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.
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Fjällräven is giving wool waste a second life by using it for innovative purposes, like padding in jackets or backplate in backpacks.
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.
RiVending is an innovative cycle of recovery and recycling of polystyrene cups, stirrers and PET bottles for vending machines in Italy.
The partnership between Herning and DFD has led to a new circular business model for the work clothing used by the municipality’s technical operations department.
The Dutch company KarTent has come up with a sustainable solution for the many tents left behind by music festival goers: a cardboard tent, designed to be purchased and transported in bulk to festival sites. After the festival, the company arranges for the tents to be removed and recycled.
Mamukko is an Irish company, founded in 2011, that uses waste nautical materials as a secondary raw material. They promote upcycling by using end-of-life sails, decommissioned life rafts and recycled leather to make bags.
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.
This retrospective report is a review of the plans set out by Circular Flanders in the Kick-off Statement.
The most important finding? A good deal more was accomplished than initially anticipated. For example, the opportunity to launch three Open Calls, permitting the funding of over 130 innovative circular economy projects. The Green Deal on Circular Construction was also an unprecedented opportunity, as was the complementary reinforcement of the OVAM team of experts in ecodesign and area-specific operations, allowing the scope to expand.
This retrospective report is an interactive PDF. External links to downloads or online resources have been embedded on each project page for easy accessibility.
This French act of law contains about 50 measures providing for:
- new obligations with the creation of new producer responsibility sectors to include new product families in the circular economy (toys, sports and do-it-yourself equipment, building materials, cigarette butts, sanitary textiles);
- new prohibitions on single-use plastics and to fight waste of food and non-food unsold products;
- new tools to better control and sanction offences against the environment (greater power for mayors to combat littering and illegal dumping), to support companies in their eco-design initiatives (bonus/malus-type incentives) and to assist citizens in new consumption practices (repairability index, information on environment and health impacts of products, harmonisation of info on sorting, etc.).
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.
Sitra commissioned this study to investigate whether and under what assumptions and policy measures the decoupling of CO2 emissions from economic growth could occur at a sufficient rate for CO2 emissions to decline to net zero by 2050. The analyses were carried out on a global level.
The results of this study show that deep CO2 emission cuts in line with the 1.5 °C target and positive GDP growth can occur at the same time.
A natural next step would be to analyse in detail the decoupling of other harmful environmental impacts from economic growth. For example, a global shift to more circular business models could reduce CO2 emissions and help cut the use of materials and natural resources while maintaining economic growth.
This study by Sitra set out to find diverse circular economy solutions that are viable and scalable, that drive systemic circularity, and that have exceptionally positive environmental and social impacts. Over 200 organisations around the world submitted their solutions for consideration.
The study presents 39 outstanding examples of circular economy solutions that are closing material loops and driving the circular transition while being very relevant to their own environment. These solutions demonstrate the benefits of circular business operations and how different organisations across society can use circular thinking to improve the value of their business and progress towards achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
RREUSE: achieving a fair and inclusive circular transition through the EU Social Economy Action Plan
RREUSE welcomes the European Commission’s proposal to develop a favourable policy environment for social economy actors, calling for an ambitious Social Economy Action Plan (SEAP) that would provide a policy toolbox enabling a green, fair and circular transition in the post-COVID economic recovery. In order to establish a sustainable EU socio-economic environment and maximise the SEAP’s potential, RREUSE seeks to put forward the following recommendations on four priority areas:
- Mainstream the social economy within circular policies and beyond
- Recognise the real value of social enterprises active in the circular economy
- Improve access to funding for social enterprises
- Acknowledge social enterprises’ role in (up)skilling to meet changing market needs.
This working paper, prepared by the ILO, looks at the future of work in textiles, clothing, leather and footwear (TCLF) industries.
It explores how technological advances, climate change, globalisation and changing demographics will shape these industries. It then analyses how these challenges and opportunities will impact decent work, and looks at the future of TCLF production in three categories of countries (least developed, middle income and high income). It concludes that at the present rate, the TCLF industries will not move to a circular economy approach for years.
The EU Ecolabel is the official European Union label for environmental excellence.
It is awarded to sustainably-designed products, thereby encouraging innovation, and contributing to the EU’s goal of climate neutrality by 2050 and to the circular economy.
Industry can use the EU Ecolabel to offer consumers an eco-friendly alternative to conventional products and help them lower their daily environmental impact.
Ambitious criteria have been set, focusing on the main environmental impacts generated over the lifecycle of these products. This ensures that EU Ecolabel hard covering products are among the best on the market in terms of environmental performance.
Access the full list of EU Ecolabel criteria for hard coverings products here.
Circular Economy Report 2021 in Italy - Focus on the role of circular economy in the transition to climate neutrality
The Third Circular Economy Report (2021) by the Circular Economy Network and ENEA, besides providing the updated analysis on circular economy in Italy as compared to the main EU countries, includes a focus on the role of circular economy in the transition towards climate neutrality, as well as an update on the most important measures implemented at the national and European levels.
This report updates the analysis on the state of circular economy in Italy, assessing the results achieved in the areas of production, consumption, circular waste management, as well as investments and employment in recycling, repairing and reuse, with a comparison among the main economies in the EU: Germany, France, Italy, Spain, and Poland.
To read the report in full (in Italian), please click here.
EN: The MarketPlace Circular Labs aim to give visibility to good practices and circular economy success stories developed by businesses and entrepreneurs in the north-west of the Iberian Peninsula (Castilla y León, Galicia and North of Portugal).
ES: El MarketPlace Circular Labs tiene por objeto dar visibilidad a Buenas Prácticas y casos de éxito de economía circular desarrolladas por empresas y emprendedores en el Noroeste de la Península Ibérica (Castilla y León, Galicia y Norte de Portugal).
PT: O MarketPlace Circular Labs pretende dar visibilidade às Boas Práticas e casos de sucesso da economia circular desenvolvidas por empresas e empresários do Noroeste da Península Ibérica (Castela e Leão, Galiza e Norte de Portugal).
Forest Sharing is a platform/marketplace for the shared and innovative management of unmanaged or underutilized privately-owned forests according to PEFC standards, a network where exchanges between owners and economic operators within the supply chain are facilitated and organized, thus creating the economies of scale needed for forest activities (sale of wood or derived products, recreational areas, adventure parks, thematic routes, management of Rural Development Plans etc.) to become economically viable.
The platform, online since September 2020, has around 300 registered users for 2 500 hectares of woods in various regions, with a potential of another 2 000 hectares. In 2019 it was selected as best practice/new business idea within Rosewood.
Circular economy marketplaces for reuse and recycling of products exist. The USOdy platform claims outstanding results with respect to its primary objective, the reuse and recycling of electrical and electronic equipment (EEE), by contributing to the increase of the reuse of administration’s EEE from 5 % up to potentially 50 %.
Going beyond, the practice also enables vulnerable users and groups to get access to refurbished equipment at an affordable price, which contributes to reducing the overall digital divide in the society and creates jobs at refurbishing organisations for vulnerable persons. The practice is transferable to any region: all necessary resources (code, methodologies…) are available as free software.
Click here for more info.
Fab City Challenge is an initiative launched in 2014 by the then mayor of Barcelona, “challenging” cities to become self-sustainable by 2054. Since then, the project has expanded to a global network of 28 cities and one country (Georgia), cooperating with each other to improve, implement and exchange their urban practices.
The end-goal is for each city to produce everything they consume. In order to reach its objective, the Challenge vividly promotes increased collective action and co-designed solutions for the common well-being of the planet. That is the main idea of its Manifesto, which contains 10 guiding principles for promoting sustainability and liveability – with actions at local and regional levels.
CIRCLES - the network of organisations contributing to the circular economy in the Eastern Netherlands
CIRCLES is a platform dedicated to disseminating circular economy solutions in the Eastern Netherlands. It encourages entrepreneurs to participate in the green transition, promoting their sense of ownership in the transition process. It offers a space for stakeholders to interact and exchange views on circular economy – digitally or physically - or simply a space to establish partnerships.
Several organisations – public, private and NGOs – interact in a range of ways, including workshops, publications, opportunities to access finance. One of the initiatives, for instance, consists of a space to submit ideas. If viable, cooperation with regional universities can be established, and entrepreneurs can collaborate to reach solutions.
BauKarussell is a consortium supported and co-run by industrial actors and the City of Vienna. It seeks to establish circular loops in the city's construction sector, with an emphasis on large-scale demolition. The platform focuses on compliance with new regulations and ensuring that reusable components are dismantled and made available for reuse through partnerships with large property developers.
Green practices are becoming standard practice in the construction sector in Austria, and this initiative is in line with that trend. Workers from social enterprises actually prepare material for reuse. It is estimated that the consortium could create around 9 000 jobs in Austria.
Som Mobilitat is a non-profit cooperative working for a more sustainable mobility model. It seeks to promote the use of public transport, cycling and walking.
The cooperative also offers an electric carsharing service if none of the other options are available for certain routes. The cooperative is structured around communities where the shared electric vehicles can be used by individuals and private and public organisations.