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From waste to wealth: a digital matching platform finds new high-value reuse options for your materials or (waste) products

circular economy waste management

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Netherlands
City: 
Amsterdam

Language for original content:

Start/End date: 
09/2017
Ongoing: 
Yes

Type of funding:

Description: 

A linear economic system considers excess products/materials and waste streams low financial value, and companies even pay to get rid of them. However, these could systematically be reused in high-value applications, reducing enterprise costs or even turning these costs into a new revenue stream.

Excess Materials Exchange (EME) has turned this objective into reality by creating EME’s Internal Marketplace.

Four tools are instrumental to EME's way of working:

  1. Resources Passport: standardised and modular format giving an overview of composition, origin, toxicity, deconstructability, etc., of a material/product.
  2. Tracking and Tracing: through identifiers like barcodes, QR codes and chips, physical materials are effectively matched to their digital twin.
  3. Valuation: the maximum potential value deriving from a material/product of waste stream is identified, together with its financial, environmental and social impact.
  4. Matchmaking: each material/product is matched to a new high-value reuse option.

The platform can be further customised depending on an enterprise's particular needs.

Main results: 

Together with ten companies, among which Rijkswaterstaat, Schiphol, Sodexo and Tarkett, EME explored the possibilities of its Internal Marketplace, to better understand what is necessary for the optimal functioning of a platform that can exchange excess material flows between industries and sectors. It also supports its clients by explaining what is needed to exchange materials on the platform.

For each partner, EME looked at multiple excess material flows and how these excess materials could be reused at their highest value. 18 materials made their way through the platform for which they calculated the possible financial gains, water, CO2 emissions and energy savings to be achieved by finding high-value alternatives for the resource streams.

More information on EME's results.