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Circular Conversations

Circular Conversations is a digital parlour created to host an open and critical exchange of ideas on what the next society and economy should look like and how to get there.

By initiating conversations with people of different perspectives, ideas and ideologies, disciplines and backgrounds, this decentralized and independent platform shares theories and practices able to shape the direction and design of the next economy.

To read more conversations like the interview with Rieta Aliredjo, 2019 circular economy stakeholder conference keynote speaker, on empowering kids to be circular starts, visit the blog here.

Brussels construction industry roadmap towards a circular economy

Brussels construction industry roadmap towards a circular economy

The Brussels Regional Programme for a Circular Economy is Belgium's capital region strategic effort towards a circular economy. Within this programme, the Brussels construction industry with its 12,000 businesses is a priority sector. As construction and facilities management accounts for 98% of water use, 75% energy demand and 33% of waste in Brussels, there is great potential for a substantial contribution to a circular transition.

This roadmap, developed in partnership with the Environmental Agency through 3 stakeholder workshops, includes three gradual steps towards circular building in Brussels:

  1. voluntary measures by construction businesses by 2025
  2. comprehensive regulation for circular public buildings by 2030
  3. reforming all relevant local planning regulations to include circular principles by 2040

While the latter goal remains to be clearly defined and prepared, the voluntary measures by companies and regulatory update for public buildings have already been transformed into actionable steps, e.g. revising training curricula in vocational and professional schools with a circular mindset or setting up monitoring systems to track the flow of resource and waste from Brussels' largest construction sites.

29 Oct 2019
Materials - value chains for circular economy: metal, wood, plastic and concrete
CEN and CENELEC members, together with their industry partners, invite you to a one-day stakeholder workshop in Brussels on 29 October 2019 to address the challenges linked to the circularity of material-use at every phase of the value chain, and to both discuss and identify specific standardization gaps for metal, wood, plastic and concrete circularity.

Circular Economy Guidebook for Cities

Type:

Author: 
Piyush Dhawan, Janpeter Beckmann
Publication Date: 
03/2019
Country: 
Germany

Language for original content:

Contact: 
Janpeter Beckmann

In recent months there has been circular economy-related activity in cities as diverse as Maribor in Slovenia, Peterborough in the UK and Abuja in Nigeria. There is as much traction on the topic of CE in major cities of China, India, South Africa, Rwanda as there is the Netherlands and the UK. Is there no silver bullet for a city to become circular? No two cities are the same, so it is important to understand what that city’s unique selling point is and exactly what it wants to make circular.

In this guidebook, the CSCP classifies cities into four broad categories: a legacy city or a pioneering city in a developed or an emerging economy. Based on this classification, a number of examples from cities across the continents this guidebook documents the journey towards becoming more circular, and provides suggestions for cities seeking to make the shift.

The role of municipal policy in the Circular Economy: Investment, Jobs and Social Capital

Type:

Author: 
Circle Economy
Publication Date: 
06/2019
Country: 
EU

Language for original content:

Contact: 
Harald Friedl

Local government programmes that encourage and support circular economy practices, such as repair, recycling and circular design activities help attract new investment, create jobs and result in tangible socio-economic benefits for the city and its people, reveals the report: The Role of Municipal Policy in the Circular Economy: Investment, Jobs and Social Capital in Circular Cities.
 

The report explores the connection between municipalities pursuing circular economy policy and investments in circular business that create jobs. In order to maximise circularity's benefits for society, municipalities can employ a series of regulatory, economic and soft instruments that include strategies, targets, loans and subsidies, which are all also conducive to generating employment.

20 Sep 2019 to 22 Sep 2019
fixfest2019

In 2017, Fixfest brought together over 200 volunteer repairers and tinkerers, activists, policy-makers, thinkers, and companies from all over the world in the name of taking greater care of the things we own – and better products.

Nutripeople uses Spain's fruit surplus to create superfood packets that alleviate malnutrition

nutripeople one product

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Spain

Language for original content:

Nutripeople, a Murcian start-up producing superfoods for the developing world, actively engages Spain's agri-food industry to sell its vegetable surplus as a resource to produce superfood pouches, which are then distributed in areas afflicted by famine.

M-LS by O.C.O Technology: a carbon-negative limestone aggregate created with residues from waste to energy residue

The company O.C.O Technology Limited recycles a hazardous by-product of waste incineration in order to produce a carbon-negative material for the construction industry.

Circular Baltic 2030: circular economy in the Baltic sea region and beyond

Type:

Author: 
Joel Ahlgren
Publication Date: 
06/2019
Country: 
Sweden

Language for original content:

Contact: 
Joel Ahlgren - Global Utmaning

Circular Baltic 2030 - Circular economy in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR) is a report produced by the Swedish independent think-tank Global Utmaning.

It is a collection of circular economy best practices supporting the implementation of the European Union Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region and covering the EU Member States of Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Sweden as well as the partner countries Norway and Russia. The report also showcases a number of circular economy best practices from around the world.

Karun upcycles harmful waste into high quality sunglasses

Karun sunglasses and fishing nets

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Italy, Sweden, Other (Chile)

Language for original content:

Karün is a Swedish-Chilean company producing sunglass frames entirely from discarded fishing nets and jeans, collected in Patagonia.

For Better Not Worse: Applying Ecodesign Principles to Plastics in the Circular Economy

For Better Not Worse: Applying Ecodesign Principles to Plastics in the Circular Economy

Type:

Author: 
Chloé Fayole, Doreen Fedrigo, Ioana Popescu
Publication Date: 
06/2019
Country: 
Belgium

Language for original content:

Scope:

Contact: 
Doreen Fedrigo

This report examines the actual implementation of existing measures and potentially relevant new approaches for deepening the application of ecodesign principles for plastic materials and products containing plastic.

It looks at a number of sectors which rely heavily on plastic, including packaging, construction, electronics, automotive, furniture and textiles. The study assesses a wide range of criteria and tools available in horizontal and product regulations, as well as so-called soft tools such as standards, Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) schemes and the EU Ecolabel.

The report also looks at the potential of these tools for driving circularity and opportunities for extending promising solutions to other sectors.

09 Oct 2019

Join the Architects' Council of Europe for a workshop on the 'adaptive reuse of our built environment for a greener Europe' on 9 October 2019

Municipality-led circular economy case studies

Publication Cover

Type:

Author: 
Charlotte Breen, C40 Cities, Peter Vangsbo, EIT Climate-KIC
Publication Date: 
12/2018
Country: 
EU

Language for original content:

Contact: 
Peter Vangsbo

This publication, managed and delivered by C40 Cities, provides 40 thorough examples of practical circular economic initiatives from cities around the world, for inspiration and replications by other cities.

The Climate-KIC Circular Cities project is investigating how city governments can be transformational change agents and creators of smart and sustainable neighbourhoods.

The results are expected to improve how cities manage building, construction and utility waste and, through productively utilizing household and industrial waste streams, can increase the growing perception that what was once viewed as waste can now be viewed as resource streams.

Creating a Digital Roadmap for a Circular Economy

Creating a Digital Roadmap for a Circular Economy

EPC publication

The EU faces multiple challenges (climate crisis, environmental disasters, a lack of competitiveness, falling behind in the digital race, etc.) that it will need to address if it is to ensure long-term sustainable prosperity for European citizens. At the same time, there are two ongoing transitions – the creation of a circular economy and the digital transformation – that could provide the means to address these challenges, if they are managed well.

As the EU and national policymakers are making significant efforts to promote a circular economy on the one hand and a digital economy on the other, Annika Hedberg and Stefan Šipka, together with Johan Bjerkem, argue that it is time to align the agendas as a means to achieve greater sustainability and competitiveness.

This publication:

  • demonstrates what digitalisation means in the context of a circular economy;
  • considers what a greater focus on sustainability would mean for the digital transition;
  • examines the role of the EU policy framework, tools and initiatives in steering a (digital) transition towards a (digital) circular economy and makes recommendations for EU institutions for the next five year.

It suggests that the EU must:

  • think systemically, define a vision and act;
  • provide an adequate governance framework and economic incentives for a (digital) transition to a (digital) circular economy;
  • encourage collaboration across European society and economy as well as globally, and empower its citizens to contribute to the transition.

This Discussion Paper builds on the findings of the EPC’s "Digital Roadmap for a Circular Economy" project of 2017-19 and paves the way for a more extensive final study, scheduled to be published in the late autumn of 2019.

The project has been supported by Aalto University and the Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke) (members of Helsinki EU Office), Central Denmark region, Climate-KIC, the Estonian Ministry of the Environment, Estonian Environment Investment Centre, HP, Orgalim, the province of Limburg, UL, Fondazione Cariplo and Cariplo Factory.

10 May 2019

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation launched its Circular Economy 100 (CE100) programme in 2013 and includes city and government authorities, universities, and companies. Within the context of this programme, the Foundation organised an Acceleration Workshop in Catalonia May 2019.

Field trip for policy makers: circular economy & social inclusion in practice

Start/End date: 
27/07/2019
Country: 
Belgium
City: 
Brussels

Scope:

Coordination Group activity type:

Abstract: 

To help inspire conversation and policy action concerning inclusive circular business models during the next EU Commission mandate, RREUSE invited EU decision makers to a closed site visit to Les Petits Riens, a Brussels-based social enterprise with activities dating back to 1937.

Adhesives industry: water-soluble adhesives facilitate return and reuse bottle schemes and end-of-life recycling

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Germany

Language for original content:

Türmerleim is a company that produces adhesives, including for reusable bottles. Its adhesives have a high level of alkaline solubility, making them easy to remove and so promoting the reuse and recycling of bottles.

19 Sep 2019
ERC

Event type:

City: 
Paris
Country: 
France

Sector:

Scope:

EuRIC – the European Recycling Industries’ Confederation – and FEDEREC kindly invite you to the 3rd edition of the European Recycling Conference (ERC) on 19 September 2019 at the unique location of the Air and Space Museum in Paris.

Eyewear made of recycled and oil-free materials

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Netherlands

Language for original content:

Founded in 2012 with the objective of creating high-quality eyewear from oil-free or recycled materials, producing Dick Moby sunglasses and eyeglasses follows a circular approach: lowering environmental compared to similar fashion accessories.

Developing Romania's strategy for a transition to a circular economy 2020 - 2030

Start/End date: 
12/04/2019 to 30/11/2020
Country: 
Romania
City: 
Cluj-Napoca

Scope:

Coordination Group activity type:

Abstract: 

During Romania's Presidency of the Council of the European Union in Spring 2019, IRCEM began a project to support the development of a circular economy strategy for Romania until 2030. With support from the Ministry of Environment, Department for Sustainable Development and countless other public authorities, civil society organisations and private businesses, a series of 9 conferences and workshops was held from April to June 2019. A draft strategy will be presented to the Romanian government on the basis of these discussions in Autumn 2019.

PVC Upcycling - reclaiming PVC, copper and aluminium from decommissioned electric cables

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Italy

Language for original content:

REDEL is an energy provider in Italy. Its activities comprise decommissioning outdated energy installations. The PVC Upcycling project aims to initiate a circular model for reclaiming resources by:

  • de-manufacturing: recovering the PVC of electric cables coming from decommissioned energy plants;
  • re-manufacturing: recycling of the same PVC in products.

Raytent: high-quality yarns and fabrics made from solar tents industry cut-offs

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Italy

Language for original content:

Giovanardi recycles technical acrylic textiles from solar protection industry, to create the Raytent line of high-quality yarns and fabrics.

Sharing platform Werflink enables construction companies in Belgium to reduce waste by re-using materials

Werflink - Sharing Platform Construction companies in Belgium

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Belgium

Language for original content:

Scope:

Werflink is an online sharing platform on which construction sites and companies and can share equipment, materials, resources, freight space and facilities. The platform has been set up in collaboration with the Flemish Construction Confederation, construction company BESIX, Circular Flanders and FLOOW2, to create a more circular construction sector.

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