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.
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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.
SOUJI is a liquid based on minerals and vegetables that, when mixed in the correct proportions with used cooking oil, and after shaking the mixture for 1 minute, becomes a cleaning agent/detergent which is 96% less polluting than a common detergent.
The URBANREC project: new approaches for recovery of urban bulky waste to create high added-value recycled products
Despite continuous advances in municipal waste management, there are still several waste streams that offer limited opportunities for material recovery and thus end up in landfills and incineration plants.
One challenging stream is the “bulky waste”, defined by the URBANREC project as “(mixed) waste from households and similar waste from companies that does not fit (because of its size, shape or weight) in the regular receptacles used for household waste collection".
In this context, the URBANREC project aims to develop and implement a comprehensive eco-innovative bulky waste management system (to enhance prevention and reuse, improve logistics and develop new waste treatment methods to obtain high added-value recycled products) and show its effectiveness in different regions.
Research on Remelting and Purification of Si-kerf for PV wafers is part of CABRISS, a European collaboration aimed to develop a circular economy mainly for the photovoltaic but also other industries such as electronics or metallurgy.
During production of silicon wafers out of silicon (Si) ingots and wafers, about 40–50% of the material is lost due to the cutting technique. The research had kerf from slurry based wafer cuttings undergoing several refining steps and being remelted into ingots for PV-application.
Conclusion: With 10% refined material, ingots were still directionally solidified, whereas with 100% refined material, they were not. The presented refining method does not allow for ingots with 100% refined material to be used as PV-material.
The project Recycling of broken Si based structures and solar cells is part of CABRISS, a European collaboration aimed to develop a circular economy mainly for the photovoltaic (PV), but also for other industries such as electronics or metallurgy.
The paper presents some tests in which broken solar cell structures coming from an early stage in the PV production process chain as well as broken finished solar cells have been recycled into new silicon (Si) feedstock through demetallisation, purification and directional solidification.
The paper explores two different routes to remove diffusion layers and anti-reflection coating (ARC) on broken cells. It also presents the characteristics of ingots produced with the Si-feedstock from the two routes by directional solidification.
In a resource-constrained world the future economy will need to be circular.
From a policy perspective, the question is whether averting catastrophic environmental impacts through an accelerated transition to a global circular economy can also deliver sustained growth and jobs.
Multiregional input−output (MRIO) analysis models the interdependencies between industries and within/between countries as well as between intermediate and final goods producers and consumers, thus providing a useful toolbox for assessing social, environmental, and economy-wide impacts of the adoption of the circular economy.
This research paper resorts to this toolbox to compare the business-as-usual (BAU) scenario to an alternative circular economy scenario.
The EU is currently engaged in two transformations that could change our economy and society for the better: circular economy and digital transformation. If managed well, and in unison, they could help the EU address one of its greatest challenges: to build a sustainable, green economy that is competitive on the global stage.
The publication by the European Policy Centre (EPC) builds on the EPC Task Force on the Digital Roadmap for Circular Economy findings to make recommendations for the EU institutions for the next five years.
The TF explored the linkages between digitalisation and the circular economy, the opportunities created by data and digitally-enabled solutions, and the challenges associated with harnessing their full potential for the transition to a circular economy.
Packaging plastics can offer an almost infinite range of options for manufacturers, both in terms of function and design. Their durability and resistance to degradation means that if they ‘leak’ into the environment, they stay there. Leakage has been increasing rapidly and its detrimental impact, especially on the marine environment, has attracted wide public and political concern.
EASAC established in 2018 an Expert Group to look at scientific aspects of plastics packaging and the circular economy. This report is the result of an 18-month investigation and reviews the negative consequences of the current linear economy for plastic packaging, the scope for improvement towards a more circular pattern and options for increasing recycling rates and reducing leakage into the environment.
The 2020 Report on the Circular Economy in Italy, developed by CEN (Circular Economy Network) in collaboration with ENEA (Italian National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development) and Fondazione Sviluppo Sostenibile, analyses the state of play of the circular economy in Italy with, this year, a particular focus on the bioeconomy.
The report was presented during the 2nd National Conference on the Circular Economy livestreamed on 19 Marchfrom Rome. It was introduced by Edo Ronchi, President of CEN, and Roberto Morabito, Director of the Department for Sustainability, ENEA, and President of the Italian Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform (ICESP).
Delivering a circular economy within the planet’s boundaries: An analysis of the new EU Circular Economy Action Plan
Delivering a circular economy within the planet’s boundaries: an analysis of the new EU Circular Economy Action Plan
This analysis by IEEP and SEI assesses to what extent the actions included in the new Circular Economy Action Plan published by the European Commission on 11 March 2020 may contribute to a more circular European economy within the boundaries of the planet.
The authors conclude that the action plan is a promising continuation of existing efforts, but ask for more concrete measures to address unsustainable resource consumption.
The authors make five recommendations to EU policymakers in this regard and emphasise the importance of EU Member States and the private sector showing leadership and willingness to innovate.
Europe is facing a growing mountain of used textiles. In North-West Europe 4700 kilotonnes of post-consumer textile waste are generated annually. Still, less than 1% of textiles produced are currently recycled into new ones, and around 50% are downcycled, incinerated or landfilled.
Automated sorting technologies could enable the industry to turn non-rewearable textiles into valuable feedstock for high-value recycling. Fibersort, a Near Infrared based technology, is able to categorise textiles according to their fibre composition, structure and colour.
At the end of each chapter of the report, recommendations are formulated for recyclers, manufacturers and brands to address the socio-cultural, physical and economic barriers for uptake of sorted textiles.
The report provides an overview of different organisations and an analysis of the local performances of 135 waste collection systems across Europe. It highlights the diversity of collection systems, with many different sorting systems and combination of collection modes (door-to-door, bring bank, combined, etc.).
This report is a publication of the ACR+ Waste Observatory whose objective is to allow consistent comparisons among local and regional authorities, in order to provide benchmarks on municipal waste management and identify effective waste strategies for quality recycling. The analysed data has been collected in the framework of the H2020 COLLECTORS project, aimed at identifying good practices to improve the quantity of sorted municipal waste leading to high quality recycling.
The 2021 ACI European Food & Beverage Plastic Packaging Summit will focus on reusing and recycling plastic packaging and future directions and scientific development in this field. It will also review relevant European legislation.
On 4 November 2020 (3:30 p.m.), as a side event to the Circular Economy Stakeholder Conference, the OECD will prepsent its synthesis report onThe Circular Economy in Cities and Regions.
Circular Innovation Fair 2020 is an early stage circular innovations pitching event taking place on 26 November. This pitching and networking event for co-developed innovative circular design concepts and ideas is organised by Aalto University, GTK, Luke, SYKE and VTT.
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 on the Platform. The workshop aims to debate the role of the circular economy for the retail and wholesale sectors, particularly in the context of their recovery from the COVID-19 crisis.
"Research & Innovation in circular economy and bio-based systems: opportunities for circular economy stakeholders" is a side event organised by the European Commission's DG Research and Innovation. It will provide circular economy stakeholders with practical insight into current and future funding opportunities.
On 20 October 2020 at 13:15 – 17:30 (CET), the Competence Centre for Sustainable Procurement and the European Commission are organising the first online networking seminar for European Governmental Competence Centres for Sustainable Public Procurement and other governmental actors active in this field.
Want to discover the latest on industrial symbiosis and the future of sustainable industrial practices? Join this event on 27 October to learn about experiences and case studies regarding successful implementation of industrial symbiosis, find out about tools and gain access to guidelines to kick-start resource efficiency in your own industry.
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.
Applications to the European Social Innovation Competition 2020 are now open! Under the theme Reimagine Fashion: Changing behaviours for sustainable fashion, the 2020 competition is looking for projects and ideas that will change the ways we produce, buy, use and recycle fashion, moving towards increased global sustainability and changing consumer behaviour at local, national and European levels.
Member of the ECESP Coordination Group Circular Change provides an overview of its activities in 2019. Circular Change is led by Ladeja Godina Košir - chair of the ECESP Coordination Group.
New Circular Economy Action Plan – Consultation on the Roadmap is open!
The European Commission published a dedicated Roadmap for the new Action Plan on the EU Better Regulation Portal and invites all interested stakeholders to provide feedback. The consultation on the roadmap is open until 20 January.
ENEA, the Italian National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development, is carrying out research into lithium-sulphur batteries to make them more competitive.
A conference entitled A Peek into the Future – Going Circular through Digital, organised by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), was held in Belgrade, Serbia, on 9 December 2019. from the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform was among the speakers.
Through the use of circulytics, a company is able to use various circularity indicators in order to assess how well a product or company is performing in the circular economy.
Despite the waste hierarchy in force – Reduce, Re-use and Recycle, re-use could be much further developed. Waste management programmes include re-use but prioritise recycling, even though re-use is more environmentally and socially friendly. 2Lifes project is meant to be an instrument to help boost re-use through public policy.
The circular economy project CIRC4Life offers a collaborative way of developing new products, one that integrates consumer needs and where consumers play a central role.
The European Commission and the European Investment Bank announce the selection of an Investment Advisor for the upcoming European Circular Bioeconomy Fund: the EU will make up to € 250 million available for innovative circular bio-economy companies and projects.
The upcoming COP25 in Madrid will be hosting a topical side event on combining circular economy principles with GHG reduction strategies.