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
You are here
To help stakeholders and citizens understand the circular economy, Didier Bourguignon from the European Parliamentary Research Service answers three key questions on circular economy.
The Urban Agenda Partnership on Circular Economy has identified several barriers and bottlenecks regarding the use of secondary raw materials (recycling) or products (re-use) originating from waste streams and has now commissioned a basic assessment of the current legislative framework, the implementation and application of that framework, and the definitions of waste in the context of a circular economy.
Are you an urban waste manager or regulator? Share your experiences and best practice to provide valuable feedback on implementing waste legislation and contribute to recommendations seeking to improve this framework.
On 5 July a a survey on consumer attitudes to reuse and recycling of electronic and food products was launched in the framework of the EU funded project CIRC4life.
Creating a Digital Roadmap for a Circular Economy
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.
- 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.
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.
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.
Cycle Terre project aims to set up an industrial process to reuse soil extracted from the excavation sites of the new subway and other construction sites in Sevran, France.
REDEL is an energy provider in Italy. Its activities comprises decommissioning outdated energy installations (de-risking), generating a vast amount of discarded power cables. 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 with low environmental impact.
Along with PVC, copper and aluminium are also reclaimed and turned into metal granules for new production purposes.
Sustainable Finance: Commission’s technical expert group calls for feedback on their report on Taxonomy for sustainable economic activities
The Technical Expert Group on Sustainable Finance, set up by the Commission in July 2018, has launched on 4th of July 2019 a call for feedback on their Report on Taxonomy published on 18 June 2019.
Anthony Peyton is the CEO and co-founder of PREP Design. He has worked as an environmental professional for 30 years.
Arthur ten Wolde is the Executive Director of Ecopreneur.eu, the European Sustainable Business Federation. Ecopreneur represents about 3000 businesses in five member states, mostly SMEs, which strive to deliver sustainable products and services. Arthur is internationally recognized as a circular economy expert, motivational speaker and (co-)author of several reports and numerous articles in magazines.
In addition, he is the EU policy expert for MVO Nederland, Trainer Circular Design for CIRCO and Head and Owner of Circular Future. Arthur worked earlier for De Groene Zaak, IMSA and the Dutch Industry Confederation VNO-NCW.
This Retrace dissemination event will be an opportunity for participants to find answers to how to achieve a systemic change that would support the transition to circular economy.
The call for interest to become a club member of the Consumer Insight Action Panel on circular economy is now open – express your interest today!
First2Run is a flagship project involving four companies and universities from Italy, UK and The Netherlands, demonstrating technical, economic and environmental sustainability on an industrial scale. This involves a first-of-kind value chain where low input and underutilized oil crops grown in arid and/or marginal lands and not in competition with food or feed, are exploited for the extraction of vegetable oils to be further converted into bio-monomers. These bionomers act like building blocks for high added value bioproducts, biolubricants, cosmetics, bioplastics, additives through the integration of chemical and biotechnological processes.
The Danube goes Circular - Transnational Strategy to Accelerate Transition Towards a Circular Economy in the Danube Region
The Danube goes Circular - Transnational Strategy to Accelerate Transition Towards a Circular Economy in the Danube Region
One of the Interreg DTP MOVECO (Mobilizing Institutional Learning for Better Exploitation of Research and Innovation for the Circular Economy) project results is the Transnational Strategy to accelerate transition towards a circular economy in the Danube region.
Be transnational – reducing disparities within the Danube Region can only happen through cooperation, capacity building and knowledge exchange across borders. This holds also true for the implementation of the circular economy to make the Danube Region, as a resource poor region, less dependent on imported primary resources.
MOVECO identified key challenges with regard to the transition towards a circular economy and offers recommendations for progress. The strategy further provides the reader with many good practice examples and possibilities to raise awareness for circular economy.
Regular updates on the MOVECO project can be found on this page.
Waste Management in Europe. Good Jobs in the Circular Economy?
The report was commissioned by the European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU) to inform a workshop on "the future of the waste sector in Europe: challenges and opportunities for workers" held on 7th December 2017 in Brussels.
The report deals with the following questions:
- What are the EU policies towards waste management?
- What are the implications of the circular economy for the waste management sector?
- What is the public/private provision in waste management in Europe?
- Which multinational companies dominate the sector?
- What are the current collective bargaining arrangements?
- What are the opportunities and obstacles for organising waste management workers in Europe?
The report focuses on:
- Improving the health and safety of workers
- Ensuring quality jobs and decent pay and conditions
- Fighting against social dumping
- Improving the quality of jobs through up-skilling.
The Consumer Insight Action Panel is a two-year initiative jointly set up by the CSCP and Sitra, as part of their contribution to the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform Coordination Group.
Its objective is to translate consumer needs and behavioural knowledge into impact-oriented activities, initiatives and recommendations, to guide and support policy makers, business and civil society organisations in enabling consumer-relevant circular economy strategies.
The European Plastics Converters Association, together with the German association for plastic packaging Industrievereinigung Kunststoff-verpackungen, is organizing its annual conference under the theme A Circular Future with Plastics on the 13-14 June 2019 in Berlin.
The European Machine Tool Sector and the Circular Economy
CECIMO has published a report underlining how the shift towards a circular economy calls for a prominent role of manufacturing. Within it, the machine tool sector plays a crucial role. Machine tools already have multiple lifetimes and embrace some key principles of the circular economy. But there is always room for improvement.
The sector can invest in advanced manufacturing technologies, but also build upon the existing good practices. This would lead to improved productivity and resource efficiency, and consumers enjoying products that last longer and use less energy.
The report also makes recommendations to the industry and policy makers.
Circular Economy Advocacy - A Strategy towards a Circular Fashion Industry in Europe
Waste and pollution from the production of textiles and clothing have become critical global issues. With only one percent of fibres being recycled, the current ‘linear’ model is outdated and unsustainable. There is an urgent need for a strategy to transform industry into a circular model.
A new report launched by Ecopreneur.eu, the European Sustainable Business Federation, calls for decisive policy measures to create an enabling framework. With a foreword from Janez Potočnik.
According to the report, a set of policy instruments to accelerate and mainstream a European circular fashion economy should be based on the following five pillars:
- Innovation policies – research programmes with subsidies, investment tax deduction, and support for technological development, innovation and small and medium-sized enterprises.
- Economic incentives – procurement, extended producer responsibility, VAT, and a tax shift to drive market demand for circular products and services.
- Regulation – establishing and enforcing a common regulatory framework for transparency and traceability, circular design and improved end-of-waste status across the EU.
- Trade policies – facilitating export of semi-finished products and sorted, reusable textile waste to producing countries, and avoiding negative social impacts in producing countries.
- Voluntary actions – covenants, commitments and standards are encouraged to engage stakeholders, with legislation standing by in case of lacking results.
On Thursday 6th of June, EREK will hold a workshop in Helsinki, Finland, titled Improving resource efficiency through industrial symbiosis – Opportunities for SMEs. This event is co-hosted by Motiva, and is officially featured as a World Circular Economy Forum side event.
The EREK international conference will demonstrate how successful businesses and industries seek resource efficient solutions, collaborate in a circular and social economy, and pursue digitalisation to gain a competitive edge. From keynote speeches to practical sessions, the conference aims to gather the Resource Efficiency community by promoting exchanges between all actors, from newcomers to front runners, from SMEs to business intermediaries, raising awareness of existing and upcoming opportunities to make the Circular Economy a reality.
Circular Economy in the Textile Sector
The concept of circular economy is becoming increasingly important in the textile industry. This study examines options for establishing closed fibre cycles in the clothing and fashion industry. It provides a detailed background analysis on fibre cycles in Europe and Germany, describes the biggest drivers and obstacles and evaluates selected technologies for textile fibre recycling.
The analysis is based on an in-depth literature review, paired with findings from a focus group session conducted as part of the Cradle to Cradle (C2C) International Congress 2018. In addition, more than 20 experts working in the textile sector shared their candid views for the analysis.
The study was commissioned by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and financed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
Putting theory into practice: Circular Economy Business Models in the EU
The policy brief discusses Circular Economy Business Models (CBM), gives several examples and considers the challenges and solutions facing policymakers. It makes a number of recommendations to regions to speed up the development of CBMs ‒ something this brief argues regions are in a good position to do ‒ and shares several good practices from Interreg Europe projects. It should be read in conjunction with the Interreg webinar on CBMs webinar on Circular Economy Business Models. It also briefly sketches EU policies in this area and offers some practical funding and networking tips.