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Progress towards preventing waste in Europe - the case of textile waste prevention

Progress towards preventing waste in Europe: the textile case

Textile Waste Prevention

Type:

Author: 
Burcu Gözet - Wuppertal Institute, Henning Wilts - Wuppertal Institute, Saskia Manshoven - VITO, Ioannis Bakas - EEA
Publication Date: 
12/2021
Country: 
EU

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Scope:

Waste prevention is the best waste management policy option, according to the waste hierarchy - the EU's main rule for the environmental ranking of waste management policies. Its main objective is to reduce waste generation, the environmental impacts of waste management and the hazardousness of the waste generated.

To support this objective, the EU and all its Member States have put in place legislation that promotes activities in products' life cycles aimed at reducing the amount of waste generated.

This report aims to assess progress towards the main objective of waste prevention: decoupling (i. e. breaking the link between waste generation and economic growth).

Linking cross-border shipments of waste in the EU with the circular economy

Linking cross-border shipments of waste in the EU with the circular economy

Shipments of waste and the circular economy

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Author: 
European Environment Agency
Publication Date: 
12/2021
Country: 
EU

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Scope:

This briefing provides a snapshot of the status of trading non-hazardous, recyclable waste within the EU. Its aim is to provide knowledge and information to support the review of the EU's Waste Shipment Regulation.

The idea is to improve the functioning of secondary material markets by offering insights and potential solutions to help ensure that waste is treated in the best possible way in line with the principles of the waste hierarchy.

Consumers’expectations of circular business models: perspectives of suppliers

Consumer expectations of circular business models - supplier perspective in Product-Service Systems

Type:

Author: 
The Circular Economy (CE) Policy Research Center
Publication Date: 
05/2019
Country: 
Belgium

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Scope:

In ‘Vision 2050. A long-term strategy for Flanders’, the circular economy is one of seven transition priorities. New business models play a key role in this transition.

This paper explores incentives and barriers for consumers in adopting new circular business models - such as Product-Service Systems (PSS). Eight B2C suppliers were interviewed in the sectors of coffee, housing, electrical appliances and clothing.

The study confirms that PSS are context-dependent and emphasises the dynamic relation between producers and consumers in PSS.

Future research priorities include uncovering practical and cultural aspects of PSS, as well as exploring what it takes for PSS to be transformative in the context of a transition towards the circular economy.

 

Impact of circular economy on achieving the climate targets: case housing

Impact of circular economy on achieving the climate targets: case housing

Impact of circular economy on achieving the climate targets

Type:

Author: 
CE Center | Circular Economy Policy Research Center
Publication Date: 
05/2019
Country: 
Belgium

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Scope:

This report assesses how the circular economy contributes to reaching climate goals with regard to residential housing.

The draft Flemish climate policy plan covers the operational phase of housing and the material and carbon footprints of building and renovation. The report explores two ways to reduce these footprints: reducing the size of new housing and splitting existing buildings, and applying alternative construction methods or building materials and increasing the use of recycled and reused materials.

Car-sharing in Flanders

Car-sharing in Flanders

Type:

Author: 
CE Center | Circular Economy Policy Research Center
Publication Date: 
05/2019
Country: 
Belgium

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Key Area:

Scope:

This report details the research conducted by the Steunpunt Circulaire Economie, covering the results of a consumer survey with over 2000 respondents, as well as four interviews with car-sharing companies and interest groups.

The main objective is to get a better understanding of the position of car-sharing in Flanders, what people think of car-sharing, including the barriers people face, and what impact car-sharing is having on behaviour and the environment.

The report concludes with a set of implications and recommendations for policy relating to car-sharing and its place in the circular economy. 

Biomass Flows in the Flemish Economy

Biomass Flows in the Flemish Economy

Type:

Author: 
Ive Vandereydt, Koen Breemersch (VITO), Kranti Navare (VITO)
Publication Date: 
05/2019
Country: 
Belgium

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Scope:

This short-term assignment attempts to improve our understanding of the data availability of biomass flows within the Flemish economy and develops a methodology to approximate the flow of biomass between different industries. 

This needs to be done in order to maximise their potential and reduce unnecessary waste flows. However, the report finds that the data currently available are insufficient, and considers that the construction of a physical counterpart to monetary input/output tables might be the answer.

CO2 mineralisation for sustainable construction materials

CO2 mineralisation for sustainable construction materials

CO2 mineralisation for sustainable construction materials
Author: 
Andrea Di Maria (KU Leuven), Ruben Snellings (VITO), Luc Alaerts (KU Leuven), Mieke Quaghebeur (VITO), Luc Alaerts (KU Leuven), Karel Van Acker (KU Leuven)
Publication Date: 
04/2019
Country: 
Belgium

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Key Area:

Scope:

The production of Portland cement (PC) is responsible for 8-10 % of the global anthropogenic CO2 emissions. PC and PC-based blends are the most common binder in concrete production (< 99 % of cases). As PC is accountable for 74-81% of the CO2 footprint, substantial climate impact reductions for concrete requires eco-innovation at the cement level.

One of the most promising technologies to lower CO2 emissions consists in partially replacing traditional PC with industrial byproducts displaying cementitious properties, such as blast furnace slag from iron production, or coal combustion fly ashes from power generation, but their availability and properties are rather constrained.

A diversification of local (secondary) raw materials to extend partial substitution of PC is ongoing. 

Circular economy indicators for person mobility and transport

Circular economy indicators for person mobility and transport

Circular economy indicators for person mobility and transport

Type:

Author: 
CE Center | Circular Economy Policy Research Center
Publication Date: 
05/2020
Country: 
Belgium

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This report presents the set of indicators comprising the mobility system, as part of the CE monitor developed by the policy research center. The indicators show that as it stands, the mobility system is far from circular and is in fact becoming more linear.

The mobility system is consuming ever greater amounts of materials, with more vehicles which are used less intensively and efficiently. The modal shift towards public transport or bicycles, which use fewer materials per person transported, is simply not progressing.

The Circular Economy and International Trade: Options for the World Trade Organization

The Circular Economy and International Trade

Type:

Author: 
Christophe Bellmann
Publication Date: 
12/2021
Country: 
Other (Global)

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Scope:

This study highlights that, while international trade has a vital role to play, policy responses to-date have largely been designed at the national level and in an uncoordinated manner.

ICC Secretary General John W.H. Denton says that "the report shines a light on how well-intentioned national policies are inadvertently hindering the adoption of circular solutions in the real-economy. Simply put: the transition to a circular economy can only be enabled at scale by harnessing the power of cross-border trade to unlock economies of scale and comparative advantages. We hope our analysis will serve as a clarion call for a concerted global effort under the auspices of the World Trade Organization to enable new patterns of trade capable of meeting global climate and sustainability goals".

From Principles to Practices: Realising the value of circular economy in real estate

From Principles to Practices: Realising the value of circular economy in real estate - a report by Arup

Arup

Type:

Author: 
Devni Acharya, Arup, Richard Boyd, Arup, Olivia Finch, Ellen MacArthur Foundation
Publication Date: 
02/2020
Country: 
EU, Other (United Kingdom)

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Arup has joined forces with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation to produce a report on the value of circular economy (CE) in real estate.

CE offers real estate investors a framework for achieving environmental and social goals while delivering better economic performance. How do real estate business models need to change - apart from eco-design - if CE principles are to scale up in this sector?

The report defines five models to improve financial performance to the benefit of real estate investors and construction clients:

  1. Flexible Spaces
  2. Adaptable Assets
  3. Relocatable Buildings
  4. Residual Value
  5. Performance Procurement.

 

Green Public Procurement: An Overview of Green Reforms in Country Procurement Systems

Green Public Procurement: An Overview of Green Reforms in Country Procurement Systems

Green Public Procurement

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Author: 
World Bank Group
Publication Date: 
09/2021
Country: 
Other (189 countries all over the world)

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Scope:

In many countries, the government is the single largest purchaser of products, services and works. Green Public Procurement (GPP) enables governments to reduce the environmental impact of their purchases. It also serves as a powerful tool for governments to simultaneously achieve their environmental and development policy objectives.

This report - Green Public Procurement: An Overview of Green Reforms in Country Procurement Systems - provides an overview of international experience in the implementation of GPP. It focuses on the institutional framework that is needed to support the mainstreaming of GPP practices across governments. The intention is to equip practitioners with a broad understanding of the issues they need to consider in the design and implementation of GPP reforms.

Towards A Circular Economy – Skills and competences for STEM professionals

Towards a circular economy – Skills and competences for STEM professionals

Towards A Circular Economy

Type:

Author: 
Association of Nordic Engineers/Ethica
Publication Date: 
11/2021
Country: 
Denmark

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Scope:

The benefits of transitioning to a circular economy outweigh the disadvantages. However, more efforts are needed to move from conceptualisation to implementation. The transition requires a political commitment and the right business mindset. It also requires prioritisation and investment in innovation, the utilisation of new technological solutions, and the right set of skills and competences.

So far, there has been very limited focus on what skills and competences are needed for this transition and whether Nordic STEM education provides them. This report introduces the basis for a Circular Economy Competence Framework for STEM specialists, including a set of essential technical and analytical skills for creating circular solutions.

Circular Threads: the Circular Economy is essential for the successful (r)evolution of the fashion and textile industry

Circular Threads

Type:

Author: 
Francesco Castellano, Alberto Monti, Shyaam Ramkumar, Letizia Ingaldo, Alessandro Innocenti, Amandeep Kaur, Giovanna Matrone
Publication Date: 
10/2021
Country: 
Italy

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Circular Threads is a down-to-the-ground research aiming to offer a picture of the practices related to sustainability and circularity in the fashion and textile industry in Northern Italy.

This work represents a starting point to concretely foster the transition towards circular production models in the Italian textile industry. Researchers have developed a tripartite approach (desk research, questionnaire and circularity assessment) with different levels of granularity to measure the sustainability and circularity of the companies present in this area.

The report highlights how few companies in the fashion and textile industry are adopting CE practices and strategies, and a clear lack of knowledge-sharing about the opportunities the CE can bring them on a systemic level.

L'école circulaire: a publication by INEC on circularity at school

L'école circulaire
Author: 
Institut National de l’Economie Circulaire
Publication Date: 
09/2021
Country: 
France

Language for original content:

The French National Institute for Circular Economy (INEC) has published its Programme Ecole circulaire (in FR), whose objective is to use schools - a place familiar to all - as showcases for the circular economy. It contains a series of good practices (for public and private actors, youth) - over 40 territorial initiatives and 50 operational solutions - on the following themes:

  1. school buildings (construction, renovation)
  2. energy supply
  3. inner/outer spatial planning
  4. stationery-equipment-furniture
  5. school cleaning (products and apparel, staff training)
  6. food loop (local and sustainable food, waste, water fountains)
  7. logistics (mobility, deliveries)
  8. student awareness (waste management, recycling, exchange).

 

Barriers and enablers for implementing circular economy business models

Barriers and enablers for implementing circular economy business models

CEPS Research Report

Type:

Author: 
Vasileios Rizos, Julie Bryhn, Monica Alessi, Edoardo Righetti, Noriko Fujiwara, Cristian Stroia
Publication Date: 
10/2021
Country: 
Belgium

Language for original content:

Scope:

Cristian Stroia Contact details

The circular economy is a key element of the European Green Deal as a concept that can support the transition towards a more sustainable growth model. In recent years there has been a growth of circular economy industrial applications, but evidence suggests that the uptake of circular approaches in many sectors is still limited.

The report titled Barriers and enablers for implementing circular economy business models - Evidence from the electrical and electronic equipment and agri-food value chains provides facts and data on barriers and enablers to the implementation of circular economy business models in two value chains that exhibit high levels of waste generation:

  1. electrical and electronic equipment and
  2. agri-food.

Why Sustainable SMEs hold the Key to the Circular Economy

Why Sustainable SMEs hold the Key to the Circular Economy

ecopreneur.eu
Author: 
Arthur ten Wolde, Josefine Koehler
Publication Date: 
09/2021
Country: 
Belgium

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SMEs hold the key to the circular economy. Their innovation potential to introduce and mainstream sustainable business models is blocked by many obstacles such as lack of demand, additional costs, and the complexity of circular design.

To unleash their full potential and realise the European Green Deal’s objectives, Ecopreneur.eu recommends: launching regional circularity hubs, active engagement of ecopreneurs as front-runners, true pricing using economic incentives, 100% green implementation of the European Recovery Plan, introducing innovation funding and subsidies that are attractive to SMEs, and enacting progressive EU legislation such as a mandatory gate-to-gate Life Cycle Assessment for all companies.

Click here for the Executive Summary.

The big food redesign

The big food redesign

While the current food system has sustained a growing population and brought economic development, much of it is essentially ‘linear’ and extractive, particularly in more developed markets. It is wasteful, polluting, and depletive, and is the primary driver of biodiversity loss and accounts for a third of global greenhouse gas emissions.

The big food redesign study by Ellen MacArthur Foundation looks at the role fast-moving consumer goods companies (FMCGs) and food retailers can play to move us towards a food system with significant positive impacts for business, people, and the environment. It explores the ways in which food products can be designed in closer collaboration with farmers, for nature. It also investigates the crucial enabling role of policies and incentives.

The Nature Imperative: How the circular economy tackles biodiversity loss

The Nature Imperative: How the circular economy tackles biodiversity loss

The Nature Imperative: How the circular economy tackles biodiversity loss
Author: 
Ellen MacArthur Foundation
Publication Date: 
09/2021
Country: 
United Kingdom
United Kingdom

Language for original content:

Regenerating nature requires an economic transformation. To halt and reverse biodiversity loss, we need to fundamentally transform the way we produce, use, and consume our products and food. Conservation and restoration efforts alone – crucial though they are – will not be enough. The circular economy offers a framework for such a transformation. Applied together, its three principles are able to help tackle the root causes of biodiversity loss and enable the regeneration of nature. These biodiversity benefits can be demonstrated across different industry sectors, as shown in this new study by Ellen MacArthur Foundation. This paper also highlights the key steps businesses and policymakers can take to scale the circular economy potential and help shape a nature-positive future.

Study on circular economy principles for buildings’ design

Study on circular economy principles for buildings' design: Final Report

EC
Author: 
Deloitte, Building Research Establishment, In Extenso Innovation Croissance, Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (European Commission)
Publication Date: 
07/2021
Country: 
EU

Language for original content:

This study aims to assist the European Commission to identify policy options that support the uptake of circular economy principles for buildings’ design in European, national and local policies.

The goal is:

  • to increase the service life of buildings
  • to facilitate the use of secondary materials and
  • to improve resource efficiency across the building life cycle.

The study also provides key insights and recommendations on actions for a roadmap supporting the uptake and implementation of circular economy principles for buildings’ design.

Manufacturing: the future is circular

Manufacturing: the future is circular

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Author: 
Holland Circular Hotspot
Publication Date: 
04/2021
Country: 
Netherlands

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Ethical smartphones, multifunctional strollers, remanufactured milking robots and bicycles-as-a-service: the Dutch manufacturing industry offers plenty of inspiring and groundbreaking innovations for a circular economy. International cooperation is nonetheless crucial to deliver and accelerate the circular transition as the value chains of the manufacturing industry cover the whole world.

With this publication on Manufacturing: the future is circular, Holland Circular Hotspot and the Dutch Circular Manufacturing Implementation Programme (UPCM) aim to bring insights and case studies from the Netherlands to an international level, in order to inspire everyone around the world to act and kickstart circular development.

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

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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

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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.

Improving the climate impact of raw material sourcing

EEA

Type:

Author: 
Ioannis Bakas (EEA), Dirk Nelen (VITO)
Publication Date: 
08/2021
Country: 
EU

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Scope:

The extraction/processing of raw materials is associated with potentially significant environmental impacts, including contributing to approximately half of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions globally. In the EU, non-energy, non-agricultural raw materials account for 18 % of GHG emissions associated with EU consumption.

Given the EU's commitment to reducing its GHG emissions, and the European Green Deal's aspiration to achieve a climate-neutral continent by 2050, mitigating climate impacts from raw material production is central to the EU's climate agenda.

All activities associated with collecting waste materials for recycling lead to GHG emissions. Especially for metals, however, their contribution to emissions is only a fraction of the emissions saved by not using primary metals.

Promotion of the circular economy in the Hotel Industry in Cyprus and Greece – Preliminary assessment of the current status of circular economy

Promotion of Circular Economy in the hotel industry in Cyprus and Greece

Hotels4Climate
Author: 
Cyprus Federation of Employers & Industrialists (OEB), Institute of Greek Tourism Confederation (INSETE), Public Policy Consultancy adelphi
Publication Date: 
12/2020
Country: 
Cyprus

Language for original content:

Antri Constantinou Contact details

This report is published by the Cyprus Federation of Employers & Industrialists (OEB), the Institute of Greek Tourism Confederation (INSETE) and the public policy consultancy adelphi (Germany) as part of the European project Hotels4Climate financed by EUKI.

The report aims to assess the current state of circularity in the hotel industry in Cyprus and Greece by conducting national surveys in both countries targeting hotels in order to:

  • identify the priority sectors within the main services offered by hotels, the business challenges and opportunities to move to circular economy,
  • create successful, flexible and resilient circular business models, and
  • identify a number of internal and external barriers that raise obstacles to the transition to circular economy.

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