In 2017 JRK Waste management introduced an intelligent data system (ECONIT) to reduce the high quantities of mixed municipal waste in Czechia. The programme asks residents to scan their rubbish with QR codes. Information on the quantity and types of waste produced is then used by the local waste management agencies to improve collection and recycling rates.
Splosh sells its range of products – from detergents and fabric softeners to shower gel and hand wash – in bottles that can be refilled from their concentrated refill pouches. Buying refills in these pouches cuts plastic waste by 95%.
Since 2010, Philips has been working on introducing recycled plastics into its product portfolio. The baseplate of Senseo Original coffee makers, the company’s most popular model, has been changed to 95% post-consumer recycled plastic.
SECONTRADE is the first and largest European online market for secondary raw materials, launched in Austria in 2018. It digitalises waste management and enables the trade of recycled materials across Europe.
Oryzite is a method for incorporating rice husks as a filler in all types of thermoplastics. The company transforms the rice husks into resin, which can then be used to obtain the same volume of injection-moulded plastic using much fewer fossil-fuel-based polymers.
Complementing traditional mechanical recycling efforts, Plastic Energy has developed a patented Thermal Anaerobic Conversion (TAC) technology to convert end-of-life plastic waste into a new feedstock, called TACOIL, that can be used in the manufacturing of virgin-quality plastics suitable for food-grade packaging.
ReBlend develops textiles and textile products made from textiles that otherwise end up in incineration. Textiles made from recycled fibres offer a positive alternative for designers and companies. In collaboration with waste collectors, producers, designers, makers and visionaries, ReBlend organises a full supply chain from start to finish to accelerate a new ecosystem for circular textiles.
“Staramaki” is a straw made of wheat. It is produced by a social cooperative KoinSep in Kilkis, northern Greece. The most widely produced local product wheat is used to create a viable eco-friendly alternative to single use plastic straws. At the same time they create employment opportunities and promote social cohesion, as well as local and regional development.
+impact, a platform aimed at supporting Nordic start-ups with their ambitions to contribute to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), has released a report about Nordic start-ups contributions and challenges while promoting its sustainable objectives. An evaluation of the impacts by those start-ups has led to the drafting of “10 myths about the Nordic impact space”, which explores to what extent common perceptions about the Nordic entrepreneurial space are valid or not. In conclusion, the report states an early adoption of the green agenda, balanced welfare societies and thriving start-ups ecosystems as good factors towards a privileged position of the Nordic start-ups on their contributions to promoting the SDGs.
The term "eco-innovation" basically boils down to innovation. What does eco-innovation really mean? And what is the link between eco-innovation and a more circular economy, particularly in the Mediterranean region?
A wide range of initiatives and programmes point towards innovation being key to enabling green growth. Eco-innovation and the circular economy: are they two sides of the same coin?
It is becoming clearer - and more urgent - every day that we need to abandon the linear economy. The climate emergency together with the economic crisis that the region is experiencing makes a transition based on eco-innovation a priority for a more sustainable future for the Mediterranean.
One of the ways we can accelerate the transition to a circular economy is to change our procurement practices. Programmes like ProCirc are running pilot projects to test the waters.
In an article titledPathways to circular procurement, Joan Prummel and Cuno van Geet, two experts on the subject working at Rijkswaterstaat, part of the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, explain the benefits of circular procurement and how to get started.
Textile products have a tremendous ecological footprint at all stages of their lives. This new report by the Environmental Coalition on Standards (ECOS), provides a comprehensive analysis of the current situation and goes on to explore the policies and standardisation actions needed to advance towards circular textiles, building on the lessons learnt from the implementation of the ecodesign approach in other sectors.
ECOS argues that textile products put on the EU market should comply with a minimum level of sustainability. Mandatory ecodesign requirements for textiles are needed to address minimum lifetime, as well as durability, reusability, repairability, recyclability, prevent the presence of hazardous chemicals, and limit microplastics release at all stages.
The final study report on Circular construction and renovation - Actions and recommendations to the Federal government for accelerating the circular economy in construction proposes actions to be taken by Belgium's federal government (and thus the regional levels as well), with a view to accelerating renovation and circular construction with respect to building materials.
More specifically, the study aims to identify relevant instruments, obstacles and measures which are either needed or already underway, and to issue general recommendations for the federal authorities. The study does not address ways to put these measures into effect or possible changes in the instruments.
This EEA Briefing highlights how digitalisation is transforming the 21st century and affecting every area of daily life, including the environmental technology sector. Digital technologies will make waste management more effective. They will enable Europe’s economy to recover more of the valuable materials present in waste streams, reducing the amount of raw materials mined or imported and avoiding the associated environmental and climate impacts.
The briefing also concludes that the digital transformation of the waste management sector should be aligned with plans to make greater use of digital technologies in the development of a circular economy.
This report, published by the German Advisory Council on the Environment (SRU), discusses the regulatory and economic tools needed to promote a circular economy.
Circular economy has come to be regarded as the solution to the problem of resource scarcity while at the same time acting as a motor for jobs and welfare in Europe and Germany. However, only a small proportion of the demand for materials is currently met by circularity, since waste management is lagging behind the requirements of a circular economy.
The goal of reducing material flows must be anchored politically and greater attention must be paid to sufficiency. Products must be designed to be compatible with a circular economy and high-grade recycling must finally become a reality.
ACR+ has run a survey targeting municipal and local authorities (and their waste operators) to understand and assess the impact of the COVID-19 on their waste systems, in particular regarding the services provided, the quantities collected, the health and safety measures, as well as the finances and communication to users.
The report presents the main information and trends coming out of this survey. It also provides an overview of the measures taken by local authorities to tackle the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown measures.
Local data were collected to analyse the impact of municipal waste generation and sorting performances. Several illustrations of good practices addressing key challenges are also highlighted.
Energy efficient bubbles, solar-powered interceptors, new business and design models, smart collection solutions, high-tech and fully automated sorting practices and chemical recycling technologies: the Dutch initiative provides inspiration and innovation insights linked to a circular economy for global application. Only by international collaboration will we achieve sizeable success as the plastics value chain spans the globe.
With this brochure, Holland Circular Hotspot and TNO bring their insights to the international level and share best practices with the hope that it will inspire everyone around the world to take action and kickstart circular development.
The Polish Circular Hotspot is a public-private platform bringing together national and local government bodies with businesses, entrepreneurs, the scientific community and civil society to jointly develop and apply the concept of a circular economy in Poland.
The hotspot has begun the following activities to develop and implement circular innovations:
organising events (sectoral, regional, national) to analyse specific problems and legislative issues such as workshops on circular procurement for public agencies
assisting with drafting strategies and roadmaps while supporting the establishment of sectoral partnerships for practical circular solutions
networking businesses to exchange knowledge, showcase innovations and connecting Polish entrepreneurs with partners abroad, e.g. through study visits and B2B monitoring sessions with the support of the Dutch, Swedish, German, French and Danish Embassies.
educating those interested in the circular economy concept, for example by organising the national educational campaign ‘Polish Circular Week’
Becoming a member of the Polish Circular Hotspot enables you to work with Polish and foreign partners in building innovative solutions and exchanging best practice across sectors. The hotspot also provides its members with opportunities to shape the debate on emerging circular economy legislation and collaborate in funding projects through partnerships.
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.
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
"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
Initial and continuing education
Cross-sector networking with researchers, companies, associations (regional, national, international)
Process support through conception, moderation of workshops, work meetings, events
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).
Just say no to textile waste! In order to identify the potential for circular business practices and fabric recycling, it is important to understand the availability and usage of post-industrial and post-consumer textile waste in production and consumption countries.
The Green Growth Community (GGC) is organising a new online edition of a communication training on 22 February. This session will help participants communicate their projects or initiatives in the field of sustainability and circular economy more effectivelly.
The online symposium "Smart Process Systems Engineering 2022: Towards sustainable and circular production processes" on 2-4 March 2022 will cover both engineering and social sciences. You can register and submit an abstract for a flash presentation until 20 February.
Circularities and Circl (an initiative of ABN AMRO) have collaborated on a magazine called ChangeMakers which offers a rich assortment of interviews, ideas and tips for the circular transition. The event on 10 February at 17:00 CET will launch the magazine.
The Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP 2.0) brings opportunities for businesses. It encourages new business models which generate substantial material savings throughout value chains, making them more resilient and fostering industrial symbiosis. Innovative environmental technologies play a substantial role in helping companies make their business models and value chains inclusive and circular faster and more efficiently.
The EU policies and initiatives under the CEAP (such as the Green Claims Initiative, the Sustainable Products Initiative and the revision of the Ecodesign Directive) supported by sectoral policies also give businesses incentives to look for better alternatives. The webinar on 17 February aims to present the Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) scheme and discuss its contribution to linking the circular transformation of industrial ecosystems with the innovation ecosystem and CEAP objectives.
This local event, in the framework of #EU Industry Week 2022, is an exchange of good practices by European regions addressing circular economy incentives for SMEs through the Taxonomy regulation for the classification of economic activities with a substantial contribution to the transition towards the circular economy. It is targeted to regional government, policymakers, regional agencies, SMEs and their support organisations.
It is possible to make products safer and more sustainable by assessing their performance at the design stage of product development, according to the EEA. This approach would reduce risks from chemical pollution and support Europe’s transition to a circular and low-carbon economy.
The RECITURF project is developing new methods for recycling artificial turf so that it does not end up in landfills. New artificial turf can be manufactured using the different plastics recovered from waste turf.
Circularity can reduce the land consumption footprint and contribute to ecosystem restoration. Safe, sustainable and circular use of excavated soils can reduce pressures on biodiversity. The European Commission has therefore launched an online public consultation on the development of a new EU Soil Strategy.
The transition from a linear to a circular economy is one of the most important imperatives of our time: it requires a fundamental change in the way we produce and consume. A circular approach to production and consumption reduces emissions and pollution, increases competitiveness, and boosts innovation.
From goods as simple as office supplies to services as complex as energy systems – everything has to go through procurement. Green Public Procurement is not only closely tied to key EU Green Deal targets, but also to the indispensable principle of a just and inclusive transition to the Circular Economy.
Together with its research partner TNO Netherlands, the European Sustainable Business Federation - Ecopreneur.eu - invites companies to take part in a consortium of green SMEs to respond to future calls from the new HORIZON EU research and innovation programme, which runs from 2021 until 2027 and has a budget of around EUR 95,5 billion.
Jacqueline Cramer, Chair of Holland Circular Hotspot’s supervisory board, invites other Circular Hubs for an interview to discuss experiences of circular economy governance. She plans to hold individual Zoom meetings in January and February with hubs interested in sharing their experiences.