Confindustria has developed an initiative which targets opportunities provided by the circular economy model, encourages knowledge-sharing and raises awareness about good practices being implemented in Italy.
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Coop Norway, Energizer and Swedish Refind Technologies have come up with a battery refund machine. People can drop off dead household batteries and walk away with coupons to put towards the price of new batteries.
The Italian project BIOCOSI (BIOdegradable and COmpostable packaging for sustainable, circular and smart industry) has come up with a revolutionary solution to the problem of wastewater in the dairy sector.
In Denmark, the interior design company Mater has developed chairs made out of brewery waste. The production method uses plastic waste and the grain left over from beer production at the Danish brewery Carlsberg.
Fjällräven is giving wool waste a second life by using it for innovative purposes, like padding in jackets or backplate in backpacks.
Cikautxo worked with the TAPA (ThermoplAstic fluid handling Pipes for cooling circuits in Automotive sector) project, funded by EIT RawMaterials, to develop new materials for pipes and hoses. They substituted natural rubber with a 100% recyclable thermoplastic material (thermoplastic elastomeric, TPE), using energy-efficient extrusion technology.
The Horizon 2020 project SUSTAINair was launched recently. It aims to research and develop solutions to increase resource efficiency and aircraft performance while cutting down on waste and material costs throughout the aircraft life cycle - what is known as "circular aviation".
CLIC trans-disciplinary research project aims to demonstrate that it is economically, socially and environmentally convenient to maintain and/or reuse cultural heritage and landscape.
Maersk has been developing ways to build recyclable ships that can be dismantled and reused.
Aerocircular provides green, service-only, economical end-of-life aircraft recycling and upcycling services to fleet owners.
Guidelines on Pre- and Co-processing of Waste in Cement Production – Use of waste as alternative fuel and raw material
Different types of waste have been successfully co-processed as alternative fuels and raw materials (AFR) in cement kilns in Europe, Japan, USA, Canada and Australia since the beginning of the 1980s.
In 2006, the first edition of the GTZ-Holcim Guidelines on Co-processing Waste Materials in Cement Production was published (GIZ-Holcim, 2006), aiming to gather the lessons of these experiences and offer it particularly to low and middle income countries as an option to improve approaches to waste management. Since then, waste management has earned a much more prominent place on the political agenda.
This revised edition of the guidelines updates technical, institutional, legal and social aspects of the original document as well as incorporate new ideas and information.
Pollution caused by incorrect packaging of waste is a serious problem. It can be addressed by designing products that are easier to recycle and by investing in collection and recycling systems. Establishing these kinds of systems requires a strong coordination body, backed up by transparent and stable sources of funding.
Experience suggests that the principle of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) can have significant potential to achieve a range of policy objectives. The EPR Toolbox contains detailed information about EPR and provides an introduction to a number of distinct issues.
Preserving value in EU industrial materials - A value perspective on the use of steel, plastics and aluminium
So far, the debate on material use and recycling has primarily been held in terms of tonnes, cubic metres, and environmental impact. This is all highly relevant, but a focus on volumes and flows also leaves important questions unanswered.
The report takes a step towards painting a more complete picture, taking an economic value perspective on material flows, and it assesses Europe’s use of steel, plastics and aluminium in terms of Euros instead of tonnes. Its objective is to answer the following questions:
- When 100 Euros worth of raw materials enter the European economy, how much economic value is retained after one cycle of use?
- What are the main reasons for loss of material value?
- How could more value be retained?
- What business opportunities arise as a result?
The study sheds light on the background of the prevention of plastic waste from packaging and disposable products by explaining the need for action, the environmental impacts and risks to human health.
Experiences of the members of the PREVENT Waste Alliance and their partners in the prevention of plastic waste by multi-actor partnerships are presented by means of 17 best practice examples.
Finally, the study gives recommendations for the reduction of plastic waste and the further work of the PREVENT Waste Alliance. These include success factors for waste prevention, necessary next steps and conclusions regarding the necessary political framework conditions.
The academic paper "Analysing European Union circular economy policies: words versus actions" comprehensively reviews and analyses the EU’s circular economy (CE) policies. Results show a dichotomy between words and actions, with a discourse that is rather holistic, while policies focus on “end of pipe solutions”.
To address these limitations, the paper proposes a set of 32 science-based policy recommendations which can help strengthen circular economy policies both within and outside the EU. This research thus brings key insights for practitioners and academics seeking to better understand the EU’s CE policies and how to improve circular economy implementation at both national and international level.
See here for more results, insights and recommendations.
Circular Czechia 2 - A circular economy as an opportunity for successful innovations of Czech firms
This report follows on from the publication Circular Czechia from July 2018, exploring the circular economy in the Czech Republic.
The report explains how innovation has developed in this field since 2018, and aims to be an inspiration for firms, organisations and authorities on how to implement circular principles. It sets out a wide selection of good practices from the Czech Republic, and includes the retail, wastewater treatment, transport, construction and furniture sectors.
The report analyses the relationship between resilience and the circular economy.
It presents socio-ecological resilience mechanisms, with particular reference to the impacts of COVID-19.
It explores various relevant topics such as resource efficiency, shared resources, regenerative resources, decentralisation, skills transferability, lifelong learning, flexible labour contracts and the strengthening of the sociological foundation.
It also presents three case studies from the Netherlands, Ecuador and India, showing how local companies enhance resilience and reduce vulnerability in various sectors.
Lastly, it gives recommendations for educating stakeholders in how to improve and implement stronger circular economy strategies.
This report describes innovation competition as a method of tackling major environmental challenges, specifically how to provide food sustainably and resource-efficiently in the future.
Two teams with expertise in plastics, logistics and sustainability developed solutions focused on a more regional food supply enabling us to reduce the amount of plastic, packaging and transport used. The winning submission is a conversion tool describing the principles of sustainable production and consumption of food.
How can design help the circular economy? Design is born from the need to find or adapt solutions to everyday problems.
Design is present throughout the value chain: production, location, distribution, transformation, transport, sales and user experience. Design can minimise the impact on the environment and simultaneously empower people in their habits and environmental preservation. This is done through shapes, materials, production processes, colours, legibility, concept and narratives that value what is systemic.
A design project starts by thinking about what you intend to achieve. A design collaboration (a dynamic of cause and effect) helps identify weaknesses and opportunities when it comes to adopting a circular design to each stage of the process.
In its position paper, Eurocities aims at contributing to the revision of the EU legislation on packaging and packaging waste by making proposals on:
- packaging design (to facilitate separate sorting by citizens, and further dismantling for reuse or recycling, i.e. less complexity in packaging materials)
- compostable/biodegradable plastic packaging (citizens cannot distinguish between biodegradable/compostable and more ‘conventional’ ones; the Commission should assess if this packaging can benefit the environment or create more littering and hamper waste collection, reuse and recycling)
- reuse and recycling (new legislation should consider EU-wide mandatory labelling to identify packaging as reusable, recyclable or compostable) and
- extending the EPR schemes.
What is the Circular Economy Industry Platform about?
Circulary is a web tool managed by BusinessEurope and its national members that contributes to the EU’s agenda on circular economy.
It continuously brings new examples of innovative ways in which industry, SMEs and other business add to the circular economy in Europe, and features over 150 prime examples of industrial best practice in circular economy as of November 2018. At the same time, it highlights the regulatory and non-regulatory challenges these businesses still face to upscale their current initiatives or to start new ones. As such the platform is a unique bottom-up business-led hub of knowledge and expertise.
Why should your company engage?
- To showcase what your company is already doing on circular economy. By showing the extent to which business is already engaged into this transformation process, you will help make EU policy fit-for-purpose.
- To raise your concerns on barriers and obstacles. The analysis of common trends in barriers and obstacles that you and other companies face to become circular will help draw the attention of policymakers.
- To make your voice heard on upcoming EU policy initiatives. By gathering your “on the ground” practical experiences, BusinessEurope will be in a stronger position to advocate the business voice towards European institutions.
- To develop your network. The platform is a unique way for you to connect to other companies on circular economy, either by being contacted by others because of your expertise or by being able to see what is happening elsewhere.
- To access the EU / Brussels debate on circular economy. Based on what we receive from you and others, BusinessEurope intends as much as possible to organise events, consultations and promotion of the platform and its participating community.
The NoAW project is dealing with innovative approaches to turn agricultural waste into ecological and economic assets. The NoAW Knowledge Exchange Stakeholder Platform aims to:
- provide a forum for knowledge, information exchange and discussion with agro-food businesses, farmers, biogas processors, food companies, scientific community, authorities relating to agro-waste management and valorisation issues in the light of their needs and expectations.
- foster an understanding of what is new in agriculture waste management from technical, environmental and business concepts / cross-chain valorisation aspects, including development opportunities and potential applications of innovative bio-processes and bio-products.
- provide guidance to NoAW based on the key activities of the members of the KESP, their needs and problems to ensure that the project activities and outcomes are focused on priority areas and the proposed processes and technologies will meet the expectations of the stakeholders.
The NoAW project is coordinated by INRA (France) and the consortium involves 32 partners from universities, public research organizations and other institutions from a dozen countries.
The Communication on Circular Economy, adopted in 2015, calls on the Commission to establish a Platform dedicated to food waste prevention. Thus the EU Platform on Food Losses and Food Waste (FLW) was established in 2016, as an informal European Commission expert group bringing together EU institutions, international organisations, experts from Member States and actors in the food value chain including consumer and other non-governmental organisations.
The Platform aids the Commission in identifying and prioritising actions to be taken at EU level in order to prevent food losses and food waste and supports all actors in identifying and implementing appropriate actions to take at national, regional and local levels. Its work is of a horizontal nature, aiming to identify opportunities for food waste prevention across the food production and consumption chain and facilitate inter-sector cooperation.
The most recent estimates of European food waste levels (FUSIONS, 2016) reveal that 70% of EU food waste arises in the household, food service and retail sectors, with production and processing sectors contributing the remaining 30%. The EU and Member States are committed to meeting Sustainable Development Goal 12.3, adopted in September 2015, which targets to halve per capita food waste at the retail and consumer level by 2030 and reduce food losses along the food production and supply chains.
All relevant documents related to the work of the Platform (such as agendas, minutes and participants' submissions) can be found on the Commission's dedicated food waste website
The Luxembourg EcoInnovation Cluster, managed by Luxinnovation, the National Agency for Innovation and Research, is an active network that brings together and supports various players of the clean technologies sector with the ultimate goal of turning the concept of circular economy into a reality in Luxembourg. The cluster's objectives are the following:
- diversify the activities of the Luxembourg companies thus allowing them to gain and to develop new capabilities in the clean technologies field;
- contribute to the development of new environmental solutions in the field of eco-technologies and sustainable construction;
- raise public awareness to the uptake of “green technologies”;
- build public-private partnerships in order to develop new collaborative projects of common interest;
- encourage networking between public and private actors at the national and international level.
The cluster provides the following services:
- access to practical and technical information related to specific questions on eco-innovation;
- advice on national and European funding opportunities for clean technologies;
- value-added information on emerging technologies and markets.
The Luxembourg Wood Cluster was set up in 2016 as a platform for exchange between all players in the wood sector, spanning from wood production to the end consumers of wood products. Its structure is managed by Luxinnovation, the National Agency for Innovation and Research.
As a meeting point for innovative, public and private organisations in the region – companies as well as research centres – the Wood Cluster brings together know-how and facilitates the sharing of experience in Luxembourg and beyond. Optimising the market release and the use of wood resources in order to lengthen their life cycles, and creating and enhancing regional wood product chains are among its objectives.
Its underlying logic is that of improving the recovery of this sustainable material par excellence at local and regional level. To this end, the Cluster:
- promotes the wood sector as a whole,
- organises networking events for its members ("Meet a member"),
- organises conferences and thematic visits,
- manages technical working groups around the themes of wood production, processing and use,
- looks for innovative projects and new technologies at national and international level,
- identifies and manages strategic flagship projects, and
- supports sectoral SMEs and start-ups.
"Circular Futures - Plattform Kreislaufwirtschaft Österreich" is a solution-oriented multistakeholder platform that brings together professionals across relevant industries, the administration, politics, science and civil society in Austria. Circular Futures acts as a think-tank, incubator, and catalyst for projects and initiatives necessary for a successful transition to a circular economy in Austria.
Circular Futures offers:
- A website that serves as a central information and communication platform;
- Knowledge events on the circular economy to inform and mobilise stakeholders;
- Targeted capacity-building for relevant stakeholders through workshops, trainings, and the publication of project information;
- The coordination of local activities and strengthening of regional networks; and
- The involvement of relevant stakeholders in political processes (consultations, strategy/guideline developments, etc.) through information-sharing and mobilization.
Circular Futures AT is a collaboration between the Umweltdachverband and the European Environmental Bureau (EEB), the Reuse and Repair Network Austria (RepaNet), and the Verband Abfallberatung Österreich (VABÖ).
The Upper Autrian Cleantech-Cluster networks all actors from the resource supplier, to the manufacturer, industrial researcher, to mechanical engineers, recyclers, and disposers in order to find joint solutions and develop new technologies. We cooperate with our 10 cluster initiatives in the Upper Austrian business support agency and 2000 partner companies, whose activities range from plastics, to automotive, furniture and wood construction, food, medical technology, mechatronics, IT, logistics, and HR, In order to support projects for SMEs in particular, the cluster also supports EU funding applications, thus offering its partners an internationally mature circular economy toolbox.
THEMES and EXPERTISE in the network:
- Material efficiency in production
- Circular design
- Business Models
- Initial and continuing education
- Cross-sector networking with researchers, companies, associations (regional, national, international)
- Project development
- Project Management
- Process support through conception, moderation of workshops, work meetings, events
- Funding advice
The “Cyprus Circular Economy Platform” aims to collect circular economy good practices and events from all stakeholders that can contribute to the transition to a circular economy across Cyprus. For industries, enterprises, local authorities, public bodies, associations, NGOs etc that have a good practice to demonstrate or an event to share, regarding the circular economy in Cyprus, this is the place to do it.
The Cyprus Circular Economy Platform was co-created by the European Commission Representation in Cyprus and the Cyprus Federation of Employers & Industrialists (OEB) and was registered as a partner for the 2018 EU Green Week.
The European Resource Efficiency Knowledge Centre (EREK for short) is here to help European companies, especially SMEs, save energy, material and water costs. We provide tools, information and business opportunities that show you new and better ways to be resource efficient and benefit from circular economy business models which turn waste into an asset. EREK also supports national, regional and local organisations across Europe that work with SMEs to improve their environmental performance, helping them to become more resource efficient.
SMEs can get the following benefits thanks to EREK’s tools and services:
- Access to knowledge on best available technologies and business models
- Better control of energy, water and material costs
- Compliance checks for upcoming regulations
- Become less dependent on suppliers
- Demonstrate return on investment when adopting resource efficient measures Information on funding sources and technology providers
- Help building a green image which enables the targeting of new customer segments
EREK offers the following to SME intermediaries:
- Tools and instruments for businesses to assess their saving potentials
- Access to top international knowledge, technical expertise and practices on resource efficiency
- Capacity-building workshops and networking events Online training opportunities to learn from resource efficiency experts
- Overview of relevant support programmes available on European, national and regional levels
- Updates on professional events within the community
Concrete activities include:
- European Resource Efficiency Self-Assessment Tool for SMEs
- Catalogue of Resource Efficiency Improvement Measures
- European Resource Efficiency Information Database
- Online EREK platform
- Structured knowledge on resource efficiency best practices
- News, trends, and information on support programmes
- Database and managed European network of the national and regional organisation providing support to SMEs in resource efficiency measures
- Capacity-building and training workshops
- Knowledge resources, expertise and sharing
EREK is an initiative of the European Commission and is implemented by a consortium of organisations including Technopolis Group, VDI Zentrum Ressourceneffizienz (DE), WRAP (UK), Motiva (FI), Enviros (CZ), WAAT and Arctik (BE).
Circle Lab is an online platform for cities, businesses, and citizens to explore, brainstorm, and implement circular business models and strategies to tackle universal and local challenges.
By digitising knowledge, opening up access, and encouraging co-creation, we aim to break down information silos and fuel cross-industry collaboration and innovation. The circular economy has the potential to change the world, and we believe the time to bring the concept to the kitchen table – so that everyone, from entrepreneurs to big brands, can play a role in making it a reality – is now.
As the Horizon 2020 research programme becomes Horizon Europe, what better time to witness how great ideas turned into real projects? LOOPS is the opportunity to show what cutting-edge research has been produced, and which changes it can bring to our communities.
On 10 June at 9:30 CEST, Alessandra Bianco Prevot and Simos Malamis will present their incredible projects - Project Ô and Hydrousa - aimed at addressing one of the current most pressing problems in water management: water scarcity in remote places.
Against the backdrop of the upcoming Sustainable Products Initative, and the recently presented proposal for a Batteries and Waste Batteries Regulation, policy makers and representatives from the Nordic business community come together to discuss how they can best ensure sustainability and circularity in future products and material cycles.
Circular Economy Hackathon is a hack-and-learn race with a focus on unleashing innovation. Participants will work collectively with the aim of developing ideas, involving students, recent graduates and PhD students in a process of designing and redesigning cities for circularity. The aim is to deep-dive and reveal the core problems with current urban settlements. This entirely online event on 11-12 June will have an international focus and aims to lead to innovations in circular economy.
The Institute for Research in Circular Economy and Environment ”Ernest Lupan” (IRCEM) invites you to co-design the city of the future, a city capable of ensuring its survival and prosperity in the face of the increasingly severe conditions imposed by climate change and the high consumption of urban resources.
At the event "Resilient and sustainable cities: Circular Cities", over the course of two days, we will assess whether we need different urban behaviour or a different way of crafting public policies based on the principles of prediction and anticipation. You are invited to join the analysis of the concept of urban resilience, and to discuss what the future prospects of cities are in terms of their circular development.
Circular Threads is the first sector study carried out to measure the level of circularity of the textile industry in Italy. In order to promote the transition towards the Circular Economy in the textile industry, Tondo - in collaboration with Fondazione Pistoletto, Associazione Tessile e Salute and Ren - has conducted research that aims to measure the level of sustainability and circularity on a sector and company scale.
Join TCO Certified for a presentation on 16 June of their upcoming report Impact and Insights: Navigating the Sustainable IT Revolution. The report will be launched in June and focuses on the critical role of independent verification and and answers the question: How to avoid false claims and greenwash by getting proof in your IT procurement?
As the largest Extended Producer Responsibility organisation in Europe in charge of household packaging and graphic papers, Citeo is fully concerned by the fight against litter pollution. In order to address the main questions and challenges surrounding this complex issue, Citeo is organising a coffee-break conference on Wednesday 2 June on Tackling litter pollution: from obligations to actions!
Metal recycling plays a key role in Europe’s circular and climate neutral objectives. Thanks to their intrinsic properties, metals can be indefinitely recycled without losing their properties. Yet, more can be done to better reward metal recycling and circular metal value chains, while preserving the competitiveness of Europe’s recycling industry. Join EuRIC Recyclers’ Talks#3 on Circular Metals on 7 June 2021 to learn more!
This roundtable discussion on 10 June 2021 will bring together experts from Europe and beyond to share knowledge and best practices in life-cycle assessment approaches, particularly in the rare earth sector.
Circular Week, an international campaign consisting of a series of events and initiatives devoted to circular economy and sustainable development, will take place on 12-18 October 2021 throughout Europe. Its goal is to promote the idea of a circular economy, support sustainable business models and establish cooperation between interested stakeholders.
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.