting user-centred design.
- Showcasing innovation focused on reducing the amount of plastic ending up in the environment.
With support from UK Research and Innovation, UKCPN forms part of the Plastics Research Innovation Fund (PRIF), which is engaging Britain’s best scientists and innovators to help move the country towards more circular economic and sustainable approaches to plastics.
The two-year programme brings together those with solutions to the problem and facilitates circular supply chain engagement with those solutions. The UKPCN will host more than 12 events during this period and launch a website for the community to interact directly, while also publishing a directory of companies active in this sector as a landscape map accessible to all members.
UKCPN also has signed up as an engagement partner of the UK Plastics Pact.
The Global Sustainable Technology and Innovation Community (G-STIC) plays a crucial role in strengthening interactions between the digital and circular community, and the online G-STIC Conference on 26-28 October is the place to join the discussion on how to spur all players and make digitalisation the decisive instrument for accelerating circular economy.
The 2020 edition of EU Green Week 2020, focussing on nature and biodiversity, is taking place from 19 to 22 October 2020 in an entirely virtual format. Join exciting virtual discussions on how protecting and restoring nature can stimulate recovery and create jobs, helping us to build more resilient and healthier societies.
Consumer buy-in is key to unlocking the potential of circular approaches. How can we encourage consumers to engage in the circular economy? Drawing on the results of CIRC4Life, the webinar on "How to encourage consumer engagement in the circular economy?" on 20 October 2020 will present examples of circular business models and discuss how to engage consumers in circular practices.
Drawing on the results of CIRC4Life, which implements circular economy business models in value chains, the webinar on "Incentivising new circular economy business models" on 14 October will present examples of circular business models and discuss barriers, enablers and the new Circular Economy Action Plan's role in accelerating towards a circular transition.
The EU Circular Talks is a new exchange concept of the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform. It aims to encourage stakeholders to interact and discuss the circular economy topics in the platform.
The workshop aims to provide a platform to share good practice, experience and lessons learnt in the use of packaging in the circular economy.
Are you a programme owner or a policy maker keen to advance the transition to a circular economy? Join CICERONE in building a circular economy joint programming platform to enable more cooperation!
The project LOOP-Ports – Circular Economy Network of Ports will hold its final conference on 16 December 2020 to disseminate its results, with a special emphasis on the analysis of the barriers faced by the actors of the maritime-port sector when implementing circular economy.
Sign in to the online #EURegionsWeek event, on 13 October 2020, to discover the evaluation method developed to assess circular economy projects.
This European Environmental Agency event on 11 November from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. (CET) is aimed at identifying opportunities for harnessing the circularity potential of buildings and synergies with other policy areas such as climate change. It is addressed to policy-makers, NGOs, academia and also the wider public.
The annual Circular Nonwovens Forum creates a platform for an in-depth engagement with stakeholders on challenges and opportunities in the pursuit of a circular economy for nonwovens, and ollectively finding opportunities to accelerate this transition. Converted into a webinar for 2020, it will cover 5 presentations and break-out sessions to stimulate the discussions among the participants.
As part of the European Vocational Skills Week, the European Commission's Directorate-General for Employment has launched Excellence Awards to celebrate the good practices and innovative work of Vocational Education and Training providers, trainers, tutors, companies, apprentices, etc.
Take five minutes to answer to few questions on the possible bio-based impact to the circular economy transition and green recovery.
ACR+ has created 3 new working groups on circular economy focusing on governance, procurement, and monitoring. They will bring together front-runners and learners to work on improving local and regional strategies on circular economy and resource efficiency.
LIFE - the European Programme for the Environment and Climate Action - has been financing Eco-Innovation and Circular Economy related projects since its start in 1992. The call for LIFE 2020 proposals is now open, with more than €450 million earmarked for nature conservation, environmental protection and climate action projects.
GRAMOFON, a European project coordinated by the Spanish Plastics Technology Centre AIMPLAS, has ended after 42 months, with very promising results on CO2 capture. New materials for capturing CO2 could be used to reduce industrial emissions and as catalysts.
In April 2020, European Aluminium launched its Circular Aluminium Action Plan, a strategy for achieving aluminium’s full potential for a circular economy by 2030.
All citizens and the wider community of stakeholders are welcome to express their views in a consultation on Waste shipments – revision of EU rules before 30 July 2020 (midnight CEST).
Business4Change is a 2-day Hackathon and initiative of the European Commission to be held on 16-17 November 2020 in Brussels, Belgium. The focus of the Hackathon is to support businesses with their transition to the circular economy. They are currently looking for "challenge owners" to pitch the circular challenges they are facing.
Repair Café Paranduskohvik volunteers give broken household items a new life in Tartu, Estonia.
The Rediscovery Centre and the Environmental Protection Agency hosted a webinar on the European Commission’s recently released Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP) on 7 May 2020.
The Coordination Group of the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform plays a key role in guiding the Platform's activities: reinforcing interaction between stakeholders, facilitating the exchange of good practices and fostering a European debate on how to transition to a circular economy.
On the 24th of May, C&A Foundation, together with Ecopreneur.EU hosted a Circular Fashion Policy Lab in Brussels at the European Economic and Social Committee in the context of the Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform. The purpose of the event was to bring together representatives from across the fashion industry to discuss key policy measures to make a meaningful impact for a green economy.
Circular Economy Stakeholder Conference on 20/21 February: Delivering on the Circular Economy - What's next?
Two years after the adoption of the first EU Circular Economy Package, more than half of the initiatives included in the Action Plan were delivered. The first Circular Economy Stakeholder Annual Conference took place in Brussels in February 2018 to discuss upcoming deliverables, explore new areas of action, and share the first achievements of the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform.