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Knowledge

In this section you will find knowledge such as studies, reports, presentations and position papers….. all submitted by stakeholders.

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Environmental assessments should focus on the needs of circular cities

Environmental assessments should focus on the needs of circular cities to support the transition to a sustainable circular economy

Environmental assessments should focus on the needs of circular cities

The circular economy (CE) is gaining momentum in cities. To ensure a sustainable CE, it is crucial to measure the environmental performance of CE strategies. However, environmental assessments overlook several strategies that are a key feature of urban CE practice. These include reuse and repair, sustainable built infrastructure and urban land use, green public procurement, smart information and access technology.

To provide insights into the environmental performance and potential of these strategies, industrial ecologists and municipalities should:

  • collaborate with urban systems experts
  • quantify the environmental impacts of entire urban systems
  • combine environmental assessments with social and economic feasibility ones.

Why the Packaging Act contributes little to the Circular Economy

Why the German Packaging Act contributes little to the Circular Economy

Why the German Packaging Act contributes little to the Circular Economy
Author: 
Machteld Simoens, Sina Leipold
Publication Date: 
06/2020
Country: 
Germany

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Scope:

Many political, business and civil society stakeholders are disappointed with the German Packaging Act. They feel it makes a comparatively small contribution to the circular economy. This study explains why they are disappointed:

  • Policy-making became entangled in disputes between proponents of a private and a public system for waste collection. Stakeholder fears of potential radical changes led to a stalemate
  • Fears allowed only incremental changes in the Packaging Act
  • The incremental changes could not resolve existing conflicts.

Based on its findings, the paper proposes possible courses of action. To create a shift to a circular economy, dialogue is needed using methods which explicitly address fears and overcome the current stalemate.

Food and feed safety vulnerabilities in the circular economy

EFSA logo

Type:

Author: 
Katy James, Anthony Millington, Nicola Randall
Publication Date: 
03/2022
Country: 
EU

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Scope:

This literature review identified and categorised circular economy (CE) practices within all stages of the food and feed production chain in Europe to provide an overview of current and envisaged practices. There are four macro areas:

  1. primary production of food and feed
  2. reducing industrial/manufacturing/processing waste
  3. reducing food and feed waste in wholesale, food retail, catering and households and
  4. reducing food and feed packaging waste.

It is recommended that future primary research in novel food and feed in the CE focuses on areas other than insect farming, and that there are further investigations into the potential risks associated with importation into the EU of livestock/goods that may have been subject to different restrictions/legislation.

Building a Circular Future; Ten Takeaways for Global Changemakers

Building a circular future: Ten takeaways for global changemakers

Building a circular future; Ten takeaways for global changemakers

This book provides answers on how to govern the transition to a circular economy in different socio-cultural and political contexts.

It is intended to help the global changemakers who are building our circular future. Author Jacqueline Cramer spoke with 20 representatives of circular hotspots worldwide, thoroughly analysed their different contexts and extracted 10 key takeaways. Everyone working on circular initiatives can use these and adapt them to their own socio-cultural and political contexts.

How Network Governance Powers the Circular Economy Ten Guiding Principles for Building a Circular Economy, Based on Dutch Experiences

How network governance powers the circular economy: Ten guiding principles for building a circular economy, based on Dutch experiences

How network governance powers the circular economy

Type:

Author: 
Jacqueline Cramer
Publication Date: 
12/2020
Country: 
Netherlands

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Key Area:

In this book, Jacqueline Cramer shows how network governance can power the circular economy. Network governance is about building a coalition of partners, which all fulfill a specific function in the network and are aligned by so-called transition brokers. By complementing conventional, public governance with this new form of governance, the best of both worlds is created.

Prof. Cramer shares her huge experience of implementing numerous circular initiatives in the Netherlands. As a practitioner and scholar, she has identified ten guiding principles for building circular initiatives, based on network governance. These guidelines can support everyone who wants to start or expedite a circular initiative.

Learning after the flood - waste management in focus

Thinking Circular®

Type:

Author: 
Eveline Lemke
Publication Date: 
03/2022
Country: 
Germany

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134 people died in the devastating flooding in the German region of Ahrweiler in July 2021, caused by a climate change-induced weather situation. Over 400 000 tonnes of waste were created by the floods in one night. 40 000 households were hit, and massive damage to infrastructure such as roads, schools and hospitals was reported. The situation was described as being similar to the massive destruction following a war.

Thinking Circular’s report summarises the process of waste management and learning from this regional crisis.

Circular public procurement: a framework for cities

Ellen MacArthur Foundation
Author: 
Ellen MacArthur Foundation
Publication Date: 
03/2022
Country: 
United Kingdom

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Scope:

This is a guide to help practitioners in a city government to adopt a more circular approach to public procurement. Public procurement processes differ from one city to another and therefore this guide is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Instead, it provides an overarching framework that should be adapted to the local context and the realities of a city.

Users are not expected to read the guide in full from beginning to end, but rather, once they have read the framework overview, to jump to the section they need by using the menu bar on the left.

Decoupling Debunked - Evidence and arguments against green growth as a sole strategy for sustainability

Decoupling Debunked – Evidence and arguments against green growth as a sole strategy for sustainability

Decoupling Debunked

Type:

Author: 
Parrique T., Barth J., Briens F., Kerschner C. , Kraus-Polk A., Kuokkanen A., Spangenberg J.H.
Publication Date: 
07/2019
Country: 
EU

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Is it possible to enjoy both economic growth and environmental sustainability? This question is a matter of political debate between green growth and post-growth advocates. Considering what is at stake, a careful assessment to determine whether the scientific foundations behind this decoupling hypothesis are robust or not is needed.

This report reviews the empirical and theoretical literature to assess the validity of this hypothesis. The conclusion is both overwhelmingly clear and sobering: not only is there no empirical evidence supporting the existence of a decoupling of economic growth from environmental pressures on anywhere near the scale needed to deal with environmental breakdown, but also, and perhaps more importantly, such decoupling appears unlikely to happen in the future.

The Circular Economy and Green Jobs in the EU and Beyond

The Circular Economy and Green Jobs in the EU and Beyond

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Author: 
Janis Brizga and Saïd El Khadraoui (Editors)
Publication Date: 
02/2022
Country: 
Belgium

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Scope:

The circular economy is a model of production and consumption that is underpinned by a transition to renewable energy and materials. It is a resilient system - good for business, people and the environment. The book titled The Circular Economy and Green Jobs in the EU and Beyond examines what the circular economy means, why the transition from a linear economy to a circular one is important, and how we can achieve it.

The book offers clarification on the meaning and the implications of the circular economy across different contexts – economic, social, cultural, legal and international. Particular emphasis is placed on the implications for jobs and different business models as well as on questions of equity.

Circular Infrastructure: the road towards a sustainable future

Circular infrastructure: the road towards a sustainable future

Circular Infrastructure

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Author: 
Rijkswaterstaat, Holland Circular Hotspot, TNO, The (Dutch) Circular Construction Economy Transition Team
Publication Date: 
01/2022
Country: 
Netherlands

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The availability of a quality infrastructure system – networks of roads, railways, bridges and waterways – is a prerequisite for all economic activity to flourish and is also paramount for people’s health, wellbeing and safety. Infrastructure is very important for human society - but its adverse environmental impact on our planet is undeniable.

To mitigate the long-term catastrophic effects of climate change and depleting material resources, a circular economy for infrastructure is crucial. The publication Circular Infrastructure: the road towards a sustainable future aims to bring this aspect into the limelight to inspire action by public actors and practitioners.

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