Tarpaper Recycling is a recycling specialist minimising the environmental impacts of construction waste. It has developed a patented method to recycle bitumen from roofing-felt waste by converting it into a material that can be used as a binder in asphalt production.
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ISWA will hold its 29th World Congress will be held in Bilbao, Spain from 7 to 9 October 2019
Find out about Europe’s top social innovations challenging plastic waste at the European Social Innovation Competition awards ceremony on 24 October 2019 in Brussels.
The 2019 International Circular Week is set to take place simultaneously in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Poland from 8 to 13 October 2019, with events ranging from Horizon 2020 brokerage to street art performances
Recently adopted EU legislation helps tackle marine litter from plastics, improves chemicals management and increases the recycling of materials. In its conclusions of 4 October 2019, the Council of the EU stresses that further ambitious efforts are needed to stimulate a systemic transition to a sustainable society, inviting the European Commission to come up with an ambitious long-term strategic framework, including a common vision for a circular economy and to adopt a new circular economy action plan with targeted actions.
Mektory at Tallinn University of Technology will host a Circular Economy Hackathon from 18 to 20 October at the biggest Innovation Center in Estonia. At the end of the hackathon, an international jury will select 10 ideas to participate in the growth and scaling workshops.
The role of national governments in closing the circularity gap while fulfilling citizen's needs is crucial - join the conversation during the Circularity Gap Webinar for policymakers on 15 October.
EURACTIV will host a high-level Stakeholder Workshop on 4 December 2019 to discuss the EU’s circular economy policy, its current challenges and its future steps.
In a continued effort to reduce Europe's carbon footprint and to lower energy bills for European consumers, the European Commission has adopted new eco-design measures on 1 October for products such as refrigerators, washing machines, dishwashers and televisions.
Destination Climate Neutrality brings together leading recommendations of think tanks, scientists, thought leaders and NGOs to offer a policy blueprint for how best to propel Europe towards net zero carbon emissions in the coming five years of the Von der Leyen term. It offers sector-by-sector analysis, targets and initiatives in the fields of governance, finance, industry, energy, transport, the circular economy, agriculture and employment.
On circular economy, the report identifies challenges in:
- a lack of EU targets for waste prevention, reuse, repair and refurbishment
- no monitoring framework for material flows
- contamination of materials by hazardous ingredients
- high demand for biomass
The authors identify opportunities in job creation, cleaner supply chains and product policies.
The SaltGae project has established real scale demonstration sites in Slovenia, Italy and Israel that show the long-term techno-economic performance of microalgae technology for the efficient treatment of saline wastewaters from the food and beverage industries.
About 50 per cent of the greenhouse gas emissions are related to materials and the manufacturing of products. Strong Circular Economy policies are therefore needed to meet the climate goals. Ecopreneur.eu has worked out far-reaching proposals as input for the EU Green Deal.
Circle Economy launched a tool to close the knowledge gap between entrepreneurs and financiers: the Product-as-a-Service Question Kit helps overcome this barrier by leading both parties through a series of questions they need to ask themselves before starting their conversation.
Join the Cradle to Cradle Bouwgroep on 4 October 2019 in Rotterdam for a seminar and debate on Material Passports and circulair building projects.
The 15th edition of the biannual French waste management conference will take place in Nantes on 2-3 October 2019.
Join the R2pi consortium for a workshop in Circular Economy in Plastics/Packaging, Electronics and Textiles Workshop on 1 Oct 2019 in Cologne
By identifiying good practices in turning biomass to heat or power, the uP_running project is unlocking the strong potential of woody biomass residues produced by Agrarian Pruning and Plantation Removals.
As global leaders gather in New York for Climate Week NYC in September 2019, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation has issued a new paper, in cooperation with Material Economics, revealing the need for a fundamental shift in the global approach to tackling climate change. As set out in Completing the Picture: How the Circular Economy tackles Climate Change, moving to renewables can only address 55% of global greenhouse gas emissions. To achieve UN climate goals, the paper highlights the urgent need to tackle the remaining 45%.
Renewable energy is not enough. There needs to be a fundamental shift in the global approach to tackling climate change and the circular economy can play an essential role.
Completing the Picture: How the Circular Economy Tackles Climate Change, a paper published by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, tells us:
- Greenhouse gas emissions are not dropping quickly enough to achieve climate targets and switching to renewable energy can only cut them by 55%
- The remaining 45% of emissions come from how we make and use products, and how we produce food
Whilst the circular economy is underpinned by renewable energy, the paper concentrates on five key areas (cement, plastics, steel, aluminium, and food) to illustrate how designing out waste, keeping materials in use, and regenerating farmland can reduce these emissions.
Circular economy, the new concept for attaining sustainable consumption and production, will not be implemented without multisectoral and international cooperation. INNOWO, Circular Change, INCIEN Czechia, and INCIEN Slovakia are launching the International Circular Week this year to promote circular economy across countries. This International Circular Week will take place from 7 to 13 October 2019, and aims to engage all circular stakeholders in central Europe and beyond.
Over the last few years the concept of chemical recycling has been promoted by industry as a potential solution to help curb plastic pollution and waste management as a whole. This Zero Waste Europe report looks into the knowledge available as well as the state of implementation of such technologies in the European context.
Mechanical recycling is a mature industrial process, well established and expanding in Europe. Plastics cannot however be endlessly recycled mechanically without reducing their properties and quality. Besides, not all plastic types can be mechanically recycled. These limits set challenges for plastics recycling and show the need for significant improvements in the end-of-life management of plastics.
Since decades, innovators test gasification and pyrolysis for alternatives to waste to energy incineration with very limited results due to the energy balance and the environmental impact. In general, more information is needed about the environmental performance of chemical recycling technologies, as this industry is in its infancy and most plants are mere pilots. The roll-out of such technologies at industrial scale can only be expected from 2025-2030, an important factor when planning the transition to a Circular Economy and wider decarbonisation.
The right policy framework must accommodate chemical recycling as complementary to mechanical recycling while ensuring that carbon stays in the plastic, thus not being released into the environment. Therefore, allowing plastic to fuels to be considered chemical recycling risks creating a loophole in EU Climate and Circular Economy legislation.
The Elephant in the Boardroom: Why Unchecked Consumption is Not an Option in Tomorrow’s Markets is a working paper from the World Resources Institute that can guide discussion within companies about an uncomfortable truth: many of today’s business models are not fit for tomorrow’s resource-strained world.
Normalizing the conversation will set the groundwork for the pursuit of new business models that allow growth within the planet’s limits and generate stakeholder value in new and exciting ways.
This research, part of the CEC4Europe factbook on the circular economy published in September 2018, evaluates 131 projects from the Circular Economy Industry Platform (CEIP) regarding their contribution to circular economy from both a scientific and political perspective.
Content analysis was applied to derive qualitative and quantitative information from company statements on the platform. This was supplemented by qualitative, semi-structured interviews with company representatives on selected projects. Results showed a diverse approach to circularity across the sample projects, thereby partly expanding the sectoral focus of the circular economy package.
Eco-design, eco-innovation and business models acted as strong enablers for circular actions in the sample, reflecting respective EU policies.
At the same time, sample projects heavily relied on recycling while missing out on potentially more efficient circular principles such as reduction or reuse.
High diversity in criteria was found regarding the evaluation of overall environmental impacts, with some projects using purely qualitative assessment methods, while other projects presented elaborate quantitative environmental evaluations, including significant positive impact potential. Regulatory challenges were specifically reported regarding the introduction of sound circularity quotas and targets, regarding definitional ambiguities, as well as regarding issues around unknown material compositions that currently impede recirculation.
The New Plastics Economy Global Commitment unites businesses, governments, and other organisations behind a common vision and targets to address plastic waste and pollution at its source. It is led by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation in collaboration with the UN Environment Program. Launched in October 2018, the Global Commitment already unites more than 400 organisations in its common vision of a circular economy for plastics, keeping plastics in the economy and out of the ocean. Signatories include:
- close to 200 businesses that are part of the plastic packaging value chain, jointly representing over 20 % of all plastic packaging used globally, including many of the world’s leading consumer packaged goods companies, retailers, and plastic packaging producers
- 16 governments across five continents and across national, regional, and city level
- 26 financial institutions with a combined USD 4.2 trillion worth of assets under management and 6 investors in total committing to invest about USD 275 million
- leading institutions such as WWF, the World Economic Forum, the Consumer Goods Forum, and IUCN
- more than 50 academics, universities, and other educational or research organisations including MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative, Michigan State University, and University College London.
All 400+ organisations have endorsed one common vision of a circular economy for plastics, in which plastics never become waste. As this June 2019 report shows, the number of business signatories has grown from over 100 to nearly 200 in the seven months since the launch.
The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) has released a report on tackling plastic waste using circular solutions, with a focus on the opportunities chemical recycling provides. After highlighting the scale of the issue, the report presents different ways of solving the plastic waste issue by comparing the impacts of different waste treatment options and technologies, such as pyrolysis. The report concludes that:
“To tackle the colossal societal and environmental issue of plastic waste, we need proportionally meaningful efforts from the private and public sectors as well as society at large that encompass behaviors and habits. The ultimate solutions will involve a combination of judicious consumption and disposal measures as well as the development of cost-competitive and environmentally friendly alternatives. Most observers would agree, however, that these changes are years away. In the meantime—over the next decade or two—we can implement circular solutions to reuse or repurpose plastic waste in the most efficient way.” (Boston Consulting Group, 2018, p. 24).
ECESP Coordination Group members contributed to this report, including Circular Change and Circle Economy.
Wao shoes are fully ecological shoes made entriely from natural, innovative and sustainable materials.
Join a 1one-hour webinar for a deeper understanding of the circular economy business model patterns identified by the R2π Consortium, to highlight key enablers and tools for implementation at the company level
The 3rd international PLATE conference (Product Lifetimes and the Environment) will address product lifetimes in the context of sustainability, and is hosted by TU Berlin and Fraunhofer IZM from 18 to 20 September 2019