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Waste management

Strengthening circularity in photovoltaics - Challenges and opportunities along the lifecycle

White paper: Strengthening circularity in photovoltaics

Deutsche Umwelthilfe

Every year, huge numbers of photovoltaic (PV) modules are being installed. This solar energy expansion greatly furthers the ecological transformation of the energy system. But to solve the climate crisis every aspect has to be taken into consideration. This is why this white paper wants to shine light on challenges currently occuring or to be expected in connection with used photovoltaic modules and their disposal in Germany.

To better implement the goals of a circular economy, this paper will retrace the steps in the lifecycle of a photovoltaic module and analyse problems and possible solutions along these stages. After a brief description of the occuring challenges, opportunities and solutions deemed to be effective and sensible in these matters are presented.

15 Sep 2021
Plastics without borders

The European Union, the Canada Plastic Pact, the Circular Economy Coalition and the project Reducing Plastic Waste in Canada are hosting a WCEF21 two-hour Accelerator Session on circular economy for plastics with a focus on global supply chains on 15 September 2021.

14 Oct 2021
International E-Waste Day

According to the UN, in 2021 each person on the planet will produce on average 7.6 kg of e-waste, meaning that a massive 57.4 million tonnes will be generated worldwide. Only 17.4% of this electronic waste, containing a mixture of harmful substances and precious materials, will be recorded as being properly collected, processed and recycled.

Many initiatives are underway to tackle this growing concern, but none of them can be fully effective unless consumers are properly informed and really play their part. This year’s International E-Waste Day will focus on the crucial part each of us has to play in making circularity a reality for e-products.

15 Oct 2021
Mazovia Circular Congress

This hybrid event, Mazovia Circular Congress, part of Circular Week 2021, will take place on 15 October. It is aimed at representatives of public administration, local government, enterprises, managers dealing with sustainable development and CSR, start-ups and media. We also plan to organise a panel discussion for various stakeholder groups (entrepreneurs, non-governmental organisations, representatives of state administration and local government) on how to use circular economy solutions.

Impacts of COVID-19 on single-use plastic in Europe's environment

Impacts of COVID-19 on single-use plastic in Europe’s environment

Type:

Author: 
Schmutz, M., et al., 2020, Cotton and surgical masks - what ecological factors are relevant for their sustainability?, Tsukiji, M., et al., 2020, Waste management during the COVID-19 pandemic: From response to recovery, Institute for Global Environmental Strategies
Publication Date: 
06/2021
Country: 
EU

Language for original content:

The COVID-19 pandemic is having an immense impact on societies across the world. It has caused millions of deaths worldwide and challenged our health systems and economies. The pandemic - and responses to it, involving lockdowns, use of personal protection equipment and stay-at-home measures - has far-reaching health and economic consequences.

This briefing deals with the less visible effects on our environment and climate originating from changed use of single-use plastics due to the pandemic.

Emerging waste streams: Opportunities and challenges of the clean-energy transition from a circular economy perspective

Emerging waste streams: Opportunities and challenges of the clean energy transition from a circular economy perspective

EEA

Type:

Author: 
Carrara et al. , Stahl et al.
Publication Date: 
08/2021
Country: 
EU

Language for original content:

Renewable energy technologies, such as wind turbines, solar photovoltaic panels and batteries, are essential for Europe’s transition to climate neutrality. Deployment, maintenance and replacement of this infrastructure requires significant resources, including many substances included in the EU list of critical raw materials.

Waste arising from end-of-life clean energy infrastructure is projected to grow up to 30-fold over the next 10 years, presenting significant opportunities to reduce consumption of scarce raw materials by recycling metals and other valuable resources back into production systems.

Circular economy approaches such as repair and upgrading of equipment and recycling of end-of-life infrastructure can underpin the sustainability credentials of EU renewable energy.

13 Oct 2021
#EURegionsWeek

The participatory info session Circular solutions for regions and cities – how to make it work will take place on Wednesday 13 October, 11:00 a.m. (CEST). Participants will learn more about the Circular Cities and Regions Initiative (CCRI), which offers possibilities for cities and regions, ranging from knowledge-sharing and technical expertise to financial opportunities, and get insights and experiences from the local perspective.

15 Sep 2021
RREUSE 20 years logo

Last days to register to an online webinar on 15 September: RREUSE, the European network of social enterprises active in re-use, repair and recycling, is delighted to share with you an invitation to its second episode of the series Let's Get Talking, with Lakshmi Narayan.
 
The aim of this series is to address and explore social value within the circular transition, a topic RREUSE hopes to bring at the heart of discussions on circular policies and re-use/secondhand.

France’s Anti-waste and Circular Economy Law: eliminating waste and promoting social inclusion

France’s Anti-waste and Circular Economy Law

France’s Anti-waste and Circular Economy Law is a great example of cross-sectoral collaboration. Policymakers, municipalities, NGOs and businesses worked together with the public administration to identify a richer range of needs, solutions, and policy measures. As a result, the law is ambitious and contributes to a system-wide transition towards a circular economy.

This case study by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation is part of a series of case studies that exemplify elements of the Universal circular economy policy goals (2021) in practice.

CICLO: New platform for the development of basic circular economy skills

CICLO logo

Through its eight modules, the CICLO platform aims to upgrade, free of cost, the opportunities for up-skilling and re-skilling of long-term unemployed and low-skilled workers, in the field of the evolving circular economy market:

  1. Circular Economy: What’s in a name?
  2. Recycling Management
  3. Materials Reuse and Remanufacturing
  4. From Products to Services (Servitisation)
  5. Soft Skills for the Circular Economy I and 21st Century Skills
  6. Soft Skills for the Circular Economy II
  7. Good Practices
  8. How to Approach a Transition Towards a Greener System.

The material could be included in educational services offered by Vocational Education and Training (VET) providers, Training Centres, Higher Education Institutions, NGOs, SMEs, public services relevant to EU labour force, etc.

23 Sep 2021
Prototyping

Since 2019, the Foundation for Future Generations has been supporting student entrepreneurs with the prototyping phase of a product, service or technique with a positive impact on society. Discover the winners in the fields of the circular economy and zero waste during a webinar on 23 September 2021 from 3.30 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Pryme: A game changer in plastic recycling

Pryme logo

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Netherlands

Language for original content:

Scope:

Pryme converts plastic waste into valuable products on an industrial scale. It has developed a new approach to an existing and proven chemical recycling technology. Pryme has optimised the pyrolysis process by adding proprietary characteristics.

ZenRobotics

ZenRobotics

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Finland

Language for original content:

Scope:

ZenRobotics has harnessed the power of artificial intelligence to improve the quality of waste sorting. ZenRobotics' AI-powered robot technology is used at its material recovery facilities (MRFs) to capture valuable high-purity materials from waste streams in construction and demolition, commerce and industry, and municipal solid waste.

22 Sep 2021 to 23 Sep 2021

Event schedule change!

This webinar is the final event of the CIRC4Life project. We will look into the lessons learnt from research and demonstrations, and discuss the challenges and policies needed to further boost circular solutions for the electrical and electronic equipment sector and the agri-food value chain.

18 Aug 2021
End-of-life vehicles

The Commission has opened a public consultation on the review of the Directive on the end-of-life vehicles (ELV). It is targeted especially at two stakeholder groups: 1) citizens with a general interest in the area of end-of-life vehicles; 2) stakeholders (economic operators, NGOs, public administrations…) who have specific knowledge and/or interest about end-of-life vehicles. Let's participate!

01 Sep 2021
Circular-economy-and-electronics-—-from-theory-to-practice

How does the circular economy work, and what are the root issues connected to IT products? How should we address them from a circular economy perspective? Join the Circular Electronics Initiative on 1 September as we discuss the circular economy and electronics - going from theory to practice.

CIA: putting coffee husks to good use

Reuse and valorisation of coffee peels

The Italian company CIA has found that the most appropriate way to reuse coffee husks is as a fertiliser and soil conditioner by composting them in organic farms.

Dienpi: applying research to materials for fashion accessory production

Dienpi

Type of organisation or company:

Country: 
Italy

Language for original content:

Dienpi S.r.l. produces labels, tags and packaging for fashion brands. The production of tags and packaging for luxury brands whose production processes are not traditionally linear involves considerable amounts of innovation, sustainability and craftsmanship.

Rice for architecture by Ricehouse

Risehouse

Ricehouse natural mortars are obtained by expertly mixing aerial lime with rice husks, a agricultural by-product derived from husking raw rice.

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