The Finnish foodtech company, Solar Foods, produces natural single-cell protein using simply renewable electricity and air, called Solein®. They bring to the market an entirely new kind of food that is both natural, and not dependent on agriculture, climate or the weather. The protein can be made in tough environmental conditions, such as the desert, the Arctic, or possibly even in space.
You are here
TOMRA's Circular Economy Division was established in January 2019 to speed up the transformation to a circular economy and shape future waste and resource systems.
TOMRA’s cutting-edge sorting technologies retain valuable resources by extracting high-purity fractions from mixed waste and metal streams in the most remote parts of the world. Its technology and equipment has been used in the world’s most advanced recycling plants.
TOMRA is the world leader in reverse vending solutions. It provides an automated method for collecting, sorting and handling used beverage containers for recycling or reuse. TOMRA has approximately 80 000 reverse vending machines in more than 60 markets.
In the Latvian town of Pļaviņas, Pļaviņu Gymnasium's circular canteen will provide students with nutritious, healthy food with a focus on waste minimisation and environmentally-friendly transportation.
Curaden Slovakia, the Slovak branch of the Swiss company Curaden AG, collects used toothbrushes for recycling in Slovakia. The company has been encouraging consumers to recycle their end-of-life products since 2017 through public awareness campaigns.
The Regional Association of Solid Waste Management Agencies of Central Macedonia and the Hellenic Ministry of the Environment and Energy present the pilot project "No more Christmas trees in landfills". The project recycles discarded trees, using the wood chips as a secondary raw material to make pellets, biofuels and chipboards, and as organic waste for composting.
The main objective of the INSIGHT project is to develop a new professional profile: the industrial symbiosis facilitator, who helps transition towards the design of a common curriculum and learning approach.
DuCoop presents innovative solutions for heating, water and energy management for a new district in Ghent with 400+ dwellings
DuCoop invests in sustainable technologies for the Nieuwe Dokken, the new circular districts in Ghent. The cooperative DuCoop provides systems for decentralized water sanitation with water re-use, 4thgeneration district heating and smart energy management. The company contributes to the climate ambitions of the city of Ghent, by closing the loops on water, energy and nutrients.
Envie Autonomie collects and renovates technical equipment from rehabilitation centers, hospitals and care centres
The French company, Envie Autonomie, collects and renovates technical equipment, such as wheelchairs, used beds, walkers and other aids. In this way, they ensure a second life to important equipment.
Austria Glas Recycling Gmbh is setting the course for the future: the Austria Glas Agenda 2030, which it has developed together with stakeholders, experts and scholars, defines the orientation of the glass recycling system according to the sustainable development goals (SDGs).
The Austria Glass Agenda 2030 is pioneering work setting new impulses for the implementation of the SDGs. As one of the first companies in Austria, Austria Glas Recycling Gmbh is facing the challenge to implement the SDGs in all its business processes. The Austria Glas Agenda 2030 is the basis for future project developments of the glass recycling system.
In addition, the Austria Glas Agenda 2030 should serve as a role model for other sectors and inspire them to take action for the SDGs.
The EU Guidelines for the feed use of food no longer intended for human consumption are an integral part of the communication Closing the loop - An EU action plan for the Circular Economy.
They were developed by the Commission in close cooperation with the food, feed, animal health and environmental authorities of the Member States and the members of the EU Platform on Food Losses and Food Waste, as well as other stakeholders.
The valorisation of the nutrients of food which, for commercial reasons or owing to problems of manufacturing, is no longer intended for human consumption, but can be safely used in animal nutrition, prevents these materials from being composted, transformed in biogas or disposed of by incineration or landfilling.
Available in all EU languages by following the Official Journal link, these guidelines should assist the national and local competent authorities, as well as the operators in the food chain, in applying the relevant EU legislation. Legal clarity is therefore enhanced and examples of best practices that are in compliance with the current EU regulatory framework are presented while preventing unnecessary administrative burden.
The report ‘Circular Economy in the Furniture Sector: Overview of Current Challenges and Competence Needs’, provides an overview on how the circular economy is currently being implemented within the furniture sector.
By focusing on existing practices, challenges and opportunities at the micro-level, the main objective of this report is to identify the necessary skills and competences needed to support the transformation of furniture companies towards a circular economy.
Project partners identified 25 furniture companies active in the circular economy throughout Europe.
Interviews, held between March and May 2018 in Belgium, Finland, Germany, Spain, France, The Netherlands, Italy and Sweden, yielded insights on the necessary skills and competences needed to develop circular business models relevant for the furniture industry.
Finally, 10 examples of circular furniture cases are presented in the report. Examples show companies from different EU countries that have implemented different actions to work towards the circularity of the company, as well as specific examples of furniture products that are sustainable.
Market study on date marking and other information provided on food labels and food waste prevention
Market study on date marking and other information provided on food labels and food waste prevention
As part of the Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission is examining ways to improve the use of date marking by actors in the food chain and its understanding by consumers, in particular "best before" labelling. Better understanding and use of date marking on food, i.e. "use by" and "best before" dates, by all actors concerned, can prevent and reduce food waste in the EU.
In order to help inform its work on date marking, the Commission launched a study to map how date marking is used in the market by food business operators and control authorities.
The market study found wide variation in date marking practices within product categories surveyed in the EU. The legibility of date marks was judged to be poor for 11% of products sampled. The study highlights the role that strengthened cooperation and innovation in the food supply chain can play in preventing food waste and finds that additional guidance may be needed to facilitate food redistribution past the "best before" date.
Based on the study's findings, the authors conclude that avoidable food waste linked to date marking is likely to be reduced where:
- a date mark is present, its meaning is clear and it is legible;
- consumers have a good understanding of the meaning of date marking (and the difference between "use by" as an indicator of safety and "best before" as an indicator of quality);
- "use by" dates are used only where there is a safety-based rationale for doing so, consistent with the Regulation on Food Information to Consumers
- the product life stated on the packaging is consistent with the findings of safety and quality tests, and is not shortened unnecessarily by other considerations, such as product marketing;
- storage and open life guidance are consistent with the findings of safety and quality tests;
- there is a level of consistency in storage of food at retail and guidance for consumers regarding the temperatures at which products should be stored in the home.
Electric vehicles are a key technology to decarbonise the road transport sector and their use is expected to increase, thereby increasing demand for lithium-ion batteries. This makes developing a full value chain for batteries in Europe a priority, particularly the recycling of lithium-ion batteries where Europe is at an advantage as a market leader.
What will happen to this huge number of batteries at their end-of-life and how the valuable materials within each battery can be recovered and recycled are important questions for EU policymakers, as is information on the impacts of developing a lithium-ion battery recycling industry within the EU.
As part of the wider CIRCULAR IMPACTS project, which looks at the economic, employment and societal impacts of shifting towards a circular economy, this case study examines the impacts of managing electric-vehicle lithium-ion batteries reaching their end-of-life in the years to come. It concludes that increasing the collection and recycling efficiency rates of electric vehicle batteries in the EU can mitigate dependence on imported materials and help to retain the value of recovered materials in the EU economy. Further potential benefits include job creation in the lithium-ion recycling sector, while recycling certain materials, as opposed to extracting the raw material, may mitigate CO2 emissions.
The circular economy is more than a potential model for Luxembourg; it is an economic imperative. Due to its history of exhausting resources then finding substitutes, Luxembourg is already a testing ground for circularity methods. For example its steel, aluminum, glass, and other industries are expert at re-using secondary raw materials. The re-use of those materials is core to their economic survival. It is a competitive necessity to sharpen their capacities in those areas.
Because Luxembourg’s exemplary European society is based on equity, cultural tolerance, economic stability, responsive government and manageable size, the country is a powerful proving ground for circularity. Its heritage of quality and its service-based economy allow leveraging of skills to take advantage of the embedded growth potential. The likely benefits for Luxembourg are considerable. The starting position is excellent. The capabilities and motivation seem to be in place. It is now only a question of providing a nucleus and initial catalyst to accelerate the transition towards a circular economy at scale. The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the Ministry of the Economy in particular have powerful roles to play as catalysts for circularity.
In the present situation where knowledge of circular economy potential is low but know-how for supporting technology and services is high, the government has a special brief opportunity to seize the initiative by delivering powerful messages about circularity through initiating and coordinating actions, as well as supporting those with a solid foundation of education, training and national co-branding. By leveraging those mechanisms the government will provide the enabling framework for its stakeholders to implement a circular economy with innovative lighthouse initiatives.
Despite resource efficiency improving 41% between 2000 and 2016,with the Circular Economy Package and the initiatives set out in the accompanying Action Plan nearing completion, the EU institutions must acknowledge that the move to a more resource efficient or “circular” economy will take time. To invest in new business models, more resource-efficient processes and new supply chains for good quality secondary materials, businesses need the assurance that the resource efficiency agenda will remain a priority for the EU in the long term.
This briefing sets out a range of policy recommendations that the Aldersgate Group believe EU institutions should continue to pursue beyond completion of the Circular Economy Package to scale up business action on resource efficiency. These recommendations are based on business case studies, including some developed as part of the EU LIFE+ funded REBus project, which began in 2013 and on which the Aldersgate Group is a partner. By the end of 2016, pilots taking part in the REBus project (many of which involved SMEs), had already delivered a financial benefit of €5.62m, material savings in excess of 62,000 tonnes and a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions of just under 2,000 tonnes. These benefits have continued to grow since.
Recommendations based on the report's findings include:
- Pursuing work to include resource efficiency design criteria in product standards by delivering on the commitment to publish an updated Ecodesign Working Plan once a year and rapidly broadening the range of products subject to resource efficiency design criteria;
- Promote business innovation on resource efficiency, through continued financial support for business trials and broadening the sectors that receive technical support through the Commission’s Innovation Deals;
- Expand the use of circular economy criteria in the public procurement of a broadening range of products and encourage their application across EU Member States and EU institutions;
- Encourage Member States to develop pricing mechanisms that support material re-use where it is environmentally effective to do so; and
- Ensure a consistent implementation of the Circular Economy Package in different Member States. This is especially important in terms of the improved definitions of “waste” currently being negotiated by all three EU institutions, which must ensure that materials are no longer classified as “waste” when they can be re-used safely.
Circular City Governance: An explorative research study into current barriers and governance practices in circular city transitions across Europe
Circular City Governance - An explorative research study presents the results of an empirical research study into current barriers and governance practices in circular city transitions across Europe carried out by a team from the Radboud University Nijmegen School of Management (NL). The research activities ran from October to December 2017. The main objective of the study was to support the European Investment Bank (EIB) and other members of the Urban Agenda Partnership on Circular Economy involved in the working group on “Circular City Governance” (CCG) with the identification, analysis and elaboration of actions in support of Circular Governance in Cities, particularly through better knowledge and better funding. At the time this report was completed, the UAPCE’s Action Plan had been recently published for public consultation.
The research study follows an empirical approach primarily focussed on the identification of (i) the most common barriers and challenges that are encountered by cities seeking to promote the circular economy, and (ii) the most important governance interventions cities have taken to initiate and advance in the transition to a circular city. This information was drawn from the analysis of selected case studies of circular economy projects in urban environments, various publicly available circular economy strategies, plans prepared by cities and interviews with experts and officials of front-runner cities that have embraced the CE agenda across Europe. The results of this research study should contribute towarads improving the general knowledge basis on the promotion of the CE in cities by presenting the experiences and main lessons learnt by cities at the forefront of the CE agenda.
The World Economic Forum’s Future of Urban Development and Services Initiative has released its new White Paper on the Circular Economy in Cities: evolving the model for a sustainable urban future.
This White Paper traces the conceptual underpinnings of the Circular Economy, and explains why cities are key to accelerating the transition away from the traditional ‘take-make-dispose’ model. It draws on examples from cities around the world in areas that include: channelling used building materials to new building sites, water harvesting and reuse, reducing energy use, electronic waste, healthcare and procurement. It explains the opportunities in the Circular Economy for all stakeholders and the ways in which they can work together at city level.
This report, commissioned by DG GROW and prepard by Technopolis and Franhofer ISI, identified major obstacles of regulatory nature or gaps within the existing legal framework where significant unlocked opportunities remain. The study includes an in-depth analysis of the identified obstacles and possible solutions through specific cases.
The analysis of specific regulatory barriers includes the full product lifecycle and focuses on the interfaces between different steps of the value chain (extraction/production, production/production internal loops, production/use, collection, waste-management/recycling/production). Barriers can be categorised within these 3 themes:
- Several case studies identified regulatory barriers often related to lacking legislation that would allow the collection and pre-treatment of homogenous waste streams.
- The second type of barrier refers to legislation that hinders the use of recycled materials in production processes.
- The third type of barrier is related to the lack of concrete and enforceable product requirements.
The analysis also highlights a variety of different generic types of barriers: in many cases waste legislation focuses on quantities (weight based collection or recycling targets) and not so much on the qualities of recycled materials. Inconsistencies between existing regulations, e.g. related to REACH or End-of-Waste criteria, have also been mentioned in a variety of case studies.
The study concludes that in general, high-quality recycling is definitely not prevented by regulatory obstacles, but by lacking or unclear legislation. Prime examples are End-of-Waste criteria or quality standards for secondary raw materials that create legal uncertainties for the industry that make it rational to continue to focus on primary raw material input.
Les "Rendez-vous de l'économie circulaire" d'UniLaSalle continuent au Campus de Rennes le 14 février 2020. Il s'agît de repenser son modèle économique grâce à l'économie circulaire.
The next big thing in design is circular!
Die Umstellung zu einer zirkulären Wirtschaft fängt bei der Gestaltung an! Ecodesign beschreibt einen umfassenden Gestaltungsansatz, um die Umweltbelastungen von Produkten und Dienstleistungen über den gesamten Lebenszyklus hinweg zu minimieren, denn 80 Prozent des Ressourceneinsatzes eines Produktes werden bereits in der Produktentwicklung festgelegt.
Due to the recent developments with respect to the coronavirus (Covid-19), the 2nd OECD Roundtable on the Circular Economy in Cities and Regions in Oslo, Norway is cancelled.
However, in light of the significance of the Roundtable the OECD and Nordic Innovation kindly invite you to register for two dedicated webinars. Click here for more info.
Join this two-day international conference and exhibition from 18 to 19 November 2020 to discuss the latest recycling technology, materials recovery solutions, green electronics, sustainable materials, non-toxic substitutes, and end-of-life strategies, as well as regulatory and business models to help reduce the environmental impact of all forms of consumer and industrial E-Waste.
The School of Engineering Management with co-organisers The Ministry of Education, Science, and Technological Development of the Republic of Serbia, and the Engineering Management Society of Serbia invites you to take an active part in the International Scientific Conference “Circular and Bioeconomy – CIBEK 2020”, which will be held on 22 April 2020.
The next instalment of the Frugal Innovation and Circular Economy Conference InnoFrugal UK will be held at Cambridge Judge Business School on 17 March 2020.
Join 80+ industry professionals at Europe's leading packaging waste event, Achieving a circular economy through packaging and packaging waste, from 23 to 25 March 2020 in Brussels, Belgium.
Join the final SeRaMCo conference on 25 and 26 March in Kaiserslautern, Germany to hear the results of the project’s 3-year top-notch research and receive the latest information regarding building with concrete made from recycled aggregates and sands.
Join this interdisciplinary circular economy conference on 21 and 22 September 2020 in Freiburg, Germany, to critically explore prospects, potentials, and limitations of circular economy initiatives for social justice and environmental sustainability.
The automobile recycling industry is gathering in Geneva for its 20th annual conference during the Geneva International Motor Show from 11 to 13 March 2020.
Vassiliko Cement Works received an important recognition for its innovative project aimed at optimizing the production process with the use of alternative fuels and innovative applications.
Austria's new government programme makes a clear commitment to the circular economy. The launch of Austria's Circular Futures Platform is an expression of this commitment.
New Plastic Planet campaign animations have been developed, which are now available for use and download for free from WRAP' Resource Library.
The European Commission is calling for applications with a view to selecting members of the Technical Expert group on Sustainable Finance.
The European Commission is aiming to reveal its plan to curb single-use plastics in May.
The first Slovenian Circular Economy Roadmap will pave the way towards a circular economy.
EU ambassadors approve new rules on waste management and recycling.
Introducing the circular events challenge.
Recycle Now plastics campaign
Avec 1784 contributions et 16071 votes enregistrés, la première phase de la consultation du public pour l’élaboration de la feuille de route économie circulaire a été un succès.