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 approximately 80 000 reverse vending machines 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.
Circular City Governance: An explorative research study into current barriers and governance practices in circular city transitions across Europe
Circular City Governance - An explorative research study presents the results of an empirical research study into current barriers and governance practices in circular city transitions across Europe carried out by a team from the Radboud University Nijmegen School of Management (NL). The research activities ran from October to December 2017. The main objective of the study was to support the European Investment Bank (EIB) and other members of the Urban Agenda Partnership on Circular Economy involved in the working group on “Circular City Governance” (CCG) with the identification, analysis and elaboration of actions in support of Circular Governance in Cities, particularly through better knowledge and better funding. At the time this report was completed, the UAPCE’s Action Plan had been recently published for public consultation.
The research study follows an empirical approach primarily focussed on the identification of (i) the most common barriers and challenges that are encountered by cities seeking to promote the circular economy, and (ii) the most important governance interventions cities have taken to initiate and advance in the transition to a circular city. This information was drawn from the analysis of selected case studies of circular economy projects in urban environments, various publicly available circular economy strategies, plans prepared by cities and interviews with experts and officials of front-runner cities that have embraced the CE agenda across Europe. The results of this research study should contribute towarads improving the general knowledge basis on the promotion of the CE in cities by presenting the experiences and main lessons learnt by cities at the forefront of the CE agenda.
The World Economic Forum’s Future of Urban Development and Services Initiative has released its new White Paper on the Circular Economy in Cities: evolving the model for a sustainable urban future.
This White Paper traces the conceptual underpinnings of the Circular Economy, and explains why cities are key to accelerating the transition away from the traditional ‘take-make-dispose’ model. It draws on examples from cities around the world in areas that include: channelling used building materials to new building sites, water harvesting and reuse, reducing energy use, electronic waste, healthcare and procurement. It explains the opportunities in the Circular Economy for all stakeholders and the ways in which they can work together at city level.
This report, commissioned by DG GROW and prepard by Technopolis and Franhofer ISI, identified major obstacles of regulatory nature or gaps within the existing legal framework where significant unlocked opportunities remain. The study includes an in-depth analysis of the identified obstacles and possible solutions through specific cases.
The analysis of specific regulatory barriers includes the full product lifecycle and focuses on the interfaces between different steps of the value chain (extraction/production, production/production internal loops, production/use, collection, waste-management/recycling/production). Barriers can be categorised within these 3 themes:
- Several case studies identified regulatory barriers often related to lacking legislation that would allow the collection and pre-treatment of homogenous waste streams.
- The second type of barrier refers to legislation that hinders the use of recycled materials in production processes.
- The third type of barrier is related to the lack of concrete and enforceable product requirements.
The analysis also highlights a variety of different generic types of barriers: in many cases waste legislation focuses on quantities (weight based collection or recycling targets) and not so much on the qualities of recycled materials. Inconsistencies between existing regulations, e.g. related to REACH or End-of-Waste criteria, have also been mentioned in a variety of case studies.
The study concludes that in general, high-quality recycling is definitely not prevented by regulatory obstacles, but by lacking or unclear legislation. Prime examples are End-of-Waste criteria or quality standards for secondary raw materials that create legal uncertainties for the industry that make it rational to continue to focus on primary raw material input.
The Relooping Fashion Initiative (2015-2017) was aimed at piloting and modelling the circular business ecosystem for textiles. This report covers the business ecosystem modelling work and introduces the project team’s crystallized vision of a higher-level system that enables the textiles industry to operate according to the basic principles of a circular economy.
The focus of the report is on explaining the principles of a circular economy in the context of textiles, and drawing a picture of the key material flows and types of actors along the value cycles from end-user back to end-user. The overall goal is to maintain the value of materials as high as possible, with minimum environmental impact. The different circular business models for textiles are introduced along the value cycles. The report covers 1) repair and maintenance, 2) re-use as product, 3) re-use as material, and 4) recycling-related activities, and business models for post-consumer/user textiles along the entire value chain.
All these processes need to work seamlessly together for the circular business ecosystem to function effectively. New recycling technologies are crucial to solving the global textile waste problem, and to be able to replace some of the virgin materials such as cotton with recycled textile materials. The report also discusses the topic of shared value creation in the circular economy context.
'The circular economy and the bioeconomy — Partners in sustainability' is the third EEA report on the circular economy. It aims to support the framing, implementation and evaluation of European circular economy policy from an environmental perspective. It shows that the two policy agendas have similar objectives and areas of intervention, including food waste, biomass and bio-based products, and that they would benefit from stronger links, particularly in product and infrastructure design, and collaboration throughout the value chain.
The increasing demand for food, feed, biomaterials and bioenergy resources could worsen the over-exploitation of natural resources. By extending the lifetime of products and recycling materials, a circular, bio-economy approach can help retain material value and functionality for longer time as well as avoid unrecycled biowaste.
Promising innovations and strategies for circular biomass use include biorefinery, 3D printing with bioplastics, multi-purpose crops, better use of residues and food waste, and biowaste treatment. Consumers can also contribute by eating less animal-based protein, preventing food waste and separating biowaste from other waste streams.
Implementing the circular and bio-economy in tandem, by applying specific design principles within a systemic approach, would improve resource efficiency and reduce environmental pressures.
This EEB and Eunomia report estimates the material consumption and CO2 emissions of the furniture sector at EU level and suggests some circular scenarios and policy options to grasp improvement opportunities.
Barriers to a circular furniture sector range from low quality materials, limited logistical infrastructure, poor demand for recycled materials to a wider range identified through the course of this research, informed through stakeholder consultation and literature review.
A move towards circular economy models within the European furniture sector would benefit from a variety of complimentary policy instruments to deal with market failures on the supply side and the demand side (creating demand for these products).
The climate conference in Paris has produced a landmark agreement. The emission reduction commitments made by 195 countries are a leap forward, but not yet sufficient to stay on a 2 °C trajectory, let alone a 1.5 °C pathway. Current commitments address only half the gap between business as usual and the 1.5 °C pathway. There is still a reduction of about 15 billion tonnes CO2e needed to reach the 1.5 °C target. Further solutions are therefore needed; solutions that go beyond decarbonising our energy system. This white paper by Ecofys and Circle Economy looks into the contribution a global circular economy could presumably make to bridging the emissions gap.
Since over half of the worldwide greenhouse gas emissions are associated with producing basic materials, there is a clear role for circular economy strategies in reducing this gap. To do this, the circular economy describes a practical and scalable landscape of opportunities by moving towards business models for an economy that is by design regenerative and as waste free as possible. Strategies at the heart of the circular economy include measures to reduce the input of virgin materials, improve the use of existing assets and reduce the output of waste. Circular economy strategies related to materials are: recovery and reuse, lifetime extension, sharing and service models, circular design and digital platforms.
Circular Economy and Employment first summarizes the main definitions and conceptualisations of a circular economy, then clarifies the relationship to related concepts such as green growth and eco-innovation. This report is the outcome of a project estimating the employment effects of a circular economy.
The Circular Economy mainly focuses on savings on the shares of material, labour, energy, and capital embedded in the product. In finite systems it is intended to “design out waste”. An important difference is made between consumables (one or few time usage) and durables (years of usage) products. Material savings can be achieved by already established recycling and remanufacturing activities finally aiming at a “zero waste economy”. More recently, the contribution of green ICT leading to less material inputs (“digital revolution”, e.g. photos are no longer printed but distributed by e-mail or social media), a general greater importance of services, the evolution of the sharing economy (e. g. car sharing) or a higher utilisation rate for products for the circular economy are discussed.
Detailed concepts of green growth from OECD, UNEP, EEA and the Global Green Growth Institute are also considered. Green growth means fostering economic growth and development while ensuring that natural assets continue to provide the resources and environmental services on which our well-being relies. Investment and (eco-) innovation activities shall give rise to new, more sustainable sources of growth and development. Moving towards a circular economy may be understood as a tool to achieve a green economy, a circular economy is one of the main elements helping to achieve the greening of an economy.
Britain faces huge economic challenges in its use of labour and scarce natural resources. Although unemployment is now falling, the risk of being out of work is higher in some regions and for some types of occupations. While Britain has significantly increased its resource efficiency in recent years, supply risks in an increasingly competitive global economy mean that we need to get better at using natural resources. A new research study, undertaken jointly by WRAP and the Green Alliance, shows that these challenges are linked: improving our resource efficiency can make a valuable contribution to improving Britain’s labour market situation.
One route to improving resource efficiency is to develop a circular economy. This involves keeping products and resources in use for as long as possible through recovery, reuse, repair, remanufacturing and recycling. In addition to protecting the environment, this potentially offers substantial economic benefits. These include greater economic stability through increased resource security and new business and employment opportunities from an expanding industrial sector. This study focuses on the second aspect and identifies the scope for the growth of the circular economy to offer new jobs.
The study finds that regions where unemployment is higher, such as the North East and the West Midlands, could see the greatest impact on job creation, especially among low to mid-skilled occupations where job losses are projected for the future.
The study finds that if we stay on the current development path for the circular economy in Britain, then by 2030 the sector could:
- require an extra 205,000 jobs;
- reduce unemployment by around 54,000; and
- offset 11% of future losses in skilled employment.
Alternatively, under a transformational scenario where there was a more extensive expansion of circular economy activities, by 2030 the sector could create over half a million jobs, reduce unemployment by over 100,000 and potentially offset around 18% of the expected future losses in skilled employment.
Aimed at defining, identifying and quantifying employment opportunities that are needed in the circular economy, Circle Economy and the Erasmus Research Institute for Happiness Economics (Ehero) have developed a standardised and replicable methodology that measures circular employment in cities around the world.
Once identified, the circular jobs were categorised according to the seven key elements of the circular economy, showing that a large majority are focused on ‘incorporating digital technology’ and ‘preserving and extending what’s already made’. In the past fifteen years, activities that involve ‘repair & maintenance‘ have remained stable in numbers, with the ‘incorporation of digital technologies’ becoming an up and coming job provider.
This conference in Rome offers an exchange platform for discussing best practices and latest developments and solutions in the circular economy and climate field.
Drawing on the results of CIRC4Life, the event aims to present examples of circular business models, discuss barriers and enablers, as well as how to incentivise consumers to engage with circular practices. It will also discuss the new Circular Economy Action Plan by the European Commission.
Unfortunately, due to the outbreak of COVID-19, the event is cancelled.
Want to discover the latest on industrial symbiosis and the future of sustainable industrial practices? Join our event to hear experiences and case studies from successful industrial symbiosis implementation, meet a network of committed actors and work together to build common goals and objectives.
The Plastics Recycling World Expo is a dedicated free-to-attend marketplace for the plastics recycling industry. The event will host over 200 exhibitors presenting the full range of sorting, washing, size reduction and recycling equipment as well as materials, additives, and relevant services.
On 20 February 2020, Eurochambres will present their newest publication on Chamber Projects in the area of Circular Economy and will discuss the upcoming Circular Economy Action Plan with representatives of the European Parliament and Commission as well as with civil society.
The Plastics Circularity Multiplier group invites you to attend its first conference on the 10th June in Brussels. The event will bring together policy makers and representatives from industry and academia who will communicate on a range of EU-funded innovations that aim of bringing plastic materials into the circular economy.
Le groupe AFNOR organise une conférence à Nantes le 3 mars 2020 de 9h30 à 12h30 sur l’économie circulaire. Au programme : panorama réglementaire, solutions pour s’engager, formations et dispositifs d’évaluation… Entrez dans la boucle !
Interreg Europe project REPLACE launches its 2nd Public Event State of the art of circular economy across governance levels hosted by Lazio Region in Rome on 6 March 2020.
Launch event of the 2020 BeCircular call for projects, to be held on 20 February 2020.
Introducing the circular events challenge.
Recycle Now plastics campaign
Avec 1784 contributions et 16071 votes enregistrés, la première phase de la consultation du public pour l’élaboration de la feuille de route économie circulaire a été un succès.
On 20 February 2018 three frontrunning companies commit to partner with Circle Economy, to develop a circular decision-making tool for the fashion and textiles industry.
El Gobierno espagnol tiene lista su primera Estrategia de Economía Circular, que busca mejorar el aprovechamiento de los recursos para reducir el uso de materias primas.
The EU said in last month’s Plastics Strategy that it wants to boost how much plastic is reused and recycled.
TEDx talk by EESC member Cillian Lohan.
REPESCA_PLAS project in the framework of the Fundación Biodiversidad Pleamar programme
First announcement circularity check.
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