This Life DOP project operated in partnership with the Italian dairy company Consorzio Latterie Virgilio uses livestock waste in anaerobic digestion plants to produce renewable energy and renewable fertilisers (solid digestate) which are then exported to non-livestock areas.
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Revì aims to have a social impact by raising awareness about recycling furniture and encouraging local crafts. It also has an environmental impact by recovering material which would otherwise be classed as rubbish.
The Lavandula project focuses on using agro-food by-products to produce active ingredients used in cosmetics.
Riuso³ – Banco del riuso in Franciacorta is a physical space above municipal level dedicated to a series of active policies geared towards conscious consumption and waste reduction through the exchange and recovery of goods.
MontECOlino has always had a keen interest in the environmental impact of its products. It has developed a carpet management system for the exhibition industry that recovers the carpet after use and transforms it into a new raw material for use in other sectors, in line with the circular economy concept.
HISER project (H2020): Holistic innovative solutions for efficient recycling and recovery of valuable raw materials
HISER's main objective is to develop and demonstrate holistic, technological and cost-effective solutions to increase recovery rates from increasingly complex construction and demolition waste (C&DW), with due regard for circular economy principles on the value chain in the construction sector (from buildings' end of life to new buildings).
In order to create a new commercial use for raw wool, the Italian association Post Industriale Ruralità has developed a form of vertical hydroponic cultivation using wool instead of soil.
In their collection named Trencadís, Barcelona Rugs uses spare scraps from various materials of high quality to create unique rugs.
reCIRCLE is the market-leading industrial solution for reusable packaging for takeaway catering. The "lunchbox as a service" concept saves millions of disposable containers every day.
Giving value to waste as a precious renewable resource: for the first time, agri-food waste can be exploited to create photovoltaic cells that produce sustainable electricity. From the residues derived from winemaking (normally disposed of without any other use), researchers can extract natural dyes that capture solar energy, transforming them into a regenerated green resource.
The Centro de Documentación Europea de la Universidad Francisco de Vitoria (European Documentation Centre, UFV) has completed a project titled Economía Circular y Empleabilidad de los Jóvenes en la Comunidad de Madrid (Circular Economy and Employability of Young People in the Autonomous Region of Madrid).
The outcomes include a report on communicating the circular economy through the lens of employment opportunities circular business models provide for young people. The project has also created a guide on communicating the circular economy to students, which introduces the subject, presents the 7R model and shows how innovative companies provide opportunities for employment in circular business.
Start-up of a microalgae-based treatment system within the biorefinery concept: from wastewater to bioproducts
Within the European project INCOVER, an experimental plant uses low-energy photobioreactors to cultivate micro-algae and transform wastewater into bioproducts.
This article describes this new experimental plant and the start-up stage, starting from the new design of three semi-closed horizontal photobioreactors with low energy requirements, for microalgae cultivation (30 m3 total), using agricultural runoff and urban wastewater as feedstock.
The inflow nutrients concentration is adjusted to select cyanobacteria, microalgae able to accumulate polyhydroxybutyrates, which can be used for bioplastics production. Part of the harvested biomass is used as substrate for anaerobic co-digestion (AcoD) with secondary sludge to obtain biogas. This biogas is then cleaned in an absorption column to reach methane concentration up to 99%. The digestate from the AcoD is further processed in sludge wetlands for stabilization and biofertilizer production.
On the other hand, treated water undergoes ultrafiltration and disinfection through a solar-driven process, then it is pumped through absorption materials to recover nutrients, and eventually applied in an agricultural field to grow energy crops by means of a smart irrigation system. This plant presents a sustainable approach for wastewater management, which can be seen as a resource recovery process, more than a waste treatment.
The publication presents a state-of-play for Slovakia's circular economy transition and introduces its circular economy policies. It also contains interviews with representatives of the Slovak State administration, NGO representatives and scientists, as well as examples of good practices from municipalities, businesses, and NGOs.
With an average of 79.5% recycled across Europe in 2016, steel for packaging is already the most recycled packaging material in Europe.
This report compiles examples of good practices from countries across the EU showcasing the varied projects, systems and processes by which steel for packaging is recycled, bringing significant reduction in emissions, resource and energy use.
Steel, a permanent material that can be infinitely recycled to make high quality products, can be easily sorted from the waste stream owing to its magnetic properties which make it the most economical packaging material to collect, sort and recycle over and over again.
Good practices in separate collection, sorting and recycling of steel for packaging contribute to improving its recycling rate, but can also serve as a guide for any stakeholder interested in improving these essential steps in a circular perspective.
The report provides a simple, yet rich overview of the barriers and enablers of circular economy business models as identifed by stakeholders, drawing upon a range of interviews, workshops and events, and a survey conducted with representatives of the European business sector.
Within businesses, stakeholders have identified high-level commitment accompanied by long-term perspectives, the personal drive and attitudes of staff, as well as the promise of enhanced competitiveness as key in supporting the transition towards circularity. Yet, from an internal company perspective, a number of factors were highlighted as getting in the way of the transition. Difficulties in financing new business models, taxation systems, resistance to change and the perceived lack of consumer demand are key examples of obstacles that hamper the circular transformation.
Importantly, stakeholders have provided interesting insights into possible solutions and recommendations able to overcome the challenges posed by circular economy barriers: tax incentives, the development of wealth-measurement systems other than GDP, material passports and quality standards, to name a few. Future solutions should also focus on ensuring safe areas for innovation out of tendering calls, green public procurement and increased financial support.
The EU Circular Economy Package pushes forward the concepts of ‘recycle, repair and re-use’, as well as waste avoidance. To comply with the Package many EU countries will need a completely new waste treatment system, and many companies will need to re-think some established business models.
Two years after adopting the Circular Economy Package, the EU institutions have finally agreed on a new EU waste regulation. The paper entitled Two years later: the EU Circular Economy Package evaluates recent EU policy moves and decisions. It also analyses the status quo of Germany's circular economy efforts and compares them to those of other EU member states. Finally, some of the risks and opportunities for companies are outlined.
This paper is an update of a previously published policy paper by Dr. Adriana Neligan (2016), which discussed the Package after it was presented in late 2016.
Two years after adopting the Circular Economy Package, the EU institutions have finally agreed on new EU waste rules. Despite lower recycling targets as originally envisaged, most countries still have to push recycling to meet the goals. A single method of determining recycling rates was also decided, but an exemption will continue to allow for disparate recycling rates.
Recycling has become increasingly important in Europe: EU recycling rates increased from 32 to 46 per cent between 2005 and 2016. Yet, more progress is needed to reach the targets.
The report Retaining value in the Swedish materials system takes a value perspective on the use and recycling of materials in a circular perspective. It analyses the use of materials in the Swedish economy in monetary terms instead of tonnes and cubic metres.
The key questions it seeks to answer include the following:
- For each 100 SEK of raw material entering the Swedish economy, how much value is retained after one use cycle?
- What are the main reasons that material value is lost?
- What measures could retain more materials value, and how much could be recovered? Which business opportunities arise as a result?
This value perspective gives a much more realistic view of how circular the Swedish materials system really is, as it captures all the downgrading effects that occur through its use of materials, in addition to the volume effects that also traditional research approaches capture. The value perspective also turns materials recycling into an industrial innovation and an economic topic, in addition to an environmental topic. To our knowledge, this is the first time anyone has value-mapped a material system in this way.
Read more about the results and download the full report (in Swedish) here.
Although the opportunities for investing in circular business models are widely available, current investment methods do not match the needs of these particular businesses. Businesses need to create an attractive business model for financiers, and financiers need to change the way they perceive the risks and opportunities associated with these models.
To help businesses position themselves in a circular context and develop future strategies for doing business in a circular economy, Sustainable Finance Lab, Circle Economy, Nuovalente, TUDelft, and het Groene Brein got together to create the Value Hill that proposes a categorisation based on the lifecycle phases of a product: pre-, in- and post-use.
The Circularity Gap Report 2019 finds that just 9% of the 92.8 billion tonnes of minerals, fossil fuels, metals and biomass that enter the economy are re-used annually. Circle Economy calculates that 62% of global greenhouse gas emissions are released during the extraction, processing and manufacturing of goods to serve society’s needs; only 38% are emitted in the delivery and use of products and services.
It highlights the vast scope to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by applying circular principles - re-use, re-manufacturing and re-cycling - to key sectors such as the built environment. Most governments barely consider circular economy measures in policies aimed at meeting the UN target of limiting global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.
In the second webinar of Signifikant's circular economy series, the discussion will be focussed on how manufacturing organizations are finding ways to fast-forward transformation beyond old linear ways of doing businesses.
Join this webinar to learn about the relevance of Circular Economy for cities, the role and approaches of EU regulation, as well as specific opportunities/challenges that municipalities may face when “going circular”.
It replaces the postponed NetWorkshop on Circular Cities>Towns>Villages and Municipal Utilities due to take place on 1-2 April.
On 17 and 18 March 2020 the Circular Materials Conference invites you to reimagine materials with the help of emerging technologies and novel collaborations to create a circular future together.
The national conference on the Circular Economy is scheduled for March 19 in Rome and will be livestreamed. Developed in collaboration with ENEA, it will show the 2020 Report on the circular economy in Italy with a focus on the regenerative bioeconomy.
The live streaming of the Conference is available here.
Fifty million metric tonnes of e-waste is generated every year, equalling the weight of nearly 4,500 Eiffel towers. Much of it is incinerated or placed in landfill, causing pollution, human health hazards and the loss of valuable finite resources.
Listen to experts do a deep-dive into the problems associated with e-waste and discuss how they can be tackled.
CEPS, in cooperation with COWI, Prognos and CapGemini, is launching a new study for the European Commission’s DG Energy on the EU’s Global Leadership in Renewables.
This webinar will outline a framework to classify indicators according to the measurement characteristics of the circular economy, but also provide an alternative pathway to monitor the circular economy.
A seminar where actors in the building and construction sector, policy-makers, academics and others can explore possibilities to accelerate the circular transition in the building and construction sector.
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.
The European Commission proposed new EU-wide rules to target the 10 single-use plastic products most often found on Europe's beaches and seas, as well as lost and abandoned fishing gear.
Les lauréats des Trophées de l’économie circulaire 2018
CEC is offering the opportunity for a promising talent to receive 1-on-1 mentoring from Prof. Walter R. Stahel.
Presentazione e lancio ICESP Italian Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform
Video highlights of the 3rd Circular Change Conference
Today EU Member States approved a set of ambitious measures to make EU waste legislation fit for the future, as part of the EU's wider circular economy policy.
Deutschland entkoppelt - Rethinking Circular Economy in Germany
El modelo de Economía Circular, ese que está tan de moda, asegura que todo, o casi todo, puede tener más de una vida, que todo puede volver a la cadena de producción... ¿Y cómo puede ser eso?
Tetra Pak aims to launch a paper straw that is suitable for its portion-sized carton packages before the end of the year, as part of a broader programme to help address the issue of plastic straw waste.
The purpose of the business unit is to develop the Group’s business in the circular economy, in the aftermarket. Created to answer a major societal challenge, it offers a solution for responsible consumption.