Interseroh provides recycling solutions for plastic packaging. For instance, it has developed a pooling system of reusable plastic boxes for fruit and vegetables sold at Aldi Süd, a German supermarket network.
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The Gr3n projects aims to contribute to the fight against plastic proliferation in the world by introducing an innovative process for profitable plastic recycling. This process uses microwave technology on a chemical reaction, and results in a ground-breaking, economically efficient chemical recycling process for PET.
Forall Phones is a chain of stores, launched in Portugal, which focuses on refurbishing and reselling technological items.
EntoGreen aims to develop sustainable feed and organic fertilisers by using bio-based technologies to recycle nutrients from agricultural and food waste and reintroducing them into the food chain, thus closing the nutrient cycle.
Toast Ale was founded in 2015 to reduce demand for natural resources by replacing virgin barley with surplus fresh bread.
The cotton gauze grocery bag provides a unique design turning an environmentally-friendly cheesecloth gauze fabric into a sturdy mass produced grocery bag that later can easily be used at home as machine-washable cotton napkins, reusable cleaning cloth and much more.
BE O Lifestyle is a Dutch company which has developed a form of plant-based plastic that it uses to manufacture water bottles. The bottles are made from sugar cane residue and are reusable, completely environmentally-friendly - and nice to look at!
The E-waste Race is an educational competition between ten primary schools to collect old electronic devices. Project participants are given an introductory lecture about recycling and the valuable materials contained in electronic devices. They then start collecting e-waste and the school which collects the most wins an educational - and fun! - school trip.
Red Orka is a circular babywear brand that aims to do better for people and the planet. Red Orka's product is delivered to people's homes on the basis of a subscription for a fixed amount each month. The baby rompers are made from 100% organic cotton and produced in the most sustainable way possible.
The Italian company Menichetti produces organic glues and adhesives intended for sustainable packaging. The raw material is obtained from leather and tanning industry by-products.
Saccharides are a valuable and readily available source of renewable carbon. There are unique opportunities to produce renewable intermediate chemicals and polymers from regionally available agricultural products and imported feedstock in the period up to 2050.
Industry in the Chemport region (Northern Netherlands) has several options to further reduce CO2 emissions, including recycling or circular chemistry and shifting towards bio-based feedstock, acting as a catalyzer for other industries.
Important focus areas of the saccharide roadmap are:
- developing technologies/markets
- strengthening/expanding feedstock production
- developing incentives/regulations
- further developing an integrated approach, cooperating and improving the knowledge base.
The Ministry of Environmental Protection of the Republic of Serbia has developed a Roadmap for the circular economy in Serbia, a document that aims to bring together, connect and promote all those actors whose knowledge, innovativeness and creativity can contribute to a faster transition to the circular economy.
The roadmap seeks to encourage the private sector to use circular business models and to motivate industry to create new jobs, as well as to inspire a shift in business operations through the introduction of innovative and sustainable solutions. The roadmap has been developed by the Circular Economy Platform for Sustainable Development in Serbia project, which was initiated and implemented by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
The Waste Action Plan for a Circular Economy fulfils the commitment in the Programme for Irish Government to publish and start implementing a new National Waste Action Plan. This new national waste policy will inform and give direction to waste planning and management in Ireland over the coming years. It will be followed later this year by an All of Government Circular Economy Strategy. The need to embed climate action in all strands of public policy aligns with the goals of the European Green Deal.
The policy document contains over 200 measures across various waste areas including Circular Economy, Municipal Waste, Consumer Protection and Citizen Engagement, Plastics and Packaging, Construction and Demolition, Textiles, Green Public Procurement and Waste Enforcement.
The City of Helsinki’s Roadmap for Circular and Sharing Economy is one of the 147 actions in the Carbon-neutral Helsinki 2035 Action Plan.
The roadmap includes the following four focuses:
- green waste and
- sharing economy and new business opportunities in the circular economy.
The goals for each focus are set until 2035, with interim goals and supporting practical actions for each one.
Reducing plastic consumption and increasing the use of recycled plastic are among the main topics of the roadmap.
This roadmap is the result of debates in workshops with experts from both inside and outside the City. A team of representatives of the City’s Environmental Services coordinated the work.
The aim of Poland's Roadmap towards the Transition to the Circular Economy (CE), which was adopted in 2019, is twofold: first, to identify cross-cutting measures capable of having the broadest possible impact in Poland, both socially and economically; and second, to prioritise areas that will enable Poland to take advantage of its current opportunities, and to deal with existing or future challenges.
The Roadmap focusses on 5 areas in particular:
- Sustainable industrial production
- Sustainable consumption
- New business models
- implementation, monitoring and financing of CE.
The Roadmap includes a set of tools, which are not purely legislative, to create the conditions for a new economic model in Poland.
In 2019 the European Commission set out a policy guideline to address global environmental challenges and circularity. EURATEX and its members welcome the ambition of the EU Institutions to change the old way and commit to engage with all relevant parties to deliver and implement a new Textile Strategy to boost the circular economy and be fit for the present and future generations.
This strategy by EURATEX is a starting point, with insights into solutions based on a 14-month consultation with members, involving over 100 companies and key stakeholders, focused on applied circular practices and future opportunities. It prioritises removing barriers to a large-scale uptake of circular economy in textiles, sets out 12 key points and puts forward 38 proposals.
Aragón Circular is an economic strategy that aims to boost the circular economy in the entire region of Aragon. Its objective is to create a political, economic, and social framework that will allow Aragon to move towards an innovative circular economy. Furthermore, this strategy will generate high-quality employment and provide the backbone for the territory.
At the beginning of June 2020 the Spanish Government published España Circular 2030, the new Strategy for Circular Economy in Spain until 2030. It contains circular economy objectives and a series of strategic orientations for the period 2020-2030.
- sets up a series of objectives for 2020-2030 which will, inter alia, allow a 30% reduction in the national consumption of resources and a 15% reduction in waste generation (as compared to 2010);
- contributes to Spain's efforts to transition to a sustainable, decarbonized, resource-efficient and competitive economy;
- takes the form of successive three-year action plans providing for concrete measures to deliver on circular economy.
In 2018, the Danish Ministry of Environment and Food and the Danish Ministry of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs launched a Strategy for Circular Economy, based on recommendations by an Advisory Board for Circular Economy. The strategy will be implemented in the period 2018-2022. The government launched initiatives within six thematic areas:
- Strengthening enterprises as a driving force for circular transition
- Supporting circular economy through data and digitalisation
- Promoting circular economy through design
- Changing consumption patterns through circular economy
- Creating a proper functioning market for waste and recycled raw materials
- Getting more value out of buildings and biomass.
The city of Leuven, in Flanders, aims to play a leading role in initiating systemic change in cities and society at large.
The Roadmap 2025 · 2035 · 2050, drawn up by Leuven 2030 and numerous experts, serves as a guide to achieving the goal of a climate-neutral city by 2050. In September 2019 a professional team of programme managers started on no less than 13 specific programmes, which will transform this unique plan into concrete actions and impact on the field.
Leuven Circulair finds its place in specific programme #09, outlining key actions for circularity in the city with a strong focus on social, repair, refurbishment, knowledge and expertise from the University of Leuven and local fablabs.
Recommendations for the EU Strategy for Sustainable Textiles from Environmental Civil Society Organisations
This joint position paper from the Wardrobe Change coalition contains recommendations for the EU Strategy for Sustainable Textiles. It has been signed by 25 civil society organisations. The paper sets out recommendations structured around four overarching principles:
- Make sustainable textile products the norm
- Drive resource-sufficient textile consumption
- Leave the linear business model behind
- Hold the EU textile industry responsible for its role in the world.
The COVID-19 may have hit the pause button on tourism, but it also highlighted the need to switch to the circular economy.
This report summarises the findings of a two-year policy dialogue with the city of Granada in Spain, and provides recommendations and a vision to transition to a circular economy. It draws on Granada’s own experience with the transformation of a wastewater treatment plant into a bio factory in 2015, which contributed to increased water reuse and the production of new material from waste. The report argues that the city of Granada can play a role as a promoter, facilitator and enabler of the circular economy. This will require a collective and coordinated approach across all stakeholders and levels of government.
The circular economy promises a move away from a linear model of growth (extract, make, dispose) to a sustainable model (recycle, reuse, remake, share). This report, Safe Jobs in the Circular Economy, commissioned by the European Public Service Union (EPSU), focuses on the role of labour in the transition to a circular economy and, in particular, the health and safety of workers operating waste and wastewater management systems.
An increasing number of countries consider implementing a deposit return system for single-use beverage containers to address today’s challenges, i.e.:
- meeting new waste recovery targets,
- ending littering and
- moving towards a circular economy.
TOMRA shares lessons learnt from its 45+ years’ experience of innovating and managing deposit return systems globally in a new white paper including:
- outcomes of effective deposit return systems
- 4 key principles and 12 elements of high-performing deposit return systems
- dozens of case studies on real-world implementation of deposit return policy.
The white paper seeks to contribute to an educated discussion on recycling best practice – including what can be learnt from the past and what the future may look like.
Romania’s recycling rate of 13% is one of the lowest in the EU with most waste going to landfill. The publication explains how the city of Sălacea, in the north-west of Romania, not only managed to quickly rise from almost no waste recycling to 40% in 3 months, but also how the community reduced its overall waste by 55%.
The case study also explains how political will, commitment from local waste operators and involvement of the community were key to the success of the strategy. The municipality introduced door-to-door household separate collection for 5 types of waste (paper and cardboard, plastic and metal, glass, bio-waste, residual waste) and implemented a four-week education programme with citizens before changing the collection infrastructure.
Study on Circular Economy developments in the GCC region and opportunities for collaboration with the European Union
Study on Circular Economy developments in the GCC region and opportunities for collaboration with the European Union
This study explores developments in the field of the circular economy in the Arab States of the Gulf region to identify areas where the EU and the GCC countries can strengthen their collaboration. Focusing on two GCC countries with recent policy developments in this area: Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, the study first examines the current framework conditions that would shape prospects for a circular economy and then explores emerging business opportunities.
The research concludes that there are three main areas where the EU and GCC countries could further collaborate on the circular economy:
- infrastructure development
- regulatory enforcement, and
- funding mechanisms.
The report was first published on the European External Action Service’s website.
More than ever during the COVID-19 crisis, the circular economy has asserted itself as the model that can accompany recovery and enable a higher and better growth, through a systemic vision that makes it possible to tackle the most relevant challenges nowadays: the climate crisis and the environmental impact.
Companies must heighten their ambitions over the next Decade of Action, to achieve the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), by adopting a production and consumption model by 2030 that allows societies to keep growing economically, but under planetary boundaries and in the light of societal challenges.
This, in brief, is the content of the report Máxima Ambición Circular para la Década de la Acción (in Spanish) published by Foretica.
ACR+ is launching a publication on the development and implementation of circular bioeconomy strategies in different contexts, focusing on three detailed regional case studies in Navarre, Bayern and Flanders.
Under a cooperation agreement with the French Pays de la Loire region, ACR+ has set up a working group on the circular bioeconomy, with a focus on governance. The working group aims to support the development of local and regional roadmaps for the circular bioeconomy, as public authorities steer and support the development of the circular bioeconomy on their patch.
The publication is the result of activities implemented by ACR+ through the working group.
Commissioned by the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP), which advises the Global Environment Facility (GEF), and co-authored by Circle Economy and Shifting Paradigms, this report uncovers the range of socio-economic and environmental co-benefits that circular mitigation interventions can bring to GEF countries of operation.
The report supports strategic advice by the STAP to the GEF and its implementing partners, and helps carve out a role for these bodies in accelerating the transition to a low-carbon circular economy. Its findings will be highly relevant to the development of future GEF projects and programmes across its different focal areas.
REVOLVE magazine has published several articles on waste management and smart cities:
Future is waste. When it comes to climate change and environmental degradation, waste is both the problem and the solution.
This article focuses on the Interreg MED Green Growth Community's work on developing green and smart public services in Euro-Mediterranean cities.
Here’s a look at Euro-Mediterranean projects that have been making progress on the ground.
Nachhaltig.digital is a platform for stepping up dialogue on the sustainability and digitalisation of SMEs in Germany.
It provides a space for the exchange of ideas, products, solutions, inspiration and discussion - both online and offline. The platform helps companies to use digitalisation to make their business sustainable.
The platform has also focused on the circular economy. As well as providing a forum where companies can interact, Nachhaltig.digital informs them about digitalisation and the circular economy, answering questions and telling them about current trends.
Repairmystuff is an online platform based in Ireland which supports, promotes and encourages the repair industry in Ireland.
It promotes a circular economy by providing a free online space for repair companies. It aims to give consumers more options for accessing repair services throughout the country. It also provides consumers with a search tool which suggests service providers according to what needs to be repaired and where in the country the person is located.
Product categories include:
- clothes and bags
- monitors, TVs and displays
- fitness and sports
- furniture and upholstery
- large and small appliances
- lawnmowers and garden machinery
- leather and shoes
- musical instruments
- watches and jewellery
CIRCit was a 3½-year research project, spanning the five Nordic countries: Denmark, Norway, Finland, Iceland and Sweden. The objective was to help their industry to discover and implement the opportunities of the circular economy.
The project focus areas for the circular economy were:
- Sustainability screening
- Business modelling
- Circular product design and development
- Smart circular economy
- Closing the loop for a circular economy
- Collaborating and networking for a circular economy.
FISSAC - Fostering Industrial Symbiosis for a Sustainable Resource Intensive Industry across the extended Construction Value Chain
FISSAC is a project seeking to stimulate the coordination and facilitation of work in the construction and demolition value chain. Accordingly, the initiative aims to gather various stakeholders and to encourage the development and adoption of a common methodology and software platform for the exchange of information and best practices.
The overall aim of the project is to help companies with sustainability practices, by creating models that can be used by anyone. The models can be:
- manufacturing processes (such as demonstrations of close-loop recycling processes to transform waste into secondary raw materials)
- product validations (examples of eco-design and eco-innovative construction products)
- industrial symbiosis models (software platforms for example).
Madaster is a platform to register and document a range of materials or products. It offers its services to individuals, companies or public sector institutions that wish to collect and store data about their materials. Madaster stores the data in a secure and efficient way.
Most importantly, the platform offers updated information about the circular values and potentials of the owned materials, thus expanding opportunities for more efficient green management of resources. With the data, Madaster provides the clients with a “material passport” that enables them to use it for moving towards a circular economy.
Circular Berlin is an NGO that focuses on making Berlin circular. Berlin is envisioned as a resilient, citizen-oriented region. Resources are sourced locally and their value is maintained as part of a continuous loop. Circular Berlin operates across areas such as community-building, education, as well as developing knowledge on industries with a high potential for circularity: the built environment, food and biomass, textile and fashion, and materials and products.
Circular Berlin hosts events in which the community meets, debates and exchanges. Topics range from sharing knowledge to collaborative planning sessions, and has built open-source digital tools allowing information to be exchanged more quickly.
For more information on specific projects, consult their website.