The Horizon-2020 SHAREBOX project promoted industrial symbiosis by developing an online platform providing information on waste resources (i.e. energy, water, residues, etc.) that could be used to replace primary resources, to plant managers and other decision-makers.
You are here
Alchemia-nova, the Institute for innovative phytochemistry and closed loop processes, has colloborated with vertECO, GRETA and LooPi to develop three types of green walls, which treat wastewater to service water standards and create plant biomass and fertiliser.
Beewraps by Malu is a food packaging material designed and produced by a Polish family company to replace food foil, aluminum foil or disposable plastic containers with a biodegradable and reusable alternative.
reWINE LIFE is a Catalonian project, running from 2016 to 2020 and co-financed by the EU's LIFE Programme. It sought to demonstrate the viability of reusing glass bottles in the local wine industry.
Orybany is an ethical concept store located in the heart of Brussels working with a community of artisans and designers connected by the same values: "Human, Ethical and Diversity".
Veolia has been extending the useful life of plastic bottles using a PET (Poly Ethylene Terephthalate) plastic recycling process. A mechanical and chemical recovery process transforms the PET flakes into a product suitable for use with food.
Veolia has developed expertise and built specific facilities to tackle the complex process of treating, depolluting and dismantling Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE). This is a valuable source of recyclable raw materials: ferrous metals, plastics and precious metals can all be recovered and reused.
The SAWYER project: identifying skills and safety needs for the furniture sector's circular transition
The SAWYER project aims to facilitate the transition of European furniture companies to a more circular economy. The project ran from February 2020 to March 2021, studying the main legislative and voluntary instruments that can facilitate this transition.
I:CO is an international circular solutions provider for the collection, certified sorting, reuse and recycling of clothing and shoes. They aim to support innovative new recycling technologies which help close the loop of production cycles.
EU legislation includes recycling targets for municipal, construction and demolition, and electronic waste. This European Environment Agency briefing shows that there is significant potential to increase recycling from all of these streams.
However, to fully exploit this potential, current barriers need to be overcome. This also requires strong implementation of targeted regulations to increase separate collection.
Implementing new policy measures, some of which are already included in the EU 2020 Circular Economy Action Plan, can both directly and indirectly exploit the potential for increased recycling.
More and more plastic products are being labelled as compostable, biodegradable, oxo-degradable or bio-based. However, plastics made from bio-based materials are not necessarily compostable or biodegradable. Moreover, plastics that do biodegrade can be made from fossil fuel-based materials.
What is the difference between compostable and biodegradable? What happens to biodegradable and compostable plastics when they are littered? Can citizens compost such products in their own gardens? Can such plastics be recycled?
The brochure "From Linear to Circular in the Textile and Apparel Industries - Let’s make the circular shift together" aims to give a push towards a circular textile industry. Circular economy strategies and business models have the potential to offer solutions for the textile industry:
- use renewable sources
- phase out dangerous substances
- increase utilisation and
- radically improve reuse and recycling.
The brochure highlights Dutch circular frontrunners that make a change - just a fraction of the initiatives, organisations and technologies available. Only the most inspiring examples have been selected, with a potential to be upscaled and implemented in other parts of the world, hoping that they will also inspire and encourage others to collaborate and make a change.
Bio-waste – mainly food and garden waste – is a key waste stream with a high potential for contributing to a more circular economy.
This European Environmental Agency Report provides an overview of bio-waste generation, prevention, collection, and treatment in Europe.
Bio-waste accounts for more than 34 % of the municipal solid waste. Many countries in Europe are far from capturing bio-waste's full potential. Food waste accounts for nearly 60 % of all bio-waste from households and similar sources. Preventing it is felt as an ethical responsibility for society.
Composting (with oxygen) and anaerobic digestion (without) are currently the two most widely applied treatment techniques. The latter generates biogas - renewable energy - and tends to deliver higher environmental benefits.
The lack of a commonly accepted, inclusive definition of and methodology for measuring circularity hinder the transition to a more circular economy (CE). These two factors obstruct the development of and access to dedicated or non-dedicated finance, credit risk assessment and the transferability and replicability of projects and investments across regions and jurisdictions.
The Expert Group on Circular Economy Financing proposes a sector agnostic CE categorisation system that defines categories of activities substantially contributing to a CE. Guidelines with an indicative list of typical investments/projects for each CE category are included.
Many European countries still lack a national strategic roadmap for transposing the European directives at national level.
Some outstanding issues include the need to have clearer operational guidelines for the adoption of circular models and metrics for monitoring the transition towards circular models.
This study has been prepared in collaboration with Enel and with the scientific contribution of Enel Foundation. It unfolds in three main parts:
- State-of-the-art of Circular Economy in the European Union
- An innovative assessment model for socio-economic and environmental benefits of Circular Economy in the EU, with a focus on Italy, Romania, and Spain
- Policy proposals for successfully managing the transition from a linear to a circular world
This research reviews the long history and diversity of circularity thinking to develop a comprehensive timeline, which identifies and conceptually classifies 72 different CE-related concepts from the Global North and South alike (such as industrial ecology, Gandhian and steady-state economics, buen vivir, doughnut economics, degrowth).
In November 2020 the paper was completed with an interactive timeline that helps researchers and practitioners better situate and navigate the concept of circular economy, both in its rich historical origins and in its theoretical diversity. It thus fosters a cross-pollination of concepts and ideas which can help address the complex socio-ecological challenges of the 21st century.
To learn more about this timeline, please click here.
The European Manufacturers of Electrical Machines and Power Electronics are committed to Circular Economy
The European Committee of Manufacturers of Electrical Machines and Power Electronics (CEMEP) supports the development towards a circular economy (CE), thus actively contributing to more sustainable manufacturing and responsible consumption. This industrial sector follows a business-to-business market model, delivering products for a wide number of economic sectors and applications.
Its three main product groups – electric motors, variable speed drives and uninterruptable power systems – show differences and similarities when it comes to material efficiency, hence the need for sector- or product-specific approaches when pursuing CE.
This position paper describes the CE status of the CEMEP industries and the way forward towards more circularity.
This document is the result of the active involvement of the Interreg MED Green Growth community, together with its projects.
To make circular economy (CE) simpler, more efficient and more competitive, it is suggested to take a holistic, integrated and cooperative approach, by considering all phases in which CE is structured, all levels (from local to European) and all stakeholders involved in the implementation of CE models.
The policy recommendations proposed in the document are structured into six main areas:
- Investments and access to finance
- Technological infrastructure
- Labour market and employment
- Awareness and knowledge
- Cooperation among stakeholders and technology transfer
- Cross-cutting issues.
The Capital Region of Denmark is committed to becoming a fossil-free and circular region by 2050. Inter alia, this entails achieving an 80% recycling rate for the region’s waste by 2035, and growing green business activities by 8% by 2025. New forms of cooperation and dialogues between stakeholders are necessary to reach these goals.
Through a three-year public-private partnership, the Region and its partners aim to pave the way for greater collaboration between the waste sector and the business community. Metabolic collaborated with the Region to undertake a material flow analysis and an environmental assessment of the Region’s waste system, and to identify impact hotspots and circular opportunities.
- 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 Network Economia Circolare (Circular Economy Network) is a multi-stakeholder platform hosted by the Fondazione per lo sviluppo sostenibile (Sustainable Develpoment Foundation) to promote the Italian circular economy.
A mix of professional and technical associations, innovative companies and civil society organisations promote the network, which is open to all companies that intend to share these goals by taking concrete actions and commitments. As of 2019, the network counts 13 promoters and a couple dozen members.
The Network Economia Circulare focuses on three core activities:
- yearly conference on the circular economy
- annual report outlining the state of the circular economy
- Sustainable Development Prize for journalists and creatives
EU Interreg Alpine Space Project CIRCULAR4.0 takes you on a virtual study tour on Circular Design Business Models in a Circular Economy.
EU Interreg Alpine Space Project CIRCULAR4.0 takes you on a virtual study tour on Optimal Use Business Models in a Circular Economy.
Organised in the context of the 2021 EU Industry Days, this event aims at understanding how the recently proposed Sustainable Batteries' Framework will impact the batteries' recycling industries. The event will gather input from EU institutions, the batteries' recycling industry and think tanks.
The session on Chemical waste as a resource – examples from the distribution sector (hosted by Fecc) on 22 March highlights opportunities for and experience of using high-quality second-hand chemicals, while connecting a variety of value chains. Result: reduced waste, CO2 emissions saved, plus the implementation of a circular business model in the chemical supply chain.
This webinar on 17 March aspires to address the developments set out in the 2020 Circular Economy Action Plan and the bioeconomy's huge potential for tackling environmental and societal challenges. The discussion will focus on how best to empower the circular bioeconomy through an enabling policy framework.
Industry is driving the recovery in Europe. The 2021 edition of EU Industry Days - Europe’s flagship annual event on industry - will take place from 23 to 26 February. On that occasion the EESC will organise a workshop on "Circular Procurement: public and private" on 24 February.
Virtual MeetingPack 2021 will take place on 27 May. It is a strategic overview of the development of barrier packaging and a prelude to Meetingpack 2022.
On 17 and 18 February the Lithuanian Innovation Center will hold a webinar on Sustainable Transport and Mobility Solutions with Circular Procurement. It will consist of presentations from public and private sectors including topics like green public procurement, sustainable mobility and transport innovation.
The Joint Initiative on Circular Economy (JICE) organises a webinar on 1 March 2021 on moving towards a more circular model on textiles. Registrations are open!
Join the Finnish innovation Fund Sitra, the European Environment Agency and the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform to discuss how to create a level playing field for circular businesses and how to enable a transition to a circular economy through incentives that promote circularity. Rendez-vous on 25 March (13:00 to 14:30 CET).
The European Commission has decided to launch a €1 billion call for research and innovation projects that respond to the climate crisis and help protect Europe’s unique ecosystems and biodiversity. The Horizon 2020-funded European Green Deal Call is open for registration. It will spur Europe’s recovery from the coronavirus crisis by turning green challenges into innovation opportunities.
On 16 September 2020, the President of the European Commission, Ms Ursula von der Leyen, gave her first State of the European Union address. President von der Leyen presented the priorities of the Commission for the coming year where the green transition of the economy and the circular economy hold prominent places.
Until 30 September 2020, the University of Helsinki is seeking contributions for a planned edited volume, exploring the various social and cultural aspects of the shift from the current take-make-waste extractive industrial model to the restorative circular economy concept.
The Sustainable products initiative, which will revise the Ecodesign Directive and propose additional legislative measures as appropriate, aims to make products placed on the EU market more sustainable. You are welcome to give your feedback on it until 2 November 2020.
The EU Platform on Food Losses and Food Waste publishes a monthly newsletter to help Platform members stay connected, inform all interested stakeholders about Platform members’ activities and inspire further action in food loss and waste prevention.
The 5th Circular Change Conference, one of key European meeting points of circular economy changemakers, was transformed this year into a “virtual roadshow” consisting of 5 events based on 5 partnerships
We are launching a Call for Expression of Interest for the new mandate of the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform Conference (ECESP), that will run from November 2020 to May 2022, open to stakeholders who wish to take part in this unique European initiative.
A new project addressing the systemic complexities of the Circular Economy is being submitted as a Marie Curie (MSCA) post doc proposal. As these aspects build upon multi-stakeholder knowledge and insights, you are kindly invited to join the project community and collaborate.
The European Commission has launched the public consultation on the green claims initiative. It will be open until 3 December 2020.
The European project DigiCirc aims to boost the circular economy using digital tools by supporting very innovative SMEs. In order to define the current challenges of a Circular City, DigiCirc is collecting the testimonies of different key actors of the market (local authorities, companies, citizens, etc.) through a questionnaire.